Diagnostic Radiography - BSc (Hons)

UCAS Code:
Full-time: B821
Part-time: apply direct to the University
Full Time (3 years), Part Time (6 years)
September 2016, September 2017

This course is now full for September 2016.

View other Health courses or our full list of Clearing courses.

Accredited by the College of Radiographers and delivered at the Midlands’ only centre for radiography training, the course equips you with both advanced technical skills and a crucial awareness of the human needs of your patient.

You will emerge as a highly proficient provider of professional care in one of the most important jobs in the NHS.

What's covered in the course?

Radiographers provide essential services, dealing with patients of all ages, including those with special needs like visual or hearing impairments. Your job will be to produce high-quality images of organs, limbs and other body parts to allow a wide range of diseases to be diagnosed.

The course combines equal elements of theory with clinical practice with theory focused on development of your knowledge and understanding of biological and radiation sciences, technology and the psycho-social issues of healthcare.

You spend half the course undertaking clinical placement, which is structured to allow you to fully experience the realities of the profession. We support you in securing a placement at several of 30 clinical sites across the Midlands, with your assigned personal tutor visiting you regularly during your time there.

“If we weren’t radiographers we would be detectives, our job is to find out what is going on... I was x-raying patients from the first hour of my first day.” Adam Robinson

Why Choose Us?

  • The course is taught  the region’s only  centre for radiography education with a well-established history
  • We have strong and effective links with hospital imaging departments, enhancing your
practical and clinical skills
  • Diagnostic radiography is a rewarding career that offers possibilities for you to work in a wide range of settings, in the UK and overseas. It’s also an ideal foundation for further study
  • Upon successful completion of the course, you will graduate with a BSc (Hons) in Diagnostic Radiography and be eligible to apply for registration with the Health Professions Council (HPC) and professional membership of the Society of Radiographers
  • Your tuition fees are covered by the NHS – and if you meet residency requirements, you are eligible to apply for a means-tested bursary, calculated in relation to your personal circumstances.
Student ambassador helps Open Day visitor

Open Day - 8 October 2016

Our next University-wide Open Day will take place on Saturday 8 October 2016. Come along to find out more about our courses and see our facilities.

Register now

Please note: we are currently reviewing our entire course provision for 2017/18. Details will be included in your registration email.

This course is not open to International students
School of Allied and Public Health Professions

Discover the School of Allied and Public Health Professions

Visit our School site for more student work and extra information.

Visit the School website

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work with companies such as:

  • Alexandra Hospital
  • Barnsley District General Hospital

And in jobs such as:

  • Radiographer
  • Diagnostic Radiographer

Entry Requirements

We now recruit to the values of the NHS Constitution. This influences our selection criteria and especially the values we are seeking to be demonstrated in both your application and interview, which we view as essential in any individual involved in patient care.

A minimum of 300 UCAS tariff points:

Level 2 qualifications which must be achieved PRIOR to application:
GCSE at Grade C or above in five subjects, which must include English Language, Mathematics and either Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Double Science. (GCSE equivalents are not accepted, e. g. Key Skills Level 2, Adult Numeracy, Adult Literacy) or
Irish Leaving Certificate, a minimum of five Ordinary Levels at Grade B3 or above, must include English, Mathematics and a Science subject. or
Scottish qualifications, a minimum of five Intermediate Standard 2 or above, must include English, Mathematics and a Science subject.
A particularly high standard of spoken and written English is necessary to cope with the clinical work on the Diagnostic Radiography and Radiotherapy courses. However, there is a great need for Radiography students who are fluent in more than one language and graduates with such skills would be a valuable addition to the profession; such candidates are therefore encouraged to apply.

Applicants who have not received their secondary school education in English will require an overall IELTS score of 7, with no subtest below 6.5

