The Specialist Community Public Health Nursing course equips nurses with the skills required to be innovative and creative when responding to client groups across different settings of public health practice.
The settings offered at University of Brighton
include the health visiting and school nursing fields of practice.
Public health roles are diverse, and flexibility in the course allows students to gain appropriate knowledge and skills. Student and service need is considered and linked meaningfully with individual learning pathways. Use of a personal / professional development plan (PDP) from the initial interview, and throughout the course, helps to bring these elements together, providing links with the existing knowledge and skills framework requirements, and providing evidence of employability on completion of the course. The PDP also ensures that needs are assessed on an ongoing basis and adjustments made accordingly, particularly useful if an extended part-time route is taken.
Students are supported by a Practice Teacher (and mentors where appropriate) in practice placements within their employing trust. This provides excellent opportunities and support in application of learning in practice. An exciting variety of learning approaches are utilised in the course, accommodating a wide range of preferred learning styles. A period of consolidation of practice at the end of the course allows further opportunity for integration of theory and practice and development of the student's role.
Successful completion of the course means that graduates are enabled to meet the ten key areas of public health practice required for second level registration as a Specialist Community Public Health Nurse with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC 2004). Achievement of these proficiencies requires ability in assessing risk in complex situations; in developing effective relationships based on trust and openness; in working flexibly with other services in a range of settings; in dealing with conflicting priorities and ambiguous situations; and in knowing when to use, different and sometimes contradictory theories and perspectives.
Students are allocated practice placements by their employing trust, and are assigned a practice teacher to support their learning in practice. Students undertake a period of alternative practice when they can spend a week in another context that is of demonstrable value to their role.
A variety of learning and teaching strategies are used including problem-based and work-based learning. You need to be highly motivated and be prepared to actively engage with all aspects of your learning.
Areas of study
A core module within the course relates to public health across the individual to population continuum. An innovative module facilitating work with marginalised groups, connected with the Community University Partnership Project may also be undertaken. An individualised approach to planning is taken with each student though a personal development plan and learning contracts that are agreed between the student, university and employer. Modules also allow students to focus their practice assignment work on areas of value to their role.
A central feature of these courses is to ensure shared learning between the community nursing specialities so that the benefits of developing intra-professional collaboration can be enhanced. Programmes have been designed to include modules in which learning is shared with students from other disciplines, and where possible, other professions.
Leading Change in Practice Development
A Critical Approach to Practising Public Health: individual to population continuum
Nurse Prescribing from the Community Nurse Prescribers Formulary
Career and progression opportunities
Most graduates go on to work within the NHS in health visiting or school nursing teams. The context of public health practice both within and without the NHS is constantly changing and the opportunities for innovative approaches to service provision exist.
It is possible to take modules for this course as single stand-alone modules, either as a sample of Masters level study, or as part of your continuing professional development.
As an NMC regulated course, the modules have a practice element that is assessed in practice. If you wish to undertake one of these modules, either as a part of a course, or as stand-alone CPE, please contact the course leader prior to application to ensure that the appropriate practice assessor can be put in place.
Applicants should be registered as a Nurse or Midwife with Nursing and Midwifery Council and should have a first degree normally at 2:1 or above and two years post-registration experience