Two students wearing lab coats, talking


Healthcare Science (Physiological Sciences)

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:
Applied Sciences
Three years
Full-time (with integrated placements)
Programme leader:
Dr Kathryn Yuill
Key fact:
Accredited by the Registration Council for Clinical Physiologists, BSc(Hons) Healthcare Science (Physiological Sciences) offers direct entry to a career in the NHS as a healthcare scientist.

Page last updated 28 June 2017


Why study BSc(Hons) Healthcare Science (Physiological Sciences)?

Healthcare Science (Physiological Sciences) examines the causes, diagnosis and treatment of diseases. The course will help you develop a strong foundation in healthcare science and specialist skills in either cardiac physiology, respiratory and sleep physiology or neurophysiology (only available for those in post). You will also gain an understanding of the importance of patient-centred care, evidence-based practice, clinical audit and multidisciplinary team working. This is a practical course that gives you the knowledge and professional skills for work as a clinical physiologist.

Why study our course?

Accredited by Registration Council for Clinical Physiologists, BSc(Hons) Healthcare Science (Physiological Sciences) at UWE Bristol is the principal training route for healthcare science practitioners in the NHS. The course is provided through a unique collaboration between the University and local NHS providers in the South West region. With fully integrated work-based training, you will work at the leading-edge of healthcare science, using state-of-the-art equipment in a patient-facing environment.

Real-world experience

Practical, work-based training is a fundamental part of the course and you will spend more than 40 weeks on placements over its duration, developing specialist knowledge and professional skills within pathways specifically designed for a career as a healthcare scientist in the NHS.

Where it can take you

As the main training route into the NHS, the course will lead you directly to a career as a healthcare scientist working in a hospital clinic, as part of a medical or surgical team, or in the community. You could also choose to continue your studies to MSc or PhD level, or to undertake further NHS-based training or specialisation.

Watch: The learning and teaching experience

Accreditations and partnerships:



This course focuses on providing you with a strong foundation in Healthcare science and specialist knowledge and training in either the Cardiac Physiology, Respiratory and Sleep Physiology or Neurophysiology (for those in post only). The combination of modules offered will enable you to understand the science of the causes, diagnosis and treatment of disease, while working at the cutting edge of healthcare sciences, using state-of-the-art equipment in a patient-facing environment.

Dependent on whether you are working in post or undertaking placements, you will study the following modules.

Year one

You will study the following compulsory module:

  • Introduction to Physiological Science.

In addition, you will study the modules in one of the following delivery routes:

Placement (Cardiac Physiology, Respiratory and Sleep Physiology)

  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Biomedical Skills
  • Cell Biology, Biochemistry and Genetics.

In post (Cardiac Physiology, Respiratory and Sleep Physiology, Neurophysiology)

  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Principles in Healthcare Science
  • Scientific Basis of Life.

Year two

You will study the following compulsory modules:


  • Practice and Communication of Science
  • Diagnostic and Professional Practice in Healthcare Science.

In post

  • Scientific Practice
  • Professional Aspects of Healthcare Science
  • Pathophysiological Sciences A
  • Pathophysiological Sciences B.

In addition, those on placement will choose one of the following two pathways:

Cardiac Physiology

  • Cardiovascular Physiology and Pathophysiology A
  • Cardiovascular Physiology and Pathophysiology B.

Respiratory and Sleep Physiology

  • Respiratory and Sleep Physiology and Pathophysiology A
  • Respiratory and Sleep Physiology and Pathophysiology B.

Final year

You will study the following compulsory modules:

  • Healthcare Science Project
  • Professional Practice for Healthcare Science.

In addition, you will study one of the following three pathways:

Cardiac Physiology

  • Advanced Cardiac Physiology and Neurophysiology
  • Applied Cardiac Physiology.

Respiratory and Sleep Physiology

  • Advanced Respiratory and Sleep Physiology
  • Applied Neurophysiology, Respiratory and Sleep Physiology.

Neurophysiology (in post only)

  • Applied Neurophysiology, Respiratory and Sleep Physiology
  • Advanced Cardiac Physiology and Neurophysiology.

