Nursing Associate FdSc Apprenticeship

Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) Gold award

Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) Gold award

Our commitment to high quality teaching has been recognised with a TEF Gold rating. The University has received an overall rating of Gold, as well as securing a Gold award in the framework's two new student experience and student outcomes categories.

Why choose this programme?

As a nursing associate, you will deliver hands-on care to patients and will work alongside healthcare support workers (holding a care certificate) and fully qualified registered nurses, bridging the existing gap between the two roles. You will play a key part in the multi-disciplinary workforce that is needed to respond to the future needs of the public and patients.

This programme is available as a two-year full-time apprenticeship (employment based, with part-time university attendance). To apply for the apprenticeship route you will need to be in full-time employment as a health care support worker or a similar health or social care role.

Your placements will be external to your usual place of work. Your employer will need to agree to release you from the workplace for protected practice and theoretical learning. This includes protected time for external placements, identified protected learning within your usual place of work, simulation, study days and guided learning. The apprenticeship tuition fees are funded through the apprenticeship levy payable via your employer.

Successful completion of the programme will equip you to work as a Nursing Associate and to progress your career within the health and social care sector. Through a combination of theoretical learning and practice placements you will develop a wide range of specialist and transferable clinical, care and interpersonal skills (including medicines management). Practice placements will also give you the opportunity to gain a wide range of experiences through exposure to different health and care settings.

Please note: the content and structure of the programme may change in line with the standards set by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

Attendance Apply Year of entry
2 years full time (employment based, with part-time university attendance) Enquire via the KU Apprenticeship Team 2024
Main location Kingston Hill

Reasons to choose Kingston University

  • We are top in England for General Nursing, and No.3 in the UK overall (The Guardian University Guide 2024).
  • We won two awards at the 2023 Student Nursing Times Awards, including Nursing Associate Trainee of the Year. Pebbles Day won the award for her work supporting individuals with a variety of mental health needs.
  • You'll develop a range of specialist and transferable skills (including medicines management) through clinical placements in a variety of settings. You'll have the opportunity to gain knowledge and experience in the fields of adult, child, mental health and learning disabilities.
Reasons to choose Kingston University


This degree confers both an academic award and a professional qualification in nursing. On completion of the programme, students are recommended to the Nursing and Midwifery Council for professional registration.  

What you will study

This programme is designed to meet the NMC requirements for Nursing Associates. You will be supported to achieve the competencies, communication, relationship management skills and nursing procedures specified in the Standards of Proficiency for Nursing Associates (NMC 2018).

Year 1

Year 2

Year 1 develops a broad understanding of the nursing associate knowledge base and enables the student to provide reasoned explanations of relevant issues.

Core modules

Personal and Professional Development 1

15 credits

This module addresses professional and personal development and runs throughout Year 1. It integrates and applies skills, knowledge and values acquired in other modules and provides academic skills support and development for students throughout their first year of study. The principles and skills of reflection are introduced and practised. The module also addresses wider issues known to influence successful study outcomes, such as wellbeing, resilience and support networks.

Applied Anatomy and Physiology

30 credits

This module explores the foundations of human anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology relevant to healthcare practice. The content covers the body's key systems and processes, the mechanisms for maintaining homeostasis and an introduction to human development across the lifespan. The module also introduces selected pathophysiology associated with common disease processes in order to assist students contextualise their learning to their clinical settings.

Skills for Healthcare Practice 1

30 credits

This module will enable the student to develop and apply a range of skills to the holistic assessment and monitoring of people within their care, documenting progress and reporting outcomes. Students will be introduced to the required skills and underpinning knowledge so that they can contribute to the ongoing assessment and recognise when it is necessary to escalate findings to other members of the multidisciplinary team for reassessment.

Professionalism in Practice

15 credits

This module explores the application of the NMC Code (NMC, 2018) and the professional principles, values and skills required to safeguard vulnerable people, optimise the quality of care and enhance the experience of people accessing health and social care. The content explores the domains of ‘prioritising people', ‘practising effectively', ‘preserving safety' and ‘promoting professionalism and trust', as applied to a range of user groups.

