Graduate Certificate in Child and Family Health Nursing

Speciality Classification
Nurses and Midwives
1 Year Part-time
Australian College of Nursing

Course overview

The Graduate Certificate in Child and Family Health Nursing (CFHN) aims to provide nurses with a sound understanding of child and family health nursing within a legal, moral and ethical framework that reflects current models of care and government policy and practice initiatives. The course is designed to engage students in the planning and evaluation of their own clinical and educational needs in an environment conducive to their learning and development to prepare them for work in this specialty nursing field.

Assessing and facilitating child and family health and wellbeing within a culturally diverse Australian society requires an appreciation of the bio-psychosocial, cultural and emotional needs of the family, and the promotion of a nurturing and supportive environment in which children can thrive.

Nurses working, or intending to work, in the specialty of CFHN require a clear understanding of primary health care and health promotion, family dynamics, structure and function, and consideration of the connections between the family, their community and health care providers. Health and developmental surveillance of infants and young children continues to be a major focus of contemporary CFHN services, but the expert model of the past has been replaced by a family partnership model that focuses on the provision of psychosocial support and for new parents as well as continuing to be a central point of access for families into community health services.

Career outcomes

A Graduate Certificate in Child and Family Health Nursing is an investment in your future and will provide you with the knowledge and skills needed to ensure better outcomes for your patients and progress your career, leading to opportunities in clinical education, management and specialist nursing roles.

Learning outcomes

This course is designed to develop specific learning outcomes. Students will:

  • demonstrate the knowledge, skills and attitudes required to practice in the specialty of child and family health nursing that is benchmarked against professional child and family health nursing practice standards
  • develop an understanding of best practice models, policies and standards to provide contemporary, evidence based practice within child and family health nursing service delivery
  • analyse and apply the principles of primary health care, health promotion and relationship-based nursing practice to facilitate optimal health and development of infants, young children and families
  • identify the key elements required to foster effective therapeutic relationships with infants, young children, families and communities within the professional boundaries of ethical nursing practice and health care responsibilities
  • discuss the importance of the role of the child and family health nurse, working in a strengths-based partnership model, in the promotion of healthy family functioning and child-parent attachment
  • demonstrate an awareness of, and sensitivity towards social, cultural, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, environmental and political factors that influence the practice of child and family health nursing
  • critically examine and apply current research to develop reflective, problem-solving and critical thinking skills in the context of contemporary child and family health nursing practice.

Course structure and fees

The Graduate Certificate in Child and Family Health Nursing is a one year course, consisting of four 10-week terms.

Students will need to complete 4 core units. One unit is studied per term.

Approximate hours of study are 12 – 15 hours per week.



2021 Member price (10% discount)

 / 2021 Non-member price



Tier 1





Tier 2





Tier 3





Tier 4





Fees are subject to change without notice.

ACN offers a flexible payment option allowing students to pay their fees on a term-by-term basis. Each term’s fees are due upfront, prior to term commencement.

FEE-HELP is also available for eligible students.

Entry requirements

Admission to GC courses is based on academic merit and selection. In addition, applicants must satisfy any prerequisites or additional requirements specified for particular courses, including ACN’s general eligibility criteria.

All applicants seeking admission are required to:

  • hold a Bachelor of Nursing or registered nurse* equivalent qualification
  • be currently registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) or the equivalent registering authority in your country of origin
  • have a minimum of one year postgraduate experience
  • be currently employed in an appropriate clinical setting.

*For some GC units of study, consideration may be given for applicants who are not registered nurses on an individual basis.

Meet your nurse educator

Sue Mapletoft MACN, Nurse Educator – Higher Education

RN, RM, MNsg Infant, Child and Youth Health (WSU), Cert CFH (NSWCN), CertIVTAE, MCAFHNA

Sue has been nursing for over 30 years, mainly in community health, and in particular child and family health, which is where her passion lies. Sue currently coordinates our Graduate Certificate in Child and Family Health Nursing and our Graduate Certificate in Community and Primary Health Care Nursing, as well as teaching short courses. Sue has a Masters of Nursing with Distinction and is a past recipient of Western Sydney University Dean’s Medal and the Royal Alexandra Hospital for Children Award for academic excellence.

Graduate Certificate in Child and Family Health Nursing
Speciality Classification
Nurses and Midwives
Provider Type
1 Year Part-time
Price Details
2021 Non-member price (Tier 1) - $2,300.00 ; 2021 Member price (10% discount)