Children's nurses care for children and young people from birth to 18 years old in hospital and in the community. Children and young people can present with a range of conditions, from birth defects, accidents and injuries, to life-limiting or critical illnesses or which can result in the death of a child. Children's nurses work in partnership with the child/young person, their parents and carers, involving them in the planning and delivery of their child's care and treatment. Children's nurses, in collaboration with other professionals, strive to promote health in children and young people to ensure they enter into adulthood in good health.
This innovative and intensive two-year course aimed at students with an existing degree (2:2 or above) will equip you with the knowledge and skills to assess and manage the nursing care needs of children and families, including those with acute and long-term conditions. The course will also develop your abilities to consider the wider aspects influencing children's health needs, preparing you for future leadership in a changing and challenging health care system.
You'll experience a variety of clinical settings such as NHS acute Trusts, community placements, independent sector and voluntary sector organisations. You'll also have a placement within a community healthcare setting.
Practice experience is gained in several world-renowned central and outer London hospitals including:
• Evelina London Children's Hospital
• Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust
• Variety Children's Hospital at King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
• University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
You will be allocated one of these hospitals as your host Trust during the course.
Success on this course makes you eligible to register as a children's nurse with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).
You will be taught separately from the three-year undergraduate students and will study the following:
Improving quality, change management and leadership
Applied anatomy and physiology for children and young people
Fundamental concepts of caring for children, young people and families
Building practice skills for children’s nursing
Enhancing practice skills for children’s nursing
Care of the critically ill child and young person
Applied pharmacology and medicine optimisation in children’s nursing
Research in health and social care
Time spent on placement
During the course you will spend 50% of your time involved in academic study and 50% in clinical practice within a broad variety of healthcare settings. A clinical practice placement allows you to put theory into practice by working with a range of health professionals in clinical situations to develop the skills, knowledge and experience required to become a competent nurse. Although sometimes initially challenging, practice learning is one of the most interesting and exciting aspects of learning to be a nurse.
LSBU is affiliated with the top teaching hospitals and Trusts in London, including Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH). At LSBU you will experience a variety of clinical settings such as NHS acute Trusts, community placements, independent sector and voluntary sector organisations. You will also undergo a placement within the community.
We're proud to partner with:
Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Trust
University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
Evelina London Children's Hospital at Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust
Variety Children's Hospital at King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust
Barts Health NHS Trust
Structure of placements
Placements are spread over the two years:
Your initial placements are designed to introduce you to working in a professional setting and to develop essential care and basic assessment skills, infection control and learn about safeguarding vulnerable people.
You will then build on the experience gained from Year one and will begin to take on more responsibility, progressing your clinical reasoning skills and begin to look after small groups of patients making confident, proactive decisions for their health and management with less supervision.
You will also have the opportunity to choose a four week elective placement in which you can pick a speciality (e.g. working with Clinical Nurse Specialists, specialist services or independent and 3rd sector providers), or a different context of care (e.g. prison, private health care facility, social care, charity, hospice etc.), or a lived experience of a certain condition (e.g. charity work, carer shadowing, etc.) During your final year, you will require less supervision and will be responsible for a small group of patients.
Support from a mentor
Whilst in the clinical placement we ensure our nursing students receive continuous support and guidance from a dedicated mentor and practice learning teams made up of lecturers and practitioners.
Find out more about nursing placements through our student and graduate testimonials.
Children's skills laboratories
We have two Children's skills laboratories which are set up like nursing wards. The skills labs are used by all student nurses throughout their on-campus study time at LSBU. They learn manual handling of patients, basic life support skills and skills specific to the field of nursing.
The nursing wards have simulator mannequins; SimMan, SimBaby and SimMom. These life-size mannequins are computer controlled and can be programmed with various clinical conditions. These are operated by a computer in real-time and so respond to a students' actions. They also allow students to see the outcome of specific interventions in certain scenarios, which could make the patient better or deteriorate quite quickly.
The mannequins are used to teach students how to recognise clinical signs, and to also associate those clinical signs with the actions they are taking to care for the patient. SimMan can be male or female with fully accurate anatomy and can breathe, blink, sweat, speak and groan in pain as well as have a pulse.
Children's nurses work in a child-centred and multi-professional team, which is reflected in the variety of people who contribute to the course. Expert speakers include service users, such as parents and charitable organisations, expert practitioners and other lead professionals in child health and children's nursing.
All graduates are offered the opportunity to apply for employment with the NHS Trusts and hospitals where they gained experience during training when posts are available. The course has an excellent record in graduate employment, including working overseas, and covering a range of qualified nurse positions.
Successful graduates of the PgDip can top-up to an MSc in one year and will be qualified to study a range of further specialist postgraduate pathways. With additional experience, advanced practice is available at masters level with the potential to progress to doctorate studies. Find out more about professional development opportunities through our online CPPD prospectus.
LSBU Employability Services
LSBU is committed to supporting you develop your employability and succeed in getting a job after you have graduated. Your qualification will certainly help, but in a competitive market you also need to work on your employability, and on your career search. Our Employability Service will support you in developing your skills, finding a job, interview techniques, work experience or an internship, and will help you assess what you need to do to get the job you want at the end of your course. LSBU offers a comprehensive Employability Service, with a range of initiatives to complement your studies, including:
direct engagement from employers who come in to interview and talk to students
Job Shop and on-campus recruitment agencies to help your job search
mentoring and work shadowing schemes.