Healthcare Science Practice BSc (Hons)

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This is an apprenticeship for a Healthcare Science Practitioner. You will gain knowledge, understanding and skills while gaining valuable on the job experience as a Healthcare Science Practitioner in a healthcare setting.

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This full-time apprenticeship programme follows the Modernising Scientific Careers (MSC) Healthcare Science Practitioner Training Programme (PTP) curriculum and is delivered using a day-release method, where you are based on campus between one and three days each week during term time (October to December and February to May). 

All requirements of the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) apprenticeship standards for entry and off the job training will be met.

Choose from six apprenticeship courses in Healthcare Science:

  • Blood Science
  • Infection Science
  • Cellular Science
  • Genetic Science
  • Cardiac Physiology
  • Audiology
Female nursing student

Why us?

  • We offer six apprenticeship courses in Healthcare Science: Blood Science, Infection Science, Cellular Science, Genetic Science, Cardiac Physiology, Audiology
  • Flexible delivery of three to six years, with each stage of the course taking one or two years
  • The cohort is open to all employers

Course structure

You will be taught via traditional lectures, interactive laboratory and simulation practicals, computing sessions, seminars, workshops, verbal presentations and posters, group work, case-based learning, directed learning, and research project supervision.

You will be assessed using a combination of formative and summative assignments throughout the degree and the apprenticeship. You are required to complete the PTP portfolio during your time in the workplace collecting evidence of your progressive development.

Life Science students will also complete the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS) registration portfolio to enable them to be eligible to apply for Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) registration to practice as a Biomedical Scientist.

Life Sciences

Stage 1:

  • Fundamental Skills in Biomedicine (20 credits)
  • Human Physiology (20 credits)
  • Molecular and Cellular Biology (20 credits)
  • Microbes and Host Defences (20 credits)
  • Chemistry for the Biosciences (20 credits)
  • Clinical and Professional Practice for Healthcare Science (20 credits)

Stage 2

  • Research and Analytical Skills for Bioscience (20 credits)
  • Professional Practice and Work-Based Training in Physiological Sciences 1 (20 credits)
  • Pathophysiology and Therapeutics (20 credits)
  • Blood Science (20 credits)
  • Molecular and Cellular Analysis (20 credits)
  • Infection and Immunity (20 credits)

Stage 3

  • Advanced Professional Practice and Work-Based Training for Healthcare Science Apprenticeship (Physiological Sciences) (30 credits)
  • Healthcare Science Research Project (30 credits)

A combination of core and optional modules depending on discipline:

  • Clinical Biochemistry (20 credits)
  • Clinical Immunology (20 credits)
  • Haematology and Transfusion Science (20 credits)
  • Medical Microbiology (20 credits)
  • Cellular Pathology (20 credits)
  • Human Genetics and Genomics (20 credits)


Some modules have prerequisites. Read more about what this means in our Help and Advice article.

Cardiac Physiology

Stage 1

  • Introduction to Cardiovascular, Respiratory and Sleep Science (20 credits)
  • Introduction to the Practice of Cardiovascular, Respiratory and Sleep Science (20 credits)
  • Human Physiology (20 credits)
  • Molecular and Cellular Biology (20 credits)
  • Microbes and Host Defences (20 credits)
  • Clinical and Professional Practice for Healthcare Science (20 credits)

Stage 2

  • Pathophysiology of Common Cardiovascular and Respiratory Disease (20 credits)
  • Instrumentation, Signal Processing and Imaging (20 credits)
  • Cardiac Physiology: Electrocardiography (20 credits)
  • Cardiac Physiology: Ambulatory Monitoring and Exercise Electrocardiography (20 credits)
  • Research and Analytical Skills for Biosciences (20 credits)
  • Professional Practice and Work-based Training in Physiological Sciences 1 (20 credits)

Stage 3

  • Applying Cardiac Physiology: Development and Disease (20 credits)
  • Applying Cardiac Physiology: Patient Centred Care and Provocative Testing (20 credits)
  • Applying Cardiac Physiology: Invasive Cardiology (20 credits)
  • Patient Centred Care and Provocative Testing (20 credits)
  • Healthcare Science Research Investigation (20 credits)
  • Advanced Professional Practice and Work-based Training in Physiological Sciences 2 (20 credits)


Stage 1

  • Human Physiology (20 credits)
  • Molecular and Cellular Biology (20 credits)
  • Microbes and Host Defences (20 credits)
  • Applied Physics and Measurement (20 credits)
  • Applied Anatomy (20 credits)
  • Physiology (20 credits)
  • Pathophysiology of Neurosensory Systems (20 credits)
  • Clinical and Professional Practice for Healthcare Science (20 credits)

Stage 2

  • Processes of Audiological Rehabilitation (20 credits)
  • Fundamental Principles of Audiological Assessment (20 credits)
  • Applied Physiological Measurement and Instrumentation (20 credits)
  • Patho-physiology of Hearing and Balance (20 credits)
  • Research and Analytical Skills for Biosciences (20 credits)
  • Professional Practice and Work-based Training in Physiological Sciences 1 (20 credits)

Stage 3

  • Psycho/Social Aspects of Hearing Loss (30 credits)
  • Advance Principles of Audiological Assessment (30 credits)
  • Research project in Physiological Sciences (30 credits)
  • Advanced Professional Practice and Work-based Training for Life Sciences (30 credits)
  • Vestibular Assessment (10 credits)
  • These are equipped with wide-ranging facilities from proteomics to drug discovery. These include a MALDI-TOF mass spectrometer and nanoHPLC MALDI spotter both 2D-gel based proteomics and bacterial identification, a new BD Accuri bench top flow cytometer for cell based assays, and an imaging suite including facilities for light, confocal and electron microscopy. You will have access to the physiology laboratories equipped with specialist equipment and instrumentation to demonstrate a range of physiological mechanisms including cardiac, respiratory and autonomic mechanisms. We have a number of laboratories dedicated for final year projects where you will gain first-hand research experience.

