Graduate nursing programs

Graduate nursing programs

Nursing with a difference for graduates

The Child and Adolescent Health Service (CAHS) offers three graduate registered nursing programs in the following areas:

  • Community Health 
  • Mental Health
  • Perth Children's Hospital

Find out more about each of the programs below.

Community Health

Community Health Graduate Registered Nurse program

Our Graduate Registered Nurse Program is a 12-month program in community health nursing in partnership with Curtin University.

The program is designed for graduate nurses interested in a community primary health specialisation. Our program offers a unique opportunity for graduates to provide early identification, prevention and intervention community-based services to children, adolescents and their families to improve health outcomes and support the growth and development of healthy communities and school populations. 

Our program offers

The Community Health Graduate Registered Nurse program offers a safe and supportive environment where you will develop clinical knowledge and competence and will be provided with site-based preceptorship with regular clinical support and study days. Graduates will rotate through a variety of community services and locations with specialisation in school and child health clinical practice. 

You will enrol in a Graduate Certificate in Clinical Specialisation-Primary Health with Curtin University and will complete three fully funded units:

  • NURS5044 Specialty Clinical Practice 1 - school health (25 credit points)
  • Advanced Nursing Practice in Primary Health Care (25 credit points)
  • NURS5045 Specialty Clinical Practice 2 - child health (25 credit points).
The third unit NURS5046 Clinical Safety and Quality (25 credit points) will complete the graduate certificate, the cost of this unit will be the responsibility of the applicant. 

This program is during office hours, Monday to Friday only.

How to apply

Recruitment for the 12 month program occurs through GradConnect.

Applicants must be able to travel across sites and must hold a valid driver’s licence.

For further information or questions

Please contact the Clinical Nurse Manager – Community Health - Graduate Registered Nurse Program on (08) 6151 1304 or email us.

Mental Health

Mental Health Registered Nurse Graduate program

The Registered Nurse Graduate program offers a 54 week program in mental health nursing in partnership with Edith Cowan University (ECU).

Graduates will enrol into the Master of Clinical Nursing course via ECU, but may exit from the course with a Graduate Certificate in Clinical Nursing (Mental Health). 

During the program, graduates will have the opportunity to work across a wide range of practice settings, gaining a broad range of clinical experience, and be provided with regular and ongoing clinical support, through a site based preceptorship model.


  • A 54 week full-time contract
  • Formal study days at Edith Cowan University
  • 10 supernumerary days in the clinical area
  • Excellent support from experienced mental health nurses and educators
  • Rotational nursing roster (may include day, afternoon and nights). 
  • Participants travelling to and from regional locations or rotations may be eligible for financial assistance.


The program offers six months in the Mental Health inpatient unit at Perth Children's Hospital and rotating to WA Country Health Services (WACHS) for a six month rural and remote placement on the roaming program.

Roaming program

The roaming program offers three positions per intake. This program offers an opportunity to undertake the program for the first six months within Metropolitan Mental Health Services and a further six months regional rotation within WACHS. Participating WACHS sites include: 

  • Albany Mental Health Unit
  • Bunbury Adult Psychiatric Unit
  • Broome Mental Health Unit
  • Kalgoorlie Mental Health Unit.

What will I learn? 

The successful applicant would enrol in the Master of Clinical Nursing Course, but may exit from the course with a Graduate Certificate in Clinical Nursing (Mental Health) on completion of three 20 credit point units:

  1. Contemporary Issues in Mental Health (CMH5109)
  2. Assessment in Mental Health (CMH5110) On completion of these two units students are eligible to enrol in one elective which will complete the Graduate Certificate. Students can select from:
  • Community Mental Health
  • Forensic Mental Health
  • Child, Adolescent and Youth Mental Health
  • Drug use and addictive behaviours. 

Course delivery

Units CMH5109 & CMH5110 would be mixed mode i.e. face to face and online. Face to face would comprise:

  • One study block at ECU prior to commencement at your health site
  • Two follow up study days at ECU
  • The third elective unit would be delivered by ECU fully online.

Cost per graduate

The first two units listed below will be funded by the Nursing and Midwifery Office (NMO):

  1. Contemporary Issues in Mental Health (CMH5109)
  2. Assessment, Intervention and Skills in Mental Health (CMH5110) 
  3. The cost of the third unit will be the responsibility of the applicant 

For further course information and fees for the elective unit please contact Edith Cowan University (external website). Grants can be applied for through the NMO for support with the course. 

How to apply

Recruitment into this program is through the CAHS Mental Health option (CAMHS) option via GradConnect (external website), the WA Department of Health’s centralised graduate recruitment website. 

Program start dates

Program commences in February and August 2019.

Questions or queries

If you have any questions relating to the registered nursing program for mental health at CAHS, please contact Chelsey Catchpole, Staff Development Educator on 6456 1217.

Perth Children's Hospital

PCH Graduate Registered Nurse Program

The Perth Children’s Hospital (PCH) Graduate Registered Nurse Program offers a unique opportunity for newly registered nurses to receive professional transition support whilst working in the only paediatric teaching hospital in Western Australia. PCH is a brand new state of the art facility.  

The PCH Graduate Registered Nurse Program offers: 

  • A 12-month program consisting of two 6-month rotations in a variety of clinical areas.
  • Two intakes per year, one in February and one in August
  • A five-day Graduate Nurse orientation at commencement of program
  • Seven paid study days throughout the program to enhance role development, reflective practice, and clinical knowledge
  • Monthly guided tutorials to encourage and facilitate peer support and sharing of experiences
  • Supernumerary days at commencement in each area
  • Support by selected preceptors in each area
  • Ward-based learning opportunities which are enhanced by the Staff Development Nurse
  • A dedicated Graduate Registered Nurse Program Coordinator who oversees and supports the participants in the program.


No cost to participants.

Employment contract

Employed as a Registered Nurse Level 1.0  (80 hours per fortnight), on a 12-month fixed term contract.

How to apply 

The PCH Graduate Registered Nurse Program offers two intakes per year, February and August. Recruitment occurs annually in July through the Department of Health website, GradConnect

When applying for Perth Children’s Hospital through GradConnect please apply for the Child & Adolescent Health Service Graduate RN Program (536879).

The annual recruitment process is for the February and August intake the following year. 

For further information or questions

Please contact the Graduate Registered Nurse Program Coordinator: Department of Paediatric Nursing Education, Perth Children’s Hospital on 6456 0515 or email PCH Paediatric Nursing Education.