MSc Advanced Practice

If you want to advance in your career as a health or social care practitioner and drive real benefits in patient care, a Master’s in Advanced Practice from the University of Bolton gives you the opportunity to build the knowledge and skills necessary to become an expert in your field.

MSc Advanced Practice

Course details

Developed for health and social care practitioners who want to progress to advanced level in their field, our part-time MSc in Advanced Practice (Health and Social Care) is designed to equip you with the knowledge and skills necessary for roles that require greater responsibility and levels of decision making. Students from a variety of health and social care backgrounds come to us to build on their theoretical and practical abilities. On our MSc course you’ll have the opportunity to get hands-on in our state-of-the-art Clinical Simulation Suite, and learn the core curriculum of a programme proudly supported by Health Education NW and employing NHS Trusts.

Covering content such as disease awareness, patient examination and diagnostics, leadership and innovation, this work-based programme aims to help you develop your clinical skills and leadership abilities to become a flexible practitioner able to respond to the challenges of your role and your developing service. As well as gaining skills in practice, you’ll have the opportunity to expand your knowledge and awareness with the relevant theory taught through blended direct and online learning approaches.

  • Start date: 23/09/2019
  • Location: The University of Bolton
  • Award: MSc
  • Duration: 2 years

Course highlights:

  • This course combines theory and knowledge with highly integrated skills practice, with the aim of both challenging and rewarding students.
  • Designed for maximum flexibility, this part-time programme is largely work-based.
  • Working in our state-of-the-art Bolton One facility, you’ll have the opportunity to apply your knowledge in practice.
  • Bolton’s Advanced Practice MSc graduates are highly sought after – many of our successful students go straight into employment after graduating.
  • On successful completion of this programme you’ll be awarded an MSc in Advanced Practice.

Key features:

  • We welcome students from a variety of health and social care backgrounds, including nurses, midwives, paramedics, public health and allied health professionals and healthcare scientists.
  • Students are allocated a learning facilitator who will advocate for you and help negotiate personalised work-based learning with your mentors and employers.
  • Alongside your core modules, you’ll have the option to personalise the programme according to your professional interests by studying an elective unit of your choice.
  • This course is supported by Health Education NW and employing NHS Trusts.

Entry requirements

  • Start date: 23/09/2019
  • Location: The University of Bolton
  • Award: MSc
  • Duration: 2 years

You must demonstrate the following: evidence of recent professional and academic development; current professional registration as a health or social care practitioner (for example, as an allied health professional, healthcare scientist, nurse, pharmacist or public health professional); normally, a minimum of five years' post-registration experience of professional practice; at least a Lower Second Class Honours degree (2.2) in a subject relevant to your health or social care practice; compliance with occupational health screening procedures and DBS Enhanced Disclosure clearance to the satisfaction of the employing health/social care organisation providing the practice placement; and support from the appropriate service manager for learning time, funding and learning support (i.e. mentors/assessors).

If you don’t meet the standard academic entry criteria listed above you may be accepted on the basis of the following: recent level HE6 study (60 credits), and/or submission of a portfolio of evidence in support of an APEL claim for level HE6 credit, or a Diploma in Higher Education linked to your professional qualification and satisfactory completion of a piece of set academic writing.

You'll be required to attend an interview as part of the application process.

This course involves regulated activity so you must gain an Enhanced Disclosure certificate from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) before starting your studies. Charges are payable to cover the cost of the DBS Enhanced Disclosure application and annual registration with the online Update Service. (Normally your sponsoring organisation will organise this.) Please note that your DBS must have been completed within three years of the course start date. Find out more

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

This course aims to develop both your clinical and leadership abilities, enabling you to achieve advanced practitioner level. You’ll be encouraged and supported to master the clinical content of the course, and have the opportunity to develop the necessary leadership skills to challenge and change practice, with a view to delivering innovative changes that provide real benefits for patients in your service.

What can I do with this qualification?

On successful completion of this programme, you’ll be eligible to practice at an advanced practitioner level across a range of roles, including midwifery, accident and emergency, intensive care and mental health.

Graduates who have completed this programme may progress into a wide range of fields, including directors of social enterprise organisations, consultant children’s nurses and advanced practitioners in audiology, mental health, palliative care, podiatry, falls management, cardiovascular, sexual health and substance misuse services. The programme also provides a platform to move into the field of research and complete a PhD.

Alternative career options

  • Probation
  • Substance misuse
  • Victim support
  • Youth work
  • Social housing
  • Learning support
  • Counselling
  • Mental health
  • Occupational therapy
  • Community education
  • Teaching and training
  • Journalism
  • Dietetics
  • Research and development
  • Health promotion
  • Armed forces
  • Health services management

Professional recognition

Currently, ‘advanced practitioner’ is not a restricted title although this issue is being explored by the professional bodies; for example, the Nursing and Midwifery Council and the Health Professions Council.

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.

  • Biological Basis of Diseases
  • Clinical Examination Skills
  • Diagnostics and Therapeutics
  • Discovery and Establishment of the Advanced Practitioner
  • Leadership and Innovation
  • Embedding the Advanced Practitioner Role within the Organisation
  • Delivering Quality Improvement in Practice

Teaching, learning and assessment

Students on this programme are taught through a blended style of direct lessons and online learning, as well as practical learning sessions. The theory of the course is taught at lectures and built on during group discussions, seminars and tutorials. Simulations are delivered by tutors in the Clinical Simulation Suite to build students’ practical awareness.

You’ll be expected to complete self-directed study, such as background reading and class preparation, and you’ll also have various eLearning projects set through the University’s virtual learning environment, Moodle. Problem-based learning is a key technique used periodically for projects requiring investigation and synthesis of knowledge in practice.

We use a range of assessment methods designed to ensure you’re on track to achieve the learning outcomes and programme aims. These assessments include essays, reports, presentations, set exercises and portfolios. Assessment methods will vary according to each module’s content and desired outcome.


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 (56%), Practical exams (18%), Written exams (26%)

Learning activities

Level Learning activity
Level One Guided independent study (70%), Placement/study abroad (17%), Scheduled learning and teaching activities (13%)

Contact The University

Key facts

  • Course type:
  • Start date:
  • Location:
    The University of Bolton
  • Award:
  • Duration:
    2 years

Contact us

Andy Taylor
Programme Leader
Telephone: +44 (0)1204 903885

Mark Holland
Telephone: +44 (0)1204 903277

Stuart Smith
Telephone: +44 (0)1204 903781

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

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