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One year, part-time

Application Deadline

30 June


St George's, University of London

Start dates

September 2024, February 2025

The Clinical Practice PgCert is designed to enhance your clinical skills in a way that is relevant to your practice. Our different pathways allow you to choose modules that best suit your practice and needs. The course will maximise your professional skills and capabilities with a goal of allowing you to practice at an enhanced level.

Four different pathways for the PgCert are available: Generic, First Contact Provider (Paramedic), First Contact Provider (Musculoskeletal), and Critical Care. The PgCert is worth 60 credits and is normally undertaken part-time over one year. The Critical Care pathway starts in Term 2.

Our degree courses meet all the requirements set out within Health Education England’s Multi-Professional Framework for Advanced Clinical Practice in England (HEE, 2017). The First Contact Practitioner pathways have been formally recognised as delivering education and training in line with the relevant Roadmaps to Practice through NHS England's Workforce, Training and Education Provider Self-Declaration process. All routes within the course promote your personal and professional development and will contribute to your career advancement within the relevant health and social care sector.

Two of the pathways result in a First Contact Practitioner (FCP) qualification. An FCP service is a registered health professional who provides the first point of contact for patients. This service increases capacity to general practice and allows patients to receive faster access to the right care. FCP's are qualified autonomous clinical practitioners who are able to assess, diagnose, treat and discharge patients without a medical referral.

Course highlights

  • Established in 1752, St George’s, University of London is the only UK university focussed on healthcare, science and medical education and research.
  • You will be surrounded by like-minded individuals which helps to build your multidisciplinary understanding and context.
  • The course faculty is made up of more than 20 academics from a variety of professional backgrounds including doctors, nurses, paramedics, physiotherapists, physician associates, speech and language therapists, and researchers.
  • The course offers four different pathways to best suit your clinical needs.
  • Three times a year your entire cohort will meet in professional practice days, where you will learn in a multi-disciplinary setting.

Want to know more?

Find out more about postgraduate study at St George’s, University of London by registering for our introductory email series.

Course structure and modules

To complete the Clinical Practice PgCert, students require 60 credits. We stagger the start dates of modules to help students balance work and life commitments with the course. 


Four pathways for the PgCert are available. Some pathways have more flexibility than others and students work with their pathway lead to determine the best choice of modules for their career path. The following core modules are required for each pathway: 

Generic pathway

  • Any optional module up to 60 credits

Critical care

  • Principles of Critical Care (30 credits)
  • Optional modules up to 30 credits

First Contact Provider (Musculoskeletal)

  • Advanced Clinical Reasoning in Health Assessment (30 credits)
  • Advanced Musculoskeletal Management (15 credits)
  • Portfolio of Professional Practice (15 credits)

First Contact Provider (Paramedic)

  • Advanced Clinical Reasoning in Health Assessment (30 credits)
  • Advanced Management of Minor Illnesses (15 credits)
  • Portfolio of Professional Practice (15 credits)

Core modules

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Advanced Clinical Reasoning in Health Assessment (30 credits)

This is a core module that provides in-depth knowledge to develop your critical thinking in complex health environments. It will enhance your ability to respond efficiently to the rapidly changing health landscape and will allow you to make balanced clinical decisions when formulating differential diagnoses, based on systematic patient assessment. The module also provokes thinking about a personalised care strategy when managing health conditions and the wider population needs that impact on health services.

The educational delivery and ethos of this module emphasises and builds on autonomous self-directed learning for independent practice.

This module requires 50 hours of clinical placement in a General Practice setting or an area where you can evaluate and assess patients with a clinical supervisor.

Advanced Practice: Management of Minor Illness (15 credits)

This module is designed for healthcare practitioners working towards advanced roles in primary care and community settings. It offers you the opportunity to evaluate the key challenges underpinning NHS targets within the field of hospital avoidance and ambulatory care.

This module requires 75 hours of clinical placement in a setting where you can evaluate and assess patients with minor illnesses with a clinical supervisor. 

