Nursing (Adult) (Pre-Registration)

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Course overview
(MSc) Master of Science
Nursing (Adult) (Pre-Registration)
University of Essex
University of Essex
Health and Social Care (School of)
Colchester Campus
MSC B74024

Professional accreditation

Recognised by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) for the purpose of registration as a qualified nurse (adult).

Admission criteria

This course is not yet open for 2020 applications but will be opening very soon. As soon as applications are open and we have details of the application deadline we will update this page.

Applicants to this course must apply for their preferred campus, either Colchester or Southend (not both). Should your application be successful, a change in campus preference may be accommodated.

Our applicants should have:

  • A relevant honours degree, minimum classification: Lower Second Second (e.g. 2:2 in a life or social science such as biology- psychology, sociology, or sports science)
  • Successful performance at interview, which includes an assessment of literacy and numeracy.

You must also have: two satisfactory references (including an academic reference and one work-based). Don't worry if you cannot provide your reference when you make your application, as if we make you an offer you will be able to provide this at a later stage. References should be recent and verifiable, on official institution paper, signed and dated by the referee.

If a referee wishes to provide an email reference, it must be sent from the referee’s email account.

You must also have a satisfactory enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Check (including child and adult barred list check) and a Occupational Health Check - both of these are organised by the University.

A satisfactory Overseas Criminal Record Check/Local Police Certificate is also required, in addition to a DBS check, where you have lived outside of the UK in the last 5 years for 6 months or more. Where it is not possible to obtain an Overseas Check a relevant professional reference may be accepted

The following documents should be submitted with your online application:

  • A personal statement (no more than 500 words)
  • A current CV
  • Academic transcripts
To be considered for October 2019 entry you must submit a complete application by 31 July 2019

In order to gain entry to the programme you must demonstrate that you have both academic achievement and appropriate voluntary/occupational experience (see below “Successful sign-off of the APEL process”).

Successful sign off of the APEL process

The requirements for the practical part are 575 hours in a care type setting. The APEL form states: ‘An appropriate setting is one that enables you to demonstrate types of practice i.e. health care assistant or working with children or adults in another setting’. The requirements for the theory are 575 hours from the third year of your undergraduate honours degree but the criteria are quite broad.

NHS Constitution and Values

As part of the selection process, you will be expected to demonstrate good knowledge and a clear understanding of the scope of work that an adult nurse is required to undertake as well as the significance of the NHS Constitution and its core values (you can find further information on these on the Health Education East of England website and the Gov.UK webpages.


Interviews will take place from November 2018 to July 2019 for the September 2019 intake. If you are selected for interview, you will be required to sit a literacy and numeracy test.

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) code

English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 7.0 overall, with a minimum of 7.0 in each component except 6.5 in writing or OET English Language with B overall and B in all components.

Other English language qualifications may be acceptable so please contact us for further details. If we accept the English component of an international qualification then it will be included in the information given about the academic levels listed above. Please note that date restrictions may apply to some English language qualifications.

If you are an international student requiring a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK please see our immigration webpages for the latest Home Office guidance on English language qualifications.

If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.

Additional Notes

The University uses academic selection criteria to determine an applicant’s ability to successfully complete a course at the University of Essex. Where appropriate, we may ask for specific information relating to previous modules studied or work experience. If you do not meet our MSc Nursing (Adult or Mental Health) requirements, you may be interested in our BSc Nursing courses: Adult or Mental Health.

Course qualifiers


Rules of assessment

Rules of assessment are the rules, principles and frameworks which the University uses to calculate your course progression and final results.

Additional notes


External examiners

Mrs Julia Mary Terry

Associate Professor

Swansea University

Dr Philip Charles Clissett

Assistant Professor in Adult Nursing

University of Nottingham

External Examiners provide an independent overview of our courses, offering their expertise and help towards our continual improvement of course content, teaching, learning, and assessment. External Examiners are normally academics from other higher education institutions, but may be from the industry, business or the profession as appropriate for the course. They comment on how well courses align with national standards, and on how well the teaching, learning and assessment methods allow students to develop and demonstrate the relevant knowledge and skills needed to achieve their awards. External Examiners who are responsible for awards are key members of Boards of Examiners. These boards make decisions about student progression within their course and about whether students can receive their final award.


