Paramedic Science - BSc (Hons)

UCAS Code:
Full Time (3 years)
September 2016, September 2017

This course is now full for September 2016.

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

Involving a significant amount of time spent on placement, this three-year course thoroughly prepares you to practise as a paramedic and to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

You will gain the knowledge and skills to work in the modern healthcare sector as an integral part of the inter-professional team – learning how to work across boundaries to provide the very best community and emergency healthcare for your patients.

What's covered in the course?

Your first year modules cover areas such as applied anatomy and physiology, paramedic assistance and introductory physiological measuring skills. You investigate the foundations of paramedic practice and intermediate life support, and undertake a general study of knowledge and skills for Paramedic Science.

In your second year, you 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.

In all, you are required to spend a minimum of 1,500 hours working in a clinical practice environment where you gain invaluable practical experience of the paramedic role.

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.

In your final year we prepare you for qualification with modules on Managing Unscheduled and Complex Care, Leadership for Paramedic Practice and Transition to Qualified Paramedic.

“Simulations at University use Sim Man; you can feel for pulses, it talks and breathes so you can treat it as an actual patient. It gives you more confidence when doing your first patient assessments.” Shaun Kemp

Why Choose Us?

  • Benefiting from close collaboration with clinical partners, the course offers the key skills of the discipline, and the encouragement to reach out for your personal and professional goals.
  • It aims to instil a capacity for life-long learning, crucial in being able to adapt to the changes of this dynamic area of professional practice.
  • You spend a minimum of 750 hours of clinical practice in each year, alternating your placements with blocks of study.
  • Working with paramedics brings you face-to-face with the realities of the role, giving you a unique appreciation of the professional life ahead of you.
  • Innovative skills facilities include breathing and talking mannequins attached to monitors to replicate falling blood pressure and cardiac arrest, as well as equipment for procedures such as giving an injection, chest decompression, and caring for babies in an incubator.
  • We have a fully equipped ambulance on site so students can experience patient care in the back of a moving vehicle.
  • Be the first on the scene of a major road traffic accident in our simulated incident event and get first-hand experience of working with West Midlands Fire Service and other health care students.
  • Successful completion gives you eligibility to apply for registration with the HCPC.
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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
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Entry Requirements

A minimum of 280 UCAS tariff points. A typical offer would be BBC:

Level 2 qualifications which must be achieved PRIOR to application for all applicants except Access Students (Please see Access entry requirements below):
GCSE at Grade C or above in 5 subjects, must include English Language, Mathematics and one of health and social care, biology, chemistry, physics or science double/triple award.

Acceptable GCSE Equivalents:
  • BTEC 1st Certificate
  • BTEC 1st Diploma
  • Intermediate GNVQ
  • OCR Level 2 National Award
  • OCR Level 2 National Certificate

Acceptable English GCSE Equivalents:

  • Key Skills Communication - Level 2
  • Functional Skills English – Level 2

Acceptable Maths GCSE Equivalents:

  • Key Skills Application of Number- Level 2
  • Functional Skills Maths – Level 2


Leaving Certificate
A minimum of five Ordinary levels at Grade B3 or above, must include English Language, Mathematics and a Science subject.


