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Pharmacist taking notes

MSc in Advanced Clinical Practice

This qualification prepares you for an advanced clinical practice role; you’ll learn the advanced health assessment skills and clinical knowledge to work as a highly autonomous practitioner, in a variety of clinical settings, across primary and secondary care. You’ll also gain a sound and critical understanding of the clinical and professional attributes required. This course is aimed at experienced, registered allied health professionals, nurses and pharmacists who are employed in trainee advanced clinical practice roles.

Key features of the course

  • Encompasses the four pillars that underpin advanced clinical practice - clinical practice, leadership and management, education, and research.
  • Develops your core capabilities and area-specific clinical competence.
  • Provides a grounding in fundamental leadership, mentoring and management skills.
  • Learn to appraise, evaluate and implement research findings in your clinical practice.

Masters degree

Course code
F85
Credits

Credits

  • Credits measure the student workload required for the successful completion of a module or qualification.
  • One credit represents about 10 hours of study over the duration of the course.
  • You are awarded credits after you have successfully completed a module.
  • For example, if you study a 60-credit module and successfully pass it, you will be awarded 60 credits.
180
How long it takes
3-5 years
Read more about how long it takes
Study method
Distance learning
Find out more in Why the OU?
Course cost
See Fees and funding
Entry requirements

Find out more about entry requirements.

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Course details

Modules

To gain this qualification, you need 180 credits as follows:

Compulsory module Credits Next start
Non-medical independent and supplementary prescribing (K803)  

This module enables you to gain the knowledge and skills required for safe, appropriate and effective prescribing practice and become an Independent/Supplementary Prescriber.

See full description

60 24 Aug 2019
Clinical foundations of advanced clinical practice (K804) planned for Aug 2020
60 Aug 2020
Professional inquiry in advanced clinical practice (K805) planned for Aug 2021
60 Aug 2021

You should note that the University’s unique study rule applies to this qualification. This means that you must include at least 60 credits from OU modules that have not been counted in any other OU qualification that has previously been awarded to you.


We regularly review our curriculum; therefore, the qualification described on this page – including its availability, its structure, and available modules – may change over time. If we make changes to this qualification, we’ll update this page as soon as possible. Once you’ve registered or are studying this qualification, where practicable, we’ll inform you in good time of any upcoming changes. If you’d like to know more about the circumstances in which the University might make changes to the curriculum, see our Academic Regulations or contact us. This description was last updated on 20th March 2019.

Learning outcomes, teaching and assessment

The learning outcomes of this qualification are described in four areas:

  • Knowledge and understanding
  • Cognitive skills
  • Practical and professional skills
  • Key skills
Read more detailed information about the learning outcomes.

Credit transfer

If you’ve successfully completed some relevant postgraduate study elsewhere, you might be able to count it towards this qualification, reducing the number of modules you need to study.

Credit transfer is not available against the Professional Inquiry in Advanced Clinical Practice (K805) module.

You should apply for credit transfer as soon as possible, before you register for your first module. For more details and an application form, visit our Credit Transfer website


On completion

On successful completion of the required module you can be awarded a MSc in Advanced Medical Practice entitling you to use the letters MSc ACP (Open) after your name.

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the qualification-specific regulations below and the academic regulations that are available on our Student Policies and Regulations website. 

Entry requirements

You will need to:
  • hold a minimum of a second-class honours degree in the cognitive field of health or be able to demonstrate equivalent academic ability through experiential learning.
  • be registered with a statutory health care and/or social care regulator with proof of current registration.
  • have a minimum of two years post-qualification experience.
  • be employed and have the support of your employer to undertake this qualification. If you’re a self-employed practitioner, assurances of support, appropriate learning opportunities, governance and safety measures will be discussed with the qualification lead.
  • have evidence of identification of a designated GMC registered medical practitioner or ANP/ACP with evidence of a qualification at Level 7, to support learning in clinical practice. You’ll require a designated registered medical practitioner or practice assessor to undertake Non-medical independent and supplementary prescribing (K803)

There are additional entry requirements for Non-medical independent and supplementary prescribing (K803) and you should look at the module description entry checks to decide if the module is suitable for you.

You will also need to complete an application form. If you are a Pharmacist registered with the GPhC, or an Allied Health Professional registered with the HCPC, the application form and further guidance can obtained by contacting the faculty at WELS-NMP-Programme@open.ac.uk

How long it takes

It is expected that most students will complete the qualification in the minimum time of three years by studying 60 credits a year, but there is flexibility to take up to five years to complete.

Career relevance

You’ll be employed as a health professional when you start the course, and have approval from your designated employer to undertake the qualification.

Once qualified, you’ll have the knowledge and skills to work as an advanced clinical practitioner across a wide variety of clinical settings. This includes primary and secondary care and other health and social care providers.