GWL407 - Death, Dying, Grief and Bereavement

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Last revision date Sep 30, 2019 12:03:35 AM
Last review date Dec 2, 2019 12:15:01 AM

Subject Title
Death, Dying, Grief and Bereavement

Subject Description

This course will provide the student with an introduction to the issues that seniors and their caregivers experience in death, dying, grief and bereavement from a multicultural perspective. While the focus of the course is on geriatric end of life issues, content will cover a lifespan perspective as sometimes grandparents ?survive? their children and grandchildren. Attention
will be on: developing students? insight into current relevant theories and practices on death and the dying process in contemporary Canadian society; application of clinical assessments will be used when evaluating for and creating end-of-life (EOL) care plans for seniors; working with volunteers and family caregivers to provide support during the dying process; understanding the loss and grieving process and working with families to adjust to loss and bereavement from a lifespan perspective; identifying effective palliative programming in community and institutional settings; promoting advocacy and funding support for seniors experiencing the dying process and the ethical dilemmas when applying the new law regarding death with dignity. Identifying the needs of older adults and their caregiver support systems will be integrated into the learning process. Students will be discussing the regulations and laws surrounding ethical issues encountered in the palliative and hospice field and reflecting on their own cultural, religious, and spiritual beliefs regarding death and the dying process. As well, students will be provided with an opportunity to reflect on personal loss history and how this may impact on their professional practice in the field when working with seniors and caregivers.

Credit Status
One credit

Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this subject the student will be able to:

  1. Describe theories related to the dying process used in the helping fields through presentations and in-class assignments
  2. Develop a holistic approach to end of life care using the empowerment model in a multidisciplinary setting by conducting needs assessments, creating “wish lists” & advanced directives, Substitute Decision-making (SDM) designations, and individualized care planning for older adults and their families
  3. Identify the losses, challenges, and common ethical & moral dilemmas faced by the professional Team, the dying person, and their family/support systems at EOL with a pluralistic cultural lens through presentations and reflective writing
  4. Critically analyse some of the current social geriatric issues and assumptions related to the dying and bereavement processes by reviewing current relevant legislation impacting the client and family system e.g. MAID Act, Patients First Act, AODA, PHIPA, Mental Health Act, SDM Act and debating their impact on older adults
  5. Describe the theories and stages of grief from a holistic-lifespan framework throughout the bereavement process using experiential approaches that also identify for anticipatory grief, trauma and complicated grief
  6. Identify one’s own feelings, attitudes, beliefs, and values related to the dying and bereavement processes that may impact the professional’s engagement with clients and their families using reflective writing skills and in-class group discussions
  7. Evaluate the diverse ways in which religions, cultures, and theories shape the process dying and bereavement through interviewing professionals in the industry and observations using a “global pluralistic lens” and individual presentations
  8. Evaluate for compassion fatigue and burn out commonly experienced in the field of hospice/palliative care and bereavement by identifying triggers and creating an effective self-care plan. (see outcome 6)
  9. Critically analyse recent research on and topics in EOL affecting older adults and their caregivers through professional journal reviews and “pop” news bytes that “inform” the public

Essential Employability Skills
Communicate clearly, concisely and correctly in the written, spoken and visual form that fulfils the purpose and meets the needs of the audience.

Respond to written, spoken, or visual messages in a manner that ensures effective communication.

Apply a systematic approach to solve problems.

Use a variety of thinking skills to anticipate and solve problems.

Analyze, evaluate, and apply relevant information from a variety of sources.

Show respect for diverse opinions, values, belief systems, and contributions of others.

Interact with others in groups or teams in ways that contribute to effective working relationships and the achievement of goals.

Manage the use of time and other resources to complete projects.

Take responsibility for one's own actions, decisions, and consequences.

Academic Integrity
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Please visit the Academic Integrity website to understand and learn more about how to prepare and submit work so that it supports academic integrity, and to avoid academic misconduct.

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Accommodation for Students with Disabilities
The College will provide reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities in order to promote academic success. If you require accommodation, contact the Counselling and Accessibility Services Office at ext. 22900 to initiate the process for documenting, assessing and implementing your individual accommodation needs.