Plus one of the following Level 3 qualifications which you may be working towards:
GCE A/A2 level 300 UCAS tariff points from a maximum of three A/A2 Level passes, which must include one science subject from Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Human Biology and Applied Science. Psychology and Sociology are only accepted in conjunction with one of the former. A typical offer would be BBB. General Studies and Critical Thinking are not accepted.
GCE AS/A1 level Two subjects accepted with two GCE A/A2 levels, which must include one from Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Human Biology and Applied Science, at Grade B or above. Psychology and Sociology are only accepted in conjunction with one of the former. A typical offer would be BBB. Must achieve a minimum of 300 UCAS tariff points. General Studies and Critical Thinking not accepted.
BTEC National Diploma in Science Minimum Grade DDM required (320 tariff points).
International Baccalaureate Diploma Minimum Grade 26 required.
Access to HE Diploma in Radiography or Science Full award (60 credits) of which a minimum of 45 must be at Level 3 including 30 at Merit or Distinction with a minimum of 18 in a Science subject with 6 credits at level 3 in Physics and 15 ungraded credits at either Level 2 or 3. Must possess GCSE Mathematics and English at Grade C or above.
The Open University Minimum of 30 Credits at OU Level 1 or above passed in subjects that include Chemistry, Biology or Physics such as SK143 Topics in Health Sciences, S142 Topics in Science, or SK277 Human Biology. Candidates must already hold Level 3 qualifications or above, such as A-Levels or a Degree. Typical candidates will be considered on the basis that their prior education is non science related or has fallen outside the 5 year recent study requirement.
Irish Leaving Certificate Maximum of five Highers: two Highers at Grade B2 and three Highers at Grade B3 or above to achieve 300 UCAS tariff points.
Scottish Qualifications Maximum of 5 Advanced Highers at Grade C or above to achieve 300 UCAS tariff points.

Other qualifications:

Applicants’ qualifications that are not listed will be considered on an individual basis.

In addition:

Applicants must have evidence of study within the last five years.

Applicants are required to undertake a face-to-face engagement, normally in the format of an interview.

An experience visit to a clinical department is MANDATORY and a condition of a place being offered. Clinical visit evidence forms are required as part of this process.

Download a Clinical Visit Evidence Form

A second reference for Access/BTEC students from the original referee is to be provided to the institution by the end of June of the enrolment year.

Places are subject to a satisfactory Occupational Heath Check, Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service check and registration with the Independent Safeguarding Authority.

Applicants should be aware that qualifications, personal statement, and references all form part of the selection criteria for this course.

Applications from mature candidates offering alternative qualifications will be considered.

The UCAS tariff is changing

If you're considering applying for this course to start in September 2017 onwards, it's important to know that the UCAS tariff system is changing.

UCAS tariff points – the points system most universities use to compare different qualifications – will be introducing a new system on how points are calculated.

More about the new tariff

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BSc (Hons) Sep 2016 FT 3 years NHS Funded
PT 6 years NHS Funded
Sep 2017 FT 3 years TBC - see bottom of this tab for more information Apply via UCAS
PT 6 years TBC - see bottom of this tab for more information

International Students

Sorry, this course is not available to international students.

The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.

This course is now full for September 2016.

You will be able to apply for 2017/18 via UCAS from 6 September 2016.

Additional costs

We offer a wide range of professionally accredited and vocational courses that require the purchase of, among other things, uniforms, equipment, subscriptions, professional body memberships and DBS checks, and may require you to pay to attend conferences or participate in placements.

The link below provides our estimate of the possible costs associated with key activities on specific courses. Please bear in mind that these are only estimates of costs based on past student experience and feedback. The actual costs to you could vary considerably (either greater or lower than these estimates) depending on your choices as you progress through the course. We set out where we can, based on experience, where these indicative costs are for activities that are optional or compulsory.

All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

Find additional costs for your course

Your personal statement

Your personal statement is a highly important part of your application. It gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Course choice

Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?

Career plans

If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.

Work experience

Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.

School or college experience

Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.

Non-accredited skills or achievement

eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

NHS funding

Places on this course are funded by the NHS in September 2016 only.

Get more information about NHS funding

Changes to funding

From 1 August 2017, new students in England on nursing, midwifery and most allied health professional (AHP) pre-registration courses will have access to the standard student support package of loans for tuition fees and living costs, rather than getting an NHS grant.

Download information about fees for health students in 2017/18

This course is available part-time

Got any questions?

Search our Frequently Asked Questions for a range of information about our courses and studying here.

Loans and Grants

Financial Support

We offer further information on possible undergraduate financial support. This includes the type of loans, grants and scholarships available both from the government and from Birmingham City University.

Year 1

Introduction to Professional Life
Radiography Physics
Imaging Technology
Introduction to the Abdominal Region
Introduction to Skeletal Imaging
Introduction to the Thoracic Region

Year 2

Evidence Based Practice
Applied Imaging Technology
Musculoskeletal System
Digestive, Endocrine and Reproductive Systems
Cardiovascular, Respiratory and Nervous Systems

Year 3

Research in Radiography
Progressing to Practitioner
Diagnostic Imaging Specialism’s
Advancing skills for autonomous practice
And one of the following 15 credit modules*
  • CT Study Option or
  • US Study Option or
  • MRI Study Option or
  • Interventional Radiography Study Option or
  • Functional Imaging Study Option
You can study full or part-time; please note part-time study is completed with full-time students and follows the same pattern of university and clinical placement attendance.

