About this course
Develop your professional skills and knowledge to a high level of competence on this Advanced Critical Care Practitioner MSc at the University of Southampton. Successfully completing this Level 7 training course will allow you to apply for membership with The Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine (FICM) as an advanced critical care practitioner.
This pathway is accredited by Health Education England's Centre for Advancing Practice. Completion of HEE accredited programmes/pathways is set to become one of the benchmark routes to recognition for Advanced Clinical Practitioners, and accreditation is also designed to ensure a consistent level of programme quality across England
You’ll study within the School of Health Sciences: ranked 5th in the world and 2nd in the UK for nursing and midwifery (QS World Rankings by Subject 2022).
This Advanced Clinical Practice (Advanced Critical Care Practitioner) master’s course is for experienced registered practitioners currently working within a UK healthcare setting.
The course will support your ongoing development in your chosen specialist area. It will allow you to take a leading role in the provision of high-quality, evidence-based critical care, helping to monitor and treat patients with life-threatening conditions.
Led by our expert academics you’ll:
- examine role development in relation to advanced critical care practitioner
- explore how to apply evidence to your field of practice
- examine the use of advanced practice, communication and decision-making skills
- develop new or enhanced clinical skills relevant to your professional role within advanced critical care
- build on your knowledge, skills and competence to become an expert or leader in your specialism
The course is built around the 4 pillars of advanced practice:
- advanced clinical practice
Flexible studyIf you prefer, you can apply to study this course as:
a Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) - you'll usually study for about 2 years and will not need to write a dissertation
You can also take a single module as part of continuing professional development (CPD). Explore modules that are available as CPD.
Your modules and fees may vary if you choose a different study option.
Your course leader is Yvonne Strathdee. Her background is an Advanced Clinical Practitioner in Critical Care.
We offer 3 other pathways on our MSc Advanced Clinical Practice course:
This course is based at Highfield.
This qualification is awarded by the University of Southampton.
Download the Course Description Document
The Course Description Document details your course overview, your course structure and how your course is taught and assessed.
Changes due to COVID-19
Although the COVID-19 situation is improving, any future restrictions could mean we might have to change the way parts of our teaching and learning take place in 2022 to 2023. This means that some of the information on this course page may be subject to change.
Find out more on our COVID advice page.
- a 2:2 degree in a clinical, health or science subject
- current registration with a relevant UK professional body
- a minimum of 2 years’ post registration critical care experience needed (3 years before commencing the non-medical prescribing module)
- a current job contract in an appropriate critical care clinical setting
- up to 2 references that include one from your current employer that assures appropriate supervision arrangements
Students following the Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine (FICM) ACCP curriculum must have overall supervision provided by a Consultant in Intensive Care Medicine, with elements of additional supervision provided by other senior medical practitioners deemed appropriate by the local clinical lead. It is also recommended to have a mentor in practice, which can be an experienced ACCP or a senior critical care medic.
Students not following the FICM ACCP curriculum require an appropriately experienced supervisor who could be a middle grade or senior Medical Consultant, or an Advanced Critical Care Practitioner with a minimum of three years post qualification experience.
Additional criteria in terms of employer support and agreed pace of study will apply if you are seeking associate membership of The Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine (FICM) as part of your training. For more information, please contact us.
English language requirements
If English isn't your first language, you'll need to complete an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) to demonstrate your competence in English. You'll need all of the following scores as a minimum:
IELTS score requirements
- overall score
We accept other English language tests. Find out which English language tests we accept.
Recognition of professional experience
If you don't have the exact entry requirements, but you have significant work experience in this sector we’ll assess your relevant professional experience, your subject knowledge and your aptitude for learning.
Your application will be considered on individual merit and you may be asked to attend an interview.
Got a question?
Please contact us if you're not sure you have the right experience or qualifications to get onto this course.
Tel: +44(0)23 8059 5000
This part-time-only master’s course runs for 2 to 5 years, allowing you the flexibility to continue working alongside your studies.
If you apply for the PGDip, you’ll study 6 taught modules. If you apply for the full MSc, you’ll study 6 taught modules and complete a dissertation.
Most taught modules require you to be at the University for 5 to 6 days, typically for 1 day a week. Some modules require up to 10 days’ attendance.
Want more detail? See all the modules in the course.
Modules are listed here in alphabetical order, not the order of study. Once you’re accepted onto the course, we’ll agree an order of study with you that best meets your needs.
From the optional modules, we’ll ask you to choose:
- either Research Methods or Research Methods (Online)
- either Applied Pharmacology for Clinical Practice or Pharmacology and Prescribing In Clinical Practice
For entry in Academic Year 2022-23
Year 1 modules
You must study the following modules:
Advanced Critical Care Practice
This is a core module within the MSc Advanced Clinical Practice (advanced critical care practitioner). This module builds on your own experience and practice as well as the knowledge gained in previous theory modules to support you in the development of ...
Diagnostic Assessment and Decision Making (Advanced Critical Care Practitioner)
Students will have completed the History Taking and Physical Assessment module which considers health assessment from a broad multi-professional viewpoint, focusing on discrimination between ‘normal’ vs ‘abnormal’ findings. This module will focus more s...
History Taking and Physical Assessment across the Lifespan
This module is designed to prepare nurses, midwives and allied healthcare practitioners with the additional skills in History Taking and Physical Examination (specifically the skills of inspection palpation and auscultation) across all major body systems....
MSc Dissertation 18 month
This module will provide you with the opportunity to plan, undertake and report on an independent, original project which is relevant to your current or future area of practice and is appropriate to the Award you are following. This version of the Diss...
Transition to Advanced Practice (Advanced Critical Care Practitioner)
This module forms the 'capstone' of the taught component of the Advanced Critical Care Practitioner journey. You will be supported to explore in depth the meaning of Advanced Practice and its associated concepts. It also enables you to critically explore ...