    Bioscience laboratories
  • You can access free Wi-Fi throughout the University campus, so you can work from anywhere. If you don't want to carry a laptop around, just use one of the University’s PCs or Apple Macs. We have hundreds of computers for you to use in the Murray Library, St Peter's Library, and the David Goldman Informatics Centre. If you ever have any technical problems, just ask the friendly helpdesk team.

    IT provision
  • We’ve got thousands of books and e-books on pharmaceutical and biomedical science, with many more titles available through the inter-library loan service. We also subscribe to a comprehensive range of print and electronic journals so you can access the most reliable and up-to-date academic and industry articles.
    Some of the most important sources for your studies include:

    • Embase: A complex database covering drug research, pharmacology, pharmaceutics, toxicology, clinical and experimental human medicine, health policy and management, public health, occupational health, environmental health, drug dependence and abuse, psychiatry, forensic medicine and biomedical engineering/instrumentation
    • PsycARTICLES: Includes information about the psychological aspects of medicine, psychiatry, nursing, sociology, pharmacology and physiology
    • PubMed: Contains life science journals, online books and abstracts that cover fields such as medicine, nursing, dentistry, veterinary medicine and health care
    • Science Direct: Offers more than 2,000 full-text journals published by Elsevier
    • Web of Science: Covers a broad range of science areas
    Library Services - sciences
  • Our Patient Diagnostic Suite is a multi-professional facility featuring a range of near patient testing/point of care resources for audiology, cardiology and laboratory medicine assessment and diagnostics including consultation areas for simulated patient assessment and feedback.

    Patient Diagnostic Suite
  • The Living Lab at the University of Sunderland was opened by Professor Lisa Bayliss-Pratt, Chief Nurse of Health Education England in 2016, following significant investment and major redevelopment of the ground floor of Fleming Building in the Sciences Complex. Our aim is to provide a state-of-the-art venue for all forms of healthcare related simulation based education.

    The Living Lab boasts the region’s only immersive simulation room allowing participants to experience events in simulated environments. An adjacent task trainer room which can be used flexibly can aid with the development of clinical and non-technical skills. Integral cameras enable participants to view live or recorded footage in our dedicated debrief room. The Lab also has a 7 bedded ward and Point of Care Testing (POCT) facility along with an OSCE suite and seminar rooms.

    The facility currently has 2 SimMan 3Gs, a SimNewB, a SimMom birthing simulator and 2 TraumaFX simbodies. A range of other clinical equipment and part task trainers as well as a pop-up ambulance are available to complement the facilities.

    The Living Lab
  • Map and directions


This course is based in the Sciences Complex at our City Campus, which boasts excellent facilities and cutting-edge equipment thanks to multi-million-pound investments.

Our Clinical Skills Suite is equipped with a range of clinical equipment for training health professionals. The cutting-edge equipment is backed up with excellent IT facilities and helpful IT support staff.

Entry requirements

The programme is work based and, as such, is subject to the apprentice being employed by an organisation throughout the duration of the programme. The employer must confirm apprentices comply with the apprentice eligibility criteria including funding requirements

Our typical offer is 112 UCAS points from a minimum of two A Levels or equivalent (e.g. 1 x AVCE double award) including biology or chemistry. Please note we do not accept General Studies AS or A Level.

We accept a maximum of 20 points from Level 3 Key Skills qualifications. We also require three passes at GCSE grade C or above, which must include Mathematics and English Language, or a minimum of Level 2 Key Skills in Communication, Application of Number and Information Technology.

We accept successful completion of an Access to Higher Education course that is accredited by the Quality Assurance Agency. We would also require a minimum of grade C in GCSE in Mathematics and English Language or equivalent.

If English is not your first language, we require a minimum of IELTS 7.0 (or equivalent) with a minimum of 6.0 in each element.

Fees and finance

There are different ways for the employer to fund the costs of higher and degree apprenticeships, which may include government levies already paid for by the employer or specific funding opportunities which may be available.

For a discussion around your specific requirements please contact: 0191 515 3361 /

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This information was correct at the time of publication.

Students graduating at the Stadium of Light


Completion of the degree apprenticeship with enable learners to be eligible for professional registration and suitability for employment as a Healthcare Science Practitioner or Biomedical Scientist (BMS). For Life Sciences, learners will complete the IBMS registration portfolio to enable eligibility to apply to be on the HCPC register.

End-point Assessment (EPA)

The EPA is a synoptic assessment that learners need to successfully complete and pass in order to complete the apprenticeship. The EPA is integrated into a final stage module and is made up of three elements: Readiness to Practice Test, Professional Discussion and a Research Project Presentation. Learners will need to successfully complete all aspects of assignments in this module including the EPA in order to complete the course.


This course is accredited by the following bodies:

  • The Registration Council for Clinical Physiologists (RCCP) 
  • The National School of Healthcare Science (NSHCS) 
  • The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)
  • International Master Program in Biomedical Sciences (IMBS)

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