Undergraduate study - 2018 entry

BN Nursing Studies

UCAS code: B700

Duration: 4 years

Delivery: Full-time

School: Health in Social Science

College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Study abroad


This programme is validated by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). Achievement of the required clinical and academic outcomes leads to eligibility for registration with the NMC as an adult nurse.

Year 1

The first two years provide an introduction to nursing care and theory, and to the sociological and psychological aspects of healthcare.

You will study the compulsory courses Life Sciences (anatomy- and physiology-based), Healthy Communities (investigating the impact of society on health), Professionalism and Evidence and Research. You will also choose two option courses from subjects across the University.

You will gain clinical experience in your first year through community and medical ward placements.

Year 2

As well as progressing your study of life sciences in Nursing Care and Decision Making, Healthy Communities, Professionalism and Evidence and Research, you will also study Mental Health and Wellbeing.

Your placements build on the Year 1 experience with a further community placement, mental health placement and surgical or outpatient experience.

Year 3

You will continue to deepen your study of Professionalism and Evidence and Research, as well as studying Management of Transitions which focuses on care of the older person and Cultural Diversity and Care: Immersion Experience which includes the clinical placement. You will also choose two honours option courses.

Clinical experience includes care of the older person, and a clinical experience linked to one of your honours options. You will also organise a clinical placement either in the UK or abroad.

Year 4

You will choose a further two honours options, study Professionalism 4 and complete your dissertation.

Your clinical practice will include an honours-linked placement and a 12-week placement consolidating your clinical competence.

Programme structure

Find out more about the compulsory and optional courses in this degree programme.

To give you an idea of what you will study on this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme structure (2017/18)

Our facilities

Teaching takes place in the Central Area of the University campus. You will have access to teaching and learning facilities, including libraries and computer labs. Clinical skills teaching takes place at the Chancellor’s Building Clinical Skills Centre, at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh


Clinical practice placements are provided by NHS Lothian and NHS Borders. You should expect to be placed across these two health boards during your programme. You will work with a trained mentor on placement.

Study abroad

There are opportunities to complete placements abroad in third year. We also ran a semester long exchange with an Australian university for the first time in 2016.

Guaranteed study abroad funding for students required to complete a year abroad

How will I learn?

All nursing programmes are 50 per cent theory and 50 per cent practice. The courses you take in this programme have both theoretical and clinical practice elements.

You will learn through a combination of lectures, tutorials, seminars, clinical skills sessions, problem-based learning, reflective diaries, group work and computer-assisted learning. You will also undertake learning in practice learning environments during clinical placements in each year.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed by coursework, multimedia presentations, exams and clinical practice profiles.

This programme has progression points at the end of each academic year where students must demonstrate clinical competence as well as academic excellence. This is in line with the Nursing and Midwifery Council Standards for Nurse Education 2010.

Programme details

Find out more about this programme's aims, what you will learn, how you will be assessed and what skills and knowledge you will develop.

To give you an idea of what to expect from this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme details (2017/18)

Career prospects are excellent for Nursing Studies graduates from the University of Edinburgh.

Our graduates have gone into careers in a range of clinical settings in both community and hospital contexts, as well as voluntary sector organisations, specialising in intensive care, oncology, theatres and accident and emergency, for example. They have also gone on to develop careers in higher education, research, management and policy development.

Typical offer

The typical offer is likely to be:

  • SQA Highers: AABB.
  • A Levels: AAB.
  • IB: 36 points (grades 665 at HL).

Minimum entry requirements

  • SQA Highers: ABBB by end of S5 or ABBBB/AABB from S4-S6, with a minimum of BBB achieved in one year of S4-S6. National 5: Biology and Mathematics at Grade B and English at Grade C.
  • A Levels: ABB. GCSEs: Biology at Grade B or 6 or Science Double Award at Grade BB or 66. Mathematics at Grade B or 6 and English at Grade C or 4.
  • IB: Award of Diploma with 34 points overall and grades 655 in Higher Level subjects. SL: Biology at 5, English at 5 and Mathematics at 5 or Mathematical Studies at 6.

Additional requirements

Some prior experience of working with people is advisable. Admission to this programme includes an interview process. Further details on the process will be sent to candidates shortlisted for interview.

Fitness to practice

There is fitness to practice guidance for people who wish to become nurses, we strongly advise you to make yourself aware of this before you apply. Please consult the Higher Educational Occupational Physicians/Practitioners (HEOPS) website for fitness to practice guidelines for this programme.


Find out more about entry requirements

International applicants

We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.

Entry requirements by country

Mature applicants

We welcome applications from mature students and accept a range of qualifications.

Mature applicant qualifications

You must provide evidence that your written and spoken English is at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies.

English language tests

If English is not your first language, you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your spoken and written English:

  • IELTS Academic module overall 7.0 with 7.0 in each component
  • TOEFL-iBT 100 or above with 25 in each section
  • Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency overall 185 with 185 in each component
  • Pearson Test of English: Total 67 with at least 67 in each "Communicative Skills" section *Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

About English language requirements


For SQA and GCSE students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher:

  • SQA National 5 Grade C
  • SQA Standard Grade 3
  • SQA Intermediate 1 Grade A
  • SQA Intermediate 2 Grade C
  • GCSE Grade C or 4
  • IB Standard Level Grade 5

Protecting Vulnerable Groups

All successful applicants will be required to join Disclosure Scotland's Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme before starting the programme. In addition, all applicants who don't live in the UK, or who have spent more than a year abroad, will need to provide equivalent verification from the relevant national authority.

Health check

All students must undergo hepatitis B immunisation and TB status health check before starting the programme.

Assessment day

An applicant assessment day forms part of the selection process. More information is available from the College Admissions Office.

This information is part of a government initiative to enhance the material that higher education institutions provide about their degree programmes.

It is one of many sources of information which will enable you to make an informed decision on what and where to study.

Please note that some programmes do not have Unistats data available.

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for BN Nursing Studies

Additional costs

If you are eligible for a SAAS bursary, you should be able to reclaim travel expenses incurred during clinical placements. Those who are ineligible will bear the cost of travel to clinical placement personally.

In Year 3 there is an opportunity to undertake a single semester exchange with La Trobe University, Australia for which you will be liable for visa, immunisation, travel and living costs. In Year 3, you will also undertake an elective clinical placement, either abroad or elsewhere in the UK. All visa, immunisation, travel and living costs associated with this placement will be borne by you.

Nursing studies students are required to join Disclosure Scotland's Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) scheme and students are expected to pay for their registration, unless eligible for a SAAS bursary. (Revised 03/01/2018 to provide more accurate information.)


For more information on how much it will cost to study with us and the financial support available see our fees and funding information.

Fees and funding

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