BSc(Hons) Public Health (Specialist Community Public Health Nursing)

Entry year
Course code
Tariff points
Health and Social Sciences
Glenside Campus
1 year full-time study, 2 years part-time study
Full-time, part-time
Programme leader
Joanne Seal

Health Visiting/School Nursing/Occupational Health Nursing

Page last updated 28 May 2020


You will need to secure a secondment opportunity or a studentship, underpinned by a fixed term contract from a Trust prior to applying. Check opportunities on the <a href=>NHS job website.</a>

Accreditations and partnerships:

The BSc(Hons) Public Health course has been designed to produce knowledgeable and skilled public health practitioners who are able to work with various client groups across different settings within the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) Professional Code of Conduct (2008).

This knowledge and skill development will be reflected in your ability to demonstrate achievement of the NMC Standards of proficiency for Specialist Community Public Health Nurses (SCPHN 2004).

Ten key areas of public health practice and domains require a practitioner to search for health needs; stimulate an awareness of health needs; influence policies affecting health and facilitate health enhancing activities in different public health settings.

This course embraces a family/child centred public health role with individuals, families and populations, focusing on improving health and tackling health inequalities.

The approach requires practitioners to work within a dynamic socio-cultural and service provision context across traditional boundaries, networking and developing services in conjunction with service users, other professionals and voluntary workers.

This involves the capacity to lead, assess, work collaboratively, evaluate public health provision, and accept responsibility and accountability for the safe, effective and efficient management of that provision.

This course is for people who wish to register on the third part of the NMC register as a Specialist Community Public Health Nurse: Health Visitor, School Nurse or Occupational Health Nurse.

The course requires effective registration on part one (Nursing) or part two (Midwifery) of the NMC register.

The course aims to:

  • Promote public health practice centred learning.
  • Develop students' evidence based public health knowledge, and skills to inform practice.
  • Promote the development of lifelong learning through reflection, and personal development planning.
  • Promote inter-professional learning, collaborative and partnership working within the context of public health.

Return to Health Visiting

Our Return to Nursing Practice Course which includes health visiting, takes approximately four months and comprises of a single specialist module and achievement of clinical competencies.

The module is over five study days, and includes a variety of approaches including; interactive discussions, seminar work, tutorials, lectures and visits.


The assessment is a 2000 word reflective assignment based on a learning contract negotiated to individual needs. Practice will be undertaken to meet the NMC requirements for returning to practice within an appropriate supervised practice area in local NHS Trust. The practice placement is organised by the returnees, supported by us.

More information

For those wanting to return to health visiting, you will complete this theory module, but your practice hours and achievement of competence will be demonstrated in the SCPHN field.

This means you will have a public health nursing placement within health visiting.

When they have successfully completed the course you will be able to restore your registration to both part one and part three of the NMC Register.

For further information regarding Return to Health Visiting email the Health and Applied Sciences (HAS) Team at or call 0117 32 81158.



The optional modules listed are those that are most likely to be available, but they may be subject to change.

During the course you will gain experiences in a range of different settings and areas of professional practice through collaborative working and inter-professional learning covering the following areas:

  • In settings and with age groups that are central to the responsibilities for the defined area of practice, health visiting, school nursing or occupational health nursing.
  • Working with disadvantaged or vulnerable populations, health inequalities and factors that contribute to health and wellbeing.
  • Working with age groups considered as either important or that may be a potential area of responsibility even if not central to the areas of responsibility.
  • Completing 60 days of consolidated practice within your defined area of practice which can be completed on a full-time basis over 12 weeks or on a part-time basis over 24 weeks.

The practice element of the course is divided into two parts, taught and consolidated.

A period of consolidation provides an opportunity for you to focus on your specific profession, building on the previous experiences developed through the course and in practice. This period allows time for prioritisation of workload, development of proficiency, and fitness for practice as a safe, accountable and effective practitioner.

The course is 50% theory to practice with designated time in the university as well as in practice with a coordinating Practice Teacher.

Level 3 Modules

  • Public Health and Health Promotion
  • Principles of Evidence Based Public Health
  • Professional Perspectives in Specialist Community Public Health Nursing
  • Leadership and Enterprise

Plus one of the following optional modules.

