Postgraduate Diploma, Master of Science
Faculty of Life and Health Sciences
School of Nursing
Developing highly knowledgeable and skilled graduates for the health and social care professions.
This postgraduate programme in Health and Wellbeing aims to develop highly knowledgeable and skilled postgraduates from the health and social care professions, including nurses and midwives. There is an emphasis on the application of knowledge to practice and the development of leadership skills. The programme extends the knowledge base necessary for practitioners to function at an advanced level and to develop into expert or advanced practitioners, advisers, managers or educators within their particular area of expertise.
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This programme leads to the academic awards of PgDip/MSc in Health and Wellbeing. Students may exit with a Postgraduate Certificate in Health and Wellbeing after completing 60 credits or with a Postgraduate Diploma in Health and Wellbeing after completing 120 credits.
The Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits) has four 30 credit Modules. Two 30 credit compulsory modules (Health and Wellbeing: Challenges and Controversies and Advanced Methods in Research and Development in Health and Social Care). Students also study Critical Application of Advanced Compassionate Communication in Health and Social Care Practice and may then choose to study either Ethics and professional decision-making or Transforming practice through person-centred collective leadership.
How to apply
Students wishing to apply for a Department of Health (DH) Commissioned place should contact the Practice Education Team in their Health and Social Care Trust. The HSCT will manage your application.
Those who are not eligible for DoH Commissioned places, must apply via the University online application system. (known as the self-funded route).
Students are required to attend for at least 75% of all campus-based modules. Some modules are online / have online sessions – students are required to log on to the website and interact on a weekly basis.
A range of teaching and learning methods are used to enable students to develop knowledge and understanding. There is a continuous focus upon how theory is linked to and informed by practice through the use of lectures, seminars, discussions, guided reading, reflection, creative methods and debate. Online material may be used to support this. All assessment is via course work
The content for each course is summarised on the relevant course page, along with an overview of the modules that make up the course.
Each course is approved by the University and meets the expectations of:
As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements - usually in the form of a timetable. For full-time courses, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until near the start date and may be subject to change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. For part-time courses which require attendance on particular days and times, an expectation of the days of attendance will often be included in the letter of offer. A course handbook is also made available.
Courses comprise modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by its credit rating. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort. Undergraduate courses typically contain 10- or 20-credit modules and postgraduate course typically 15- or 30-credit modules.
The normal study load expectation for an undergraduate full-time course of study in the standard academic year is 120 credit points. This amounts to around 36-42 hours of expected teaching and learning per week, inclusive of attendance requirements for lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical work, fieldwork or other scheduled classes, private study, and assessment. Part-time study load is the same as full-time pro-rata, with each credit point representing 10 hours of student effort.
Postgraduate Masters courses typically comprise 180 credits, taken in three semesters when studied full-time. A Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) comprises 60 credits and can usually be completed on a part-time basis in one year. A 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) can usually be completed on a part-time basis in two years.
Class contact times vary by course and type of module. Typically, for a module predominantly delivered through lectures you can expect at least 3 contact hours per week (lectures/seminars/tutorials). Laboratory classes often require a greater intensity of attendance in blocks. Some modules may combine lecture and laboratory. The precise model will depend on the course you apply for and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. Prospective students will be consulted about any significant changes.
Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module. Assessment can be via one method or a combination e.g. examination and coursework . Assessment is designed to assess your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes. You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessment. The precise assessment will depend on the module and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Coursework can take many forms, for example: essay, report, seminar paper, test, presentation, dissertation, design, artefacts, portfolio, journal, group work. The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the course you apply for and the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification and the assessment timetable. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Normally, a module will have four learning outcomes, and no more than two items of assessment. An item of assessment can comprise more than one task. The notional workload and the equivalence across types of assessment is standardised.
The class of Honours awarded in Bachelor’s degrees is usually determined by calculation of an aggregate mark based on performance across the modules at Levels 5 and 6 (which correspond to the second and third year of full-time attendance).
Level 6 modules contribute 70% of the aggregate mark and Level 5 contributes 30% to the calculation of the class of the award. Classification of integrated Masters degrees with Honours include a Level 7 component. The calculation in this case is: 50% Level 7, 30% Level 6, 20% Level 5. At least half the Level 5 modules must be studied at the University for Level 5 to be included in the calculation of the class.
