Advanced Nurse Practitioner/Professional Practice MSc

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What is special about this course?

The MSc in Advanced Nurse Practitioner / Professional Practice will equip nurses and allied health professionals to work autonomously to lead the advanced clinical care of patients/clients. The programme will help practitioners to develop and practice advanced knowledge and skills in clinical assessment, diagnosis, care and treatment.  The programme is relevant for advanced practitioners or those who are working towards advanced practice across primary and secondary care settings, including remote and rural contexts. A combination of core and option modules will support consolidation of clinical knowledge and skills reflecting the Advanced Practice Framework.

Find out more about the Department of Nursing

Special features

  • Exclusive arrangements for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for core modules
  • Innovative and clinically current curriculum developed and taught by subject experts
  • Designed in partnership with expert clinical partners
  • Practice-led and research-based curriculum
  • Accessible and flexible learning that combines innovative technologies for e-learning 
  • Core and option modules available 
  • Different exit points including, postgraduate certificate, postgraduate diploma and the full Masters.

Entry requirements

  • You must be a registered nurse or allied health professional, normally working in a full-time or part-time post with a health, social care or third sector setting
  • You will have a first degree or relevant professional experience and normally three years' experience as a registered health professional.  
  • Application for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) may be undertaken and will be assessed on an individual basis*
  • You must submit evidence of your current professional registration, for example Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) Registration.
  • Within your application personal statement, you must provide information about your place of work and employing Health Board. This information should include contact details for your line manager.

*The Department of Nursing in the University of the Highlands and Islands has a tailored arrangement for Recognition of Prior Learning for our Advanced Practice programmes. For the Masters of Science (MSc) and Post Graduate Diploma (PGDip), it is possible to apply for 80 credits of exemption for qualifying modules, instead of the normal 60. Not only that, clinical skills and prescribing modules undertaken at lower than post-graduate level for example at SCQF level 9 can be upgraded to post-graduate level by submission of additional academic work to be assessed by the Department academic team. These arrangements can allow for considerable financial and time savings. Finally, once confirmed at the start of the programme that Recognition of Prior Learning is possible, completing the process can be postponed to a convenient point in the programme, rather than having to be done before commencing the programme.

Further information on RPL.


For the PgCert (60 credits) and PgDip (an additional 60 credits) the core modules include:

  • Clinical Assessment for Advanced Practitioners (CAAP) (40 credits)
  • Clinical Reasoning, Judgement and Decision-making (20 credits)
  • Non-medical Prescibing (NMP) (40 credits) 

You will also choose one of the following option modules (20 credits):

  • Professional Leadership and Resilience
  • Improving Processes and Outcomes for People
  • Complex Symptom Management/Multimorbidity in Practice
  • Expertise in Dementia Practice
  • Risk, Vulnerability and Incapacity


To complete the Masters (180 credits in total), you will choose one of the following:

  • Quality Improvement (QI) Dissertation
  • Applying Research Skills for Clinical Impact: Systematic Review
  • Applying Research Skills for Clinical Impact: Clinical Audit
  • Applying Research Skills for Clinical Impact: Service Evaluation

How will I study my course?

Part Time (Structured)

You will study mainly through supported online learning through the university's virtual learning environment (VLE) with some face-to-face delivery for certain modules. You will be invited to attend a campus-based induction at the start of the programme, alternative induction arrangements will be available for those who cannot attend the campus event.

If you have any questions or need further information, please contact Joanna Smith, Lecturer/Head of Postgraduate Studies at:

How long will my course last?

Part-time (structured):

  • Pg Certificate in Advanced Health Assessment and Clinical Decision-making - normally 12 months
  • Pg Diploma in Advanced Nurse Practitioner/Advanced Professional Practice - normally 24 months
  • MSc Advanced Nurse Practitioner/Advanced Professional Practice - normally 36 months

Where can I study my course?

  • Department of Nursing, Inverness

Start date

  • September
  • January


The following fees apply to this taught postgraduate course :

fee status
Rest of the UK
Per 20 credits (180 maximum for the MSc) £520 £650

You will also be required to pay for any travel and accommodation costs to attend the induction session at the start of the programme and the face-to-face sessions in year one and two.


External scholarships and financial support may be available. Contact the relevant UHI partner college for more information.

What can I do on completion of my course?

The programme aims to enable nurses and allied health professionals to work autonomously in clinical practice using advanced clinical skills to lead care delivery within a variety of health and social care settings.

Can I progress into further study?

The University of the Highlands and Islands provides a range of options for further study including doctoral programmes.

Is there more information available online?

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Apply for Advanced Nurse Practitioner/Professional Practice MSc

I want to start in Jan/Feb 2018 or Aug/Sep 2018 or Jan/Feb 2019

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI). UHI operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of gender, age, disability, ethnicity and socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.

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