Portfolio of Professional Practice (15 credits)

This module is designed to enable students to demonstrate that they have acquired the skills and knowledge to practice as a First Contact Practitioner (FCP). It incorporates the concepts of academic, professional and personal development required for an FCP. It encourages students to further develop their ability to critically reflect and enhance their role. It facilitates the integration and use of skills, knowledge and attitudes learned in other modules for their FCP.

Students are required to produce a portfolio that evidences meeting the FCP capabilities. This portfolio can be reused, adapted and refined throughout an entire career as a Clinical Practitioner.

Principles of Critical Care (30 credits)

This module is intended for health care professionals who are working in or towards a specialist or advanced role in prehospital critical care. The module will enable you to explore the theory and practice of critical care in the prehospital setting.

Optional modules

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Advanced Practice: Management of Minor Injuries (15 credits)

This module is for healthcare professionals, such as nurses or paramedics, wishing to develop knowledge and skills in managing minor injuries in children and adults. It is intended to develop your practice through the efficient use of resources and enable you to manage patients presenting to urgent and primary care settings with minor injuries.

This module requires 50 hours of clinical placement in a setting where you can evaluate and assess patients with minor injuries with a clinical supervisor.

Advancing Clinical Education and Supervision (15 credits)

This core module is designed to give you a comprehensive foundation in clinical pedagogy, practice education and approaches to continuing professional development. It will support your development as an advanced clinical practitioner.

It draws on contemporary research, opinion, and wider pedagogic and professional development theory to equip you with the knowledge and skills that underpin effective practice education. These include approaches to education, clinical, managerial and leadership supervision within and across traditional professional boundaries.

The focus on professional learning provides a foundation for your wider advancing practice development. You will have opportunities to learn with and from colleagues, including membership of multi-professional learning sets and pathway-specific tutorials which enable you to plan and contextualise learning within your clinical specialty.

Advanced Musculoskeletal Management (15 credits)

This module gives you the opportunity to develop and apply advanced musculoskeletal knowledge and skills in a clinical setting. The focus is on work-based learning – you are encouraged to work closely with your employer to develop a framework that supports learning and development under the guidance of a clinical mentor. This development time is likely to differ according to your clinical practice environment and will be supported by the module team via a variety of technology-enhanced learning approaches.

The module offers the flexibility to develop skills and competence in a role appropriate to your practice and developmental needs. As such, it provides an opportunity to develop both role-specific and core attributes of an advanced musculoskeletal practitioner.

Advanced Practice in Urgent & Emergency Care (15 credits)

This module will help you develop advanced skills in assessment, reasoning and early management planning for patients presenting with undifferentiated acute injuries or illnesses, or acute exacerbations of chronic conditions, in an urgent or emergency setting. It will focus on the effective assessment, referral, safeguarding and health promotion of a range of vulnerable or complex patient groups through the network of urgent and emergency care services in the UK.

Pre-requisites for this module include: Minor Injuries, Minor Illness, D&PDGs or equivalent.

Applying Pain Principles (15 credits)

The focus of this module is to advance your application of the current concepts of pain, enabling you to manage patients’ pain and to participate in life situations. Pain is considered a multidimensional experience, understanding it requires an in-depth knowledge of pain neuroscience and potential contributing factors which can be psychological, social or cultural. Through undertaking this module, you will develop their skills to evaluate and debate the literature around pain neuroscience and pain drivers. This will enable you to develop a critical approach to assessing an individual’s pain drivers and to create appropriate treatment plans in collaboration with individuals who are experiencing pain.

At the foundation to this is adopting cognitive behavioural principles and an advanced communication approach. Through debate and interactive tutorials you will reflect on you own and societal beliefs about pain and how your communication can influence an individual’s understanding and management of pain.

Cardio-Neuro Care in Prehospital Critical Care (15 credits)

The module will enable you to explore the theory and practice of managing key cardiovascular and neurological diseases in the prehospital setting. The particular emphasis will be on the recognition and referral to specialist services for these two major disease groups.

Drug and Patient Group Directions (15 credits)

This module will explore the science behind medicine management and consider the safe practice of administration of medicines under PGDs in different clinical settings.

