MSc Community Health Care Nursing (top-up)

If you already have a PgDip in Community Specialist Practice (District Nursing) this course allows you to extend your studies to master’s level. We’ll support and guide you as you undertake the substantial piece of independent inquiry involved in completing the MSc Community Health Care Nursing (top-up) qualification.

MSc Community Health Care Nursing (top-up)

Course details

If you’ve successfully completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Community Specialist Practice (District Nursing), and are seeking to complete a master’s degree, you can top-up your existing qualification with the University of Bolton. Our MSc Community Health Care Nursing (top-up) course allows you to continue your professional development, gaining higher-level academic skills that will help you make effective use of your learning and improve service delivery in your workplace.

You’ll have the opportunity to undertake a substantial independent study into a specific aspect of health and social care practice. We’ll match you with an expert academic supervisor who will encourage and support you to choose a topic where you can undertake research that advances the boundaries of your knowledge and enhances your professional practice. This may involve the collection and analysis of empirical data or library-based research, and culminates in you writing and producing a dissertation. With our guidance, you’ll complete a thorough analysis and synthesis of theory and practice, generating new understanding and knowledge in relation to health and social care.

  • Start date: 23/09/2019 or 27/01/2020
  • Location: The University of Bolton
  • Award: MSc
  • Duration: 1 year

Course highlights:

  • Our dedicated academic team has extensive health and social care experience. Along with their passion for service excellence in health and social care settings, they’re also currently engaged in highly relevant research, which means they can add valuable context and insight to your learning.
  • The course is designed to provide the flexibility to fit in with busy home and working lives.
  • As you study this course, we’ll encourage you to develop knowledge and understanding of the ethical principles, values and moral concepts inherent in health and social care practice.
  • We’ll also support you to gain a strong appreciation of the evidence-based concepts that underpin modern health and social care, and the value of research in advancing theory and practice in the field.

Key features:

  • The University of Bolton has been offering high-quality courses designed to meet the health and social care sector’s needs for over 30 years, so we have the knowledge and experience to anticipate and respond to changes in the health and social care sector.
  • You’ll have access to a well-stocked library and our subject librarian can help you with any queries. Many of our library resources can be accessed online so you can work at a place and time that is convenient to you.

Entry requirements

  • Start date: 23/09/2019 or 27/01/2020
  • Location: The University of Bolton
  • Award: MSc
  • Duration: 1 year

You must have already successfully completed the Postgraduate Diploma in Community Specialist Practice (District Nursing). You must also have appropriate work experience.

You’ll be required to attend an interview and may be asked to provide a portfolio of work evidence.

If English isn’t your first language you’ll also need IELTS 7.0 with normally no less than 6.5 in any band (or equivalent). We also accept a range of other English language qualifications – please visit our English Language Requirements web page for more details. Find out more

Career opportunities

On successful completion of your studies, you’ll be able to synthesise practice and theory, in decision-making within practice, service delivery and leadership, and demonstrate competence, autonomy and professional accountability in the development of higher level skills. You should also be able to enhance service delivery and outcomes for service users and the community, in conjunction with other professionals.

The course aims to develop professionals who can independently access information and use that information to critically assess, evaluate and disseminate the evidence base for community nursing care. It’s designed to help you develop problem-solving skills and prepare you to take a leadership role in the community context.

What can I do with this qualification?

The context of community healthcare nursing practice, both within and outside of the NHS, is constantly changing and offers opportunities for career development and innovative approaches to service provision. This course can support your progression towards becoming a nursing leader for the future.

While most graduates are expected to work in the NHS, the knowledge and skills achieved can also be applied to a wide range of community nursing or public health roles in various settings. Opportunities include roles such as NHS clinical nurse manager, practice education facilitator or manager of a care home. You could also consider careers in advanced clinical practice, public health practice or government.

Students can become engaged in a range of research projects that focus on advancing nursing knowledge, skills and expertise as well as improving health outcomes for patients and families. This may fuel your ambition to continue your studies and gain a professional doctorate or PhD.

