Student radiographer using the x-ray machine


Diagnostic Imaging

Please note the tariff points stated for this course are indicative. The tariff points for 2018 will be published by August 2017.

About this course

Entry year:
Course code:
Tariff points:
Allied Health Professions
Glenside Campus
Three years
Programme leader:
Karen Dunmall
Key fact:
Develop specialist diagnostic imaging knowledge and skills using leading-edge technology and gain experience on placements in a range of NHS and private healthcare environments.

Page last updated 3 March 2017


Why study BSc(Hons) Diagnostic Imaging?

Most hospital patients will not receive treatment without some form of diagnostic assessment. Computer or digital radiography equipment uses plain imaging to assess the chest and skeleton. Specialist modalities such as ultrasound, computerised tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and nuclear medicine help diagnose surgical, medical or vascular conditions, and complex injuries. To produce and interpret these diagnostic images, radiographers need specialist knowledge in radiation science, technology, anatomy, physiology and pathology.

Why study our course?

This course is accredited by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and you will be able to register with these on graduation. You will study the science that underpins effective diagnosis and develop strong inter-professional and interpersonal skills, along with the ability to operate highly specialised equipment. You will learn in state-of-the-art technological facilities where you can observe and practice diagnostic procedures. This learning is also applied in a range of healthcare environments through a series of clinical work placements.

Real-world experience

The course has a strong practical focus, incorporating evidence-based learning, simulations and use of cutting-edge equipment, such as the Shaderware virtual reality x-ray laboratory. Half of your time will be spent on placements in a variety of environments in NHS and private healthcare organisations. Throughout your course, you will engage with patients, clinical radiographers and other healthcare professionals in placements, classes and online learning opportunities. There will also be options to develop and apply your skills working abroad.

Where it can take you

Diagnostic radiographers are in demand, with exciting career opportunities for graduates in the NHS and private radiography departments in the UK and worldwide. You can also choose to develop a specialism through studying for a Master's degree in fields such as ultrasound, nuclear medicine, radiotherapy and CT.

Watch: The learning and teaching experience

Accreditations and partnerships:



BSc(Hons) Diagnostic Imaging integrates academic studies with clinical experience within professional studies modules. A strong science theme runs throughout the course. The Radiation Physics, Anatomy and Physiology and Applied Sciences modules in Year one provide a solid foundation in imaging science. This knowledge is then applied to new technologies and procedures in Years two and three. In each year, there are separate professional practice theory and clinical placement modules. These build on the complexity of imaging in preparation for autonomous practice post qualification. In addition, there is a module dedicated to ethical, legal and professional principles in Year two and role development and employability in Year three.

The development of effective inter-professional relationships and collaboration is promoted through shared, enquiry-based learning with other professional groups. Research is an integral element of the course and an essential foundation for future professional development as a radiographer.

Year one

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Applied Sciences for Radiographers
  • Radiation Physics
  • Anatomy and Physiology for Radiographers
  • Care of the Patient in Clinical Imaging
  • Foundations of Radiographic Imaging
  • Diagnostic Imaging Clinical Practice 1

Year two

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Intermediate Diagnostic Imaging Theory
  • Science and Instrumentation in Diagnostic Imaging
  • Professional Issues in Radiography
  • Research Principles for Radiography
  • Service Improvement - A Collaborative Approach
  • Diagnostic Imaging Clinical Practice 2

Year three

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Principles of Radiographic Interpretation and Patient Assessment
  • Professional Development and Employability
  • Diagnostic Imaging Clinical Practice 3
  • Advanced Imaging Studies
  • Research Dissertation for Radiography

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course, are approved we will inform you.

Learning and Teaching

In addition to lectures, a variety of methods are incorporated into the modules, including practical sessions/experiments, student led seminars, e-learning, guided self-study and problem based learning, using scenarios and case studies. Like all radiography students, you will be allocated a personal tutor from the radiography lecturers.

For more details, see our full glossary of learning and teaching terms.

