A Guide to Return to Practice

Nursing Clinical Simulation Centre

Here are the most frequently asked questions about the Return to Practice course (RTP). If you have any other questions, please attend the next Open Evening when you will have an opportunity to meet the RTP course leader or contact us.

What are the entry requirements for the Return to Practice course?
You will need to provide evidence of lapsed registration of no more than 10 years. This is in the form of an NMC Statement of Entry which you can get from the NMC. You will need to quote your NMC PIN and the name you were originally registered under.

Entry requirements:

  • 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.

International Student Entry Requirements

  • Those who meet residency/academic requirements of UK students but whose language is not English will need to hold IELTS with an overall score of at least 7.

Are there course fees?
Currently, there are no course fees. A bursary of £3,000 will be available to each student. This amount should be paid to the student in equal installments by the education provider.
Assistance with childcare costs
Currently, students can apply for means-tested assistance with childcare costs incurred whilst attending clinical placements and refresher training. Payments will only be made on production of relevant receipts from registered childcare services.

Payments will be managed by the NHS Wales Student Awards Services. The childcare allowance is means-tested and is based on 85% of the actual registered or approved childcare costs up to a maximum amount.

Application for assistance with childcare costs, for returners who have secured NHS Wales funding, should be made directly by emailing the student awards service at [email protected] with the following information:

  • Institution studying at
  • Start date of course
  • Home address
  • Contact telephone number

Student Awards Services will manage the process and liaise directly with the returner. Returners will be required to apply for childcare costs before the commencement of their course as childcare allowance cannot be claimed in arrears.

If you have any queries or need further explanation then please contact your Programme Lead, or email [email protected] or [email protected]

How do I apply?
You apply as a direct applicant via the University website. You will need to write a 400-500 word personal statement which outlines why you want to return to practice, and your plans for when you complete the course. You will also need to provide a reference – this can be an employer or character reference; evidence of current DBS via update service and a successful occupational health screen.

Will I get a degree?
No, the RTP is a 40 credit degree-level module, not a degree.

Can I continue working?
Yes – however, you are required to undertake a minimum of 450 hours in practice as part of this course as a student, not an employee. Times and shift patterns can be agreed with your Practice assessor/ supervisor in practice, although you are required to experience one full day of 24-hour care delivery.

When will I be in university? 
You will have an initial week of block theory and then a further series of study days, usually on a Thursday between 10am – 3pm on the Glyntaff Campus. You will have a total of 25 touchpoint theory days but will be expected to undertake a number of hours directed study.

How difficult is the course?
The RTP course is delivered at Level 6, which is equivalent to the third year of an undergraduate degree. For those who are returning to study after a long break or are nervous about the academic demands of the course, there is plenty of study skills support.

If I am currently working in a clinical area, can I undertake the Clinical Learning Outcomes in this area, rather than a new clinical placement?
No, you will be required to undertake your practice learning experiences in an area where you are not currently employed.

When will I be back on the NMS register?
The course runs from January and is a full year so about a month after successful completion you can expect to be on the register.

Is there a certain amount of work experience you expect from an applicant, particularly if they are not working in a care field at the moment?
This needs to be assessed on an individual basis as it depends on your current role and previous experience. You can discuss this with us at an Open Evening.

More information
You can speak to Alex Holmes, the course leader, at the next Open Evening or contact her at [email protected] - 01443 483886.