Promoting Health and Wellbeing

30 credits

This module will set healthcare in its wider social context, providing participants with an understanding of the various influences on health outcomes and inequalities, the relationship between mental and physical health, and their roles in promoting wellbeing. Effective communication skills for supporting people to manage their health and care will be explored.


Year 2 promotes a more detailed understanding of the subject matter covered in Year 1, related theories and concepts, enabling students to provide substantiated arguments applied to relevant issues.

Core modules

Personal and Professional Development 2

15 credits

The module will continue the development and consolidation of students' academic practice skills and will support their professional growth as they transition to Registered Nursing Associates. The range of learning, teaching and assessment activities undertaken in the module will allow students to demonstrate acquisition of reflective practice and lifelong learning skills, together with the knowledge and insights necessary for professional practice. The module also covers career development, employability skills and job-seeking preparation.

Skills for Healthcare Practice 2

30 credits

This module builds on the Year 1 module: Skills for Healthcare Practice 1. The module will enhance students' knowledge of the different approaches used to assess and promote a person's health and wellbeing, and to identify those who are at risk. Students will continue to develop the knowledge and core skills required for safe, effective assessment and care management within the practice setting.

The Acutely Unwell Person

30 credits

This module enables students to develop the knowledge and skills necessary to deliver safe, effective, compassionate, evidence-based, person-centred care when a person's condition is deteriorating. The module builds on students' knowledge of anatomy and physiology. It will equip them to recognise people who are at risk of deteriorating mental and physical health, undertake timely structured assessments, provide appropriate interventions and care across the lifespan and in a variety of settings.

Long Term Conditions

30 credits

This module will introduce students to the principles of working with people across the lifespan who live with complex and/or long-term conditions (LTC's) in primary and/or secondary care settings.

Leadership for Nursing Associates

15 credits

This module is aimed at final semester nursing associate students. It focuses on the acquisition of knowledge and skills for promoting the delivery of high-quality person-focused care. The content will include: leadership and management; supporting learning and assessment in practice; research, development and innovation; policies and frameworks that support effective care.

Entry requirements

Typical offer

As an apprentice on this programme, you need to be employed for a minimum of 37.5 hours per week, see additional requirements below. You will also need to have evidence of Right to Work in England for the duration of your course and endpoint assessment.

  • GCSE at grade 4 or above (or grade C or above for GCSEs taken before 2017) in English Language and Mathematics or equivalent qualification e.g. Functional/Key skills level 2 in numeracy and literacy
  • Learning at level 3 by qualification (normally 56 UCAS points) or two years of verifiable and relevant work experience

Additional requirements

Admission is subject to:

  • Occupational health screening.
  • Enhanced Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) check including checks against the Adult and Child Workforce Barring Lists.
  • Completion of a digital and technological literacy questionnaire.
  • Working in the sector.
  • Sponsorship from an approved employer within the industry.
  • Meeting all the requirements of the Education and Skills Funding Agency to undertake an apprenticeship as listed in the Apprenticeship Funding Rules.

All applicants who meet the minimum requirements are required to attend an interview and selection day. The day will include an appraisal of current digital literacy skills which will assess applicants' level of confidence with selected aspects of digital literacy and provide a baseline from which to develop capability in digital and technological literacy during the programme.

As an apprentice, you should be employed at NHS Agenda for Change Band 2 or 3 as a healthcare support worker (or equivalent). At the point of entry onto the programme, you should be working within a health or care setting where you can be appropriately supervised by a Registered Nurse or other appropriate health or care professional. You will need to have agreed with your employer that you can attend one day of study release each week and attend placements external to usual place of work throughout the course. The apprenticeship tuition fees are funded through the apprenticeship levy payable via your employer.

Covid-19 vaccination requirement

The Nursing and Midwifery Council, General Pharmaceutical Council and Social Work England strongly encourage everyone eligible to be fully vaccinated against Covid 19 to keep yourselves and your community safe.