Core You must take this module.
You must pass this module. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options You can choose which module to study.
You must pass this module. No failure can be permitted.
Compulsory You must take this module.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.
Compulsory with Options You can choose which module to study.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.
Optional You can choose which module to study.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.

Year 1 - 2020/21

Exit Award Status
Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Credits PG Diploma PG Certificate
01 HS821-7-SL Ongoing patient pathways in adult nursing Core 15 Core
02 HS823-7-FY Nursing Practice Assessment 1 Core 10 Core
03 HS826-7-FY Nursing Practice Assessment 2 Core 20 Core
04 HS858-7-FY Using Evidence in Health Care Practice Core 15 Core
05 HS888-7-AP How People Function Core 15 Core
06 HS889-7-AP Delivering Compassionate Care as an Adult Nurse Core 15 Core

Year 2 - 2021/22

Exit Award Status
Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Credits PG Diploma PG Certificate
01 HS828-7-FY Nursing Practice Assessment 3 Core 30 Core
02 HS824-7-SP Critical Patient Pathways in Adult Nursing Core 15 Core
03 HS827-7-PS Leadership and Preparation for Practice Core 15 Core
04 HS859-7-FY Research Activity Core 30 Compulsory

Exit awards

A module is given one of the following statuses: 'core' – meaning it must be taken and passed; 'compulsory' – meaning it must be taken; or 'optional' – meaning that students can choose the module from a designated list. The rules of assessment may allow for limited condonement of fails in 'compulsory' or 'optional' modules, but 'core' modules cannot be failed. The status of the module may be different in any exit awards which are available for the course. Exam Boards will consider students' eligibility for an exit award if they fail the main award or do not complete their studies.

Programme aims

To provide a comprehensive teaching environment that facilitates the development of critically aware, safe and effective adult nurses.

To develop the capacity in students to analyse complex healthcare environments and associated legislation, and work autonomously in contemporary health settings.

To develop understanding of the underpinning theories of communication and demonstrate client centred communication & interpersonal skills when working with people in distress.

To enable students to appraise and select from relevant health related theory in order to practice evidence based decision making in adult nursing.

To instil a critical awareness of professional nursing values and the role of reflection in continuous professional growth as an adult nurse.

To develop students critical understanding and skills in leadership and management and an understanding of complexity within multiprofessional team.

Learning outcomes and learning, teaching and assessment methods

On successful completion of the programme a graduate should demonstrate knowledge and skills as follows:

A: Knowledge and understanding

A1: A critical appreciation of the knowledge for adult nursing practice that underpins the safe and effective practice of a registered adult nurse

A2: Extended knowledge of a specialist area of adult nursing informed by research, scholarship and clinical activity.

A3: An advanced understanding of the principles and practice underpinning human interaction and its importance during patient/client journeys through health and illness.

A4: An extensive understanding of leadership and management within the political, cultural, and professional context of different health care environments.

A5: A critical understanding of psychosocial processes and the role of emotion in personal effectiveness.

A6: An advanced understanding of reflective learning and its role in personal and professional development.

A7: A critical understanding of health care research and research within adult nursing.

Learning methods

A1-A7 are achieved through lectures, seminars, workshops, group work and tutorials, with case studies and formative tests presented through elearning

Assessment methods

A1-Assessed through essay, examination and case studies/portfolios

A2-Assessed through essay and case studies/portfolios

A3-Assessed through reflective accounts, OSCEs and direct observation of practice by the mentor in clinical settings

A4-Assessed through essay and case studies/portfolios

A5-Assessed through reflective accounts and case studies/portfolios A6-Assessed through reflective accounts and case studies/portfolios
A7-Assessed through critiques of nursing research and a research project

B: Intellectual and cognitive skills

B1: Adopt a critical stance to all aspects of nursing practice, education and leadership past, present and future.

