Assistant Practitioner (Nursing) Higher Apprenticeship FdSc

Work-based undergraduate (20 months)

Chelmsford, Cambridge

September, January

(Subject to approval 2020)

Overview

Our higher apprenticeship is ideal if you're a healthcare assistant who wants to develop your skills and play a fuller role in your nursing team. On successful completion of the course, you can opt to study for a full honours degree - and ultimately, become a registered nurse.

Full description
One of the top 10 UK universities for nursing
Nursing Times
31 August 2016

Careers

On successful completion of this course and the endpoint assessment, you'll be ready to work as an assistant practitioner to a nursing team. You can also opt to join our Nursing degree apprenticeship, and train to become a registered nurse.

Modules & assessment

  • Essential knowledge and skills for person-centred care (30 credits)
    Introducing you to the fundamental aspects of person-centred care for safe, compassionate and effective nursing care. You’ll explore the NMC Code (2018) and begin to grasp the basics of the NMC Future Nurse Standards of Proficiency for Registered Nurses (2018). Using a person and family-centred care approach through the use of family based scenarios, you’ll be supported to begin to explore the context of health, ill health and disability, and health care needs across the lifespan. Recognising the diversity of the patient population we’ll support you to understand the need for ethical, legal and professional values to ensure equality within health care delivery. The scenarios will include healthcare related to adult, child, mental health and learning disability patients. You’ll gain an understanding of bioscience and physiology, alongside a range of physical health care needs that often co-exist with other health care issues. You’ll build an awareness of the nursing care of patients with mental illness, obesity, asthma, diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and cardiovascular disease. All of this will be underpinned by an introduction to professionalism and the key tenets of nursing.
  • Essential nursing skills and practice 1 (30 credits)
    You will apply your new knowledge from the first module in your usual work setting, developing a range of knowledge and skills that will include accountability, professionalism, assessment and care planning, providing and evaluating care and improving safety and quality of care. We’ll prepare you in our simulated skills labs for skills such as taking and recording vital signs, personal care, basic life support and introduction to safe drug administration. You’ll be exposed to real life situations and begin to develop communication and relationship skills, as well as a range of physical skills, as set out in the NMC (2018) Standards of Proficiency for Pre-registration Nurses.
  • Exploring and promoting health and wellbeing (30 credits)
    Promoting health and preventing ill health is a key role in nursing. You’ll explore the importance of epidemiology and the impact of environmental factors that affect our health. You’ll discuss current and topical public health programmes and health promotion frameworks. An understanding of local services will help you to appreciate the promotion of health and prevention of ill health amongst your local population. You’ll have the opportunity to consider your own health and your place as a healthy role model in supporting the health education of patients. Building on the learning of previous bioscience topics, you’ll explore a further range of bioscience systems and consider the prevention, biopsychosocial impact and care of some common conditions such as breast cancer, teenage pregnancy, Down’s syndrome and depression. You’ll gain an understanding of the role of the accountable professional, safeguarding, and responsibilities around duty of candour, patient advocacy and autonomy.
  • Medicines Calculation for Safe Practice 1 (0 credits)
    Patient safety is at the heart of nursing and it is a requirement of the professional regulator (the Nursing and Midwifery Council) that by the point of entry to register, nurses must demonstrate competency in numeracy skills in the safe administration of drugs (NMC, 2018). This includes being competent in basic medicines calculations relating to: tablets and capsules, liquid medicines and injections. Safe Medicate is an online learning and assessment package focusing on medicines calculations. You’ll be given login information for this software at the beginning of the course and can have unlimited access to this e-learning platform, practice questions, and formative assessments. A professional requirement of the course is that you become proficient in medicine calculations. Each year, you’ll undertake an online medicine calculations module which offers the opportunity for unlimited practice related to a variety of medicine calculations. You’ll be required to undertake a minimum of 6 formative assessments prior to the summative assessment. When you take your exam, you’ll be required to get a pass mark of 80%.
  • Essential nursing skills and practice 2 (30 credits)
    You’ll further develop your skills in practice and your understanding of accountability, professionalism, assessment and care planning, providing and evaluating care and improving safety and quality of care. We’ll support you to consolidate the learning that took place in the prior theory module. We’ll prepare you in our simulated skills labs for skills such as pain assessment, injections, physical and mental health first aid. You’ll be exposed to real life situations and continue to develop communication and relationship skills, as well as a range of physical skills, as set out in the NMC (2018) Standards of Proficiency for Pre-registration Nurses.
  • Work-Based Learning for Healthcare Assistant Practitioners (60 credits) – subject to approval
    This module incorporates specific Knowledge, Skills and Behaviour as set out in the apprenticeship standard. Behaviours: Demonstrate courage to challenge areas of concern and work to best practice. Knowledge: The importance of the strategic environment in health and social care and the implications for the individual. Skills: Manage own work and case load and implement programmes of care in line with current evidence, taking action relative to an individual’s health and care needs; Allocates work to and supports the development of others and may supervise, teach, mentor and assess other staff as required; Maintains and further develops own skills and knowledge, and that of others, through recognised Continuing Professional Development (CPD) activities enabling flexibility in practice and responsiveness to changing service needs; Health and safety: Promotes and maintains a safe and healthy working environment.

