Practical skills

How to perform respiratory assessment

  • RCN accredited
  • Peer reviewed
  • Certificate
  • Duration: 01 hr
  • Level: Qualified nurses, Students
  • Last updated: 2020

This learning module sets out how to undertake respiratory assessment using a logical and structured approach, such as the ‘look, listen and feel’ approach. Respiratory rate as an early indicator of deterioration of a patient’s condition and the use of a track and trigger scoring tool are also discussed.


Please note that information provided by RCNi Learning is not sufficient to ensure competence in the skill. Assessment of competence should take place in line with local practice. Practice should always align with local protocols and procedures, latest guidelines and any regulatory code. All modules should currently be viewed together with available national and local Covid-19 guidelines. For advice, go to

Joyce Smith, Lecturer in adult nursing, University of Salford, Salford, England.
Melanie Rushton, Lecturer in adult nursing, University of Salford, Salford, England.


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