All other qualifications have an overall grade determined by results in modules from the final level of study. In Masters degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.
Figures correct for academic year 2019-2020.
The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 59% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.
Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (25%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (20%) or Lecturers (55%).
We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic staff (81%) are accredited fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) by Advanced HE - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.
The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise. The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff. This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.
Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.
Figures correct for academic year 2021-2022.
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Here is a guide to the subjects studied on this course.
Courses are continually reviewed to take advantage of new teaching approaches and developments in research, industry and the professions. Please be aware that modules may change for your year of entry. The exact modules available and their order may vary depending on course updates, staff availability, timetabling and student demand. Please contact the course team for the most up to date module list.
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This 60-credit module is compulsory for the student to achieve their MSc award. Students are allocated an MSc supervisor. The student completes either a traditional research project or a service evaluation or a project development initiative. Students must write a project proposal, apply for ethics, collect data, analysis the data and the write the final report. This module is assessed by 100% coursework.
This 30-credit module is compulsory for the student to achieve their MSc award. This module builds upon previous study of research methods and enables students to develop and apply theoretical and scientific knowledge and problem-solving skills, extending their understanding of the philosophical and practical aspects of research, service evaluation and project development initiative. Students are required to write an identified research question relevant to research, service evaluation or a project development initiative. This module is assessed by 100% coursework.
This postgraduate module explores and debates issues in health and wellbeing, utilising a theoretical base to develop, discussion, reflection and more insightful practice through a rigorous analysis of current dilemmas and topical issues. Assessment is by Coursework
This module is optional
This module develops students' understanding of the major components and complexities of professional decision making and accountability and the central role this plays in the design, delivery and evaluation of ethically safe and effective compassionate care for people within services in hospital and community settings. Within the module. students will critically analyse the relationships between professional decision-making, accountability, governance and patient safety within an interdisciplinary context. Assessment is by coursework.
This module is optional
This module encourages students to lead small step change contributing to quality improvement initiatives leading to transformation of services through person centred practice. It focuses on the development of strategic leadership skills in nurses in order to meet the global challenges facing todays healthcare systems.
This module is optional
This level 7 module provides conceptual frameworks for the critical study of advanced compassionate professional communication and behaviour within health and social care, providing critical knowledge and skills for students to develop professional and critically reflective competence in the delivery of compassionate communication in all health care contexts. Assessment is by 100% coursework.
We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.
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Applicants must have gained:
(i) A subject relevant Honours or non-Honours degree from a University of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland, or from a recognised national awarding body, or from an institution of another country which is recognised as being of an equivalent standard; or
(ii) an equivalent standard in a Postgraduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma, Graduate Certificate or an approved alternative qualification;
In addition, applicants should normally
• be working in the field of health and social care
• and, additionally, for admittance to a clinical pathway hold a registered/licensed Nursing or other Health and Social Care professional qualification
(b) provide evidence of competence in written and spoken English (GCSE grade C or equivalent).
or as an alternative to (a) (i) or (a) (ii) and/or (b):
(c) In exceptional circumstances, where an individual has substantial and significant experiential learning, a portfolio of written evidence demonstrating the meeting of graduate qualities (including subject-specific outcomes, as determined by the Course Committee) may be considered as an alternative entrance route.
Applicants whose first language is not English must demonstrate their competency in written and spoken English through the achievement of an IELTS score of 6.0 with no individual band score (in the four bands of listening, speaking, reading and writing) below 5.5.
English language requirements for international applicants
The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.
Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.
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This degree covers a broad range of healthcare issues allowing for careers in health and social care, education, leisure and health promotion and management.
Our postgraduate fees are subject to annual increase and are currently under review. See our tuition fees page for the current fees for 2022/23 entry.
It is important to remember that costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges) and normal living will need to be covered in addition to tuition fees.
Where a course has additional mandatory expenses (in addition to tuition fees) we make every effort to highlight them above. We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals, as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free Wi-Fi are also available on each of the campuses.
There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.
Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as a part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs, as well as tuition fees.
See the tuition fees on our student guide for most up to date costs.
We know that choosing to study at university is a big decision, and you may not always be able to find the information you need online.
Please contact Ulster University with any queries or questions you might have about:
For any queries regarding getting help with your application, please select Admissions in the drop down below.
For queries related to course content, including modules and placements, please select Course specific information.
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