Advanced Application of Ethical Theory in Clinical Nursing Practice


Nursing Care

Holder of subject:

Dr Alice Kiger, Associate Professor
Dr Irena Trobec, Assistant Professor

Education providers:

  • Dr Alice Kiger, Associate Professor
  • Dr Irena Trobec, Assistant Professor
  • Dr Sonja Kalauz, Assistant Professor
  • Dr Vesna Čuk, Senior Lecturer, Assistant

Contact hours - lectures:


Contact hours - seminar:


Contact hours - exercises:


Individual student work:





Second cycle study program Nursing





Subject specific competences:


The student:

The overall aim of the course is to provide students with an opportunity to look critically at ethical issues encountered in their practice and to encourage them to assess their own actions and responsibilities with enhanced judgement.
Specific learning objectives include that by the end of the course students will be able to:

  • Explain the importance of ethics in professional practice
  • Identify important aspects of the historical background to professional ethics in health care
  • Identify relevant ethical/professional codes of practice
  • Explain basic ethical principles, indicating possible areas for conflict
  • Critically discuss competing theoretical/ philosophical perspectives
  • Apply processes of ethical reasoning to selected professional situations
  • Critically analyse ethical dimensions of their own professional practice
  • Apply enhanced ethical judgement in their professional practice

Mandatory and recommended references:

Mandatory references:

Thompson I, Melia KM, Boyd KM, Horsburgh D. Nursing Ethics. 5th ed.  Edinburgh:  Churchill Livingstone/Elsevier; 2006.
Kalauz, S. Etika u sestrinstvu. Zagreb: Medicinska naklada; 2012.
Kalauz, S. Sestrinska profesija u svjetlu bioetičkog pluriperspektivizma. Zagreb: Pergamena: Hrvatska komora medicinskih sestara; 2011.
Hugman R. New Approaches in Ethics for the Caring Professions.  Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan; 2005.
Butts J, Rich K. Nursing Ethics : Across the Curriculum and into Practice.  Sudbury, Massachusetts: Jones & Bartlett; 2005.
Fry ST, Veatch RM, Taylor CR. Case studies in nursing ethics. Sudbury: Jones & Bartlett Publishers; 2010.
Bosek MSD, Savage TA. The ethical component of nursing education: Integrating ethics into clinical experience. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2007.

Conditions for the inclusion in the study:

Basic nursing qualification.

Assessment methods:

 Type (examination, oral, coursework, project): (20%)
Group presentation
Essays (2)
Seminar contribution
Written examination (80%)

Teaching methods:

Lectures, group work, text reading, practical exercises, audiovisual presentations, case studies.