University of Technology Sydney

92286 International Perspectives in Midwifery

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2022 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Health
Credit points: 6 cp

Subject level:


Result type: Grade and marks

There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.


As students near the end of their course, this subject enables them to identify their role in Australia and in the wider community of midwifery. The implications and responsibilities that they are about to face as licensed practitioners is explored in relation to contemporary issues in the regulation of midwives. An exploration and critique of the ideologies associated with Western constructs of childbirth and maternity care allow for a new dimension in the students' learning. It examines the role of international bodies such as the World Health Organization in the maintenance of women's health and health care and the International Confederation of Midwives in the practice and regulation of midwifery.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

Upon successful completion of this subject students should be able to:
A. Explore variations in how the midwife-woman relationship is played out across the world (NMBA 12.2)
B. Explore the role of the World Health Organisation and the International Confederation of Midwives with particular reference to strategies to reduce maternal and infant mortality and morbidity (NMBA 10.1)
C. Analyse and compare sources of funding, maternity systems, midwifery regulation and education in Australia with comparable Western countries (NMBA 7.2)
D. Analyse how notions of ‘choice, control and continuity’ have been articulated within neo-liberal ideologies and the development of Western maternity services and compare with non-Western countries (NMBA 7.2)
E. Analyse and compare maternity service provision in Western and non-Western countries (NMBA 7.1)
F. Evaluate the effects on maternity service provision of movements such as ‘risk management’, ‘clinical governance’ and ‘evidence based medicine’
G. Explore a primary health care approach to midwifery practice (NMBA 9.1)
H. Explore contemporary issues in the regulation of midwives (NMBA 1.1)
I. Identify potential further educational opportunities for new graduates from three-year BMid courses who wish to work in developing countries or in remote Australia. (NMBA 13.2)

Teaching and learning strategies

In this subject, you will participate in a range of teaching and learning strategies that are designed to assist you to develop understanding and awareness of the issues related to international perspectives of midwifery care for women, families and communities.

Lectures and online learning materials
This subject benefits from both the real time delivery of content and access to online resources including videos and learning modules. Face to face lectures are provided to enable students to clarify, discuss and develop critical thinking directly related to women centered care in developing nations.

Online learning activities
Students access online learning resources including, videos, either prior to or in place of face-to-face attendance. Online resources enable students to clarify complex concepts and terminology, and engage with sensitive or confronting topics at their own pace. Online activities are then discussed in class to share learning, experiences and reflections.

Case studies and stories from practice
Case studies and stories from practice depict people and their families in clinical, community and social situations. Students use these scenarios to learn concepts, interpret information and develop creative solutions. Critical thinking is developed through analysis, interpretation of and reflection on issues or situations.

Seminars and oral presentations
Seminars involve students either individually or in groups providing presentations to the class. Students received feedback from peers and lecturers not only on their knowledge of a subject area, but also their ability to communicate their thoughts and relevant information in a clear, coherent and confident manner.


Assessment task 1: Conference Abstract


The purpose of this assessment item is for you to begin to consider the final presentation that you will be asked to give at the Midwifery Student International Conference. You are required to work in pairs or a maximum of three students to develop your abstract and to prepare for your final presentation.


This assessment task addresses subject learning objective(s):

A, B, C and D

This assessment task contributes to the development of graduate attribute(s):

.0 and .0

Weight: 20%

250 words maximum - abstracts over 250 words will not be accepted.

Assessment task 2: Report


The purpose of this assignment is for you to reflect on the Sustainable Development Goals in relation to an international organisation that provides care/services to women and their families.


This assessment task addresses subject learning objective(s):

B, C, D, E, F, G and H

This assessment task contributes to the development of graduate attribute(s):


Weight: 40%

2000 words - word limit will be strictly adhered to and marking will cease when word limit is reached. Reference list is not included in word limit. In-text citations are part of the word count. Reference list must be in Harvard (UTS) format and assessments will be returned and resubmission required if referencing is incorrect

Assessment task 3: Conference presentation; either poster or oral presentation


This assessment item is the culmination of the work you have completed in this subject. You will be required to present this assessment as either a paper, or a poster at the Midwifery Student International Conference.


This assessment task addresses subject learning objective(s):

B, C, D, H and I

This assessment task contributes to the development of graduate attribute(s):

.0, .0 and .0

Weight: 40%

As required for each type of presentation

Minimum requirements

When all items of assessment that carry a numerical mark are combined, an overall mark of 50% is required for a pass in this subject. Students will work in pairs for the first and third assessment pieces


Magar, V. 2015, 'Gender, health and the Sustainable Development Goals', Bulletin of the World Health Organization, vol. 93, no. 11, pp. 743-.

Renfrew, M., Homer, C., Downe, S., McFadden, A., Muir, N., Prentice, T. & ten Hoope-Bender, P. 2014, 'The Lancet series on midwifery: executive Summary', The Lancet, United Kingdom.

United Nations 2016, Sustainable Development Goals, United Nations, New York, viewed 29 June 2016, <>.

United Nations Population Fund 2016, UNFPA Midwifery, UNFPA, New York, viewed 29 June 2016, <>.

United Nations Population Fund, International Confederation of Midwives & World Health Organization 2014, State of the world's midwifery report: a universal pathway, a woman's right to health, UNFPA, ICM, WHO, Not Stated.

Van Lerberghe, W., Matthews, Z., Achadi, E., Ancona, C., Campbell, J., Channon, A., de Bernis, L., De Brouwere, V., Fauveau, V., Fogstad, H., Koblinsky, M., Liljestrand, J., Mechbal, A., Murray, S.F., Rathavay, T., Refr, H., Richard, F., Hoope-Bender, P.t. & Turkman, S. 2014, 'Country experience with strengthening of health systems and deployment of midwives in countries with high maternal mortality', The Lancet, vol. 384, no. 9949, pp. 1215-25.

World Health Organization 2016, Midwifery, World Health Organization, Geneva, viewed 29 June 2016, <>.

Other resources

UTS Student Centre
Building 10
Monday to Friday: 9am - 5pm
Tel: 1300 ASK UTS (1300 275 887)

Details for student centres:
For other resources/information refer to the Faculty of Health website (, the Health Student Guide ( and UTSOnline at:

UTS Library
The Library has a wide range of resources, facilities and services to support you including textbooks, subject readings, old exam papers, academic writing guides, health literature databases, workshops, a gaming room and bookable group study rooms. There is also a team of librarians to help you with all your questions.
W:, Facebook: utslibrary, Twitter: @utslibrary Tel: (02) 9514 3666

Improve your academic and English language skills
Marks for all assessment tasks such as assignments and examinations are given not only for what you write but also for how you write. If you would like the opportunity to improve your academic and English language skills, make an appointment with the HELPS (Higher Education Language & Presentation Support) Service in Student Services.

HELPS (Higher Education Language & Presentation Support)
HELPS provides assistance with English language proficiency and academic language. Students who need to develop their written and/or spoken English should make use of the free services offered by HELPS, including academic language workshops, vacation intensive courses, drop-in consultations, individual appointments and Conversations@UTS ( HELPS staff are also available for drop-in consultations at the UTS Library. Phone (02) 9514 9733

Please see for additional information on other resources provided to students by UTS.