Graduate Certificate of Nursing Online

Why Nursing at JCU?

James Cook University’s online Graduate Certificate of Nursing will give you the boost you need to achieve your professional goals in today’s fast-paced healthcare system.

100% online & part-time

Fast-track your career with flexible study you can balance around your life. Study one subject at a time and complete your degree in as little as eight months part-time.

Choose your career pathway

Choose to specialise in either advanced practice, education or leadership and management. Have the opportunity to continue your studies and gain a master's degree with a double major.

Ranked in the top 25 universities in Australia

JCU is in the top 25 Australian universities in the 2022 THE World University Rankings. You’ll study and connect with industry leaders, specialists and experienced nurse academics.

Program Highlights

  • Choose from three in-demand specialisations.
  •  Transform your practice and improve your clinical skillset.
  •  Develop key skills to help you succeed in clinical contexts.
  •  Fast-track your career with 100% online study.
  •  Be supported by a dedicated Student Success Advisor.
  •  Begin the pathway to a master degree.

A hospital corridor with nurses

Nursing student smiling

Make Your Mark on Nursing

Want to make your mark on nursing? JCU’s online Graduate Certificate of Nursing will help prepare you for the healthcare system of tomorrow.

Australia's healthcare landscape is changing. Governments, industry and healthcare providers are working smarter to meet rising costs coupled with the increasing demand on our health system.

You’ll develop advanced knowledge and specialist skills in your chosen nursing field. You’ll be able to take on nursing leadership roles in your area of practice, receive increased professional recognition and boost your potential to seize new opportunities in your nursing career.


What you will study

To complete your online Graduate Certificate of Nursing, choose from one of three majors: Leadership and Management, Education or Advanced Practice, so you can shape your study to suit your own career path.

JCU offers subjects from Ethics and Health Management to Clinical Coaching, so you can focus on areas that will help put you on your best career path.

Want more details about these subjects? Find out more from our course guide.


*Duration dependent on individual study path and subject availability. Please speak to an Enrolment Advisor for more information.

Leadership and Management major
  • Leading and Managing in Health
    This subject explores foundational concepts of leadership and management in diverse healthcare settings and geographic locations. Read more
  • Ethics and Health Management
    This subject examines ethical principles and theories, exploring how managers may apply these in a healthcare context. Read more
  • Effective Clinical Governance
    This subject explores the development of clinical governance and contemporary issues in healthcare workplaces. Read more
  • Persuasive Communication
    This subject explores professional communication strategies across a variety of mediums in the healthcare workplace. Read more
Education major
  • Principles of Education for the Health Professional
    This subject introduces the most prominent theories in adult learning and the ways in which they can be applied to a healthcare setting. Read more
  • Teaching in Practice Settings
    This subject focuses on the application of key theories and specific strategies related to teaching for health professionals in the clinical setting. Read more
  • Clinical Coaching
    This subject explores the knowledge required in clinical coaching and how to use specific strategies related to healthcare contexts. Read more
  • Persuasive Communication
    This subject explores professional communication strategies across a variety of mediums in the healthcare workplace. Read more
Advanced Practice major
  • Quality Use of Medicines in Practice
    This subject explores pharmacology and principles relevant to the quality use of medicines in practice. Read more
  • Effective Clinical Governance
    This subject explores the development of clinical governance and contemporary issues in healthcare workplaces. Read more
  • Advanced Health Assessment
    This subject provides the knowledge and skills required to complete system-specific and comprehensive health histories and physical examinations. Read more
  • Persuasive Communication
    This subject explores professional communication strategies across a variety of mediums in the healthcare workplace. Read more

double major graph

Choose from 1 of 3 principle specialisations

Advanced Practice: Giving you the skills you need to deliver advanced patient care

Leadership and Management: Giving you the confidence and knowledge to embrace leadership or management positions in healthcare, or

Education: Giving you the ability to take on educational practice roles in clinical or non-clinical environments.

You may also choose to continue your studies and gain a master's degree with a double major.


Course information

With JCU’s 100% online Graduate Certificate of Nursing, you can choose a specialisation based on your career goals. You may also be eligible for Recognition of Prior Learning so you can complete your degree sooner.

  • Entry Requirements
  • Recognition of Prior Learning
  • Learning Outcomes
  • Career Outcomes
  • Inherent Requirements
Entry Requirements

To be eligible to enrol in the online Graduate Certificate of Nursing, applicants must have:

  • Completed an AQF Level 7 Bachelor of Nursing, or equivalent qualification, and;
  • Registration as a Registered Nurse (Division 1) or Registered Midwife with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) or equivalent registration with the relevant registering authority for applicants outside of Australia;
  • Completed a minimum of one year of full-time clinical experience, or the part-time equivalent, as a registered nurse.
  • Applicants of non-English speaking backgrounds must meet the English language proficiency requirements of Band 3a – Schedule II of the JCU Admissions Policy.

