Nursing Associate FdSc


UCAS code: B710

Start dates: September 2024 / September 2025

Full time: 2 years (24 months)

Location: Swindon

Department(s): Oxford School of Nursing and Midwifery

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Our Nursing Associate Foundation (FdSc) course is ideal for people who want to work as a nursing associate or want to progress onto a nursing degree, whether this is your first or second career.

This career will see you working with registered nurses and other healthcare professions to deliver patient care.

You will gain a range of practical skills and the underpinning knowledge to make a real difference to the quality of life and care of people of all ages and in a wide range of healthcare settings. You will develop skills of evidence-based practice, teamwork and leadership, professionalism and accountability, communication and interpersonal skills, enhanced care delivery and problem solving approaches to clinical practice. You will gain experience in a variety of settings, focusing equally on theory and practice learning.

By completing this course, you’ll gain professional registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council and an FdSc Nursing Associate awarded by Oxford Brookes University.


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Nurse at work

Why Oxford Brookes University?

  • Innovative Partnerships

    The Oxford School of Nursing and Midwifery is a partnership that is at the forefront of research-driven education, clinical practice and quality healthcare research.

  • Professional Guidance

    The academic team members are all registered professionals who hold extensive healthcare and teaching experience in their field.

  • The 50/50 Approach

    Learn both theory and practical skills in this 50% taught, 50% practice based programme.

  • Interactive facilities

    Practice nursing care in augmented reality and other simulations before applying them in real scenarios.

  • Placement opportunities

    We have good links with local healthcare providers, allowing you to gain practical hands on work experience in the local area.

  • Accreditation(s)

    Nursing and Midwifery Council

    • Nursing and Midwifery Council

Course details

Course structure

Throughout this course you will learn a myriad of important skills to prepare you for a future career as a nursing associate. Learn a problem-solving approach to clinical practice, develop your communication and interpersonal skills, and learn the value of teamwork and leadership in the healthcare sector.

Student nurse at work

Learning and teaching

You’ll gain valuable experience working in clinical settings, including working alongside qualified professionals whilst studying full time. You’ll learn how to work with a range of population groups and conditions, giving you a wide breadth of knowledge to take forward with you in either your studies or career. 


The course includes a range of assessment styles and opportunities including essays, reflections, presentations and examinations. You will also be assessed within the practice environment, where you will have the opportunity to demonstrate your applied knowledge and skills in the development of key proficiencies.

Study modules

Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Study Skills for Foundation Degrees

    This module will provide you with the theoretical and practical study skills necessary for successful completion of the Nursing Associate Foundation Degree. It will give you an understanding of the learning process and of yourself; developing confidence to take control of your learning. It offers you the opportunity to apply different approaches and learning strategies and to develop the study skills needed for Higher Education.
  • Practice Based Learning 1

    This is the first of four double practice based learning (PBL) modules that are taken in practice. It encourages you to examine your care practice; allowing you to begin to embed knowledge from nursing associate theory modules within your practice and through the completion of proficiencies and professional values.
    This module also uses a safe environment to learn new knowledge and skills to facilitate increased participation in the assessment, planning, implementation and evaluation of care.
    You will have the opportunity to apply principles of normal anatomy and physiology from the Science for Nursing Associates module during your learning.
  • Science for Nursing Associates

    This module aims to provide an underpinning of anatomical and physiological knowledge for safe and effective delivery of care regardless of setting. The module introduces and reinforces an understanding of the major physiological systems, their normal workings and frequently encountered potential abnormalities that may occur for those requiring health care throughout the lifespan.
    The teaching and learning of anatomy and physiology within the module will follow an integrated approach. Students will have the opportunity to apply principles of normal anatomy and physiology alongside the relevant specialist care skills being taught.
  • Applied Social Science for Health and Social Care

    This theory module will introduce you to the study of major psychological and social influences on human behaviour within the context of health care. You will gain understanding of the links between behaviour, and the development of self, and will develop your understanding of health behaviour and aspects of health care delivery.
  • Practice Based Learning 2

    This is the second of four practice based learning modules, which gives you the opportunity to continue to work alongside your assessors to continuously reflect on your own and others’ practice. You will be encouraged to consider specific aspects of health care needs and reflect on how to deliver them in practice. In addition, under the guidance of your placement and module team, you will gain and demonstrate new skills specific to your role to facilitate increased participation in the assessment, planning, implementation and evaluation of care.

