BSc (Hons) Diagnostic Radiography
Why choose this course?
With an outstanding reputation for teaching quality, student satisfaction and employment success, this course is the ideal route to a rewarding career as a radiographer.
- Achieve your ambitions on a course ranked number one for graduate prospects in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017
- 100% of our graduates are in work or further study within six months of completing this course
- Prepare for your career on a course approved by the Health and Care Professions Council, so you can apply to register with them as a diagnostic radiographer on graduation
- Build your technical and interpersonal skills on a variety of clinical placements which make up around half of your time on the course
- Gain hands-on experience in our purpose-built diagnostic imaging suite and our new immersive simulation environment
- Engage with our enthusiastic teaching team who use innovative approaches to deliver an inspiring learning experience
- Choose a course with a strong seal of approval from students: in the 2016 National Student Survey, 94% said our staff made the subject interesting.
UCAS code: B821
Start date: September
Course length: Full-time: three years
Campus: Kedleston Road site, Derby Campus
College: College of Health and Social Care
About this course
Take your first steps towards a career as a diagnostic radiographer. This dynamic course will equip you with all the professional skills, practical experience and technological knowhow you need.
A worthwhile and important career
Radiographers work alongside other healthcare professionals to diagnose and treat patients using imaging techniques such as x-rays, CT scans and ultrasound.
With an acute shortage of radiographers in the UK and exciting developments in technology transforming the profession, there has never been a better time to consider a career in this important field. It is little surprise that our degree enjoys 100% employment rates.
The course is approved by the College of Radiographers and by the Health and Care Professions Council, which means you will be eligible to register as a diagnostic radiographer on graduating.
Hone your skills on placement
Approximately half of your time will be spent on clinical placement, so you’ll develop your skills as an all-round, flexible and adaptable healthcare professional – with the first-hand experience that employers are seeking.
You’ll work in various settings ranging from large teaching hospitals to community hospital departments. It means you’ll build your knowledge of how different imaging departments operate, the range of equipment used and the varying workloads, practices and roles in the profession.
Such diverse experiences also give you insights into the workplace settings and fields of radiography which might suit you best as you advance your career.
We have invested in exceptional learning facilities to give you the best possible preparation for practice. In our purpose-built Diagnostic Imaging Suite you’ll become familiar with the up-to-the-minute technology used by radiographers. With the help of £250,000 funding from Health Education East Midlands, the suite has just been upgraded to feature the very latest in x-ray, diagnostic radiography, ultrasound and bone densitometry systems.
An exciting new addition is our state-of-the-art Immersive Suite which offers a simulated environment where you can practise your skills in a safe but realistic setting. The first university facility of its kind outside London, the suite replicates the atmosphere, sights and sounds of, for instance, a busy A&E ward so you can gain a greater understanding of clinical decision-making in action.
A rich learning experience
All modules are designed to give you the core skills and experience you need to practise effectively, including the ability to make radiographer comments when viewing images. You’ll also explore the radiographer’s role in improving the quality of health and social care services and will build mentoring and leadership skills so that, once qualified, you can help nurture the next generation of radiographers.
There are opportunities at each stage of your course to learn with, and from, students from other disciplines. This is really important in preparing you to work in a multi-professional team after graduation. By learning to work together, you can help achieve the best outcomes for patients.
You could raise your professional profile nationally too. Our students have attended prestigious conferences, written articles for leading journals and have become Care Maker Champions to spread the word about compassion in practice across the NHS.
Our degree has an excellent track record in the National Student Survey, with a 100% overall satisfaction rating for 2015.
Flexibility and choice
You can tailor your degree to match your specialist interests and career plans. For the Independent Practice module, you can study a topic of your choice – a chance to concentrate on the imaging area in which you hope to specialise in future.
The course also features a three-week elective placement to broaden your horizons. Some students have chosen to explore fields such as veterinary radiography while others gain international experience: two students went on placement to Tanzania after securing a travel bursary from the British Institute of Radiology.
Support from a forward-thinking team
You’ll learn from a dynamic team of qualified and highly experienced healthcare professionals. They are committed to developing engaging teaching methods – one of the reasons our course has attracted exceptional student satisfaction ratings.
Among innovations pioneered by the team is an instructional DVD of radiographic techniques which you’ll receive in your first year. This enables you to brush up on your positioning skills outside the classroom, while you’re at home, during your placement and in the run-up to exams. The DVD was shortlisted for the Association for Learning Technology’s Epigeum Award for the Most Effective Use of Video.
Latest learning technologies are used in other ways too, including electronic portfolios to help you reflect on your clinical experience and prepare for continuing professional development activities in your career.
Make the most of our partnerships
We have strong links with employers across the health and social care sector which will open doors for you, including the chance to attend guest lectures by leading professionals from organisations such as the Society of Radiographers.
