Professional course Return to Practice

Entry year
Course code
Professional/Short Course
Nursing and Midwifery
Glenside and Gloucester
Six weeks
Online delivery for theory

For qualified nurses and SCPHN

Page last updated 12 March 2021


This Return to Practice Level 3 programme is for qualified nurses (adult, child, mental health and learning disabilities) and SCPHN who have lapsed registration and wish to return to practice and re-register with the NMC.

Provision of Return to Practice (RTP) has recently changed to an employer led model with places commissioned by Health Education South West (HeSW).

In conjunction with UWE Bristol, healthcare organisations such as NHS Trusts, GP practices and independent providers will be supporting Nurses and Health Visitors to return to practice, with the potential of employment on successful completion of the programme. 

Due to social distancing measures, currently, the theory part of the programme is delivered online. From January 2018, a Return to Practice for GP Nurses is also available with additional skills teaching - focusing on clinical skills specific to primary care.

The theory part of the programme runs over six consecutive weeks with live online sessions on Mondays and Fridays between 09:00 and 12:30. We have three intakes for this programme a year starting in January, May or September.

Watch the Return to Practice promotional video on YouTube.

Entry requirements

RTP information for prospective students (PDF)

RTP information for placement providers (PDF)

New Return to Practice Standards:

Please check your eligibility against the new NMC standards (PDF).

Careers / Further study

This module can contribute towards:




The course content covers:

  • Professional values
  • Communication and interpersonal skills
  • Nursing practice and decision making
  • Leadership, management and team working

Learning and Teaching

The theory part of the programme is designed to support RTP students in updating their knowledge and skills on contemporary nursing practice. The theoretical aspect of the programme is run alongside a practice placement where returnees will complete practice competencies that meet the NMC outcomes that are required to be eligible to return to practice; these are:-

  • An understanding of the influence of health and social policy to the practice of nursing and midwifery
  • An understanding of the requirements of legislation, guidelines, codes of practice and polices relevant to the practice of nursing and midwifery.
  • An understanding of the current structure and organisation of care, nationally and locally.
  • An understanding of current issues in nursing and midwifery education and practice.
  • The use of relevant literature and research to inform the practice of nursing and midwifery.
  • The ability to identify and assess need, design and plan interventions and evaluate outcome in all relevant areas of practice, including the effective delivery of appropriate emergency care.
  • The ability to use appropriate communications, teaching and learning skills
  • The ability to function effectively in a team and participate in a multi-professional approach to people's care.
  • The ability to identify strengths and weaknesses, acknowledgement limitation of competence and recognising the importance of maintaining and developing professional competence.

In addition to the practice outcomes, you will be required to pass an academic assignment at level 3, which is based on reflective practice. You will also need to compile a professional portfolio of evidence and pass a numeracy assessment to complete the programme.



In order to enrol onto the RTP UWE Bristol programme, the first step for you is to secure an RTP placement with a healthcare provider.

Most large NHS trusts would periodically advertise for the RTP post on the NHS jobs website.

However, you may want to consider and approach some local organisations (via their educational department or for example a GP practice manager) and enquire about the opportunity for undertaking the RTP programme with them.

If you are currently working for a healthcare organisation, you may want to discuss the RTP option during your PDR meeting or with your manager.

Study facilities

You'll have access to a range of on-campus and online facilities to support your learning, including the University Library which is open 24 hours a day.

The Faculty of Health and Applied Sciences has an excellent reputation for the quality of its teaching and the facilities it provides.

Prices and dates

Supplementary fee information

Please visit full fee information to see the price brackets for our module.The placement provider will apply for a grant from Health Education South West (HESW) who fund the cost for this programme.

A bursary is available through HESW to support your study and associated costs - this is £1,000 for nurses is only available for Adult, Learning Disability and Mental Health nurses. All others receive £500. 


Please click on the Apply Now button to view dates.

How to apply

How to apply

Applications are initially made through employing organisations. You will find a list of supporting organisations through the Health Education South West website. Return to practice places  may also be advertised through NHS jobs and other local sites.   

Interviews will be held jointly with the employing organisation and UWE Bristol. Please do not submit an application prior to this interview.

Successful applicants should then register online for the Return to Practice course within seven days of accepting the post and upload the completed RTP Placement Information form to the CPD Portal (UWE Bristol online application).

Closing date for all applications is two weeks prior to the start of the course. Please check course details for closing date.


1.    Please ensure that you have received your Honorary Contract before applying for this course online.

2.    You will need to arrange the completion of the RTP Placement Information form which must be completed by your interviewer/employer. Please ensure that it is scanned and saved on your device before you apply online for the course. Once you have applied, it is essential that you upload the form to your application. If you fail to upload your document, your online application will be cancelled.

3.    Your NMC letter showing your registration has lapsed will need to be uploaded once you have applied.

4.    Once your Placement form and NMC letter has been completed and saved, you can then use the Apply Now button.

5.    Select the course date you have agreed with your employer.

6.    Select Apply for Course.

7.    If you are new to UWE Bristol CPD, you will need to register to use the Professional Development portal.

8.    If you have already registered on the Professional Development portal, sign in and complete the application.

See Frequently Asked Questions.

For further information