Nursing Studies BSc (Hons)

Full-time undergraduate (4 years with foundation year)

Chelmsford, Cambridge



If you thrive on the unexpected and want to make a difference in people’s lives, a career in a healthcare setting could be for you. Study over four years in Cambridge, with a foundation year in nursing studies to get you started.

Full description


Our course provides the knowledge, values and skills you will need to pursue a career in a healthcare setting whether that may be working for an international NGO or in professional roles in healthcare, such as management or policy.

Modules & assessment

Year one, core modules

  • Foundation in Nursing Studies
    This module will provide students with the necessary skills to begin studying at level 4 in courses related to Nursing Studies. Students will be introduced to the core skills necessary to succeed in higher education, including thinking critically, researching and referencing appropriately, demonstrating appropriate numeracy and ICT skills, and communicating effectively verbally and in writing. Students will also be introduced to specific concepts related to their degree programme including the structure of health and social care provision in the United Kingdom, and the various professional roles with the sector. Students will practice applying theoretical frameworks to case studies and experiments. Students will enter this programme from a wide range of backgrounds with a breadth of experience in education- this module will give the students the opportunity to share their viewpoints and build a strong learning community, with opportunities for group work and self-reflection, supported by staff feedback. The module is made up of the following eight constituent elements: Interactive Learning Skills and Communication (ILSC); Information Communication Technology (ICT); Critical Thinking; Core Maths; Ethics; Psychology; Biology – Physiology; Preparing for a Career in Caring.

Year two, core modules

  • Preparation for Professional Practice in Health and Social Care
    This module introduces the scaffolding that will allow the students to gain an understanding of the fundamental aspects and values of health and social care in practice for all client groups, such as care, compassion and professionalism, communication, personal learning, risk assessment and team-working. Students will also be introduced to the underpinning theories of normal anatomy and physiology from a bio-psychosocial perspective. Students will examine their own individuality in society, their lifestyles and their health behaviours as a means of formulating a personal perspective of health and to increase their self-awareness. Clinical skills experience will be gained through simulation within a clinical skills environment to include mandatory training (BLS and Moving & Handling) and development of fundamental aspects of care. Throughout all of these skills sessions important issues will be highlighted including: communication, documentation, risk assessment, health and safety whilst demonstrating care and compassion. During the module there will be an inter-professional workshop, which explores interprofessional service innovation and improvement.
  • Research and Study Skills
    This module promotes the importance of evidence-based care by providing students with an understanding of research and the impact this has on care delivery. The skills gained throughout the module will prepare students for the rigour of academic work, enabling the development of literacy, and providing a sound knowledge base to develop key research skills. Students will be expected to consider clinical skills, knowledge and aspects of clinical practice in order to demonstrate an understanding of the importance of delivering the highest standards of care and service, and maintaining the standards of professional practice. The module will include skills required for independent learning e.g. time management, IT skills, academic writing skills, note taking, referencing, presentation skills: the skills required for research e.g. finding and understanding appropriate evidence, understanding the research process, appraising research; and the skills to apply research to the practice setting. The students will develop academic skills and their ability to find and interpret simple research within their small groups.
  • The Philosophy and Values of Mental Health Nursing
    Mental health nursing has always responded to dominant ideas about the nature of mental illness, and mental health nursing practice exists within the social, cultural and historical context of the time. Presently the influences on practice indicate that as a profession we need to work alongside people with mental health difficulties, families, care-givers, and other health and social care professionals in a collaborative, empowering and value driven manner. This module intends to enable the student to develop awareness of influences on care, and begin to establish sound and evidenced based professional perspectives on care delivery. Key mental health and mental capacity legislation will be introduced and explored. Students will be introduced to international mental health policy drivers that will offer global perspectives on mental health care provision. This will enable discussion and exploration around values based and ethical approaches to mental health care from an international perspective. The module intends to challenge students pre-existing values, beliefs and opinions and aims to facilitate the development of core principles that support a philosophy of recovery led and service user focused care across the lifespan. A life course perspective will facilitate this process. Students will develop values that promote a positive culture of care: respect, dignity, care, compassion, effective communication, competence in practice, courage to do the right thing and a commitment to quality of care and to improving lives. There will be an inter-professional workshop held within the University as part of this module to develop the ethos of working together for patients, and with their families and carers.
  • Factors that Impact on the Health and Wellbeing of Children and Young People
    This module aims to raise the student's awareness of the factors that may impact on the health and wellbeing of children in a variety of settings. Students will explore factors that enable and factors that inhibit children and young people from achieving their innate potential, including care, compassion, competence, communication, courage and commitment. The factors will take into account the children and young people's cultural, spiritual, emotional, physical, intellectual, developmental and social needs. Students will develop awareness of the child’s rights as well as the needs of the whole family when considering care options. Students will evaluate the role of the children's nurse, focussing on the implications for children and young people living in contemporary society and across different cultures. They will explore how health care legislation, policy and other developments have encouraged children's nurses to examine practice, to use research, and to approach change in a dynamic way. Students will explore the importance of inter-professional frameworks in the delivery of care to children and young people, and consider their importance to the principles of safeguarding. The children's nurse's role in health promotion and the local, national and international policy that influence strategies and initiatives will also be considered.