Choose your final two modules from one specialist branch below; NB you must be working in a related healthcare setting

Adult branch

  • Holistic care for people with long term conditions (30 credits)
    Understanding the biopsychosocial aspects of a long term condition from a patient perspective including the impact on the carer and family is essential. You’ll learn about a range of long term conditions and the associated qualitative research including; heart failure, coronary heart disease, cancer and alcohol related diseases. You’ll consider the NHS plan (2019) and Public Health Outcome Framework (2019) in the context of integrated care that clients receive in preventing ill health and promoting physical and mental wellbeing. You’ll study the complexities of living with a long term condition in a variety of care settings. We’ll support you to develop an in- depth understanding of the biopsychosocial issues that affect people living with a long term condition. You’ll explore the legal and ethical challenges that people and their families face. Focusing on a person centred holistic approach to assessment and care planning you’ll learn to address these challenges. You’ll examine the concept of empowerment and the factors (psychological, physiological, social-economic and genomic) influencing a person’s health choices and readiness for change. Decision making in end of life care through the use of advance care planning is central nursing care and we’ll prepare you to understand the legal and ethical implications alongside government policy.
  • Developing adult nursing practice 1 (30 credits)
    In this practice module you’ll consolidate your learning in a skills lab and practice environment. By now you’ll have cared for many patients and have an understanding of some of the physical and communication skills that can improve the patient experience. In the skills lab you’ll have the opportunity to practise passing feeding tubes, managing catheters, removing sutures, wound care, oxygen therapy and the symptom management in end of life care. You’ll advance your communication skills through techniques such as motivational interviewing and de-escalation strategies. End of life care is a theme within this module and you’ll learn skills to support you in distressing situations such as breaking bad news. You’ll be supported to practise with increased confidence as you progress through your placement and will continue to have the opportunity to work alongside health care teams and Practice Supervisors who will support you in developing new knowledge and skills. You’ll continue to practise and develop your communication and relationship skills, as well as a range of physical skills. You’ll meet patients with a wide range of health care needs and have the opportunity to continue to practise and enhance your skills around accountability, professionalism, assessment and care planning, providing and evaluating care, leading and managing nursing care, working in teams and improving safety and quality of care.

Child branch

  • Holistic care for the developing child and young person with health care needs (30 credits)
    Building on the experience gained across the first year of the course you’ll explore a wide range of health care issues experienced by the child, young person and their family/ carer. Emphasising the importance of assessment, communication and partnership working will develop your skills, knowledge and attitude required to meet their care needs. Children’s nurses are effective when they give care to children that demonstrates respect for their rights and considers the needs of the whole family. You’ll explore the developmental, emotional, physical, social, cultural and spiritual needs of children and young people in order to deliver holistic family and child centred care. Factors that impact on physical and mental health and wellbeing will be central to your learning. You’ll evaluate the role of the children's nurse, focussing on the implications for children and young people living in contemporary society. You’ll consider the role of the children's nurse in promoting health in the context of local, national and international policies which influence strategies and initiatives.
  • Developing childrens nursing practice 1 (30 credits)
    In this practice module you’ll consolidate your learning in a skills lab and then back in your usual working environment. By now you’ll have cared for many children and young adults and have an understanding of some of the physical and communication skills that can improve their experience. In the skills lab you’ll have the opportunity to practise passing feeding tubes, managing catheters, removing sutures, wound care, oxygen therapy and basic life support of the new born child. You’ll advance your communication skills through techniques such as motivational interviewing and de-escalation strategies. You’ll work with children with sensory impairments, learning difficulties and mental health issues and will explore suitable communication strategies. You’ll be supported to practise with increased confidence as you progress through your placement and will continue to have the opportunity to work alongside health care teams and Practice Supervisors who will support you in developing new knowledge and skills. You’ll continue to practise and develop your communication and relationship skills, as well as a range of physical skills. You’ll meet patients with a wide range of health care needs and have the opportunity to continue to practise and enhance your skills around accountability, professionalism, assessment and care planning, providing and evaluating care, leading and managing nursing care, working in teams and improving safety and quality of care.