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

The department promotes student-centred learning, with guided individual learning encouraged through lectures, workshops, tutorials and practical work. Your studies will also be supported with very well equipped modern lecture theatres and laboratories.

While on the 15 and 25-week placements, you will undertake a 30-credit Professional Practice in Healthcare Science module. This incorporates the Department of Health's Healthcare Science Practitioner Training Programme Training Manuals, with learning outcomes mapped to assignments to allow the award of marks. During the final 25-week placement, you will conduct a placement based Healthcare Project. 

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


You will be assessed through a mix of laboratory tasks, coursework, practical project work and examinations.

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


Professional accreditation

This course is accredited by the Registration Council for Clinical Physiologists (RCCP) and the National School of Healthcare Science as part of Health Education England. The RCCP accreditation provides recognition by employers and quality assurance. It also sets industry standards and enables career mobility. Once you have completed your professional portfolio, you can register with the Health Education England.


Throughout the course, you will be able to apply your expertise and build professional skills in patient-facing roles within the NHS. There are a minimum of six placement weeks in Year one, 15 weeks in in a specialist discipline (cardiac or respiratory and sleep) in Year two and 25 weeks in your chosen discipline in your final year. This means you will complete the course with over 40 weeks of work-based experience and training, putting you in a strong position for employment opportunities with your placement provider.

Study facilities

Healthcare Science is primarily taught at UWE Bristol's main campus at Frenchay. In addition to the first-class campus facilities, the department's science laboratories have recently undergone a £3.2 million refurbishment and feature state-of-the-art analytical facilities and excellent technical support. Some teaching sessions will be held at the Glenside Campus, where specialist clinical simulation suites provide a unique learning opportunity for you, as a student on a professional practice-based course.

Find out more about the facilities and resources UWE has to offer.

Learn from experts

You will be supported and mentored by a team of healthcare science specialists at the University and on placements. Guided independent learning is encouraged and supported by a course of lectures, seminars and tutorials, complemented by laboratory and computer-based sessions and a web-based virtual learning environment.


Careers / Further study

This course is a recognised training route for healthcare scientists and will prepare you for a range of careers or for postgraduate study. Healthcare scientists working in physiological sciences use specialist scientific equipment and typically have a significant amount of direct contact with patients. Graduates work in hospital clinics and departments, as part of a medical or surgical team and in the community. The course also develops the transferable skills valued by every employer, including teamwork, communication, leadership, problem solving and numeracy.

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.

Be inspired

Read about NHS careers in the South West.


Full Time Course

FeesAmount (£)
International-Full Time-Annual (Per Year) Fee12750
International-Full Time-Module Fee (15 Credit)1594

Indicative Additional Costs

FeesAmount (£)
Additional Course Costs - Full Time - Home/EU - Indicative Maximum Cost Per year450
OH/Medical assessment - ONLY charged for missed appointments.30

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.

Further information about fees and funding.


Typical offers

  • Tariff points: 120
  • GCSE: For all applicants, Grade C or above, or Grade 4 under newly reformed GCSE grading, in English Language, Mathematics and 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 should have a minimum IELTS score of 7.0 or above with a minimum of 6.5 in all sections of the test. 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 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: Preferably Biology or Chemistry
  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: To include six units in a science subject
  • Access: Achievement of the Access to HE Diploma; to include 15 level 3 credits at merit in science, and an additional 15 level 3 credits at merit in another subject.
  • Baccalaureate IB: A minimum grade of 5 in a higher level science subject

Entry requirements

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

Health assessment/declaration/vaccinations. You must be in good health and be 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 the 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. 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.

Questionnaire. You may be required to complete a biographical questionnaire.

Selection Event. If you are shortlisted, you will be invited to attend a selection event including an individual interview with an academic member of staff and a representative from a laboratory practice setting. On successful completion of all of these criteria, you will be offered a place.

If you don't meet the entry requirements of this course, you may be eligible for Foundation Year entry into this or other related degree courses.

Please read the general information about entry requirements.

How to apply

Please see the general information about applications.

For further information


UWE Main Campus

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