Year three, core modules

  • Health Communication
    Educating people about their health has never been so important, but understanding how to do this, and how to understand and measure their behaviour change can be difficult. Using latest examples of campaigns from the UK and internationally, you’ll learn about and evaluate theories used in behaviour change and in health communication. Through the course, you’ll examine and evaluate different channels of health communication (such as digital communication, games and apps and more traditional forms like posters, video and radio). You’ll analyse past and present health promotion campaigns, and produce your own campaign targeted to different audiences.
  • Health Systems 1: Epidemiology and Health Economics
    This module intends to provide the student with insight into different healthcare systems. Through the early part of the course, students will produce a series of questions that will then be applied to different global locations to investigate how public health is funded, and some of the challenges faced in different parts of the world. Through this virtual journey, students will learn about different types of data used in public health practice with some practical examples of how this is done effectively to make healthcare decisions. Students will learn how to identify relevant and valid sources of data. Students in this module will learn about the basic concepts of analysing the data, identifying the trends and reviewing the demographic changes that represent population health status. A fundamental understanding of the application of epidemiology in public health will be offered through exploring the theories, learning the practical skills and case study exercises. Students will be put through a challenging discussion to examine emerging public health issues and the contributors to the health system review of the selected health systems via a consistent approach to the country’s key indicators (eg geography, government, and economy, the country’s healthcare system facilities, workforce, technology, cost, quality, and access). Students will be formatively assessed by utilising an electronic workbook of relevant questions, on a regular basis, that will cover the content from classes, providing feedback on knowledge and understanding of the subject content and its application.
  • Global Health and Sustainability
    Explore highlights from the most recent Global Burden of Disease study report to understand current global disease patterns. Learn about effective disease control measures by examining past and current global disease eradication efforts. You’ll examine current drivers of disease worldwide, which include issues such as vaccine hesitancy. You’ll learn about sustainability and the Sustainable Development Goals, which form the basis of International Public Health Practice. You’ll be introduced to public health policy and learn what a sustainable public health policy should include. Finally, you’ll work in a group to produce a policy paper and recommendations based on the World Health Organisation, government and local authority recommendations for a given public health problem. Each group will generate a portion of the policy paper and these will be combined to produce a class policy. Working in a group will give you an opportunity to explore group dynamics and reflect on team dynamics. As these issues are complex and many aspects are intertwined, you’ll be encouraged to form your own opinions and reflect upon the complexity of these issues in debates, negotiations and formal written work.
  • Principles of Holistic Assessment, Recognition and Management of Adult Care in Nursing
    The needs of an individual will change during illness. In order to assess, interpret and manage a patient's needs nurses require particular skills and knowledge to provide high quality care. This module introduces the student to the theory which underpins nursing assessment and care management. Students will develop the necessary knowledge and skills to assess and plan care for adults, taking account of the multi-cultural needs of diverse patient populations. Students will be required to interpret and analyse the patient assessment process and understand how this is developed into evidence-based care delivery within an inter-professional environment. Taught theory days within the University will include a combination of lectures, group tutorials and simulated skills sessions.