  • Promoting the Health of School-aged Children in the Community
  • Workplace health and well-being
  • V100 Prescribing Practice

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.

This structure is for full-time students only. Part-time students study the same modules but the delivery pattern will be different.

Learning and Teaching

A range of teaching and learning methods are used including formal lectures, seminars, enquiry-based and online learning, project work, individual self-directed study and assignment preparation. Students are encouraged to draw on their own and colleagues' existing experience in the learning process.

See our full glossary of learning and teaching terms.

Study time

To facilitate learning in practice you will be allocated a practice teacher who is qualified in your chosen practice area (health visiting or school nursing), by the seconding or sponsoring health organisation.

Underpinning study themes include:

  • Critical reflection on practice and learning
  • Self-evaluation and professional development planning
  • Leading teams and managing change
  • Multi-disciplinary team working
  • Interprofessional and inter agency working
  • Need assessment, planning and evaluation of practice
  • Service development
  • Group working and teaching
  • Critical evaluation and utilisation of research in practice
  • Critical evaluation of policy and its implementation in practice

Computer skills are vital for your academic studies. At UWE computing is an integral part of your course - many lecturers make lecture notes and materials available online. Some modules will require you to use information technology to help you undertake and present your work. IT facilities are available on all campuses. At the main Frenchay Campus there is 24-hour access to computing facilities, and the Department 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 e-mail
  • Searching the web for information, e.g. online shopping, booking a holiday

There is also a range of information and resources that includes interactive exercises to support study skills on the Department website.


Modules are assessed by a range of methods including: case studies, oral presentations, professional practice portfolios and written examinations.

See our full glossary of assessment terms.


Professional accreditation

The BSc(Hons) Specialist Community Public Health degree is accredited by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), which means when you graduate you can register with the annotation of Health Visitor, School Nurse or Occupational Health Nurse.


Students will have secured a placement appropriate to their chosen SCPHN field via secondment or sponsorship from a health organisation.

Study facilities

The Department is superbly equipped with an extensive range of teaching and learning resources across four campuses.

The library on the Glenside Campus is one of the best health and social care libraries in England with a huge selection of books, journals and audio-visual materials including access to specialist health and social care packages.

The inter-professional skills simulation suite provides excellent opportunities for the demonstration and practice of professional competencies for health and social care students.

Information Technology provision is in the form of multimedia laboratories, smart boards and innovative projects such as 'multicasting' to deliver teaching material.


Careers / Further study

Students will need to already be working in an appropriate placement setting, but on successful completion of the course you will be able to:

  • Register as a Specialist Community Public Health Nurse.
  • Enhance and build on your previous professional qualifications and practice.
  • Develop your public health knowledge and skills.
  • Enter a career in public health nursing.
  • Register as able to prescribe from the community practitioners' formulary if you have completed the V100 element of the course.


There is currently no published fee data for this course.

Supplementary fee information

Additional costs

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

For information about funding for undergraduate courses see our funding pages.

Secondment/Sponsorship -

Health Education South West may fund courses for employees of NHS Trusts and some independent organisations.

This usually means that:

  • Health Education South West will pay all or part of the tuition fee (and placement fee if applicable)
  • you continue to receive a salary or training/cost of living allowance
  • your employer provides placements

You should contact your manager/training manager for further information.


Typical offers

Entry requirements

Students must have the following:

  • Active first level registration on the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) professional register
  • 120 credits at Level 2 or above (Students who do not fulfil this criteria but have other relevant/equivalent qualifications or experience will be considered on an individual basis and maybe advised to access the Accelerated Learning for Professionals module, successful completion of which will fulfil this entry requirement)
  • The route onto the course is to secure a secondment opportunity or a studentship, underpinned by a fixed term contract from a Trust. The Trust will then pay you on a band five scale pro-rata for the period that you are on the course, as well as provide you with a practice placement, which is essential for entry onto the course. Trusts will be advertising these opportunities in the near future on NHS Job website therefore we would advise you to check this site regularly.
  • In securing a sponsored or seconded place from a NHS Trust or Community Organisation, all students will need to have successfully completed an in-depth Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) check through the sponsoring or seconding Trust.

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.

Read more about entry requirements.

How to apply

Once a practice placement has been secured from a Trust, please apply using the online link 'Apply for this course'.

For further information