It is intended for clinical practitioners from a range of backgrounds who are administering medicines to patients in a range of settings. It is compulsory for those without a recognised non-medical prescribing qualification and who are not taking the non-medical prescribing module as part of their ACP studies. The module will serve as a foundation for aspiring future prescribers.

Evidence-Informed Quality Improvement in Advanced Practice (30 credits)

On this module you will lead, design, and deliver a small-scale, practice-based quality improvement project in your practice field, using the quality improvement project proposal you have learnt about in the Leadership in Advanced Clinical Practice module.

You will consider establishing baseline measures, selecting relevant quality improvement methodologies, and evaluation. You will produce a written project report which includes the rationale for your initiative, the methods and evaluation adopted, analysis and discussion of the outcomes achieved, and a reflection on what you have learnt from the project.

Improvement and Implementation Science: Principles for Practice (15 credits)

This module is designed to introduce you to a relatively new and expanding science that is bringing about quality improvements and enhancing patient safety by encouraging more effective use of research evidence within practice. It draws on theory and practice from a broad range of other professional disciplines, such as sociology, management, behavioural psychology, science and technology.

You will be encouraged to critically explore a range of strategies to support the integration of research findings with practice, considering this within the context of an ever-changing working environment and policy landscape.

Throughout the module you will engage with a wide range of learning activities that aim to develop both knowledge and skills, offering practical insight into how to make best use of resources and evidence, and helping you to effectively implement ideas within the context of your own professional practice.

Interprofessional Diabetes Course for Healthcare Professionals (15 credits)

The prime aim of this module is to provide practitioners from different specialities and with the knowledge and competencies to manage, maintain, treat and/or transfer patients with diabetes to the appropriate tier of care. The outcomes will include improved personal confidence, more effective referral in the tiered structure of diabetes care, appropriate collaboration and engagement with the specialist team(s) and intelligent use new therapies.

This module is offered through St George's short courses and Clinical Practice students may take this module along with other healthcare professionals.

Introduction to Medical Imaging (15 credits)

This module is designed to give you a foundational understanding of concepts of image generation, safety considerations and the knowledge to identify common pathological conditions. The module draws on contemporary imaging practice and guidance from the Royal College of Radiologists. It provides you with opportunities to learn with and from colleagues in multiprofessional learning sets and pathway-specific tutorials so you can plan and contextualise learning within their own clinical specialty.

Leadership in Advanced Clinical Practice (15 credits)

This module is designed to give you a comprehensive foundation in clinical leadership, which will support your ongoing development as a leader in advanced clinical practice. It draws on contemporary research, opinion and wider leadership theory to equip you with the knowledge and skills that underpin effective clinical leadership, including approaches to operational and strategic service configuration and quality improvement within and across traditional professional and operational boundaries.

Opportunities to learn with, and from, colleagues include membership of multi-professional learning sets and pathway-specific tutorials for you to plan and contextualise learning within your clinical specialty.

Patient Safety and Clinical Human Factors (15 credits)

This module introduces health and social care professionals to the subject of human factors in a healthcare setting and allows them to gain a greater understanding of human limitations. By acknowledging these limitations, this module offers ways to minimise and mitigate human frailties and improve patient safety.

The emphasis of the module is to offer an evidenced-based and coherent approach to patient safety and clinical excellence. Human factors, often referred to as ergonomics, is an established scientific discipline used in other safety critical industries. The principles and practices taught on this module will optimise human performance, through better understanding the behaviour of individuals, their interactions with each other and with their environment.

Principles of Palliative Care (15 credits)

This module is aimed at health professionals who work with patients at the end of life in non-specialist palliative settings.

In this module you will learn the knowledge, skills and capabilities to make key clinical decisions through effective assessment, diagnosis and management. Throughout the module students will develop the advanced communication skills necessary to manage difficult situations at the end of life.

The module will introduce the organisational, policy and legislative frameworks governing palliative care in the UK. Emphasis will be placed on developing deep critical reflective skills which enable students to integrate the clinical, ethical and legal concerns common in managing end-of-life patients. Students will be supported to recognise and effectively respond to the personal impact of challenging situations.