Alternative career options

  • Teaching and education
  • Policy research
  • Children and families social work
  • Journalism
  • School nursing
  • Voluntary sector
  • Health promotion
  • Health service management
  • Community development
  • Counselling
  • Mental health

Professional recognition

Fees & funding

No fee information is currently available, please contact Student Data Management on 01204 903059 or for more information

The fees for a student’s course of study will be set for the normal duration of that course subject only to inflationary increases – measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) recorded in March each year to take effect for subsequent start dates.

The University is currently awaiting Government guidelines as to EU fee charges for students commencing study in 2019/20.

UK undergraduate tuition fees are subject to UK government approval and are subject to the outcome of the Teaching Excellence Framework.

How to apply


You may apply directly to the University using the University's online application form. Please select your chosen start date from the list below:

Before you commence the online application please read the Application Guidance Notes.

You should also ensure you have to hand:

  • Details of the educational establishments you attended and dates

  • Your certificates for the qualifications you are using to gain entry to the course – you will need to enter the completion date and upload copies

  • Details of any employment history including name, address, dates and role

  • Personal statement – this can be either input into the relevant field or uploaded separately

  • Details including e-mail addresses of two referees, at least one of which should be someone who can provide an academic reference

Please make sure any documents you wish to upload in support of your application are in pdf or jpeg format. Personal statements may be word documents.

Please ensure your data is correct at each stage of the application before you proceed to the next page. If you use the back button at any time during the application, you should check the validity of the data you have already input.

If you experience difficulties during the application process, contact the Admissions Team on 01204 903394 or


International applications are not possible for this course

As an international student you are not allowed to study this course because of the restrictions on your visa.

We offer a wide range of full-time courses in lots of different subjects, many of our courses start in September and January. If you would like to see what courses are available please visit our Course Search.

Teaching & assessment


Modules listed below are a mixture of compulsory and optional. You may not have the opportunity to study all the modules as part of the course.

  • Dissertation

Teaching, learning and assessment

To successfully complete this course, you’ll need to self-direct and manage your own independent learning experience with guidance from one of our supportive academic supervisors. As far as possible, we’ll work to match your area for investigation with the interests, expertise and existing research projects of your supervisor.

In the early stages of the course, we’ll work with you to identify potential topics for investigation. Topics will need to offer scope for research that advances the boundaries of your knowledge, balanced with a realistic opportunity for completion.

Your supervisor will help you to clarify the terms of your project, establish a timetable for the project, and agree dates for subsequent meetings. They will also support you to identify learning opportunities, advise you regarding the study design and methodology, assist you to gain ethical approval (where necessary), and help you identify the analytical strategy and methods appropriate for your study. While supervisory support will form a key part of the teaching method throughout the project, you will ultimately be responsible for initiating most of your learning.

Summative assessment will be based on your 15,000 word dissertation. Your supervisor will offer you informal feedback on drafts of this document before you submit it for formal assessment.


The university will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver your course as described in its published material and the programme specification for the academic year in which you begin your course. Please be aware that our courses are subject to review on an ongoing basis. The content of course modules and mode of associated assessments may be updated on an annual basis. This is to ensure that all modules are up to date and responsive to employment and sector needs. The published course material and the programme specification contain indicative ‘optional modules’ that may be subject to change due to circumstances outside of our control. For this reason we cannot guarantee to run any specific optional module.

Assessment methods

Level Assessment method
Level One Coursework (100%)

Learning activities

Level Learning activity
Level One Guided independent study (98%), Scheduled learning and teaching activities (2%)

Contact The University

Key facts

  • Course type:
  • Start date:
    23/09/2019 or 27/01/2020
  • Location:
    The University of Bolton
  • Award:
  • Duration:
    1 year

Contact us

Russell Gurbutt
Programme Leader
Telephone: +44 (0)1204 903707

Sue First
Dissertation Module Leader
Telephone: +44 (0)1204 903755

Enquiry Team
University of Bolton
Telephone: +44 (0)1204 903903