Case study

Flexible study opens world of possibilities for Lisa

Working 12-hour shifts in a hospital meant Lisa Libreri had no time for a traditional university experience. Then a colleague recommended flexible, online study with the University of Derby Online Learning.

Creating a work/life balance

For many, working in the health sector is extremely rewarding but it often means working with a demanding rota, making it hard to find time for other things. This is how Lisa felt while working in a psychiatric hospital in Malta.

However, she heard from a colleague that they were due to start studying with the University of Derby Online Learning. When Lisa investigated this further, she found many others in Malta were studying with us too. This is when she decided to enrol on our Nursing Studies (Top-Up) BSc (Hons)

Studying online gave Lisa the freedom to divide her attention between her work, studies and personal life. She says: “Studying online is all about having flexibility. In fact, the flexibility of this first course is one of the reasons that I chose to continue my studies with the Integrative Health and Social Care MSc.”

She found the studying pattern so successful to master that she was able to complete her studies on an accelerated route and finish early. She says: “I had the possibility to study this programme online on an accelerated route. This has enabled me to finish my studies a few months before the actual deadline.”

With all the learning materials available online, it meant that online learning worked around Lisa’s schedule. She explains: “I have a very busy life so it’s important to have flexibility. For me, I liked studying at night. The learning material is available online all the time, enabling me to study in my free time while still working full time.”

Online student Lisa Libreri sat at her desk
Online Integrative Health and Social Care MSc student Lisa Libreri

Personalised support

One of Lisa’s concerns when deciding to study online was how could she feel supported from a distance. She says: “Studying with the University of Derby Online Learning turned out to be one of the best decisions I have made and I do not regret it at all.

“Whenever I had a problem, either academically or just a query, I always found very helpful staff and professionals who were ready to guide me through it. But, most of all, they made sure the issue was solved. I think that the individual attention given to students makes the teaching experience more personalised and students feel more appreciated.

“The teaching at the University of Derby Online Learning has been of a very high standard and always met my expectations. Tutors are knowledgeable in the subject. Each module has a set of learning outcomes which enables students to have a direct goal and know the requirements needed to successfully achieve a module.”

Helping development

Lisa credits her BSc and her soon-to-be-completed Integrative Health and Social Care MSc for making her more passionate about nursing. Through her studies, she improved her time management, communication and critical thinking. She developed her confidence, became a class rep and joined the programme committee meetings.

She is also a new member of our Peer Assistant Learning Scheme (PALS), where new and current students have the chance to get in touch with former students who offer support and guidance. Lisa says: “This helps to create a friendly and supportive community between students. I am proud to be given the opportunity to be part of this team.”

These personal developments will also help Lisa in the career. She says: “I am certain that, when I complete my postgraduate studies, I will be in a better position and have the knowledge and qualifications required for furthering my career at my workplace. Working within the health sector, especially the nursing field, one should never stop learning as this profession is always evolving.”

Teacher with children undertaking a colouring activity

Our online health and social care courses

We want to help develop your professional practice, so you can improve outcomes for patients. Our courses range from single modules to diplomas and degrees.

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