Psychology for Behavioural Change (15 credits)

This module will examine the psychology of behaviour and you will develop an in-depth understanding of psychological correlates, psychological well-being and psychological interventions pertaining to healthcare. From this module, you will critically develop an advanced knowledge of the sociological and psychological concepts that inform human behaviour in a healthcare context. You will also foster a knowledge and critique of the implementation of advanced communication skills within a therapeutic relationship and will allow participants to draw on their own practice as a focus.

Remote Consultations (15 credits)

The module provides healthcare professionals with authentic opportunities to explore autonomous practice in the context of undertaking a comprehensive holistic, structured clinical assessment of the patient using remote/digital technology. The module delivery and assessment are remote, allowing you to put your skills to practice immediately.

Soft Tissue and Joint Injection Therapy (15 credits)

This module aims to enable students to extend their scope of practice to include the use of injection therapy. Teaching will include injection techniques. This module is designed to enable you to use injection therapy as part of your expanded advanced musculoskeletal practice.

Transition to Advanced Practice (15 credits)

Transition to Advanced practice is a portfolio module designed to prepare you for advanced practice through work-based learning. This module requires 575 placement hours with the development of a portfolio and reflective essays.

Trauma: Initial Assessment and Management (15 credits)

This module is designed for practitioners directly involved in the emergency care of polytrauma patients. A range of traumatic injuries will be explored, but the focus will be upon initial assessment and management of these patients in the context of the emergency department.

Non-Medical Prescribing (NMC) (30 credits)

This module builds on existing physical assessment and clinical reasoning skills to develop the practitioner’s pharmacology knowledge base. The module is delivered using a blended learning approach, which incorporates both face-to-face and online activities. A variety of strategies and techniques are employed, including simulation-based learning, to encourage critical enquiry and problem solving, in recognition of the complexities that may be encountered in prescribing practice.

This module requires 78 hours of clinical placement with a prescribing clinical supervisor.

Entry criteria

To be considered for this course, you will need to:

  • meet the entry criteria
  • write a personal statement
  • provide two suitable references

Undergraduate degree or equivalent

You should have all of the following:

  • Honours degree (2:2 or above) from the UK or Republic of Ireland
  • recognised healthcare/health-related professional qualification and current professional registration
  • at least one years full-time clinical experience (or the equivalent in part-time hours) in health or social care employment (for example nursing, paramedics, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, pharmacy, radiology, etc), within a clinical service area relevant to Advanced Clinical Practice or the specified pathway you wish to follow (specific requirements and entry criteria apply to some modules and these will be indicated in the module outlines)

International qualifications

We accept equivalent qualifications gained in other countries. Please see our Postgraduate International Equivalencies. For countries not on this list, we use UK ENIC to assess. Please see our International Student Support pages for more information.

If you have any questions, you can contact us at

English Language requirements

This is a Group 1 course.

Full details can be found on our English Language requirements webpages.

Personal statement and references

You will be asked to outline your reasons for applying for the course in a brief personal statement on the application form.

You will also need to provide two satisfactory references. One of these should be a recent academic reference and the other should be either a second academic reference or a professional/employer reference. For those unable to provide an academic referee a second professional/employer reference will be permitted.

Go to the ‘Apply’ tab for more information.

Teaching and learning

Our philosophy of learning and teaching is to develop practitioners as self-reliant and autonomous learners, capable of independent and novel thinking. We use a broad range of learning and teaching approaches to meet differing aspects of personal and professional development, learning styles and learner preferences, with emphasis on participatory methods. The inter-professional nature of our modules provides excellent opportunities for collaborative learning across professional boundaries. We work jointly with practice supervisors and assessors to promote partnership in learning and to ensure there is a close connection between theory and practice.

