PgDip Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (Health Visiting) with Integrated Nurse Prescribing

Are you seeking to train as a health visitor and build the knowledge and skills to achieve your career ambitions? Our PgDip SCPHN (Health Visiting) programme is NMC approved and delivered by our expert academic team working in in partnership with a number of local NHS organisations.

Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (Health Visiting) with  Integrated Nurse Prescribing

Key information



Mode of Study:



52 weeks


University of Bolton

Start date:

To be confirmed

Course Details

The Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (SCPHN) (Health Visiting) course from the University of Bolton is designed to provide you with a comprehensive overview of the health visiting profession, with the aim of equipping you with both the theoretical knowledge and practical skills to succeed in your career. Our programme was the first in the country to be accredited by the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative, which recognises programmes that support mothers in effective breastfeeding. We also provide training in the Solihull Parenting Approach, which supports practitioners in promoting emotional health and wellbeing in children and families.

Studying a course curriculum developed in line with the professional standards of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), you’ll cover subjects like leading health promotion practice, collaborative working for health improvement and safeguarding children. You’ll also have the opportunity to get hands-on and build your practical skills in partnership with primary healthcare trusts and within our state-of-the-art healthcare teaching and research facility, Bolton One.

On successful completion of this course, you’ll be awarded a Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (Health Visiting) and have your name registered on part 3 of the NMC's professional register.

  • We’ve successfully delivered healthcare programmes for decades – our health visiting course has a longstanding, excellent reputation.
  • Our dedicated academic team has a wealth of experience working in NHS settings and are engaging in relevant research, bringing their expertise and passion for service excellence to their teaching.
  • We have the knowledge and experience to anticipate and respond to change. Our courses and programmes respond directly to the requirements of the NHS Knowledge and Skills Framework (KSF), which is at the heart of the career and pay progression strand of Agenda for Change.
  • Our students have the opportunity to benefit from supportive learning opportunities in partnership with primary healthcare trusts.
Key Features
  • This course is designed to take account of the changing healthcare climate with a curriculum that combines flexible learning with the knowledge and insight to respond to industry developments.
  • Our teaching team has many years of experience working in healthcare and NHS settings, particularly in the fields of child care law, public health and safeguarding.
  • The course curriculum is regularly reviewed to ensure that contemporary theories are adopted.
  • We offer a supportive learning environment that includes small group lessons, one-to-one sessions and access to IT facilities and WiFi across campus.
Professional recognition

The University of Bolton’s PgDip Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (Health Visiting) programme is approved by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

As a successful student, you’ll have your name registered on part 3 of the NMC's professional register.

  • You must have an active entry on Part 1 or Part 2 of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) Professional Register (or have applied for the same).
  • You’ll also need at least 120 credit points at Level HE4, 120 credit points at Level HE5, and 120 credit points at Level HE6, or AP(E)L equivalent (see explanation below). Academic credits (APL) should normally be for recent studies in the areas of nursing and health studies, or the behavioural or social sciences. For instance, you may have an Honours degree.
  • You’ll be required to produce satisfactory professional and academic references and pass Occupational Health screening.
  • You’ll also be required to successfully complete an online numeracy test unless you already have a current Nursing and Midwifery Council recorded prescribing qualification.
  • The Nursing and Midwifery Council also requires self-declaration of good health and good character for the programme.
  • AP(E)L information – Prior learning and experience and learning are considered when deciding on any advanced standing to which you may be entitled. This may be based on qualifications you’ve already gained (Accreditation of Prior Learning – APL) or it may be based on making a claim for significant work experience (Accreditation of Prior Learning – APEL). The process of granting you appropriate advanced standing will be overseen by the programme lead for this course and an AP(E)L panel. When making a claim for APL against a relevant academic module you’ll be required to produce evidence in your professional portfolio that demonstrates how your prior learning relates to your impending role as a specialist community public health nurse. This will usually take the form of a reflective submission.
  • AP(E)L for exemptions from modules in this course – NMC Standards permit no more than a third of a programme to be credited on the basis of prior learning. Any applications for accreditation of prior learning will be considered prior to admission, on an individual basis, by the APL panel. Claims need to demonstrate achievement of learning outcomes in theory and practice as defined by PgDip Specialist Community Public Health Nursing module specifications.
  • This course involves regulated activity so you must gain an Enhanced Disclosure certificate from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) before starting your studies. Charges are payable to cover the cost of the DBS Enhanced Disclosure application and annual registration with the online (Normally your sponsoring organisation will organise this.) Please note that your DBS must have been completed within three years of the course start date.Update Service.
  • You’ll be required to attend an interview and/or provide a portfolio of work.
  • If English isn’t your first language you’ll also need IELTS 7.0 with normally no less than 6.5 in any band (or equivalent). We also accept a range of other English language qualifications – please visit our English Language Requirements web page for more details.

Where changes are made to material information contained in this course description or a decision is taken to suspend a course between the offer of admissions and enrolment, we will inform applicants at the earliest possible opportunity and will outline the various options available to the applicant.

This Specialist Community Public Health Nursing course is designed to prepare practitioners for the role of health visitor. If you’re a nurse or midwife and wish to further develop your career through working with clients and communities to improve health it should be of interest to you.

Health Visiting consists of developing, leading and managing activities that aim to promote health and social well-being, prevent health breakdown and improve ill health through working with individuals, families and communities. Health visitors seek to help clients take control of their lives and protect vulnerable members of society, by promoting social inclusion and reducing inequalities.

