New Course: Human Factors in Critical Care

Rethink how crises are managed, even when stress levels are high. Enrolments are now open for our new course, led by Associate Professor Stu Marshall, starting 1st May 2023.

Every day in healthcare, experts are making split second life-or-death decisions. These are often made when the information they have is scarce or incomplete. Health professionals react rapidly to emergency circumstances performing complex procedures from memory.

Human Factors is the science of redesigning the environment, the equipment, the training and processes to ensure every decision is well-informed and every action is performed accurately. This course will equip you with the knowledge and skills to design future care that is safer and more efficient.

Designed and led by Associate Professor Stuart Marshall, ‘Human Factors in Critical Care’ is a flexible, online, 8 week course with a single day face-to-face intensive.

‘Human Factors in Critical Care’ is offered as a single subject, or as part of the Graduate Certificate in Disaster and Terror Medicine, or as an elective in the Master of Advanced Nursing degrees.

Key details:

  • Flexible 8 week online course
  • 1 day face-to-face workshop

What will I learn?

On completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  • Identify and describe the scope of human factors/ergonomics and apply it to their work setting
  • Analyse the components of a work task and determine how it might be modified using human factors techniques
  • Perform an evaluation of an environmental or organisational aspect of their work that affects human performance
  • Appraise the effects of team processes on performance and give examples of how these could be improved
  • Recognise how linear models of incident analysis fail to capture complexity of how work is performed
  • Construct a translational simulation to address a potential incident

Dates and times

All learning is conducted online, except for one compulsory face-to-face workshop (Friday 16th June). Students will be required to attend campus on this day.

Enrol online by: 25th April 2023

Access to materials: 24th April 2023

Teaching period: 1st May to 25th June 2023

Single subject fees

$3,784 (assessed)

$3,028 (non-assessed)

Applications have been submitted for registration of CPD points with CICM and ACEM.

Who you will learn from

Associate Professor Stuart Marshall is the Lead, Interprofessional Team Work & Crisis Management in the Department of Critical Care. He is a member of the Council of the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthestists, works as an anaesthetist in Frankston and as the Lead in Clinical Human Factors at the Alfred Hospital Centre for Health Innovation in Melbourne. He has teaching and research portfolios in Human Factors and Patient Safety at The University of Melbourne and Monash University. Associate Professor Marshall is an associate editor of Anaesthesia, and Advances in Simulation, and an editor of the international Human Factors in Healthcare journal. He has an interest in how to support decision making in clinical emergencies and how innovation can improve safety an efficiency of care.

Other contributors:

  • Marion Orchison, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Critical Care and humanitarian specialist with 15 years experience working in the sector, helping prepare technical experts for field deployments.
  • Steven Shorrock, Psychologist, Chartered Ergonomist and Human Factors Specialist, with experience in aviation, rail, onshore process industries, healthcare and government administration, currently working at Eurocontrol.
  • Jo Douglass, Director of Research and James Stewart Professor of Medicine, The Royal Melbourne Hospital & The University of Melbourne.
  • Tony Smith, Clinical Director of St John Ambulance and Intensivist, Auckland City Hospital, Aotearoa, New Zealand
  • Rob Heaslip, Area Manager for Ambulance Victoria.
  • Ellen Flint, Executive Director of People and Culture at The Royal Melbourne Hospital.

More information




Phone: + 61 3 8344 0149

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