Not sure if you meet these entry criteria? Our Enrolment Advisors can assist you.

Recognition of Prior Learning

If you have previously studied related subjects that are relevant to this course, you may be eligible to receive credits towards your Graduate Certificate of Nursing, cutting the overall time it could take to complete your qualification.

Learning Outcomes

The online Graduate Certificate of Nursing core subjects will provide you with a well-rounded experience, with learning outcomes that focus on:

  • Apply specialised knowledge, skills and technical competencies across a variety of health contexts, including tropical, rural, remote and Indigenous settings

  • Effectively communicate using high-level written and oral language skills

  • Reflect on practice to ensure quality and promote an environment of excellence in healthcare

  • Analyse, synthesise and evaluate a range of data and evidence to provide solutions to complex nursing problems

Career Outcomes

Depending on your specialisation, after completing your Graduate Certificate of Nursing you will have the skills to succeed in positions such as:

  • Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Clinical Nurse Consultant
  • Leadership & Management
  • Nurse Unit Manager
  • Clinical Teacher
  • Nurse Educator
Inherent Requirements

Inherent requirements are the identified abilities, attributes, skills, and behaviours that must be demonstrated, during the learning experience, to successfully complete a course. These abilities, attributes, skills, and behaviours preserve the academic integrity of the University’s learning, assessment, and accreditation processes, and where applicable, meet the standards of a profession.

All JCU students have the opportunity to demonstrate, with reasonable adjustments where applicable, the inherent requirements for their course.

Meet our Nursing Academics

Our academics will empower you to improve health outcomes, enrich your nursing practice and equip yourself with the skills to take your career to the next level.

Nested qualifications: Early entry exit options

JCU’s Graduate Certificate of Nursing is a pathway towards obtaining a master degree. After completing your graduate certificate, you can continue your studies and gain a Graduate Diploma of Nursing and a Master of Nursing. Get in touch with an Enrolment Advisor to find out more.


Nursing nested qualification graph Nursing nested qualification graph

Your personalised Enrolment Advisor

The role of an Enrolment Advisor is to ensure that you have all the resources and academic support needed to be successful in your studies.

Enrolments Advisors are here to help you with:

  • Determining your eligibility for the course.
  • Understanding the structure of your course and what you can expect to learn.
  • Time management strategies for success.
  • How to apply for financial assistance and FEE-HELP.
  • Any questions you have about your application.

Contact hours for your Enrolment Advisor 

Monday and Tuesday: 8am-6pm (AEST)
Wednesday and Thursday: 8am-7pm (AEST)
Friday: 8am - 5pm (AEST)


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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between a Graduate Certificate of Nursing and a Master of Nursing?
A Graduate Certificate of Nursing comprises four subjects and can be completed in as little as eight months, while a Master of Nursing comprises 12 subjects and can be completed in 24 months. A master degree is a more advanced qualification. The Graduate Certificate of Nursing can be a pathway towards completing a master degree.
Is the program self paced?
This degree is 100% online meaning you can study when and where it suits you. Our flexible online structure means you can study one subject at a time over a 7 week period and all resource material is accessible 24/7 on our online learning platform.
How much does it cost to complete the Graduate Certificate in Nursing?
JCU Online's Graduate Certificate of Nursing comprises four subjects and costs $2,905 per subject. FEE-HELP is available for eligible students.
What is FEE-HELP?
FEE-HELP is a government loan scheme that can help eligible students to pay for all or part of their postgraduate tuition. You can find more information on our Fees page, or reach out to our Enrolment Advisors on 1300 535 919.
How do I apply for the Graduate Certificate of Nursing?
First, call us at 1300 535 919 or email You will be connected with one of our Student Enrolment Advisors who will discuss your career goals, answer any questions and help you select the right course, ensuring your application experience is as smooth as possible. Next, you will need to gather your documents – this may include transcripts, certificates, advanced standing documents (if applicable) and proof of English language skills (if applicable). Your Student Enrolment Advisor will help guide you and make sure you have the correct documents. Once you have all the necessary documents, you can apply online.

Ready to get started?

Download a course guide

For more detailed and up-to-date information about your degree, including:

  • Information about the course
  • Course duration
  • Fees
  • Course descriptions
  • What to expect from the course
Download course guide

Speak with an Enrolment Advisor

Investing in the right course for you is important to us and we’re here to help. Simply request a call back and will assist you with:

  • Entry requirements
  • Choosing right course
  • How to apply and enrol
  • How online study works
  • Course duration and fees
Enquire Now