Mental Health branch

  • Exploring the values theories and evidence underpinning mental health assessment and practice (30 credits)
    You’ll explore the nature of mental illness and the values that underpin mental health nursing practice within a biopsychosocial, cultural and historical context. You’ll consider the issues that may be essential to service users’ lives, particularly with regard to mental health and wellbeing. You’ll learn the ethical theories, legal principles and values that are relevant for professional practice in mental health. Evidence-based assessment and care planning strategies to meet the holistic needs of service users and carers are central to this module. You’ll challenge your pre-existing values, beliefs and opinions. You’ll develop core principles that support a philosophy of recovery led and service user focused care across the life course. You’ll learn to champion mental health service users through advocacy and empowerment and discuss ethical issues surrounding constraint and seclusion. You’ll study psycho-pathology and understand the symptoms of mental health disorders and comorbidity across the life-course. Access to services – including LGBTQ and other minority groups will be explored. You’ll examine legislation and policy relating to mental health care that will help you to safeguard yourself and service users.
  • Developing Mental Health Nursing Practice 1 (30 credits)
    In this practice module you’ll consolidate your learning in a skills lab and then in your usual work environment. By now you’ll have cared for many patients and have an understanding of some of the physical and communication skills that can improve the mental health service user experience. You’ll advance your communication skills through techniques such as motivational interviewing, solution focused therapy, de-escalation strategies and positive reinforcement strategies. In the skills lab you’ll have the opportunity to practise physical skills such as passing feeding tubes, managing catheters, removing sutures, wound care, oxygen therapy and the symptom management in end of life care. You’ll be supported to practise with increased confidence as you progress through the module and will continue to practise and develop your communication and relationship skills, as well as a range of physical skills.
  • Medicines Calculation for Safe Practice 2 (0 credits)
    Patient safety is at the heart of nursing and it is a requirement of the professional regulator (the Nursing and Midwifery Council) that by the point of entry to register, nurses must demonstrate competency in numeracy skills in the safe administration of drugs (NMC, 2018). This includes being competent in basic medicines calculations relating to: tablets and capsules, liquid medicines and injections. Safe Medicate is an online learning and assessment package focusing on medicines calculations. You’ll be given login information for this software at the beginning of the course and can have unlimited access to this e-learning platform, practice questions, and formative assessments. A professional requirement of the course is that you become proficient in medicine calculations. Each year, you’ll undertake an online medicine calculations module which offers the opportunity for unlimited practice related to a variety of medicine calculations. You’ll be required to undertake a minimum of 6 formative assessments prior to the summative assessment. When you take your exam in your second year, you’ll be required to get a pass mark of 90%.

Assessment

Assessment will be through a range of strategies and will include essays, online presentations, multiple choice tests, case studies, portfolios and practice assessment.

Your practice assessment document (PAD) will be managed online through a tool called MyProgress; this will be introduced to you in advance of the first practice module: Essential nursing skills and practice 1.

Please note that deadlines for submission of assignments are strictly enforced at the University.

In addition to the on-programme assessments for each module, the End Point Assessment (EPA) completes the apprenticeship. This takes place during the final three months of the Foundation Degree and comprises the following components:

a) A multiple choice and short answer test

b) An observation of practice undertaken in your workplace

c) A reflective journal completed by the apprentice
This is completed in the three months leading up to your EPA. You will reflect on the development of the following components from the apprenticeship standard:
1. Case Management
2. Supervision and Teaching

d) An interview (professional discussion)

These elements are carried out by independent assessors who will be identified from the register of assessors (RoAAO). Time will be allocated to guide you in the process.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

The Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine and Social Care is the largest in ARU, with over 7,000 students. Our Faculty is teeming with expertise and primed to meet the demand for creating health professionals, teachers, doctors, scientists and educators for the three districts we serve: Chelmsford, Cambridge and Peterborough.

We have been training undergraduates for professional roles for over 25 years, with a reputation for quality, dedication and ambition balanced with student satisfaction.

We know that to give our students the very best experiential learning, prior to getting into the workplace, simulation is second to none, for safe, realistic, learning environments. We have invested heavily in purpose built simulated wards, science labs and skills space, to support our students through their learning.

Where can I study?

Chelmsford
Tindal Building on our Chelmsford campus

Our striking, modern campus sits by the riverside in Chelmsford's University and Innovation Quarter.

Explore our Chelmsford campus

Cambridge
Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

Our campus is close to the centre of Cambridge, often described as the perfect student city.

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Fees & funding

Course fees

Degree apprenticeships are funded by your employer and the Government

£0

Entry requirements

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Essential requirements:

  • Employment in a suitable healthcare role/environment on a permanent contract exceeding 30 hours per week
  • Evidence of level 3 study in a related subject e.g. A Levels, BTEC in Health and Social Care*
  • Level 2 separately certificated qualifications in Maths and English e.g. GCSEs at Grade C/4 or above, Functional Skills or Key Skills**
  • A completed Initial Needs Assessment Form

* Applicants without a Level 3 qualification but with at least six months relevant experience will be considered on an individual basis for accreditation of prior learning (APL)/prior experiential learning.

** Applicants currently working towards a Level 2 qualification in either English or Maths may apply on the basis that they have gained the qualification prior to the start of the course. Please add your exam dates to the application.

You must supply these before you can be registered on the course:

  • An Enhanced DBS for the Adult and Child Workforce, signed up to the online update service (ARU will fund new applications if you cannot provide this)
  • Occupational Health clearance from your employer
  • Line Manager confirmation of support

Please note: you will need to have the National Care Certificate (Health) to undertake the End Point Assessment. You will be able to complete this during your Foundation Degree programme to enable you to take the EPA.

Apply now