How much of my time will the course take up?

The course is designed to be taken part time, by distance learning, over a period of three years. To gain a masters degree it is necessary to accumulate 180 credits, each of which is notionally equivalent to 10 learning hours. In total that makes 1800 learning hours, or 600 hours per year. The actual time spent will, however, vary dependant on your own level of prior learning and amount of relevant work experience.

What happens if I start the course and then cannot continue to the end

It would be a shame to waste any effort you put into a course like this. For that reason it is possible to opt out after one year (60 credits) with a Postgraduate Certificate or after two years (120 credits) with a Postgraduate Diploma. Naturally we would prefer you to reach masters level (180 credits). If your personal circumstances force you to take a short break in studying, this can be arranged, with your credits being temporarily 'banked'. The maximum period over which the course can be completed is five years.

Do I need a first (bachelors) degree to register for this course?

Normally yes, but in exceptional circumstances accreditation for other forms of learning or relevant experience can be given. You would need to discuss your personal circumstances with the Programme Leader.

As this course will be taught over the internet, do I need a high spec computer?

It is not necessary to have a state-of-the-art computer, as any modern computer should be able to cope with the course materials. We also work to ensure that course materials are accessible on mobile devices too where possible. The most important aspect will be to have a reliable internet connection.

English is not my first language. Will I be able to keep up?

As this is an international programme, many of the participants will have English as their second (or third) language. To ensure that everyone will be able to participate fully and gain maximum benefit we will only accept students onto the programme who can demonstrate an appropriate level of English language proficiency.

For the purposes of completing an online course at masters level the University has decided that a proficiency in English which rates at 6.5 or above on the IELTS scale is necessary.

If you studied your first degree in English you will not need to provide evidence of your English Language proficiency.

The University of Sheffield has more information on English language test scores provided by its English Language Teaching Centre

Is there any clinical requirement?

No. This programme is not about teaching basic clinical skills: those students who are registered nurses or healthcare professionals will have these skills already. The programme is all about enhancing the knowledge and abilities of experienced practitioners. Clinical experience will be useful to call upon to illuminate discussions but is not an integral component of the course as such.

How will I be supervised?

It is important that you do not feel isolated during this course, so the University will ensure that you remain in regular contact with teaching staff as well as with your fellow students. Your programme leader will be available to monitor your progress and provide support throughout the course. In addition, each unit leader will closely supervise work done during their unit and a subject specialist will be allocated to supervise your research dissertation, once a suitable topic has been agreed.