Our BSc Healthcare Science degree is a recognised NHS practitioner training programme that is based at University Hospital Southampton. It is a three year full time course that can also be completed over four years part time.
The programme focuses on learning to use state-of-the-art technology to diagnose health problems, minimise disabilities, and improve all round health. There is a high level of patient interaction throughout this NHS practitioner training programme thanks to its supervised practice placements.
Our Healthcare Science degree has been commended by the Registration Council for Clinical Physiology and the National Academy for Healthcare Science, for its innovative approach to learning.
This course offers a pathway to professional registration and a rewarding career in cardiac physiology and presents a unique opportunity to combine science and technology with patient care. You will receive high quality tuition and practical training sessions.
As a practicing graduate of the Healthcare Science degree, you will be at the forefront of technological advances that aid the diagnosis and treatment of cardiac and respiratory conditions. You will study both cardiac physiology and respiratory and physiology in year one before specialising in cardiac physiology in year two.
You will study cardiovascular and respiratory and sleep physiology in year 1. In years 2 and 3 you will focus on cardiac physiology. Cardiac physiology is concerned with heart function, whilst respiratory and sleep physiology concentrates on breathing difficulties and sleep disorders.
Throughout your studies you will learn how to diagnose a whole spectrum of complaints thanks to our world class learning facilities and highly respected academics. Furthermore, our research groups will give you access to some of the latest scientific discoveries to strengthen your knowledge. Additionally, we put special emphasis on acquiring skills of emotional intelligence like empathy and compassion. These are particularly important because people with undiagnosed conditions will often be deeply worried or anxious.
You will undertake practical training in a dedicated skills lab using the latest clinical equipment at University Hospital Southampton to prepare you for clinical placements. 2,000 hours of placements will allow you to apply and develop your clinical skills.
All undergraduate applications should be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). Visit our How to Apply page for information on the application process and further details about UCAS' website, phone and contact details. Specific application deadlines are available on the UCAS website.
“I have gained technical knowledge through the course, in the recording systems used for cardiac investigations, including non-invasive tests such as resting ECGs, ambulatory monitors, exercise tolerance tests and more invasive procedures like angiograms and pacemaker implants.”
Applications should be submitted through UCAS (www.ucas.com). Once you have submitted your application, the Admissions Team will review it to check that you either already meet or are on target to meet our academic entry criteria for this course. If so, your application will be passed to the Programme Admissions Tutor who will review your personal statement and reference and assess these against fixed criteria.
What will the Admissions Tutors look for in my Personal Statement?
The Admissions Tutor looks for evidence that you offer a caring and compassionate approach; that your personal values and attitudes align with those of the NHS Constitution and the University; that you have realistic insight to the area you plan to study; and that you are committed to both study and practice parts of the course.
Why do you want to be a Cardiac Physiologist? What is it about ‘your’ attitudes, values and character that makes this profession so appropriate for you?
What do you understand about the role? To further strengthen your application, it is important that you demonstrate a clear insight into your chosen profession and scope of the role. This should hopefully be achieved by reflecting on relevant work experience, volunteering or shadowing you may have undertaken.
Discuss your relevant academic preparation. What have you particularly enjoyed during your studies and how do you feel this has prepared you for this degree. Discuss any particularly relevant projects/coursework you may have undertaken.
Personal interests – sports / music / drama / ‘team’ / job / responsibilities / relaxing / etc. Identify transferable skills that will be useful in your chosen profession
The Admissions Tutor will then decide whether to shortlist your application and invite you to attend a selection session or reject your application. You will normally be notified of this decision within 3 weeks of submitting your application, however at peak times this can be longer.
What happens if my application is shortlisted?
If the Admissions Tutor decides to invite you to a selection session you will receive an invitation via email. You will be offered a range of dates to choose from and further information on how to confirm your attendance. You will also receive a link to a website with important information informing you how to prepare and what to expect during your selection session.
Healthcare Science Selection sessions normally last approximately 5 hours and includes:
Group discussion - where small groups of around 6 applicants will have 30 minutes to discuss a particular topic linked to NHS Core Values. Two assessors will monitor this discussion and you will be assessed on your contribution and your interaction with other members of the group. It will be helpful to draw on your experience during this task and hopefully interesting to hear views and opinions from others with similar interests to you.
Short Interview - where you will have the opportunity to demonstrate your understanding of the role of a Healthcare Scientist and reflect on your relevant work experience.
Your performance in the group activity and short interview will be considered in conjunction with details from your application to determine whether to make you an offer or reject your application. You will normally be notified of this decision within 2 weeks of attending the selection session.