We’re proud to say that our courses are closely mapped to the demands of the sector. This ensures that our curriculum is up to date and relevant. Because we respond promptly to national developments such as latest government policy, some of the information about our courses may change.
What you will cover
You’ll study modules such as:
- Principles of Radiographic Imaging 1
- Science and Technology of Imaging 1
- Anatomy and Physiology 1
- Principles of Radiographic Imaging 2
- Developing Professional Practice 1
- Principles of Radiographic Imaging 3
- Research Methods for Practice
- Science and Technology of Imaging 2
- Anatomy, Physiology and Applied Imaging
- Developing Professional Practice 2
- Skills for Graduate Practice
- Independent Practice
- Principles of Radiographic Imaging 4
- Developing Professional Practice 3
- Quality Improvement.
The way UCAS Tariffs are calculated is changing in 2017. The entry requirement below reflects this change. Read more about these changes.
September 2017 typical entry requirements UCAS points 120 (up to 16 from AS-levels) Specific requirements at A-level
At least a B in Biology (preferably), Chemistry or Physics at A-level (or equivalent qualification)
Specific requirements at GCSE
Five GCSEs at Grade C or above, including Maths, English and Double Science
Interview / Audition
Yes - please see below
If you've completed an Access to Higher Education Diploma our preferred route is Science. You'll need the following:
- 45 credits at level 3, at least 24 of which must be in a pure science (Biology preferably, or Chemistry or Physics)
- 18 of these must be at Distinction
- all your remaining level 3 credits should normally be at Merit
- at least 12 level 2 Maths and/or English credits if you don't have these at GCSE
- at least 6 extra level 2 credits in Chemistry or Physics if your Access course does not have the required level 3 credits in pure science
We will usually expect you to have studied within the previous three years.
You must have had some recent work experience in a Radiography department. We do appreciate that this can be difficult to arrange so please ensure you ask for observational experience, rather than placement or clinical experience. You should also state that you require this experience in order to obtain a place at university.
When you apply for this course you should make sure that you consider the following areas in your application:
- Give evidence that you meet the academic entry criteria above or are expected to
- Show you meet the criteria to apply for NHS financial support
- Provide examples of using your communication skills with the public
- Give examples of working as part of a team
- Demonstrate you can write clearly and concisely, showing a good level of spelling and punctuation
- Provide a reference
- Show that you've studied formally at some point over the last five years
- Demonstrate how you've gained insight into caring for others.
- You should be aware that you will need to pass an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check and successfully complete health screening and immunisations.
At the University of Derby we aim to attract and select radiography students on the basis that their individual values and behaviours align with our core values, those of the Chief Nursing Officer’s 6Cs and The NHS Constitution.
We have enhanced our existing processes to ensure that we recruit the right workforce not only with the right skills and in the right numbers, but with the right values to support effective team working and excellent patient care and experience.
The selection day will include:
- A presentation by academic staff about the course
- A group-work exercise
- An individual interview (with members of the admissions team/practice partners and/or current students)
Documents to bring
- Evidence of a total of five GCSE’s, or equivalent, at grade C or above – this must include English, Maths and Single Science.
- If you are completing an Access to Higher Education Diploma we need to see evidence of level 2 English and Maths only
- Evidence of your level 3 Qualifications such as AS Levels, A-Levels, BTEC (certificate and transcript) etc if you have already completed these
- If applicable evidence of your Degree and/or Master qualification – certificate and transcript
- If you have completed an Access to Higher Education Diploma we need to see your certificate and transcript
- Documentation showing proof of residency in the UK (if applicable). This is required as this programme is not available to overseas applicants.
- If you were born outside of the UK you must have no restrictions on your stay in the UK so would need to provide evidence of Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK, a certificate which shows you now have British Citizenship or an official home office document which shows you have refugee status.
Find out more details of NHS Bursary eligibility criteria.
A Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) is required at the point of accepting a place at the University. The Disclosure and Barring Service was established when the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) merged in 2012 and will now provide the criminal records checking service for this programme.
Use our UniPoints app as a guide to calculate your UCAS Tariff points, search for courses and check entry requirements for 2017 and beyond.
Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.
How to apply
- Full-time students applying in September should apply for this course through UCAS
Fees and finance
Eligible students who are accepted onto this course in 2016/17 will usually have their tuition fees paid in full and may receive financial support in the form of a bursary.
We are still waiting for information from the Department of Health regarding the allocation of bursaries. We hope to be able to provide an update on NHS bursaries in due course, so please keep checking this course page for up to date information.
NHS Student Bursaries provides financial support to eligible students taking approved (NHS funded) courses in nursing. Please visit the NHS Student Bursaries' website for more information including:
- eligibility requirements
- the financial support available
- an online bursary calculator
- how the process of applying for financial support works
- frequently asked questions
Changes to funding for degrees starting on or after September 2017
From 2017/18, new students on Nursing and Allied Health Profession (AHP) courses will take out maintenance and tuition loans like other students rather than receiving an NHS grant. Find out more
For an independent view on student finance see Martin Lewis' Money Saving website.