Study time

Computer skills are vital for your academic studies and future employment. At UWE Bristol, computing is an integral part of your course. Many lecturers make notes and materials available via computers, and some modules will require you to use information technology (IT) to help you undertake and present your work. IT facilities to do this are available on all campuses. At the main Frenchay Campus, there is 24-hour access to computing facilities, and the University offers help and support throughout your course.

Prior to commencing your course of study, you may find it helpful to familiarise yourself with some core IT skills:

  • Basic word processing.
  • Storing and retrieving files.
  • Communicating via email.
  • Searching the web for information (e.g. online shopping, booking a holiday and homework).

There is also a range of information and resources, including interactive exercises to support study skills, on the Department's website.


A variety of assessment tools are utilised across the courses. Assessment is distributed over each academic year and includes:

  • examinations
  • assignments
  • case studies
  • appraisals of clinical skills
  • student-led presentations
  • clinical portfolio
  • research dissertation
  • weblogs
  • wikis.

For more details, see our full glossary of assessment terms.


Professional accreditation

This course is accredited by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and leads to eligibility to apply for registration with the HCPC.


You will undertake a variety of placements to increase your experience and aid your adaptability. As well as developing your professional skills, health industry knowledge and network, the variety of clinical placements, including a pre-qualifying placement, will make you highly employable on graduation.

We have excellent links with hospitals and private healthcare. You will spend half the course applying your knowledge and building professional skills within these. Placements offer a variety of work environments so you can find a location that suits you. Our graduates work in the hospitals within the region and also go on to work nationally and internationally.

Study facilities

A range of specialist facilities, including the skills simulation suite, is available to help with your studies. You will:

  • Explore the use and production of x-rays and develop positioning and patient-related skills using modern computer radiography and digital radiography and processing equipment.
  • Practice procedures and experience changing factors, as they would look on a real patient using Shaderware technology.
  • Access a huge selection of books, journals and audio-visual materials including specialist health and social care databases in our Glenside Campus library - one of the best health care libraries in England.

Find out more about our fantastic facilities at UWE Bristol.

Expand your horizons

There are opportunities for you to gain experience all over the world, whether it is through the five-week pre-qualifying placement abroad during your final year, or going for a place on the Work The World programme.

Network and learn

We arrange regular presentations from visiting NHS professionals. There are also opportunities for you to engage with service users. Both provide input to our teaching and curriculum, helping us to provide a holistic experience of the health service.

Raise your profile

We will encourage you to share learning and attend conferences with the Society of Radiographers' student body. Some of our students have won prizes for presenting abstracts at their conferences. Others have had their work published in professional journals.


Careers / Further study

Diagnostic radiographers are in demand, with exciting career opportunities for graduates in the UK and worldwide. The majority of our graduates find positions in the diagnostic imaging departments of NHS Trusts. Others go into private healthcare providers or work in field hospitals for the forces. Some go on to develop a specialism through studying for a Master's degree in fields such as ultrasound, nuclear medicine, radiotherapy and computerised tomography (CT).

Award-winning careers service

Our award-winning careers service will help you develop your employment potential through career coaching and a vacancy service for internships, along with placements, jobs, global opportunities, volunteering and community activity, plus support for entrepreneurial activity and access to employer events.

Creating employable students

UWE Bristol places strong emphasis on employability and skills development at every level. Through work placements, volunteering, study abroad and initiatives nurturing talent and innovation, you will have opportunities to gain valuable real world experience, allowing you to graduate with diverse career opportunities and a competitive place in the job market.

Visit our Employability pages to find out about careers, employers, real world experience and what our students are doing six months after graduating.


Supplementary fee information

The additional costs listed are those you could reasonably expect to incur during your studies and are for items not covered by the standard tuition fee. These could be materials, text books, travel, clothing, software or printing.

If you are a UK student you may be entitled to living cost support.

For more details please see our guidance on NHS funding for UK students or our guidance on NHS funding for EU students.

We are unable to accept applications from international students (overseas fee status).