B2: Act autonomously to deploy safely adn effectively a range of personal skills and techniques to the benefit of patient/clients in the adult nursing practice setting.

B3: Engage in structured critical reflection on issues arising from adult nursing practice.

B4: Demonstrate original and creative approaches to problem solving in health related clinical and domestic settings.

B5: Undertake self-directed and purposeful continuous professional development.

B6: Demonstrate the ability to manage complex and professional issues for which there are no protocols, codes or standards.

B7: Develop informed research questions that reflect and inform contemporary health care practice.

Learning methods

B1-B7 are achieved through engagement with clnical learning, personal and group reflection on placement experience, seminars, and elearning discussions

Assessment methods

B1-Assessed through direct observation of practice, reflective accounts and case studies/portfolios

B2-4-Assessed through direct observation of practice during clinical placement by mentors and reflective accounts

B5-Assessed by reflective accounts

B6-Assessed through direct observation of practice during clinical placement by mentors, examination and reflective accounts

B7-Assessed through case study and research project

C: Practical skills

C2: Demonstrate competence in autonomously delivering essential skills of nursing practice.

C3: Plan, implement and evaluate the outcomes of professional activity, actively seeking and valuing feedback from patients/clients and colleagues to inform this process.

C4: Initiate and lead on creative responses to clinical problems identified within nursing practice education and/or management.

C5: Be a visible champion for best clinical practice and assertively challenge unsatisfactory practice

C6: Practice in a range of contexts, including those within which there is uncertaintly or unpredictability.

C7: Manage and take responsibility for a range of nursing resources

Learning methods

C1-C6 are achieved through clinical placement practice, personal and group reflection, tutorial, elearning discussions and simulated practice.

Assessment methods

C1-C6 are assessed through the direct observation of practice by clinical placement mentors in the practice setting, and OSCEs

D: Key skills

D1: i) Use a range of advanced communication skills that are appropriate to nursing and multidisciplinary team working, and ii) effective and confidence in communication with a large audiences

D2: i) Use the Internet, ii) access data via library, professional bodies, Trusts, iii) use appropriate data analysis packages, and iv) use audiovisual presentation tools and techniques.

D3: i) Interpret statistical information, ii) use statistics to analyse data, and iii) use software packages to support data analysis.

D4: Identify and analyse problems emerging from theory and practice.

D5: i) Motivate and engender partnership working, ii) demonstrate a strong awareness of personal limitations and scope of practice, and iii) take responsibility for one own work and significant responsibility for the work of others.

D6: i) Demonstrate an aptitude for continuing to advance knowledge, understanding and skills in line with identified learning needs, and ii) identify, conceptualise and define new and abstract ideas within professional practice/education/management.

Learning methods

D1 is supported in small group discussion and seminars.

Tutorial time is allocated for individual discussion.

D2 commences on the pre-registration induction day and through seminar presentations.

D3 is supported in seminars where students present and analyse work.

Tutorial time is allocated for individual discussion and problem solving.

D4 is practised throughout the course.
Students work through given problems or derived from the students' practice.

D5 is facilitated by the use of collaborative group work and during seminars.

D6 is achieved through feedback on coursework and individual tutorial time.

Assessment methods

D1 is assessed by course work, essay, portfolio, presentation, literature review, research proposal and case study.

D2 is assessed through use of word-processing and ability to cite references from internet sources.

Practical assessments are also included which test students' skills.

The use of information technology during presentations is encouraged.

D3 is assessed through course work, essay, portfolio and dissertation.

D4 is assessed through course work, essay, portfolio and dissertation.

D5 & D6 are assessed through course work, oral presentation and placement assessment.


The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include a change of law or regulatory requirements, industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key personnel, change in government policy, or withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.


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