You must also choose from the following modules:
Applied pharmacology for clinical practice
This module will enable healthcare practitioners to significantly expand their knowledge of pharmacology and the related clinical sciences. This knowledge applied in the clinical domain, will enhance their ability to assess and manage patients/clients pr...
Pharmacology and prescribing in clinical practice
On successful completion of the module, practitioners are eligible to register as an independent and/or supplementary prescriber in accordance with current professional standards and regulations. Please see special features section below for detailed ent...
This module aims to support you in enhancing your knowledge, skills and understanding required for the acquisition and critical appraisal of research literature, and other evidences, used to inform evidence based practice (EBP) in your area of health and/...
Learning and assessment
The learning activities for this course include:
- lectures and seminars
- group activities
- workplace-based learning
- facilitated clinical skills practice
- supervised study
- independent learning
We’ll assess you through:
- case studies
- written exams
- simulated assessments
- practice-based assessment
- clinical portfolio
- a dissertation
If you’re taking the full MSc, you’ll research and write a dissertation on a subject relevant to your current or future area of practice. You can submit your final dissertation in one of the following formats:
- a literature review
- a service improvement project (including audit)
- an empirical project
We'll assign you a personal academic tutor, and you'll have access to a senior tutor.
This qualification will allow you to apply for membership of the Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine (FICM) as an advanced critical care practitioner.
You'll be able to work as an advanced critical care practitioner in a critical care unit or similar environment.
Careers services at Southampton
We're a top 20 UK university for employability (QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2022). Our Careers, Employability and Student Enterprise team will support you throughout your time as a student and for up to 5 years after graduation. This support includes:
- work experience schemes
- CV/resume and interview skills workshops
- networking events
- careers fairs attended by top employers
- a wealth of volunteering opportunities
- study abroad and summer school opportunities
We have a thriving entrepreneurship culture. You'll be able to take advantage of:
- our dedicated start-up incubator, Futureworlds
- a wide variety of enterprise events run throughout the year
- our partnership in the world’s number 1 business incubator, SETsquared
Fees, costs and funding
On this course you pay for each module as you study it. There is no overall fee.
Read the latest module fees and dates on our CPD course page.
What your fees pay for
On this course you'll pay for each module as you study it.
See the latest module fees and dates.
Accommodation and living costs, such as travel and food, are not included in your tuition fees. Explore:
10% alumni discount
If you’re a graduate of the University of Southampton you get a 10% discount on your postgraduate tuition fees.
Postgraduate Master’s Loans (UK nationals only)
This can help with course fees and living costs while you study a postgraduate master's course. Find out if you're eligible.
NHS Learning Support Fund
As a student on this course you may be entitled to help from the NHS Learning Support Fund.
This can include a training grant of £5,000 per academic year, parental support of £2,000 for students with at least one dependent child under 15 years, or under 17 years if registered with special educational needs, and help with travel and temporary accommodation costs for placements.
Find out more on the NHS Learning Support Fund website.
Other postgraduate funding options
A variety of additional funding options may be available to help you pay for your master’s study. Both from the University and other organisations.
Funding for international students
Find out about funding you could get as an international student.
How to apply
- Use the 'apply for this course' button on this page to take you to our online application form.
- Search for the course you want to apply for.
- Complete the application form and upload any supporting documents.
- Submit your application.
The deadline for applying for your course for the 2023 year of entry depends on where you’re domiciled (where your permanent home is and where you have the closest ties).
This is because:
- students from different countries tend to apply at different times of year
- we want a diverse and balanced mix of international students with exceptional academic ability
|Place of domicile||Deadline|
|Anywhere else (except the UK)||Closed|
|UK (and others eligible for home fees)||7 July 2023|
We must receive new applications by midday UK time.
The deadline may still move to:
- an earlier date if we have already received enough applications before the deadline
- a later date if there are still places available on the deadline
We receive many high-quality applications, so places for many of our courses are very competitive.
Application assessment fee
We’ll ask you to pay a £50 application assessment fee if you’re applying for a postgraduate taught course.
This is an extra one-off charge which is separate to your tuition fees and is payable per application. It covers the work and time it takes us to assess your application. You’ll be prompted to pay when you submit your application which won’t progress until you've paid.
If you're a current or former University of Southampton student, or if you’re applying for certain scholarships, you will not need to pay the fee. PGCE applications through GOV.UK and Master of Research (MRes) degree applications are also exempt. Find out if you’re exempt on our terms and conditions page.
When you apply you’ll need to submit a personal statement explaining why you want to take the course.
You’ll need to include information about:
- your knowledge of the subject area
- why you want to study a postgraduate qualification in this course
- how you intend to use your qualification
You'll also need to send 2 academic references.
Please include the required paperwork showing your first degree and your IELTS English language test score (if you are a non-native English speaker) with your application. Without these, your application may be delayed.
What happens after you apply
You'll be able to track your application through our online Applicant Record System.
We'll assess your application on the strength of your:
- academic achievements
- relevant professional experience
- personal statement
- academic references
We will aim to send you a decision 6-8 weeks after you have submitted your application.
If we offer you a place, you will need to accept the offer within 30 working days. If you do not meet this deadline, we will offer your place to another applicant.
Unfortunately, due to the volume of applications we receive, we may not be able to give you specific feedback on your application if you are unsuccessful.
We may invite you to an interview, which will take place by phone if you live abroad. You'll get an email from the admissions tutor if we'd like to talk to you before offering you a place.
Equality and diversity
We treat and select everyone in line with our Equality and Diversity Statement.
Got a question?
Please contact us if you're not sure you have the right experience or qualifications to get onto this course.
Tel: +44(0)23 8059 5000
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