Course structure

Being a diagnostic radiographer takes a special kind of person - one who can combine skilled use of highly technical equipment with excellent interpersonal skills. A good radiographer makes the patient feel at ease while conducting technical procedures.

How you learn

A diverse range of imaging methods are used including ultrasound, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and computed tomography (CT) scanning. The role of a radiographer is vitally important to other members of a healthcare team - the diagnosis from their images can affect, influence and determine a patient’s treatment and care.

Our facilities also include the latest tools of the diagnostic radiographer’s trade – like the Ultrasim Ultrasound machine; picture archiving and communication systems (PACS) suite; and Xograph x-ray imaging suite.

Year one is all about learning the fundamentals, with years two and three about applying what you have learned in areas like X-Ray and diagnostic imaging. So in year one you will learn for example about Imaging Technology, later on Applied Imaging Technology will be the natural succession. There is a major emphasis in the third year on the evidence-based necessity for all radiography practice and you can start to explore a specialism.

You can study full or part-time; please note part-time study is completed with full-time students and follows the same pattern of university and clinical placement attendance.

Teaching staff

The Course Director and all teaching staff maintain registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC), and many hold advanced professional roles including appendicular, axial and CT Head reporting.

We also invite clinical experts to share insights and expertise, enhancing your training in specialist areas of practice.


Upon successful completion you will graduate with a BSc (Hons) in Diagnostic Radiography and be eligible to apply for Registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and professional membership of the Society of Radiographers.

Additional support

If you are dyslexic, have a specific learning difference or a disability, we have a Disability Tutor who can help and support you. 

More on our disability tutor >>

We offer extra technical and learning support.

Teaching breakdown

20 Time in lectures, seminars and similar MidnightBlue
80 Time in independent study RoyalBlue

Assessment breakdown

57 Written exams DarkOrange
43 Coursework FireBrick

Student stories

Star Alumni Deirdre Dobson graduated in 2009 and is now a Senior Radiographer.


Student Adam Robinson talks about his experiences on degree course BSc (Hons) Diagnostic Radiography at Birmingham City University.


These independent reviews show what our students really think:

"On my particular degree, different teaching methods are employed from lectures to workshops to small group tutorials to self study slots to practical sessions to simulations etc. to suit people with all needs. Staff are also available for one-to-one sessions should the student have the need for it."

Read all Which? Uni reviews

Study and work abroad

If you are interested in undertaking part of your studies abroad, the Erasmus scheme may be of interest to you. It allows higher education students to study for part of their degree in another European country.

It is open to undergraduates in their second year (or above) and offers a unique opportunity to enhance your CV and experience new cultures. If you study with us you will have access to an Erasmus co-ordinator, who can provide information about which institutions we have links with.

Find out more

Further study

Diagnostic Radiography provides the opportunity for life-long learning.

A comprehensive portfolio of post-registration short courses that focuses on Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is available, along with other postgraduate courses.

Many are taught as part-time flexible modules to fit around your work and domestic commitments and allow for academic and / or clinical development.

If you decide to continue on to postgraduate study, we offer several courses which may interest you, including:

Student stories: Charlene Davison

Radiographer at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire

Following my studies at Birmingham City University, I’m now in full-time employment as a radiographer at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire. My studies gave me the qualifications needed to practice, as well as social and communication skills. The university experience has completely changed me as a person – I’m no longer the shy and retiring type; I want to put myself out there and help as many people as I can. There’s no stopping me now!

The course lived up to my expectations with regard to the amount of radiography, anatomy and pathology we learnt. I felt the amount of time offered in clinical placement would aid me in becoming a good radiographer and the new clinical skills suite allowed practice before going out into real-life situations.

Enhancing employability

You‘ll be able to register with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)to work as a qualified Diagnostic Radiographer. Upon qualification you will be able to use X-rays to help diagnose a range of injuries and diseases, plus develop knowledge and skills in other imaging methods such as CT and MRI scanning. You can, once registered, practice in the UK and overseas.

In terms of career, you may choose to specialize in imaging modalities such as Computed Tomography (CT), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) or Ultrasound. Other options are teaching, management and research.


Your radiography placements could be based with our 30 partners all over the West Midlands, but also beyond the local area, as we have partnerships with the vast majority of hospitals in our part of the UK, such as the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham. Many students look to take a placement outside of even this wide catchment area.

A placement is your chance to be a part of the working world of health and social care as it really is: your first taste of your career. For most of our courses, it's a compulsory part of your training; it's that important.