During the selection session you are likely to meet academic members of staff, current students and clinicians. Their thoughts and observations support the evidence you have provided on the day but be assured that all final decisions are made by the admissions tutor, who will review your whole application to enable a final decision to be made.
As part of the selection session, you will also have the opportunity to pose yours questions to Admissions Tutors and current students in order to discover more about the course and studying at Southampton. We get a lot of information from you in this session so it’s important that you ask all your questions too.
Understanding your offer
If you receive an offer of a place to study on our course, this will be a “Conditional” offer. This means to secure your place on this course you need to meet certain conditions such as attaining certain academic grades/qualifications. Any conditions attached to your offer will be shown on UCAS Track.
All offers are also made on the condition that you pass an Occupational Health check and Disclosure and Barring Service (criminal record) check. Further information on these processes will be provided to you before you start the course.
You will only be able to enrol on the course when you have met all these conditions and your offer becomes “Unconditional”.
Typical course content
The BSc Healthcare Science degree (NHS practitioner training programme) is delivered with a mixture of theory at our university campus and will use integrated practical training on the latest clinical equipment. Placement opportunities will predominantly be in the South Central healthcare region although students may also be placed in adjoining healthcare regions.
Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the
programme and the learning outcomes that a typical
student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if s/he takes full advantage
of the learning opportunities that are provided.
More detailed information can be found in the programme handbook (or other appropriate guide
Fees & funding
Course fees for 2017/18 full-time UK and EU undergraduate students are typically
£9,250 per year.
Tuition fees for international students differ between each course. Most
part-time courses cost 50% of the full-time fee.
Scholarships, bursaries or grants may be available to support you through your
Funding opportunities available to you are linked to your subject area and/or
your country of origin.
These can be from the University of Southampton or other sources.
Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such
essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the
academic requirements for each programme of study.
There will also be further costs for the following, not purchasable from the
You will be expected to provide your own day-to-day stationary items, e.g. pens, pencils, notebooks, etc.). Any specialist stationery items will be specified under the Additional Costs tab of the relevant module profile.
Calculators: Candidates may use calculators in the examination room only as specified by the University and as permitted by the rubric of individual examination papers. The University approved models are Casio FX-570 and Casio FX-85GT Plus. These may be purchased from any source and no longer need to carry the University logo.
Where a module specifies core texts these should generally be available on the reserve list in the library. However due to demand, students may prefer to buy their own copies. These can be purchased from any source.
Some modules suggest reading texts as optional background reading. The library may hold copies of such texts, or alternatively you may wish to purchase your own copies. Although not essential reading, you may benefit from the additional reading materials for the module.
Lab Coats: You will need provide yourselves with laboratory coat for use in the Centre for learning Anatomical Sciences. These can be purchased from any source.
Printing and copying
In the majority of cases, coursework such as essays; projects; dissertations is likely to be submitted on line. However, there are some items where it is not possible to submit on line and students will be asked to provide a printed copy. A list of the University printing costs can be found at http://www.southampton.ac.uk/isolutions/services/copying_for_students_and_visitors/faq.php
Travel: Attending lectures: Lectures take place both on the Highfield Campus and at Southampton General Hospital which are separated by a distance of 2.3 miles (by road). The sites are connected by a regular bus service, or alternatively students may prefer to travel by bicycle or on foot.
This programme involves mandatory placements in all years. The placements are organised by the University and will take place with a range of healthcare providers; as such students will need to travel to placements/arrange accommodation.
Travel & Accommodation: Conference attendance is not normally expected as part of the HCS programme. If you decide to attend conferences then you will normally be expected to cover the cost of accommodation, travel and admission.
In some cases you'll be able to choose modules (which may have different costs associated
with that module) which will change the overall cost of a programme to you. Please also
ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and
Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at www.calendar.soton.ac.uk.
Careers in Healthcare Science
Following graduation, you will be eligible to apply for professional registration. Graduates from this NHS practitioner training programme are at the forefront of technological and scientific developments in the health sector. They work as part of medical and surgical teams in hospitals to diagnose cardiovascular and respiratory related conditions.
As a clinical physiologist you will work with people of all ages with suspected illnesses. The ability to work closely with specialist doctors, nurses and other health professionals will also be essential. There is also the opportunity to study at postgraduate level. Some of our graduates go on to clinical academic careers or to working in education.
More information about careers in Healthcare Science (NHS practitioner training programme) can be found on the NHS Careers website.
Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) Survey 2014/15
100 per cent of students are in work or study six months after graduation
Typical average salary of £22,600
Most common job role: cardiac physiologist
Careers in the NHS
Prinicipal Cardiac Physiologist, Karen Taylor, discusses the career opportunities available to Healthcare Science graduates