Typical offers

  • Tariff points: 120
  • GCSE: For all applicants, a minimum of five subjects at grade C or above, or Grade 4 under newly reformed GCSE grading, to include English Language and Mathematics and Double Science, or equivalent. Please note the University does not accept Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Certificates in Adult Numeracy and Literacy as suitable alternatives to GCSEs.
  • English Language Requirement:

    If your first language is not English, you must have a minimum IELTS score of 7 overall with a minimum of 6.5 in any section, (or equivalent). Full details of this language test can be obtained from the British Council. Please note the University's published list of alternative English Language qualifications does not apply to this course.

  • A-level subjects: Grade C or above in a Science subject. Points from A-Level General Studies and AS-Level subjects (not taken onto full A-Level) can be included towards overall tariff. You must have a minimum of two A-Levels.
  • Specific subjects: Subjects that meet the science requirement for this course: Biology, Human Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics, Psychology.

    Applicants with other science subject that have a strong academic profile will be considered on an individual basis. For further advice on acceptable science subjects please email

  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: To include six units in a science subject
  • Access: Achievement of the Access to HE Diploma; to include 30 level 3 credits at merit, of which 15 credits must be in a Science related subject.
  • Baccalaureate IB: A minimum grade of 5 in a higher level science subject

Entry requirements

Please note we do not accept deferred entry applications for this course.

Please read the general information about entry requirements.

We require evidence of recent assessed academic study within the last three years.

If you do not meet the minimum academic entry requirements but have significant life and/or work experience, you will be considered on an individual basis. However, you still need to meet the GCSE English, Maths and Science requirements, and should have evidence of recent study in a science/health related subject area recognised as equivalent academic level by the University.

If you don't meet the entry requirements of this course, you may be eligible for the Health Professions Foundation Year which can qualify you for the full degree.

Recruitment for this course is informed by Health Education England's Values Based Recruitment Framework. The purpose of this framework is to ensure that we recruit students whose individual values and behaviours align with the values of the NHS Constitution.

Additional Selection Criteria

As well as meeting the academic entry requirements, applicants should meet the following selection criteria:

Health assessment/declaration/vaccinations. You must be in good health and up-to-date with your routine immunisations e.g. tetanus, diphtheria, polio and MMR. If you are offered a place, you will be required to complete a questionnaire and must be prepared to undergo a medical examination. You will also be required to confirm your status in respect of a number of infectious diseases and immunisations (tuberculosis, measles, mumps, rubella, chicken pox, varicella, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, HIV antibodies) and be prepared to have all required vaccinations. If your vaccinations are not up-to-date this will affect your ability to continue on your course. If you have any concerns with regards to vaccinations please raise this at the point of application.

Disclosure of Criminal Background. The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 does not apply and all convictions, including those which are spent, must be disclosed. This is in accordance with the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975. If you are offered a place, you must undergo a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check and will be required to complete a Disclosure Application Form. All information will be treated in confidence and only taken into account when absolutely necessary.

Selection Event. If shortlisted, you will be invited to a selection event where you will be required to complete a 30 minute written task relating to the skills and attributes required for the profession. You will also have an individual interview which will last approximately 15 minutes. The interview panel will consist of representatives from academic/clinical staff and service users. If you score well on both elements, you will be offered a place.

Prior to starting the course you will need to undertake a visit to a hospital's x-ray/diagnostic imaging/radiology department (particularly general radiography) to shadow and observe a radiographer in their day-to-day work. This will help you gain experience and insight of what it is like to work as a radiographer from behind the scenes and to know what the profession entails. It is not always possible to attend a clinical visit prior to application/interview, this will not disadvantage you. However, if you have managed to arrange a clinical visit, or have already been on a clinical visit, you should download a copy of the Clinical Visit Report Form (PDF) .

Completing the Application Form. We will be looking for applicants committed to a career in radiography. You should clearly demonstrate in the 'personal statement' section of the application form: your motivation and enthusiasm for a career in radiography; that you have good interpersonal skills; any IT experience; relevant work experience that you have gained to date; what you saw and liked when you visited a x-ray/diagnostic imaging/radiology Department.

How to apply

Please see the general information about applications.

For further information


UWE Main Campus

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