Therapeutic Modalities in Psychiatric Nursing

Health Sciences
Nursing - Psychiatric
Course Code
PNUR 4710
Semester Length
15 weeks
Max Class Size
Method Of Instruction
Typically Offered
To be determined


Course Description
Students will develop an understanding of the most relevant therapeutic approach for clients through examination and analysis of selected current therapeutic approaches and issues related to psychiatric nursing practice. Self growth-oriented techniques, therapeutic environments, crisis intervention, and advanced pharmacology related to different age groups are addressed. Issues related to health beliefs and health care system complexity, legal and ethical considerations, and strategies which influence the decision-making process are discussed. There will be opportunity to apply the concepts to psychiatric nursing practice within the context of primary health care delivery systems.
Course Content
  1. common therapeutic approaches
  • most suited client populations
  • most suitable level of intervention
  • selecting degree of complexity
  • self-growth techniques and target groups
  • indicators used to analyze traditional therapeutic approaches
  • client populations, their characteristics and needs
  • components of a health care system
  • psychotropic agents - review
  • general principles and mechanisms of psychotropic drug action
  • drug interaction effects
  • psychotropic agents and the life span variances
  • therapeutic environment review
  • networking
  • team roles in a therapeutic environment
  • systems use of communication patterns
  • essential elements of a therapeutic environment in all settings
  • health care system decision-makers
  • decision-making in treatment situations
  • health care models
  • principles of effective decision-making
  • Methods Of Instruction

    Students will acquire knowledge and skill and learn to apply concepts through a variety of means of instruction and activities, including: lecture, demonstration, audio-visual aids, case studies, debate forums, critical thinking exercises and teamwork. 

    Means of Assessment

    The course evaluation is consistent with Douglas College evaluation policy.  An evaluation schedule is presented at the beginning of the course.


    This is a graded course.

    Learning Outcomes

    1.  discriminate among selected therapeutic approaches

    1.1      identify therapeutic approaches most suited to client populations
    1.2      identify the level of intervention required
    1.3      identify the degree of complexity required in the therapeutic situation

    2.  describe selected self-growth techniques which are used to effect changes in individuals or groups

    2.1      relaxation techniques
    2.2      exercise regimes
    2.3      biofeedback
    2.4      imaging

    3.  analyze the use of traditional therapeutic approaches to effect change in individuals or groups

    3.1      psychotropic agents
    3.2      electroconvulsive therapy
    3.3      milieu therapy
    3.4      crisis intervention

    4.  identify components of a health care system which affect health care delivery
    5.  review psychotropic agents - indications for use, actions, dosages, side effects and contraindications
    6.  relate the general principles and underlying mechanisms of action of psychotropic agents
    7.  describe mechanisms that give rise to drug interactions
    8.  analyze effects of psychotropic agents on client populations across the lifespan
    9.  analyze the concept of therapeutic environment and its use in all client settings
    10 describe ways to assist the client to establish networks within the community and health care system
    11 describe roles of the psychiatric nurse and team members in establishing a therapeutic environment
    12. dentify formal and informal communication patterns between and among clients, nurses, team members and families
    13. analyze the essential internal and external environmental factors which contribute to a therapeutic environment in all settings
    14. identify decision-makers in the health care system
    15. analyze the basis for treatment decisions in the health care system
    16. describe selected health care models and their effects on decision-making
    17. apply principles of effective decision-making in independent and interdependent situations
    18. describe the impact of decision-making strategies in selected client and staff situations
    19. analyze uses and abuses of physical restraint, seclusion and use of medications
    20. analyze patients rights regarding treatment, informed consent
    21. analyze the role of patient advocate

    Textbook Materials

    A list of required and optional textbooks and materials is provided for students at the beginning of each semester.



    No prerequisite courses.


    No corequisite courses.


    No equivalent courses.

    Course Guidelines

    Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

    Course Transfers

    Institution Transfer Details Effective Dates
    There are no applicable transfer credits for this course.

    Course Offerings

    Fall 2021

    There aren't any scheduled upcoming offerings for this course.