Year four, core modules

  • Research Methodology
    With the increased emphasis on research and evidence based practice, it is essential that established practitioners who wish to undertake higher educational courses are conversant with research methodology and the application of theory to practice in their field. The ability to be analytical and insightful regarding research reports is an invaluable skill for anyone who wishes to provide effective, evidence-based and appropriate care in their individual sphere of practice. In addition, today's practitioner is required to work in an expanding field of multi-professional, multi-agency collaboration, and thus requires the skills and insight into the efficacy of research within these disciplines also. This module will revisit existing knowledge of the research process and assist the student in further developing skills of critical analysis. In addition, students will have the opportunity to appraise the ethical dimensions of research studies.
  • Managing Care for the Adult Patient
    The health needs of an individual change on admission to hospital or when there is a change in health status. In order to asses, interpret individuals' needs and provide quality care, nurses require particular skills and knowledge. This module will enable the student to develop further their understanding of this nursing skill in a global context. This module aims to focus the student towards the necessary theories that underpin nursing assessment and care planning and to consider these from a global perspective. Students will be required to gather and appraise patient assessment and care planning strategies from international contexts and relate this to their professional development. The importance and partnership, within interprofessional framework of care, will be reviewed and its emphasis is on developing the requisite skills, knowledge and attitudes required to assess and implement safe and effective evidenced based care. Theory sessions will include on-line activities, small group synchronous /asynchronous discussion forums, recorded seminars, guided project work, and presentations, utilising appropriate technology.
  • Undergraduate Major Project
    Your Undergraduate Major Project is chance to raise and address significant questions relating to your chosen topic/issue. You will be supported by a tutor with similar interests and research profile. This module requires autonomous study and it is your chance to demonstrate that you have met our University’s expectations and are ready to graduate.
  • Leading Change in Promoting Health and Wellbeing in an International Context
    This module will consider the nature of health, and will focus on the political, social and psychological theories and issues that underpin the concepts of promoting health and well-being. The module will introduce key concepts and issues to develop the student’s awareness, knowledge and skills to promote health and wellbeing at individual and community levels. The role of the nurse in the promotion of health and wellbeing for the individual and the population (young adult to older person) will be explored, emphasising the importance of all nurses as health promoting practitioners. The focus of the module is upon contemporary theory and the main approaches to health promotion which underpin change including; the medical approach, behaviour change approach, educational approach, client-centred approach and the societal-change approach.


Throughout the course, we’ll use a range of assessment methods to help measure your progress. These will include design projects, presentations, timed assignments, exams and coursework.

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?

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

Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

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

Explore our Cambridge campus

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK & EU students starting 2020/21 (per year)


International students starting 2020/21 (per year)


UK students starting 2021/22 (per year)


International students starting 2021/22 (per year)


How do I pay my fees?

Tuition fee loan

UK students (and EU students starting a course before 1 August 2021) can take out a tuition fee loan, which you won’t need to start repaying until after your graduate. Or there's the option to pay your fees upfront.

Loans and fee payments

International students

You can pay your tuition fees upfront, in full or in two instalments. We will also ask you for a deposit of £4,000 or a sponsorship letter. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees


We offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships, which provide extra financial support while you’re at university. Some of these cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Explore ARU scholarships

Funding for UK & EU students

Most new undergraduate students can apply for government funding to support their studies and university life. This includes EU students starting a course before 1 August 2021.

Government funding includes Tuition Fee Loans and Maintenance Loans. There are additional grants available for specific groups of students, such as those with disabilities or dependants.

We also offer a range of ARU scholarships, which can provide extra financial support while you’re at university.

Funding for international students

We offer a number of scholarships, as well as an early payment discount. Explore your options:

Entry requirements

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Foundation year entry requirements

  • GCSE maths and English at grade 4 or C
  • 5 GCSE passes in total at grade 3 or D or above and evidence of two years post-GCSE study at Level 3
  • If you have achieved at least grade E in one A level, or equivalent, you are exempt from the two year post-GCSE study requirement, but you still have to meet the GCSE requirements
  • If English is not your first language you will be expected to demonstrate a certificate level of proficiency of at least IELTS 5.5 overall including 5.5 in each band/component

Whether you're studying entirely online or through a blend of face-to-face and online learning in September 2020, you'll need a computer and reliable internet access to successfully engage with your course. Before starting the course, we recommend that you check our technical requirements for online learning.

International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

Whether you're studying entirely online or through a blend of face-to-face and online learning from September 2020, you'll need a computer and reliable internet access to successfully engage with your course. A small number of our courses require additional technical specifications or specialist materials. Before starting the course, we recommend that you check our technical requirements for online learning. Our website also has general information for new students about starting university in 2020-21.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for undergraduate courses.

Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry onto a degree course.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

Similar courses that may interest you

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UK and EU students

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International students

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