Placements help you with your confidence, by putting theory from the classroom into practice. We make sure you get a quality experience and that you are fully supported by a workplace mentor on hand throughout your placement.

More about our placement opportunities...


OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.


BCU Graduate+

Through our courses we give you the skills and experience needed to get a head start when applying for jobs. But we offer something extra too – Graduate+.

Our unique programme gives you the chance to develop valuable skills outside of the more formal classroom learning. We award points for Graduate+ activities (including firewalking!) and these can be put towards a final Graduate+ award.

More about Graduate+

Other student opportunities

To enhance your CV, we offer extra-curricular student opportunities, such as a major incident simulation, that you can get involved in.

Student opportunities

Trips and visits

We have a strong relationship with a major Canadian University, Dalhousie, in Nova Scotia, which means students can spend a brief period there exploring the work of the radiographer in a non-UK context.

We encourage creative choices of placements, too, and have often supported students who have secured short experiences at hospitals in countries as diverse as Cyprus, Australia and Tanzania while on the course.


We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities.

We boast up-to-date, innovative facilities that simulate the real situations that medical staff may come across.

These resources are essential in offering students a hands-on introduction to health and social care practice. Much of our teaching is carried out within our state-of-the-art, £30m Seacole Building, which houses some of the best learning facilities in the UK.

Take a virtual tour of our skills suites at Seacole

In a sector where new techniques are constantly being discovered, we work hard to ensure that students learn using the most up-to-date equipment available. These include the only mock operating theatre in an English university and a cutting-edge radiography virtual clinical training facility, virtual ward and virtual case creator.

Radiography Skills Suite

Our purpose-built Radiography Skills Suite allows you to improve your skills through simulation in a safe and protected environment, and includes:

  • Dedicated PACS (Picture Archiving and Communication Systems) suite;
  • Dedicated Xograph X-ray imaging suite (CR and DR);
  • Fully functioning Mobile X-ray and Image Intensifier units, for use in our on-site Ward and Theatre simulation workshops.
  • Oncentra Masterplan Radiotherapy Planning system;
  • Ultrasim Ultrasound machine;

X Ray room/PACS Room

This is a real, working X-ray room, where students can practice taking x-rays and also to digitise them to view on the PACS system. We also have a fully functioning Mobile X-ray and Image Intensifier units, for use in our on-site Ward and Theatre simulation workshops. We use a portable camera system that can record and stream video to any other classroom on the campus so we can simulate scenarios with our students.

Simulation Mannequins

We have several Simulation men (SIM men) and Simulation babies (SIM babies) which are leading edge, anatomically correct mannequins used for teaching specific techniques such as advanced adult and paediatric life support skills, acute and high dependency clinical skills, first aid and communication skills.

Computer Facilities

The Seacole building houses a large open access IT Suite which comprises of 96 PCs, full colour printers, photocopiers and scanners. Our PCs utilise the latest Intel i5 core technology, all with:

  • Fast (unrestricted) internet connectivity
  • Ability to save files to USB, DVD & CD
  • Microsoft Office software
  • Research and statistical software
  • Storage space which can be accessed from any PC across the University and from home

Our PCs are also designed to support students who may have difficulties with reading and writing, featuring specialised software with zooming/magnification and screen reading capabilities, which may also be customised for individual student needs.

The IT Suite offers extended opening hours and is supported by a specialist Open Access Assistant during term time. In addition to the open access PCs within the IT Suite, there are 12 networked student PCs available within Seacole library.

Charlotte Burnside

Senior lecturer / Programme Leader for Diagnostic Radiography

I am the Programme Director for Diagnostic Radiography and so my role is the overall management of the programme, as well as supporting students in their studies and helping them to manage their learning.  My door is always open for students who need to discuss any aspect of their studies with me.

I am the Personal Tutor for diagnostic radiography students who are placed at New Cross Hospital in Wolverhampton, and I see my students regularly to offer pastoral support and discuss their progress, both in their academic studies and in their clinical placement.

I teach predominantly on the diagnostic radiography programme, as that is my professional background, but I also teach sessions relating to academic and professional practice on the radiotherapy programme.  The radiography disciplines are very different, but share many elements relating to patient care and professional regulation.

My clinical area of expertise is Radionuclide Imaging/Functional & Molecular Imaging and I cover this subject on both the radiography courses at all levels of the degree.

I am currently involved in research, particularly the student experience and student engagement within Higher Education. 

UK prospective students:

UK enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5595

EU / International prospective students:

International enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5389

Already applied?

Email the applications team

+44 (0)121 331 6295