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Undergraduate study

Course overview

Our paramedic science top-up degree course is a post-registration programme for students who already hold paramedic registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). It allows you to further develop key areas of your professional practice.

The pre-registration training of paramedics has been evolving from in-house vocational courses, to diplomas in higher education and foundation degrees, and now most courses are moving to degree level. The profession continues to develop rapidly with new roles emerging and a higher level of understanding and decision making expected from all paramedics.

This course recognises that while you may have extensive experience as a paramedic, you may also need and want academic recognition to enhance your practice and position yourself for emerging roles. It builds on your existing knowledge to enhance practice and prepare you for the future by exploring theoretical and practical elements of the profession.

Supporting information for applicants

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Course details

The course provides a supportive environment that fosters self-initiated enquiry and reflection on the subjects underpinning paramedic practice. You consolidate your ability to synthesise and apply knowledge and skills to the often complex and unpredictable setting of paramedic practice. In particular it develops your understanding of mental health issues that affect patients, the public and professionals.

In stage 1 you consolidate your current practice. You look at the principles that underpin sound decision making, strengthening and possibly extending your understanding of current legislation, clinical guidance and the ethical considerations that impact on how you provide care. This is supported by a close examination of the knowledge and skills required to appraise the evidence that underpins your practice. You also explore the delivery of emergency and unscheduled care to patients with mental health problems.

In stage 2 you look at developing your own and wider paramedic practice. The main part of the second stage of study is your dissertation, which focuses on a detailed exploration of the evidence that underpins paramedic practice and how it can be used for improvement. Alongside the dissertation you study an optional module that either enhances your current practice or prepares you for future roles. The options are written to align with the four strands of the College of Paramedics Post-Registration Career Framework: clinical, leadership, research and education.

Course structure

Stage 1 core modules

Context of Evidence-based Paramedic Practice

You enhance your understanding of research material and how to read it critically. These skills contribute to your ability to analyse and evaluate literature related professional dental care which is a requirement of summative assessment throughout the programme. This module prepares you for you final year dissertation.

Mental Health Emergency and Unscheduled Care Practice

You enhance your understanding of the theories underpinning how you apply knowledge and skills in the practice environment. You also engage critically with important studies, guidance and government policy that directs paramedic practice. You develop your academic skills and it introduces you to e-learning@tees, VLE. You submit a formative piece of written work within the first few weeks to receive feedback on your academic writing.


Stage 2 core modules

Using Evidence to Improve Paramedic Practice

You complete a self-managed service improvement project. There are three days of taught content at the beginning of the module to prepare you for completing your project file. You identify an area of paramedic practice that you feel could be improved. You establish if there is sufficient evidence to support your proposed improvement and explore how you would achieve the implementation of your project.


Modules offered may vary.


How you learn

You learn through a variety of learning and teaching methods to help develop and consolidate your knowledge and skills.

The course recognises and builds on the experience of qualified paramedics. Approaches to subject delivery and support enable you to utilise your own experiences and apply them to subject material.

Much of the taught content is delivered through online and distance learning, to improve accessibility. Face-to-face sessions are also included to help develop a cohort identity for students, so that you can provide peer support to each other.

Each core module begins with focused online activities and content (such as video-captured lectures, webinars and directed learning) to introduce key elements and encourage you to begin to engage with the subject matter. This is followed by one or two two-day face-to-face blocks where students meet together to build on your work through seminars, discussion, small group work and (in some modules) service user presentations. Following the face-to-face sessions, further online activities develop themes and prepare you for assessments. In Year 2, the face-to-face sessions reduce as this relates to the final project. Individual support is provided by project supervisors.

As a rapidly developing profession, it is essential that you develop research skills to keep up-to-date with changes. Evidence-based practice and research skills are embedded in the course through the core modules Context of Evidence-based Paramedic Practice and Using Evidence to Improve Paramedic Practice.

How you are assessed

Depending on the optional modules you choose, assessments include written assignments, practical examinations and presentations, and a self-managed project in stage 2.

Our Disability Services team provide an inclusive and empowering learning environment and have specialist staff to support disabled students access any additional tailored resources needed. If you have a specific learning difficulty, mental health condition, autism, sensory impairment, chronic health condition or any other disability please contact a Disability Services as early as possible.
Find out more about our disability services

Find out more about financial support
Find out more about our course related costs


Entry requirements

Entry requirements

You must be a HCPC registered paramedic and be able to evidence successful study of 120 credits at Level 4 and 120 credits at Level 5 in a related subject area or equivalent. This will usually be the completion of a relevant foundation degree or diploma in higher education, however you may apply for prior learning to be considered through the School of Health & Social Care Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) process. We also welcome applicants who have initially qualified outside of the UK.

For additional information please see our entry requirements

You can gain considerable knowledge from work, volunteering and life. Under recognition of prior learning (RPL) you may be awarded credit for this which can be credited towards the course you want to study.
Find out more about RPL



Career opportunities

You develop knowledge and skills to underpin research and evidence-based practice. Whilst the course does not prepare you for specific, specialist or advanced roles it provides the opportunity to develop the academic skills often required for these. On completion you should feel confident about meeting the present and future challenges of paramedic practice and be in a position to apply for specialist paramedic roles within ambulance services and the wider health service.



  • Not available full-time


2020/21 entry

Apply online (part-time)


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