Return to Practice

This Return to Practice course offers an excellent opportunity if you have previously fulfilled the role of a registered nurse to return to the profession.

It also supports those unable to meet practice hours to fulfil the NMC requirements for revalidation, to remain on the register.

This course will enable you to develop, refresh and enhance the knowledge, skills, professional values and proficiencies required of a Registered Nurse and to deliver safe, effective and compassionate person centred care within your field of practice.

These key skills are reflective of the new NMC (2018) Future nurse: Standards of proficiency for registered nurses.

Although the course has been developed to meet the NMC (2019) Standards for Return to Practice programmes, the course team have had a number of years supporting those wishing to return to nursing on previous versions of this course.

Please note, this course is subject to approval by the NMC to commence in September 2020.


This course is subject to validation.

2020/21 update: Blended learning approach for USW courses.

The wellbeing and health and safety of our students and staff is paramount to us. We are committed to delivering all of our courses and services as safely as possible. Due to the pandemic, the methods and activities adopted for the coming year may differ from those previously published and may be subject to further change through the course of your study if such change is necessary due to public health concerns, health and safety guidance or in response to Government Guidelines. USW is committed to providing you with a fantastic student experience and a wealth of support, and you can hear how students have benefitted from this approach here: Learn more about blended learning.

UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
N/A Part-time 1 Year March Glyntaff A
N/A Part-time 1 Year September Glyntaff A
UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
N/A Part-time 1 Year March Glyntaff A
N/A Part-time 1 Year September Glyntaff A

The course consists of a single 40 credit module at degree level which has been constructed around the seven platforms of the NMC (2018) Standards of proficiency for registered nurses, which are:

1. Being an accountable professional
2. Promoting health and preventing ill health
3. Assessing needs and planning care
4. Providing and evaluating care
5. Leading and managing nursing care and working in teams
6. Improving safety and quality of care
7. Coordinating care

The course will also enable you to develop your knowledge and skills in relation to the communication and relationship management and nursing procedures identified by the NMC that a registered nurse needs to be proficient in



You will learn through a blended approach including direct contact, client focused discussions, self-directed study and simulated scenarios.

You will have a number of online learning units to complete to refresh and develop your knowledge and skills in specific areas, including a number of clinical skills, safeguarding, medicine dosage calculations, medical law and ethics and health promotion.

Self-directed study will be used and structured to promote your learning so that you become immersed in your own professional development in your chosen field of practice. Critical reflection will enable you to analyse your own performance and action plan to further develop your knowledge and skills.

The course will enable you to further develop and re-rehearse your skills in communication and relationship management and nursing procedures in a variety of state-of-the-art facilities, including the Clinical Simulation Centre and Hydra Minerva suite.

These facilities recreate the challenges experienced in practice learning environments but allows for safe experimentation and practice of techniques and re-build your confidence.

The number of theory hours will be equivalent to 400 hours, you will also undertake a minimum of 450 hours of learning within the practice environment, during which time you will be supported and assessed to work towards the achievement of proficiencies required of a registered nurse.

You will have an opportunity to learn from service users, carers and specialist practitioners as well as the core course team.


You will be assessed in four ways during the course.

You will have a numeracy medicines drug dosage calculations assessment related to your field of practice.
You have to gain a 100% in this assessment but do not worry, you will have lots of support to prepare for this.

You will have a written assessment in which you offer a critical appraisal of the development of your knowledge and skills to become a proficient practitioner and finally a presentation relating to your field of practice, that will be deliver to your peers and course team

You will be assessed in practice as to whether you can demonstrate the proficiencies and communication and relationship management skills and nursing procedures required of a registered nurse.

You will have nominated Practice Supervisors and a Practice Assessor to support your development as you work towards achieving your proficiencies.


The University of South Wales is an NMC Approved Education Institution (AEI).


Practice Learning Experiences

You will undertake 450 hours of practice learning supported by Practice Supervisor(s) and a Practice Assessor, to enable you to work towards and achieve the proficiencies and skills required of a registered nurse.


You will have a fantastic opportunity to participate in simulated learning in the Clinical Simulation Centre.

This provides a well-equipped, state-of-the-art facility which replicates a range of practice settings. It has a dedicated team of staff comprising of registered nurses, midwives and technical support staff.

You will also have opportunity to develop decision making and team working skills in the Hydra Minerva Suite.

The practice experiences will be primarily within partner health boards. This will be arranged by the USW course team.


You will also have sessions whereby service users and carers share their lived experiences with you and by expert practitioners

The module is offered at level 6 and is within the BSc Professional Practice award. Entry to level is dependant on previous experience and qualifications.

 What are the entry requirements for the Return to Practice course?

Applicants must have a lapsed registration with the NMC or be in a position whereby they are unable to meet the required practice hours to revalidate with the NMC and remain on the professional register.

Applicants must be able to demonstrate that they have capability in numeracy, literacy and digital and technological literacy to meet the programme outcomes and proficiencies.

Applicants will also have to demonstrate they meet NMC English language requirements, if applicable.

During application and interview each candidate will be asked to declare that they are of good health and good character to enable safe and effective practice.

Entry to the course is dependent on a satisfactory disclosure and barring check (DBS) and Occupational Health screening.

Applicants may apply to have their prior learning and experience in relation to the standards of proficiency, course outcomes and hours of relevant practice as a current registrant. The evidence supplied by each applicant will be assessed on an individual basis by an Academic Assessor and Practice Assessor in collaboration with the Course Leader and with approval of the External Examiner.

The evidence will be measured specifically against the NMC (2018) Proficiencies for registered nurses which includes Annexe A – Communication and relation management skills and Annexe B Nursing procedural skills as well as the Module and Course learning outcomes.

If your application meets the entry criteria, you will be called to a formal interview. Alex Holmes, the RTP course leader, and a practice facilitator or senior nurse will interview you. The interview will last around twenty minutes and you will have the opportunity to ask questions.



There are on average 20 funded places per cohort paid for by the Welsh Government for applicants who are resident in Wales. Those applicants who are not resident, the standard module fee for 40 credits applies.



Additional Requirements

An Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check on the Child & Adult Workforce and Child and Adult Barring Lists and subscription to the DBS Update Service.




Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2019 - July 2020 Fees

    These courses are normally supported by Welsh Government commissioners in collaboration with Welsh NHS University Health Boards

August 2020 - July 2021 Fees

    These courses are normally supported by Welsh Government commissioners in collaboration with Welsh NHS University Health Boards

August 2021 - July 2022 Fees

    These courses are normally supported by Welsh Government commissioners in collaboration with Welsh NHS University Health Boards

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.

* Obligatory

Item Cost
DBS * £47.2
This fee includes £40 for the enhanced DBS certificate, the Post Office Administration fee and the online administration fee.
DBS Updating Service * £13
Subscription required for each year of the course for a yearly fee of £13. Please note the service has to be joined within 30 days of receipt of your enhanced DBS certificate.

This Return to Practice course has a consistently high success rate in enabling its students to find employment as registered nurses or midwives across a range of differing clinical/ care environments.

We recognise that returning to practice after a career break can be a daunting experience for individuals. Upon successful completion of return to practice course, which results in re-registration with the Nursing & Midwifery Council, our students are fully prepared to return to practice.

You will supported by the RTP team in finding employment through attending career fairs organised by USW, providing interview advice, references and through our connections with our local health board.