Course details

Course length

Minimum of 2 years

Lecture/workshop days - dates/times

One day per week at the University, eleven weeks per year on placement

Course description

The University of Derby was one of the first Higher Education Institutions to be involved in the pilot training programme for Nursing Associates, with over 100 Trainee Nursing Associates starting with the University in January 2017.

Nursing Associates work with care assistants and Registered Nurses to deliver hands-on care across the full range of assessment, planning, implementing and valuating care. Nursing Associates bridge the gap between care assistants and Registered Nurses, complementing the care provided by both.

The Nursing Associate Higher Apprenticeship looks to develop your knowledge and critical understanding of theory underpinning workplace practices. The apprenticeship fosters reflective practice and explores the limits of the learner's scope of practice. By studying at the University of Derby you will gain access to Gold-rated teaching and excellent facilities, and benefit from our strong track record in providing high quality, innovative nursing education. 

675 hours of placement are integrated within the programme, enabling registration as a Nursing Associate with the NMC.

A nurse looks at a bottle of medicine from a cabinet in front of a bright yellow wall.

Who is this course for?

For apprentices

For organisations

Postgraduate Engineer Degree Apprenticeship logos

Structure, certificates and assessment

Level 4

  • Reflection and Learning for Personal and Professional
  • Development Foundations of Nursing Associate Practice
  • Communication and Interpersonal Skills Working in Health and Social Care
  • Foundations of Anatomy and Physiology
  • Knowledge and Skills for Practice

Level 5

  • Continuing Development in Lifelong Learning
  • Applied Anatomy and Physiology for Care Management of Medication for HC
  • Workers Developing Nursing Associate Practice Service
  • Co-ordination in H&SC
  • Advanced Knowledge and Skills for Practice




Entry requirements

We welcome and encourage applications from people of all ages as long as they can be considered adequately prepared to succeed on the programme. If apprentices have few or no formal qualifications, they may be able to gain entry to the programme if they have the required communication and learning skills as well as the knowledge, experience and motivation to succeed. All learners will be asked to provide evidence of academic potential and commitment to confirm their ability to undertake the programme.

Individual apprentices will also set their own selection criteria and typical entry requirements and we will work with them concerning entry.

To apply for this apprenticeship you must currently be in paid employment of at least 30 hours per week. Your employer must cover the costs of the apprenticeship.

Interview information

Fees and funding


Cost of the apprenticeship will normally be in line with the funding band £15,000, but individual agreements will be considered depending on student numbers and involvement of employers.


Fees will be paid by your employer with government funded support or through the apprenticeship levy.

Additional costs and optional extras

How to apply

For more information call +44 (0)800 001 5500 or email

Applications to this apprenticeship will need to be made through the employer. If you are an individual who is not yet employed within this sector, you may find the following links useful:

Contact us

Apprenticeship Hub +44 (0)800 001 5500

Additional information about your studies

Additional costs and optional extras

We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.

The information below is correct for entry in the academic year September 2020 - August 2021 only. Entry for future academic years may be subject to change.

Optional costs not included in your fees

Professional NMC membership required to practice. More details can be found on the NMC website.