Short courses
Health & Social Care

Physical Assessment Skills (Adult)

University Certificate in Professional Development:

  • Limited HEENE-funded places are available for eligible applicants (you must check this with admissions before applying).
  • Standard University fee applies once all funded places have been allocated.

Course information

Part-time

More part-time details

  • 20 Credits, Degree Level
  • Enrolment date: October, January and April
  • Admission enquiries: 01642 384176
  • Fee for UK/EU applicants: £1500
  • Limited funded places available

Contact details

Further information

This award enables you, as practitioner, to develop the clinical skills of history taking, case review, systems examination and basic diagnostics. It is a multidisciplinary award aimed at practitioners who are expanding their roles to practice more autonomously in their clinical field. In line with the NHS agenda for change it is open to all health care practitioners – nurses in all specialist areas in the acute and community sectors, out of hours staff, walk in centre staff, paramedics, pharmacists and other PAMS. The award uses a systems approach to the development of skills and a practice based skills workbook enables you to have supervised skills practice in your own practice setting according to national standards.

On completion you can:

  • Undertake a thorough but focused and systematic history and examination in the following areas: cardiovascular, respiratory, gastrointestinal, urinary tract, nervous system, locomotor system, CNS, skin, HEENT, endocrine
  • Present and record findings on history and examination.
  • Use and interpret clinical tests correctly, for example blood data, ECG, X ray.
  • Produce a basic differential and working diagnosis from findings elicited through history, examination and clinical tests.
  • Safely triage a patient on the basis of the clinical assessment.

This award helps meet the requirements of all PAMS involved in the implementation of the changes required by the reduction in hospital doctors’ hours and the current GMS contract and out of hours servicing/GP category calls.
You need to be supported in the workplace by an experienced advanced practitioner to ensure safety in application of principle to practice in the workplace.

How you learn

You attend five full-day direct contact sessions delivered every other week for a period of ten weeks. Your exam will be on week 14. Depending on your start month you attend on the following days each week: October is Tuesdays, January is Thursdays and April is Tuesdays.

Lectures and skills sessions develop your knowledge of anatomy, pathology and physiology as applied to the diagnostic process. Facilitated workshops help develop your clinical history-taking and examination skills.

Peer group assessment helps provide formative feedback regarding progress in system assessment.

Practice-based supervision develops your application of clinical skills in the practice setting. A practice workbook is used following a systems approach to enhance learning and Blackboard supports interactive online learning.

Assessment is in the form of an objectively structured clinical examination. There are three stations, 15 minutes in duration, based on the award content and assess your capacity to:

  • communicate with a patient
  • take a patient history from a presenting symptom
  • perform clinical examinations, for example, cardiovascular, respiratory, and musculoskeletal
  • formulate a clinical opinion on the basis of history, exam and investigative data.

The pass mark for each station will be 50%. You are required to pass all stations, referral at a station means you repeat the individual station.

Entry requirements

You should have at least three years experience and have studied at diploma or degree level. Previous courses undertaken should be inclusive of pathophysiology. You must be in need of the skills provided by the award for service development in your area.

You are required to identify a practice facilitator for the duration of the module. This will be a clinician or an appropriately skilled practitioner (e.g. nurse practitioner). The practice facilitator will provide supervised practice and assist completion of the workbook (estimated 100 hours). You should be currently employed in a capacity which requires use of physical assessment skills. You need verification from your line manager of the requirement for physical assessment skills in area of practice.

Course information

Part-time

More part-time details

  • 20 Credits, Degree Level
  • Enrolment date: October, January and April
  • Admission enquiries: 01642 384176
  • Fee for UK/EU applicants: £1500
  • Limited funded places available

Contact details

Further information