We are aware that some placement providers may require their staff and students to be fully vaccinated for some clinical areas. The University position is to strongly recommend everyone eligible to be fully vaccinated for health and care courses.

You can book your vaccinations here.

You can read information about Coronavirus vaccines here.


This programme is not suitable for international applicants without the Right to Work in England.

Teaching and assessment

This programme enables you to develop a broad understanding of care needs, relevant to all fields of nursing. It equips you to identify holistic needs and deliver care to a diverse range of individuals. There is an emphasis on the relationship between physical and mental health care throughout the lifespan, and the wider influences on health and wellbeing.

The integration of theory and practice is achieved through learning, teaching and assessment strategies which require you to reflect on your experiences in practice. Nursing knowledge and evidence are applied to these experiences, with an increasing depth of discussion and analysis as you progress through the course.

You will learn through lectures, seminars and online work in our Virtual Learning Environment (CANVAS). You will also participate in tutorials, workshops, conferences and project work. Your learning in the simulation suite will help you relate theory to practice.

The programme is offered through day release, and blocks of external placement practice. During your on-the-job learning, you will be working as a trainee nursing associate carrying out activities relevant to the clinical area you are working in.

Guided independent study (self-managed time)

When not attending timetabled sessions, you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. This typically will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking coursework assignments, and preparing and giving presentations. Your independent learning is supported by a range of excellent facilities including online resources, the library and CANVAS, the online virtual learning platform.

Academic support

Our academic support team here at Kingston University provides help in a range of areas.

Dedicated personal tutor

When you arrive, we'll introduce you to your personal tutor. This is the member of academic staff who will provide academic guidance, support you throughout your time at Kingston and show you how to make the best use of all the help and resources that we offer at Kingston University. 

Your workload

Year 1

Scheduled learning and teaching 248
Placement and simulation skills 487.5
Guided independent study (self-managed time) 772

 Year 2

Scheduled learning and teaching 248
Placement and simulation skills 487.5
Guided independent study (self-managed time) 772

Please note: To meet Nursing and Midwifery Council requirements, all apprentices will be supernumerary of their practice placements, which will not be at their usual workplace.

How you will be assessed

There are a range of assessment types including examinations, coursework and practical assessments in both the Clinical Skills and Simulation Suite and the workplace. The assessments are staged throughout the academic year to ensure coherence and an even, manageable workload.

Practice is assessed through successful completion of the practice assessment document and objective structured clinical assessments (OSCAs), in conjunction with successful sign-off in practice by a practice assessor and an academic assessor at the end of Years 1 and 2. Students require a pass in both theory and practice to achieve their final award.

Year 1

Year 2

Year 1
  • Coursework: 50%
  • Practical: 25%
  • Exam: 25%
Year 2
  • Coursework: 80%
  • Practical: 20%

Feedback summary

We aim to provide feedback to you on your assessments within 20 working days.

Your timetable

Your individualised timetable is normally available to students within 48 hours of enrolment. Whilst we make every effort to ensure timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week between 9am and 6pm.

Programme fees and funding

Fees for this programme

This degree apprenticeship programme is funded through the Government's Apprenticeship Levy within the approved funding band.

Additional costs

Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs which are not covered by tuition fees, which learners will need to consider when planning their studies.

Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching, assessment and operating University facilities such as the library, IT equipment and other support services. Accommodation and living costs are not included in our fees.

Where a programme has additional expenses, we make every effort to highlight them. These may include optional field trips, materials, security checks such as DBS, uniforms, specialist clothing or professional memberships.


Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. You may prefer to, or be required to, buy your own copy of key textbooks.

Computer equipment

There are open-access networked computers available across the University, plus laptops available to loan. You may find it useful to have your own PC, laptop or tablet which you can use around campus and in halls of residences. Free WiFi is available on each of the campuses.


In the majority of cases coursework can be submitted online. There may be instances when you will be required to submit work in a printed format. Printing and photocopying costs are not included in your tuition fees.


