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Ulster School of Nursing Among Top Performers in the UK

23 October 2012

The University of Ulster’s School of Nursing is one of the top performers in the UK, according to the profession’s regulatory body, the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

The NMC sets the standards of education and training forallnurses and midwives throughout the UK by monitoring every year approved education institutions (AEIs) to ensure student andqualified nurses and midwives are educated to deliver high quality healthcare.

The NMC Quality Assurance Monitoring results for 2011-2012 show that Ulster’s School of Nursing was one of only two approved education institutions(AEIs) to get ‘outstanding’ for Practice Learning.Ulster was also one of only five AEIs to get ‘outstanding’ in any of the five areas monitored: Practice Learning; Resources; Admissions and Progression; Fitness for Practice and Quality Assurance.

Professor Owen Barr, Head of Ulster’s School of Nursing since 2007, said the NMC results - which placed Ulster in the top 4% of education institutions providing training for nurses and midwives - confirmed that the quality of teaching across the university was first class.

“The NMC defines ‘outstanding’ as ‘exceptional and consistently high performance’, with examples of effective practice which is innovative and worthy of dissemination and emulation by otherprogrammeproviders," Professor Barr said.

During the 2011-2012 monitoring cycle, the NMC reviewed a total of 130programmesacross 54 of the 80 NMC approved institutions.Programmeproviders adjudicated by the NMC to be ‘good’ or above across the five areas earn autonomy the following year.

Twenty six approvedprogrammeproviders earned autonomy for 2011/2012.Ulster’s School of Nursingachievedautonomy in 08/09 and again in 2010/11 and, on the basis of the most recent results, has nowearned autonomy for 2012/13.

Professor Barr said thehighly ratedquality of teaching in the School of Nursing, as endorsed by the NMC, was complemented by the School’s proven track record and success in nursing research.

“The School of Nursing performed exceptionally well in thelastUK ResearchAssessment Exercise (RAE) with 100% of nursing research classified as being of international quality and 20% of world class,” he said.

Two undergraduatePre RegistrationProgrammesare currently offered by the School of Nursing: BSc (Hons) Nursing (Adult) and BSc (Hons) Nursing (Mental Health). Last year, the University of Ulster also announced that thenumber of student nurses at Magee will be increased as part of the planned academic expansion at the campus.

By 2015, both Pre Registrationprogrammeswill be taught only at Magee.This year, there were 2,168 applications for just 224 places, a 6 per cent increase from the previous year.

Caption: Professor Owen Barr