The course aims to help you gain a wide range of skills and supporting knowledge, including leadership, communication, enquiry, advocacy, critical reflection and analysis skills. We’ll support you as you learn how to think, read and write critically around contemporary issues, in order to become a flexible, autonomous and highly-skilled practitioner.

What can I do with this qualification?

This course is designed for future Health Visitors. As a successful graduate, you’ll have your name registered on part 3 of the NMC's professional register.

Health visitors are employed mainly by the NHS within a range of settings. Some are attached to general practices and undertake home visits, as well as seeing patients within the surgery. The role may also involve organising and attending clinics and sessions in community and children's centres. In some areas, it’s possible to work as a member of a staff 'bank' and provide cover for vacancies. It may also be possible to find work through specialist nursing agencies.

Universities and other academic institutions employ experienced health visitors to work as lecturers or tutors. It’s also possible to work with new health visitors in a tutoring role. Some health visitors decide to go into clinical academic research, which is a fast-growing career pathway for healthcare workers. Types of clinical research programmes include Master's in clinical research, clinical Doctoral research fellowships and clinical lectureships.

On successful completion of the PgDip you’ll be eligible to progress to the MSc Community Public Health Nursing (Top-up) which comprises a 60-credit research dissertation module.

Alternative career options

Graduates can also use the qualification to enter a range of other careers, and for some of these roles, both relevant experience and/or postgraduate study may be required. Some of these careers include:

  • Children and families social work
  • Teaching and education
  • Research
  • Journalism
  • School nursing
  • Voluntary sector
  • Health promotion
  • Health service management
  • Community development
  • Counselling
  • Mental health
  • Probation

Course fees

Important note regarding tuition fees for the 2021-2022 academic year: EU nationals who meet residency requirements (have settled or pre-settled status) may be eligible for ‘Home’ fee status. If you do not meet these residency requirements, overseas fees will apply. Irish citizens living in the UK or Ireland will be eligible for ‘Home’ fee status under the Common Travel Area arrangement. Please read the student finance eligibility 2021-2022 policy on for information.

The fees for a student’s course of study will be set for the normal duration of that course subject only to inflationary increases – measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) recorded in March each year to take effect for subsequent start dates.


Click here for more information on our 2020 Master's Bursaries.

For details of how to apply for this course, please choose your status from the options below:

Course application details are unavailable at present

Course application details are unavailable at present

In-keeping with the NMC’s Standards for Proficiency, this course is split equally in terms of theoretical and practical learning. You’ll be expected to attend timetabled lectures, where concepts and principles will be explored through presentations, discussions and group work. We’ll help you build on this core content in workshops and studio sessions, and you’ll also be expected to complete self-directed learning, such as background reading and preparation for lessons. Our virtual learning environment is another learning tool you can use to your full advantage – resources are available 24/7.

You’ll also attend seminars, where you’ll have the opportunity to engage in group discussions and debates – occasionally, you may be asked to lead the discussion or prepare a presentation. Group and one-to-one tutorials may also be arranged. These sessions can be used to discuss your development and any issues you may have.

Several assessment strategies are used to measure your progress and ensure you’re meeting the expected learning outcomes. These techniques include essays, practice-based assessments, portfolio entries, Observed Structured Clinical Examinations (OCSEs) and time-constrained examinations. At the beginning of the course, you’ll be given access to a module handbook where you can find out more about the assessments specific to each module.


The modules listed below may be a mixture of compulsory and optional. You may not have the opportunity to study all the modules shown as part of the course.

  • Community Nurse Prescribing (V100)
  • Critical Evaluation for Evidence Based Practice
  • Exploring Public Health
  • Professional Practice (Public Health Nursing)
  • Early Intervention for Working with Children, Young People and Families
  • Safeguarding Children, Young People and Families
Assessment methods
LevelAssesment method
Level oneCoursework 12%, Written exams 6%
Level twoCoursework 48%, Practical exams 27%, Written exams 7%
Learning activities
LevelLearning activity
Level oneGuided independent study 5%, Placement/study abroad 8%, Scheduled learning and teaching activities 5%
Level twoGuided independent study 20%, Placement/study abroad 42%, Scheduled learning and teaching activities 20%


The university will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver your course as described in its published material and the programme specification for the academic year in which you begin your course. The university considers changes to courses very carefully and the university will minimise any changes. Please be aware that our courses are subject to review on an ongoing basis and changes may be necessary due to legitimate staffing, financial, regulatory and academic reasons. The content of course modules and mode of associated assessments may be updated on an annual basis. This is to ensure that all modules are up-to-date and responsive to employment and sector needs. The published course material and the programme specification contain indicative ‘optional modules’ that may be subject to change due to circumstances outside of our control. For this reason, we cannot guarantee to run any specific optional module.

Meet the team

The academic staff detailed above teach across a range of courses in this subject area and may not teach on this course specifically.

Programme Contacts

Nursing and Midwifery Team
Email Enquiries

Hayley Carr
Senior Lecturer

+44 (0)1204 903282

Enquiry Team
University of Bolton

+44 (0)1204 903903

Related courses

BSc (Hons) Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (Health Visiting) with Integrated Nurse Prescribing

Mode of study
52 Weeks

University of Bolton


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