You may need to pay additional travel costs for placements. If you are an apprentice, you can apply for an apprenticeship oyster card.

End-Point Assessment (EPA)

Each apprentice on an approved Apprenticeship Standard is required to take an End-Point Assessment (EPA) to complete the programme. The EPA is delivered by an End-Point Assessment Organisation (EPAO) that is registered with the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA).

The EPA is either integrated as part of the apprenticeship or completed after the course element. If an apprentice is completing the EPA after the course element, they must ensure they have successfully completed their learning, achieved the gateway requirements and finished uploading their evidence prior to taking the EPA.

What does an End-Point Assessment (EPA) involve?

There is no common format for EPAs, as they vary between apprenticeships. All EPAs are developed from 'assessment plans', drawn up by the trailblazer group responsible for apprenticeship standard and subsequently approved by the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IfATE).

An apprentice's EPA plan must detail the knowledge, skills and experience that they are expected to achieve as assessed by independent assessors. Employers have an important role in assessing competency and they have a key responsibility at the gateway in signing off the apprentice as ready to undertake EPA.

The EPA can be conducted either be awarding organisations, training providers like Kingston University, in case of integrated assessment, or End-Point Assessment Organisations (EPAOs). Without exception all should;

  • EPA must be conducted by an independent EPAO, which must be on the Register of End-Point Assessment Organisations. EPAOs will employ independent assessors.
  • Ensure independence – the EPA should be an independent assessment of an apprentice's competence. The decision on whether an apprentice has passed their EPA and what their final grade should be, must be taken by someone who has no vested interest in this decision or relationship to the apprentice. This is to ensure that all apprentices are treated fairly and helps to maintain trust in the robustness of the EPA system.
  • Underpin their EPA services with independent quality assurance.
  • Have relevant occupational experience of the apprenticeship standard.
  • Meet at least twice annually, review programme content and delivery, consider feedback from apprentices, employers and academics, and report findings annually to the University – through established committee structure and to employers.

Who provides a non-integrated assessment?

Employers can choose any organisation listed on the Register of End-Point Assessment Organisations (RoEPAO) against the apprenticeship standard being taken by their apprentice. RoEPAO lists organisations that have been assessed by the ESFA as being suitable to conduct independent EPA of apprentices. The employer can then inform Kingston University who will support the EPA process.

How is an integrated assessment different?

For apprenticeship that follow an integrated approach, the University delivering the apprenticeship will also be the EPAO and must be on the RoEPAO. Thus, integrated apprenticeships are where Kingston University provides both the scheduled teaching and the EPA. No independent assessor organisation is required – though the EPA must still deliver an impartial result – with assessors independent of the apprentice and their employer and, where possible, from a third-party organisation such as a professional body or another employer. If this is not possible, they may be sourced from within the same University but must be occupationally competent, meet any other conditions for assessors and not have been involved in the on-programme delivery.

For further details on EPA process for a particular apprenticeship programme please contact the relevant Apprenticeship Course Leader or Faculty Student/Degree Apprenticeship Officer. You can also get in touch with the Kingston University apprenticeships team via or 020 8417 5492.

After you graduate

This programme will equip you to work as a Nursing Associate and enhance your career in the health and social care sector. You may be able to progress to a shortened nursing degree course.

The programme will enable you to develop a wide range of specialist and transferable clinical, care and interpersonal skills (including medicines management).

Visit NHS Careers for more information about the role of Nursing Associates working in the NHS.


Next steps

Next steps


If you are currently employed full-time and would like to find out more about apprenticeships, please ask your employer to contact the Kingston University apprenticeship team.


If you are an employer interested in how apprenticeships can support your organisation and employees, please contact the apprenticeship team for further details.

Course changes and regulations

The information on this page reflects the currently intended course structure and module details. To improve your student experience and the quality of your degree, we may review and change the material information of this course. Course changes explained.

Programme Specifications for the course are published ahead of each academic year.

Regulations governing this course can be found on our website.