Teaching is delivered using a variety of methods to support different learning styles, and may include:

  • Blended learning, discussion boards, interactive web pages, electronic resources and databases
  • The use of a portfolio, including personal learning contracts and action plans
  • Independent work, enabling you to undertake in-depth projects in a relevant area, supported with small interactive tutorials and one-to-one support
  • Self-directed activities and tasks, independent presentations and student-led seminars
  • Presentations of original work, interactive discussions and debates
  • Case study analyses of situations encountered in professional practice
  • One-to-one tutorials

Assessment methods

You will be assessed using a variety of methods. Examples include:

  • Reflection and critical analysis of achievement
  • Case studies, essays, literature reviews and reports
  • Objective structured clinical examinations (OSCE)
  • Oral presentations
  • Project proposals
  • Competency Assessment Documents
  • Simulation activities
  • Portfolio
  • Work-based learning
  • Poster presentations
  • Group presentations


St George’s University of London is the only UK university, which specialises in healthcare education and is based on a hospital site, namely St George’s Hospital, where much of the Channel 4 television series 24 hours in A&E was filmed. We offer a unique opportunity to study and work alongside the full range of clinical professionals and their patients. Based in the thriving multi-cultural hub of Tooting in South West London, our location has the added advantage of being just a short tube ride from Central London and all the city lifestyle has to offer.

We also have a range of specialist health and academic facilities to support your learning, listed below.

Imaging Resource Facility (IRF)

First established in 1979, the IRF has developed to encompass Light Microscopy, Electron Microscopy, and sample preparation for both, all housed in a single department providing a range of imaging analysis options and the expertise to compliment them. Users of the IRF have the ability to image histology samples, cells and molecules of all varieties, and model organisms such as zebrafish using any of the light microscope, slide scanning, or electron microscope systems we maintain, supported by experienced staff at all stages of analysis.


Our teaching laboratories are fully fitted with equipment for biological, chemistry, biomedical, molecular biology and pharmacy practicals. This includes microscopes, spectrophotometers, DNA amplifiers, organ baths and specialist glassware. We also have audio visual equipment installed, so that microscope images can be projected on to large screens.

Museum of Human Disease

Our on-site museum houses a collection of over 2,000 pathological specimens, including a number of original specimens donated by Sir Benjamin Collins Brodie in 1843. This space is used for small group tutorials by students across all of our courses as an educational tool to help you understand the mechanisms of disease.

Anatomy Suite

The Anatomy Suite is where present and future healthcare professionals and scientists in the hospital and University learn or expand on their anatomy knowledge directly from the human body, through access to high quality anatomy resources. These include plastinated (preserved) specimens, osteological materials, anatomical models and digital/imaging resources such as Anatomage tables and Complete Anatomy.

IT facilities

We have five computer suites housing 260 workstations. Three of these suites are accessible 24 hours a day. It’s easy to find a free space with our handy real-time computer locator. We also have 75 self-service laptops available. Free Wi-Fi covers the whole campus, including all accommodation. You can use these resources to access your course materials, discussion boards and feedback through Canvas.

Library and learning technology

Our modern health sciences library offers a wide range of books, e-books, academic journals and other resources to support you. You will also have access to online resources, such as the Canvas virtual learning environment and our Hunter discovery service to help you find the information you need. The library is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and comprises silent, quiet and group learning areas, as well as four group discussion rooms.

Student support

Whether you are heading off to university straight from school or college, or returning to education as a mature student, we want to ensure your experience is positive from the outset. At St George’s, you’ll be welcomed by a multicultural student and staff body of different ages, ethnicities, nationalities and backgrounds, all with one thing in common – an interest in healthcare, science and medicine.

Students frequently tell us they greatly appreciate the diversity of our student and staff body, as well as the patients who access healthcare services in the borough of Tooting. The University attracts a substantial number – over two-thirds – of ‘mature’ students, aged 21 or over when they start; many have family and caring responsibilities.

We offer a full range of academic support and student services across all institutes, departments and faculties, some of which are listed below. We take pride in offering a transformative educational experience underpinned by cooperation and collaboration between staff and students. Our innovative Student-Staff Partnership Grants (SSPGs), for example, provide funding for small projects led jointly by students and staff, which included the co-creation by one of our students of an art exhibition inspired by the Pathology Museum collection.

