Care of the Critically Ill Neonate (SNM3264/SNM672)

This page gives details of both the undergraduate degree module (level 6) and post graduate masters module (level 7).  Both units are delivered as a shared module with individual assessment modes.

Who is it for?

This unit is for nurses who are registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).  You must have either an Advanced Diploma in adult or children's nursing (level 6 applicants) or a relevant Nursing Degree (for level 7 applicants); and currently by employed within the neonatal environment.  You must have at least 6 months experience of working in a neonatal environment before commencing this module.  The module is part of a suite of modules that run over year one as part of the:

NURU144 BMedSci (Hons) Health and Social Care Studies (Neonatal Intensive Care) - SNM3264


NURT78 Postgraduate Certificate in Neonatal Intensive Care - (Masters in Advanced Practice) SNM672

Please be clear when applying for the QIS (qualification in speciality) which level of module you require.

Please note that this module cannot be accessed until SNM3263 (level 6) or SNM673 (level 7) have been completed.

Overview of content:

  • A pathophysiology approach to bodily systems will be taken.  This will include teaching sessions on the altered anatomy and physiology of all major systems linking to altered embryology and fetal development across all gestations of infants - focusing on disease processes
  • Management of infants with critical care needs includes topics such as advanced resuscitation and stabilisation, ventilation strategies, haemodynamic stability and management
  • The support required by the family in this context

What is it about?

This unit is designed to build on the learning from SNM3623/SNM673.  It enables neonatal nurses to develop an in depth knowledge of the pathophysiology of the newborn with reference to establishing, supporting and maintaining homeostasis for infants who require resuscitation at birth and subsequent intensive care.  Completion of this module contributes towards the Higher Education England descriptors for neonatal nurse training:  QIS (qualification in speciality)

How does it enhance practice?

Completion of this unit will enable you, the practitioner, to use specialist skills, knowledge and expertise relevant to emergency management and intensive care of the newborn.  This includes a deeper and broader understanding of the neonate and family health needs within the context of changing health care provision and the use of evidence based practice.

The 20 level 6 academic credit awarded on successful completion of this unit (SNM3264) can be used towards becoming QIS with a Degree in Neonatal Intensive Care.

The 15 level 7 academic credit awarded on successful completion of this unit (SNM672) can be used towards becoming QIS with a Post Graduate Certificate in Neonatal Intensive Care.

Mode of Assessment:

Part 1 - An OSCE (observed structured clinical exam) that examines an element of clinical care pertinent to the care of the baby in NICU.
Part 2 - A reflection on an infant receiving intensive care that has a pathophysiology focus underpinning the discussion (level 6).
A case study that is focused on the critical care of a neonate and underpinning pathophysiology (LM).
Marking grids and learning outcomes will be provided at the beginning of the module that reflect the level of assessment.

Links to Professional/Academic Award:

BMedSci (Hons) (Neonatal Intensive Care) - level 6
PGCert in Neonatal Intensive Care - level 7
Masters in Advancing Practice - level 7


20 credits at level 6 and 15 credits at level 7

How this unit fits into the Course Structure:

BMedSci (Hons) Neonatal Intensive Care

60 credits from:

SNM3263 - Stabilisation and Management of the Special Care Baby (20 credits)
SNM3264 - Care of the Critically Ill Neonate (20 credits)
SNM3262 - Specialist Neonatal Practice: Work based Learning (20 credits)

20 credits from:

SNM3182 - Promoting Evidence Based Practice

40 credits from:

SNM3016 - Developing Clinical Practice (40 credits) or
SNM3136 - Dissertation (40 credits)

Students cannot commence the dissertation unit until they have successfully completed 80 credits which must include the QIS modules (60 credits) plus the evidence based practice (20 credits).

PGCert Neonatal Intensive Care

In order to gain the full Postgraduate Certificate award, students must complete the three compulsory units.  The units run once a year - please note that SNM673 (semester 1) must be completed before assessing SNM672 (semester 2).  SNM674 runs from September to June (inclusive).

SNM673 - Stabilisation and Management of the Special Care Baby (15 credits)
SNM672 - Care of the Critically Ill Neonate (15 credits)
SNM674 - Specialist Neonatal Practice: Work based Learning (30 credits)

Start Date: 11 September 2018

Attendance Dates: 11.09.18, 25.09.18, 09.10.18, 23.10.18, 06.11.18, 20.11.18

Start Date: 15 January 2019

Attendance Dates: 15.01.19, 29.01.19, 12.02.19, 26.02.19, 12.03.19, 26.03.19

Application and Funding

To apply for this course you need to complete an online application form and you can do this by selecting the "apply" link at the top right of this page. A fees and funding form will automatically be sent on submission of your application form.  Details of funding option can be found on our Funding Page.

If successful in your application for the course you will receive a confirmation email with the exact details of the location of teaching, closer to the start date.

The School of Nursing and Midwifery is based at Barber House, Glossop Road, Sheffield; opposite the Royal Hallamshire Hospital however teaching may take place across the University site. Please see a map below of the Central Campus.


Programme Leader/Contact Name:

Barbara Howard

Tel: 0114 222 2063 Email: