Paramedic Science - DipHE

Course Overview

The essential course information

Download the course factsheet
Full Time (1 year)
School of Allied and Public Health Professions
City South

The Dip HE Paramedic Science programme is only open to current qualified IHCD* Ambulance Technician, via direct application. The programme is designed to provide students with the knowledge and skills required to practice as a Paramedic and upon successful completion have eligibility to apply for registration with the HCPC.

The programme consists of two modules at level 4 and five modules at Level 5.

Collaboration between the University and clinical partners will aim to ensure students develop the skills and knowledge they need as a Paramedic and the programme team are committed to providing the support and encouragement required by students to achieve their individual personal and professional development goals.

We are committed to developing Paramedic professionals who are capable of independent practice and also being members of interprofessional teams, while responding to the dynamic nature of professional practice.

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

We offer extra learning and technical support.

To enhance your CV, we offer extra-curricular student opportunities that you can get involved in.

*IHCD; Institute of Health Care and Development

Key Facts

  • Developed in partnership with students and practice partners, the course aims to produce suitably qualified Paramedic graduates who are fit for practice, eligible to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council and capable of life long learning.
  • We aim to provide students with the support and environment to develop personally and professionally in order to meet the needs of modern Paramedic practice
  • Students spend a substantial amount of time on placement, working with Paramedics and seeing first-hand the day-to-day challenges of the job.
  • The role requires quick thinking, initiative and great team working skills, you’re trained to work independently and with professional colleagues developing interpersonal and communication skills.
  • A variety of teaching approaches are used including simulations using our ambulance and extensive skills facilities
  • On successful course completion, students have eligibility to apply for registration with the HCPC (Health and Care Professions Council).

Why Choose Us?

  • Health programmes are based in the £30 million award-winning Seacole Building, which includes fully equipped Emergency Ambulance, mock hospital wards, mock Operating Theatre, Home Environment and Laboratory.
  • Extensive skills facilities and equipment are utilised in all Health programmes, an example of which is the use of SIM Man - a breathing and talking mannequin attached to monitors replicating conditions such as falling blood pressure and cardiac arrest – these help create real-life situations which require your response.
  • Students consistently give positive feedback on our skills teaching and simulations and the benefit it provides in creating real-life experiences in a safe environment.
  • SPACE (Skills Practice And Clinical Enhancement) is a bookable learning facility that enables you to further practice the skills taught in class, at your own pace and convenience. This facility is fully stocked with the specialist items and equipment needed for procedures such as taking blood pressure, giving an injection, chest decompression, and caring for ill babies in an incubator.
  • Moodle – the University’s Virtual Learning Environment – complements your classroom learning, allowing you to access learning materials online and interact with staff and student colleagues.
  • Annual Health and Social Care Awards invite nominations for, among others, exceptional performance by students on placement.

Download the Course Programme Specification

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.

Direct application only
  • Must be employed in a Trainee Paramedic role
  • Be working in an appropriate area of practice
  • Have the full support of your Line Manager and Trust to undertake the course
  • Have access to a mentor who has received/ or is prepared to receive prior to commencement of the programme training from Birmingham City university in regard to the specifics of the course learning outcomes, competences and requirements of the programme.
  • Hold IHCD Ambulance Technician Award

All candidates must satisfy the general admissions requirements of the programme, which are as follows:

  • Attend a joint university/placement partner selection day.
  • Whilst not essential it would be beneficial for applicants to possess a full clean UK manual driver's licence and where possible have provisional C1 entitlement added to their licence. Prospective students should be aware that whilst a driving license and category C1 are not requirements for acceptance onto the programme you should be aware that to improve your employability prospects following completion of the programme these should be considered as essential.
  • You must be physically fit and have the strength to lift and carry patients and equipment.
  • You must be able and prepared to undertake shift work e.g. night duty, evenings, religious festivals and weekends.
  • Evidence of good health and good character are required which are assessed by occupational health screening and Disclosure and Barring Service report .
  • Candidates whose first language is not English are required to provide the original language test certificate to the Admissions Tutor as evidence of their proficiency and must ensure that it is, or is comparable to, IELTS level 7.0 with no element below 6.5 for eligibility to apply for registration with the Health Profession Council upon successful completion of the full learning programme.

Claims by students who wish to APEL are approved by the Personal Development Department on an individual basis.

Evidence of Literacy and Numeracy (Minimum of GCSE A* to C in Maths and English or Adult Training Scheme key skills level 2 in literacy and numeracy)

How to Apply

Full Time: Apply directly to the School.
Course Code: TBC. 
Application form for undergraduate courses

This course is not available to International Students

The application form requests a significant amount of personal information. This is required so that we can decide on your suitability for the course. The information you provide will be used for this purpose and monitoring of equal opportunities only. It will be treated in confidence and will only be seen by those whose jobs require them to do so.

Fees and Finance

Fees for students from the UK or EU countries?
Start Mode Duration Award Fees
Sep 2015 FT 1 year DipHE £7,500

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.

Additional costs

Please allow up to £300 for personal protective equipment (PPE) to include: helmet, high-vis jacket, goggles, gloves, waterproof trousers and boots. We recommend you join the College of Paramedics. Please also allow personal costs to attend work placements including travel and accommodation.

This course is not supported by NHS bursary or fees funding. You will need to apply to Student Finance England for tuition fee loans, maintenance grants and maintenance loans.

Financial Support

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

University Approach to Employability

Birmingham City University is committed to preparing students for successful employability and professional careers. We have an innovative approach to employability that will help you obtain an interesting and well-paid graduate job.

Read our Employability Statement to find out more.


The duration of time students spend in clinical placement during the programme, equates to a minimum of 750 hours upon successful completion of the programme.

You are expected to arrange your own pre-hospital care placements, however the University will try and facilitate Hospital based placements within the West Midlands area, or you are welcome to make your own arrangements for hospital based placements.

The University will need to audit all clinical placements before students commence their placements.

Your mentors in the placement areas are prepared for their roles and understanding of the course by the university, and the ongoing suitability and availability of learning opportunities is assured by placement audit, evaluation and liaison meetings between university staff and practice partners.

Full Time

From September 2012, all universities and colleges are publishing standardised information for all undergraduate courses in the form of a Key Information Set (KIS). The KIS data is designed to meet the needs of prospective students and allow for informed decision-making when choosing a university course.

Putting our students first

We pride ourselves on our student satisfaction levels which have risen from 73 per cent to 83 per cent between 2010 and 2012. Our dedication to improving the student experience is illustrated by our award-winning student engagement, our close links with business and industry and our £180 million investment in new facilities.

Employability facts

95 per cent of leavers from the DipHE Paramedic Science course who responded to our survey entered employment (and/or further study), earning an average salary of £23,000 within six months. Employers including Birmingham City Council and Birmingham Community Healthcare Trust offering positions such as Social Worker and District Nurse.

Working with your Students’ Union

Improving student satisfaction is a priority commitment shared by both Birmingham City University and its Students’ Union. In its strategic planning, the Union has pledged to be more accessible, more relevant and provide more opportunity to engage with a diverse student community.

The Students’ Union is already a key stakeholder in supporting an excellent teaching experience at Birmingham City University, through joint projects such as the Extra Mile Teaching Awards and the Student Rep scheme, which allows students to share their ideas on how they are taught.

As Birmingham City University moves towards a two campus strategy where it can better support enhanced learning and student support facilities across a two-mile radius, the Students’ Union will also be better able to implement its commitment to improve communication and engage with its valued student membership.

Course Structure

Applicants will be expected to complete a portfolio to substantiate evidence of skills equivalent to the IHCD Technician Award (Institute of Health Care and Development). This will then be used towards the APEL procedure in order to complete the remaining modules of a DipHE programme.

The modules you will be expected to complete will cover; applied anatomy and physiology knowledge and skills for Paramedic science. You will also explore paramedic care of the trauma patient, pre-hospital coronary care, and women and children’s health. Other modules include Evidence-Based Paramedic Practice, Negotiating Health and Social Care Needs, and Pharmacology for Paramedic Science.

You also develop the interpersonal and communication skills that complement your science-based knowledge, and which are crucial in putting your patient at ease and making you an effective collaborative member of your professional team.

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.

Course Modules

The Dip HE Paramedic Science consists of:

Level 4 modules

  1. Applied Anatomy and Physiology for Paramedic Science (15 credits)
  2. Knowledge and Skills for Paramedic Science (30 credits)

Level 5 modules

  1. Evidence Based Paramedic Practice (15 credits)
  2. Negotiating Health and Social Care Needs (30 credits)
  3. Paramedic Care of the Trauma Patient (15 credits)
  4. Pharmacology for Paramedic Science (15 credits)
  5. Pre Hospital Coronary Care (15 credits)
  6. Women and Children's Health (30 credits)

Course delivery will be in blocks of study alternating with clinical practice placements.

The following modules you will be credited during the APEL process, in consideration of your application to continue studying with us.

  1. Assisting the Paramedic (15 credits)
  2. Introducing Physiological Measuring Skills (15 credits)
  3. Foundations of Paramedic Practice (30 credits)
  4. Intermediate Life Support (15 credits)

Assessment Methods

Some of the assessments are designed to test certain competencies or essential skills but do not count as credits towards the final award. Those assessments are as follows:

Title of ModuleThe non-credit assessment name (e.g. competencies)Brief descriptionWhen (year) the assessment takes place in the programme
PAR4005 Knowledge and Skills for Paramedic Science Advanced airway management and circulatory access Intubation, surgical airway skills and intravenous/ intraosseous access As above
PAR5999 Paramedic Care of the Trauma Patient Advanced trauma life support and Spinal immobilisation fracture/ wound care management Apply principle of ATLS Safely and appropriately manage the spinal injury patients Appropriately use variety of fracture management and wound care treatments As above
PAR5004 Pre Hospital Coronary Care 3 and 12 lead ECG placement Interpretation of 12 lead ECG Correctly apply cardiac monitoring Be able to interpret and recognise MI/ STEMI/NSTEMI, and cardiac arrythmias As above
PAR5005 Women and Children’s Health Acute gynaecology Children’s Health Obstetric patient Recognition and management of life threatening gynaecological presentation Effectively communicate with children of all ages Recognition of the difference in physiological parameter in children in context of sick child using PEWS from adolescents to infants Management of emergency childbirth and various problematic deliveries and Eclamptic patients As above

Shaun Kemp

Why take DipHE Paramedic Science?

Entry to DipHE Paramedic Science?

DipHE Paramedic Science and the Armed Forces

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Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities. It’s no surprise that the Complete University Guide placed us in the UK top 10 for spending on facilities in both 2012 and 2013.

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.


Our real road going ambulance allows you to gain experience working in a confined space using real ambulance equipment. You can actually practice driving (under normal conditions) and treating patient in the back of a moving ambulance as your colleagues drive through the streets of Birmingham.

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.

The SIM men and SIM baby mannequins are complete with software, which is used to replicate real symptoms, and are enhanced by the manipulation of for example blood pressure, pulse and heart rate for extra realism. SIM Man can also “talk” to the students which adds another dimension to their use in teaching clinical skills and in simulation exercises

Mary Seacole Library

The Seacole library, based at City South Campus, is one of the UK's largest specialist health education libraries. The state-of-the art facility offers an extensive range of range of information and reference materials set out in a relaxing environment, conducive to studying. There are comfortable seating areas, group study areas, a silent study area and private study rooms.

You will have access to all of the University’s libraries, including the main Kenrick Library on the City North Campus, which is open for almost 90 hours a week and holds more than 320,000 books, 2,000 print journals and carries more than 4,000 electronic journals online.

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 Corporate ICT 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.


Prospective students from the UK
  • Take a look at our Frequently Asked Questions for answers to a range of questions about our courses and studying here.
  • If you need further help, you can contact the Course Enquiries Team online by using the Course Enquiry Form.
  • Alternatively, call us on +44 (0)121 331 5595.

This course is not available to International Students


For an overview of our undergraduate courses and a range of other information order a printed Prospectus or download a PDF of our Prospectus (16Mb).

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