If you require reasonable adjustments or disability services you can find information on our disability information for students pages. For any further information please contact the disability adviser.  

Academic support

On arrival, you will be allocated a personal tutor – someone with whom you can have regular contact, who you ask questions and discuss problems with, both academic and personal. The main purpose of a personal tutor is to monitor your progress, pick up and help you resolve any problems, whether academic or welfare related. Even if they don’t have the answer they will point you in the right direction towards the best people to deal with specific problems.

Induction programme

Within your first week at St George’s, you’ll take part in an induction programme to help with your orientation and introduce you to various study skills, including interprofessional learning and use of the Dissecting Room. Additional sessions provide advice and guidance about the Registry, Students’ Union, personal tutor system, safety, occupational health and sexual health awareness.

Student Life Centre

Our Student Centre team can help you with almost any aspect of student life: finances, accommodation, exams and assessment, academic procedures, admissions, international queries, careers, disability and wellbeing, even finding your way around – whatever it takes to make you feel at home.

Careers service

Our careers service works to support current students and recent graduates to find and maintain a rewarding and successful career. As well as general workshops on topics such as writing a CV and developing interview skills, the service works with the academic lead for employability to ensure there are careers activities specific to your programmes and future profession. You will also be able to book a one-to-one appointment with a careers consultant to discuss all aspects of careers and employability. This might include investigating options and making career decisions, gaining advice and guidance on where to look for jobs, CV and application checking, or booking in for a practice interview.


All routes within the course promote your personal and professional development and will contribute to your career advancement within the relevant health and social care sector.

This course will maximise your professional skills and capabilities with a goal of allowing you to practice at an enhanced level. NHS England define enhanced practice as an area which makes significant and essential contributions to health and care. This level of practice includes graduates delivering a majority of clinical activity and professionals who have moved beyond novice/competent that are not working at the level of advanced practice. 

Two of the pathways result in a First Contact Practitioner (FCP) qualification. An FCP service is a registered health professional who provides the first point of contact for patients. This service increases capacity to general practice and allows patients to receive faster access to the right care. They are qualified autonomous clinical practitioners who are able to assess, diagnose, treat and discharge a person without a medical referral.

Fees and funding

In this tab you will find the financial information for this course of study, including details of financial support

Tuition fees 2024/25

  • PgCert: £4,450
  • Independent and Supplementary Prescribing Module (30 credits): £1,950

Additional costs

We do not expect students to incur any extra costs over and above those that we have advertised on the course page. To get the most from your studies, you will need your personal computer or laptop (Windows 10 or Mac OS) and an internet connection in your home. Find out more about technology requirements associated with online learning.


We have a range of funding opportunities available for students. You may be eligible for the following.

How to apply

Before beginning your application please check the entry criteria of the course you wish to study to ensure you meet the required standards.

Applications must be submitted through our online application system, which you can access below.

Access our online application system

1. Select the application link for your chosen course and mode of study:

2. You will be asked to create an account.

3. Once you have created your account, you will be able to complete an application form and upload any relevant documents. You can save a partly completed form and return to it later. Please make sure you complete all sections. Please make sure that the information you provide is accurate, including the options you select in menus.

4. Add to your address book to ensure you do not miss any important emails from us.

5. When you have checked that your application is complete and accurate, click ‘submit’.

You can track your application through your online account.

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Guidance for completing your references

When completing your application, you will be asked to provide contact details of two referees. Please ensure these details are accurate. As soon as you have submitted your application, your referees will be contacted by the university asking them to upload a reference to your online application.

One must be a recent academic reference. The other should be either a second academic reference or a professional/employer reference. They should cover your suitability for the course and your academic ability.

Your referees should know you well enough, in an official capacity, to write about you and your suitability for higher education. We do not accept references from family, friends, partners, ex-partners or yourself.

We will send reminder emails to your referees but it is your responsibility to ensure that contact details are correct and referees are available to submit a reference. References should be uploaded within two weeks of making your application.

Apply now


One year, part-time

Application Deadline

30 June

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