    You will have the opportunity to apply principles of normal anatomy and physiology from the Science for Nursing Associates module during your learning.
  • Promoting Health for Nursing Associates

    Nursing Associates play a role in supporting people to improve and maintain their mental, physical, behavioural health and wellbeing (NMC, 2018).
    You will gain an understanding of Public Health and how this will inform nursing associate practice, moving from universal prevention campaigns to targeted approaches across the lifespan. You will explore health promotion theories and models and how behaviour can be changed. This will link to evidence regarding the social determinants of health. Health priorities will be considered by exploring global strategies, local and national legislation, and research-based clinical guidance. You will also explore ethical issues, human rights and how marginalised communities are supported to promote health and wellbeing.


Year 2

Compulsory modules

  • Legal and Ethical Aspects of Evidence-Based Practice

    In this module you will explore theories and current thinking underpinning and guiding evidence based decision making in nursing associate practice. The module will provide you with an understanding of the complexities of legal and ethical aspects of the delivery of care in various settings and your own accountability within the delivery of nursing associate care.
    Throughout the module you will develop an understanding of the need for best practice in the workplace, with opportunities to highlight and discuss the implications and recommendations for your practice in relation to your own findings.
    Through a review of literature you will examine research and evidence around a specific legal and ethical issue which you will identify from your own area of work.
  • Practice Based Learning 3

    As the first Level 5 PBL module, this module builds on the previous year’s theory modules and PBL modules. By the end of the module, you will have demonstrated new knowledge and its application to professional practice.
  • Integrated Care for Nursing Associates

    This module develops your knowledge of specific areas of nursing associate care across the lifespan. It introduces the underpinning frameworks and responsibilities for the organisation, assessment, planning, implementation and evaluation of holistic family/person-centred and compassionate care in a variety of settings. It is underpinned with an understanding of local and national policies that influence the delivery of health care.
  • Practice Based Learning 4

    This is the final Practice Based Learning module, which consolidates all of your previous learning; it will enable you to link the application of theory to practice. Within this module, you are expected to be a more independent, self-directed learner who can identify and fulfil their own learning needs and objectives.


Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from those shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.


With this Nursing Associate foundation degree under your belt, you’ll be able to step into the healthcare profession as a Nursing Associate, or progress onto a nursing undergraduate degree. This course broadens available routes into the healthcare profession and helps both new and existing healthcare employees to take the next step in their career. 

Entry requirements

International qualifications and equivalences

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
2024 / 25
Home (UK) full time

International full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2024 / 25
Home (UK) full time

International full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

+44 (0)1865 534400

Please note, tuition fees for Home students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Oxford Brookes University intends to maintain its fees for new and returning Home students at the maximum permitted level.

Tuition fees for International students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students. 

The following factors will be taken into account by the University when it is setting the annual fees: inflationary measures such as the retail price indices, projected increases in University costs, changes in the level of funding received from Government sources, admissions statistics and access considerations including the availability of student support. 

How and when to pay

Tuition fee instalments for the semester are due by the Monday of week 1 of each semester. Students are not liable for full fees for that semester if they leave before week 4. If the leaving date is after week 4, full fees for the semester are payable.

  • For information on payment methods please see our Make a Payment page.
  • For information about refunds please visit our Refund policy page

Financial support and scholarships

For general sources of financial support, see our Fees and funding pages.

Additional costs

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course are detailed below.

Programme changes:
On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website. For more information, please visit our changes to programmes page.