Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (Health Visiting) (MSc) Part-time

This programme is designed to prepare nurses and midwives to become Specialist Community Public Health Nurses. The programme will lead to the professional award of Specialist Community Public Health Nurse (health visitor), with subsequent registration on the Specialist Community Public Health Nurse part of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) register.

This MSc course offers the opportunity for nurses and midwives who have completed the PG Diploma Specialist Community Public Health Nurse (SCPHN) to gain a Masters level qualification.

The MSc programme involves a taught element (one year full-time or two years part-time), leading to the professional award of Specialist Community Public Health Nurse (Health Visitor) with subsequent registration on the Specialist Community Public Health Nurse part of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) register (Please refer to the Postgraduate diploma description).  On completion of the taught stage (52 weeks / 104 weeks), students shall be eligible for a Postgraduate Diploma (exit award) OR to progress to the dissertation stage of the programme and complete the full MSc route in Specialist Community Public Health Nursing.  The dissertation module has to be completed within three years of completing the PGDiploma.  Students will need to seek funding for this element of the programma.

Distinctive features

  • Enables registration as a Specialist Community Public Health Nurse, annotated as health visitor on the third part of the professional register.
  • You will spend 50% of the course on placement (this placement may not be in your local area and you will be expected to travel).
  • Funding available via the Welsh Government for students undertaking the Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (SCPHN) programme.

Please note: Candidates must work for the NHS in Wales to receive funding from WEDS (Workforce, Education, and Development Services) which is currently available.

Key facts

Next intakeSeptember 2018
Duration3 years
Other ways to study this course
Academic Tutor contact(s)

Admissions criteria

Candidates must be registered on either parts one or two of the Nursing and Midwifery Council register.

Candidates can enter the programme either with a diploma (120 credits at level 2) or with a degree.

Adult, children, mental health or learning disability nurses as well as practitioners who qualified as midwives via the three year direct entry route can undertake the programme and become health visitors.

Applicants whose first language is not English or Welsh are required to provide proof of their proficiency in the English or Welsh language. They must satisfy the English and Welsh Language requirements for entry to the university by attainment of a minimum score of 7.0 on the IELTS no more than 3 years before the proposed date of entry.

A Criminal Record Bureau (CRB) check will be undertaken on prospective students and this must be deemed satisfactory before admission to the programme.

The personal statement on your application form will be considered when a judgement is made on your suitability for the programme for which you have applied.

You must address the following points in your personal statement, this list is not exhaustive:

  • Why have you selected this programme?
  • What interests you about the programme?
  • Any relevant experience related to the programme or module content.
  • How you plan to use the qualification in your career.
  • How you and your profession will benefit from your studies.
  • Why you feel you should be given a place on the programme.

Application deadline: End of July of each academic year.  Your application will be considered after this date but it may be for a later intake.


Find out more about English language requirements.

The Postgraduate Diploma course is divided into four modules that are credit rated. Each taught module offers 30 credits and all must be successfully completed in order for students to have their name included on the third part of the professional register as a Specialist Community Public Health Nurse.

Note: A clinical practice element will account for 50% of the taught programme, which is in accordance with NMC (2004) regulations. Students are required to pass assessment in both their clinical and theoretical work in order to achieve their qualification as a Specialist Community Public Health nurse.

Each student will be allocated a practice teacher (PT) who will take accountability and responsibility for assessing the student's clinical progress, which is evidenced through a clinical portfolio.

Students who complete the programme successfully will be awarded a Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Community Public Health Nursing and may proceed to Part 2 to obtain a Master’s Degree in Specialist Community Public Health Nursing.

The course offers includes a dissertation for those who wish to move to Masters level. The MSc in SCPHN is optional and self-funded. The dissertation involves the completion of a 20,000 word dissertation. You have three years following completion of the Postgraduate Diploma to submit the dissertation.

The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2018/19 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2018.

Year one

Year two

Year three

The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.

How will I be supported?

The University offers a wide range of services and activities designed to support students. These include a student counselling service, a student advisory service, crèche and day facilities, sport and exercise facilities, as well as campus information, library and IT services.

This programme gives you the opportunity to share ideas with health professionals. As well as developing your own intellectual abilities, this sharing of ideas enables them to learn and benefit from the experiences of others.  Opportunity is given for this sort of discussion and exchange of ideas through seminars and tutorials.

All students are given a named personal tutor following registration onto the programme, who is able to assist with any pastoral care as well as advice on writing style, grammar and academic mentoring.

All modules within the programme make extensive use of Cardiff University’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) Learning Central, on which students will find course materials, links to related materials and assessment exemplars.

For students whose first language is not English there are open access English Language courses available. These are 5 week courses run on a first come first served basis and cost an administration fee of £25.


We will provide you with feedback on your work in a variety of formats.  These will include oral feedback during lectures, written feedback provided through online module discussion forums, and electronic written feedback on assessed coursework through GradeMark.  You can discuss your overall performance with your personal tutor.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed by various means, including written work, classroom tests, and presentations, as well as a clinical portfolio for the practice element.

What skills will I practise and develop?

By fully engaging in this course, you should develop the knowledge and skills to enable you to:

  • Develop academic knowledge and understanding to achieve Master’s level competence.
  • Achieve clinical prowess and integrity to be awarded a specialist qualification.
  • Practise effectively as a Specialist Community Public Health Nurse.

This course is designed to prepare nurses and midwives to become Specialist Community Public Health Nurses.

It leads to the professional award of Specialist Community Public Health Nurse (Health Visitor), with subsequent registration on the Specialist Community Public Health Nurse part of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) register.

As this programme is three years or over in duration and has a one year full time equivalent you will not be eligible for a postgraduate loan. The UK Government has more information about eligibility for postgraduate loans.

Tuition fees

UK and EU students (2018/19)

Tuition feeDepositNotes

More information about tuition fees and deposits, including for part-time and continuing students.

EU students entering in 2018/19 will pay the same tuition fee as UK students for the duration of their course. Please be aware that fees may increase annually in line with inflation. No decisions regarding fees and loans for EU students starting in 2019/20 have been made yet. These will be determined as part of the UK's discussions on its membership of the EU and we will provide further details as soon as we can.

Students from outside the EU (2018/19)

This course does not currently accept students from outside the UK/EU.

Will I need any specific equipment to study this course/programme?

You will not need to provide any specific equipment.

A clinical placement accounts for 50% of the diploma stage of the course.