Fees for 2018/19 entry are still being decided, so please check back later in the year for more information.
How you will learn
You’ll learn through group activities, lectures, practical work, seminars and simulation. Take a look at the specialist facilities you’ll use throughout the course.
How you're assessed
Many of your assignments are focused on real-world scenarios to help you develop skills that you can take into your career. You’ll be assessed on placement by the radiographers you work with and you’ll gain experience in presenting to an audience through presentations and posters.
Clinical placements are an integral part of your study. You will be allocated to a placement centring on one of the East Midlands cities, with the length of time spent on placement increasing in each phase of the programme. Find answers to your frequently asked questions about placements.
Who you will meet
Our teaching team includes qualified health professionals with experience of working in clinical or community settings. Many hold external roles with hospitals, the College of Radiographers, the Health and Care Professions Council, and other universities.
Our Programme Leader, Alex Partner, previously worked as a full-time clinical radiographer at Leicester Royal Infirmary, gaining experience in CT, theatre, fluoroscopy, paediatrics, plain film and accident and emergency radiography.
She has a special interest in plain film trauma imaging and CT. Her research interests centre on radiographer-led stroke teams and preparing radiography students to deal with death and dying patients. Alex is an external examiner for Portsmouth University, a peer reviewer for the Radiography journal and an ISAS assessor. She also sits on the HCPC ‘fitness to practice’ panels.
Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will be communicated after enrolment on your course.
Careers and employability
When you graduate, you’ll be able to apply for registration with the UK Health and Care Professions Council as a diagnostic radiographer, fully prepared to work in the rapidly expanding field of medical imaging.
Nationally, there is a 17% shortfall in radiographers so you can look forward to excellent career prospects. Our BSc (Hons) Diagnostic Radiography has an outstanding track record for producing highly employable graduates. Latest statistics showed that 100% of graduates from this course were in work or further study six months after completing their studies, with 95% in a professional or managerial job. In 2015/16, 80% of our cohort achieved good honours degrees of 2.1 or above.
Many graduates go on to secure jobs at their placement hospitals and build on the skills they have gained on the course to become advanced practitioners. As part of your studies, you’ll develop your leadership capabilities to prepare for more senior roles and you’ll explore the way the profession is changing – in areas such as image analysis – to ensure you are ready to meet the challenge of change.
Extensive careers guidance is integrated at every stage of the course, including CV writing and interview skills. There are annual recruitment days held at the University where you will have the chance to meet prospective employers.
Opportunities for further study
We offer an exciting range of postgraduate courses to help you take your qualifications, skills and experience to the next level or to pursue new directions within the profession. These include our innovative MSc Medical Ultrasound which features a flexible part-time pathway as well as a fast-track full-time pathway.
You could also consider various postgraduate qualifications specialising in areas such as osteoporosis and falls management, bone densitometry reporting, and radiographic image analysis of the appendicular skeleton.
Ongoing careers support
Our Careers and Employment Service will provide you with help, guidance and support from day one of your course – and for up to three years after you’ve completed your studies.
What our students say
“While working in London in a hospital pharmacy I decided it was time for a change at the age of 34. I have to admit that the adjustment to student life at the University of Derby did not come easily to me and I did struggle at times due to the intensive hours and having a young family. But, with the amazing support of the teaching team at the University, I was able to qualify and find employment.
“Since qualification I have found diagnostic radiography to be a rewarding and enjoyable career. I was inspired during my time as a student by the qualified radiographers in my placement areas to go on to become a student liaison officer for our local university and within two years of qualification I have progressed to a Band 6 role and specialise as a Cardiac Radiographer at the Lincolnshire Heart Centre. In the future I plan to use my qualifications to live and work in Australia so my wife can finally go home!”
Bob Upton, Diagnostic Radiography graduate
"The best thing is the patient contact on placement. Helping people in need gives great satisfaction, and knowing that you've made a difference is fantastic." George Whitaker
"Although the course can be overwhelming, the radiographers and the lecturers fully support you all the way through to qualifying." Saima Dalvi
"I enjoy the placement as it is the job I am working towards, working with patients and different people." Stephanie Harrison
"I enjoyed the time I spent on placement as the lectures and preparation beforehand made me feel confident to carry out some hands-on skills." Nicholas Wong
"I thoroughly enjoy the interactive lectures and taking part in group work as well as being in clinical skills and clinical placement." Rachael Jones
"My best experiences have been during clinical placement, as the practical hands-on learning has been invaluable." Faye Morrissey
Take a look at some of the latest student and graduate achievements.
Key Information Sets