Scottish qualifications
A minimum of five Intermediate Standard 2 or above, must include English Language, Mathematics and a Science subject.
Plus one of the following Level three qualifications which you may be working towards: (Except Access students - please see entry requirements below)
GCE A/A2 Level
280 UCAS points from a maximum of three A/A2 Level passes, which must include one of Health & Social Care, Human Biology, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Applied Science, Psychology or Social Science. A typical offer would be BBC. General Studies and Critical Thinking not accepted
GCE AS/A1 Level
280 UCAS points from a maximum of two AS/A1 Level passes, plus a maximum of two A/A2 Level passes at Grade C or above, which must include one of Health & Social Care, Human Biology, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Psychology or Social Science. General Studies and Critical Thinking not accepted.
GCE/AVCE Double Award in Health and Social Care
280 UCAS points from A*, A* profile or combined with UCAS points from a maximum of one GCE A/A2 level. General Studies and Critical Thinking excluded.
BTEC National Certificate (NQF) in Health and Social Care, Society, Health and Development, Science or equivalents
Acceptable only when combined with other Level 3 qualifications.
BTEC National Diploma (NQF) in Health and Social Care, Society, Health and Development, Science or equivalents
280 UCAS points from Distinction, Merit, Merit profile.
BTEC Extended Diploma (QCF) in Health and Social Care Society, Health and Development, Science or equivalents
280 UCAS points from Distinction, Merit, Merit profile.
BTEC Diploma (QCF) in Health and Social Care Society, Health and Development, Science or equivalents
280 UCAS points from Distinction*, Distinction* profile.
BTEC Subsidiary Diploma (QCF) in Health and Social Care Society, Health and Development, Science or equivalents
Acceptable only when combined with other Level 3 qualifications.
International Baccalaureate Diploma
Minimum Grade 25 points (282) required. Acceptable on its own or combined with other level 3 qualifications.
Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced diploma
Core plus combined other Level 3 qualifications.
Cache Diploma in Childcare and Education
Minimum Grade B required (300 tariff points).
The Open University K101 – An Introduction to Health and Social Care or equivalents
Completion of full year (transcripts will be required)
Irish Leaving Certificate
290 UCAS points from a maximum of 5 Highers at Grade B3 or above.
Scottish Qualifications – Advanced Highers
280 UCAS points from a maximum of 5 Advanced Highers at Grade C or above.
NVQ Level 4 in Health and Social Care
Full award required, plus GCSE English Language and Mathematics at Grade C or above.
14-19 DIPLOMAs in Society Health and Development
To be achieved in Advanced Diploma or Progression Diploma 300 UCAS points from an A Grade.
OCR National Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care or Science
280 UCAS points from an M2 Grade OCR National Diploma or National Certificate in Health and Social Care or Science Grade D. Acceptable only when combined with other Level 3 qualifications.
Access to HE Diploma in a Health and Social Care Subject
Full award (60 credits) of which a minimum of 45 must be at Level 3 including 24 at Merit or Distinction, of which a minimum of 18 must be in a Science or Health related subject and 15 at Level 2 which must include Mathematics and English Language GCSE equivalent if you do not already have these two subjects at GCSE.
Foundation Degree
Foundation degrees will be reviewed on an individual basis and will require a transcript of the content of the course.
Other qualifications:
Applicants’ qualifications that are not listed will be considered on an individual basis.
International candidates:
Those who meet residency/academic requirements of UK students but whose language is not English will need to hold IELTS with an overall score of at least 7.0.

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.

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

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 £9,000 per year
Sep 2017 FT 3 years £9,250 per year Apply via UCAS

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.

This course is not 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 one

Modules include:
Applied Anatomy and Physiology for Paramedic Science
15 credits
Assisting the Paramedic
15 credits
Introducing Physiological Measuring Skills
15 credits
Intermediate Life Support
15 credits
Foundations of Paramedic Practice
30 credits
Knowledge and Skills for Paramedic Science
30 credits

Year two

Modules include:
Evidence Based Paramedic Practice
15 credits
Understanding Unscheduled and Complex Care
30 credits
Knowledge and Skills for Paramedic Trauma Care
15 credits
Pharmacology for Paramedic Science
15 credits
Knowledge and Skills for Paramedic Coronary Care
15 credits
Knowledge and Skills for Gynaecology, Obstetrics and Paediatrics
30 credits

Year three

Modules include:
Research Methods
30 credits
Managing Unscheduled and Complex Care
30 credits
Leadership for Paramedic Practice
30 credits
Transition to Qualified Paramedic
30 credits

This course gives you a balance of both the academic, evidence-based approach to health care but also the hands-on, real-world training you will need to enter this vital and fast-moving part of the health service.

In your first year, you'll be getting the fundamental knowledge and skills for paramedic practice, whilst your second and third years are about both developing and enhancing those skills to allow you work flexibly in various settings.

You'll learn via a carefully-designed mix of academic and clinical modules and a rolling series of practical placements, with a mixture of lectures and project work. The course is designed to help you become a capable, competent practitioner steeped in the ‘6 Cs’ values of the NHS Constitution and become employable after you graduate.

You'll also develop your research, leadership and clinical reasoning capabilities, while discovering the legal and ethical framework of today's healthcare culture.

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.

Overseas opportunities

While there is no formal placement opportunity overseas; we'll support you find placements outside the UK if this is something you're interested in.

Some of our previous paramedic students have briefly studied in countries like Vietnam, for instance, while some students choose to get exposed to third world healthcare delivery via short trips to places such as Nepal, though these are not classed as part of your official training here.

Enhancing your employability skills

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.

After graduating from this undergraduate degree in Paramedic Science, you'll be eligible to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

The modern paramedic is faced with new challenges of working in a wide variety of situations traditionally staffed by other health professionals and our course reflects this changing picture. That means you'll be able to work in the NHS, as part of an ambulance crew, or in one of the many emerging roles; for example in a minor injuries unit.

The independent sector is also rapidly developing and actively seeks to employ HCPC paramedics; giving opportunities in areas across the UK and abroad. There is also a requirement for off shore installations and ships to have medics on board and UK paramedics are filling these posts and finding themselves working on oil platforms in the Middle East and ships ranging from pirate patrols to cruise ships.

If you want to stay closer to home, the TV and film industry, motorsport event and music festival organisers all have a need for paramedics to ensure that the crew and crowds remain safe and are well cared for in case of an emergency.


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.

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

The University will arrange pre-hospital care placements, with our placement partners across various localities and facilitate Hospital based placements within the West Midlands area.

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.

Hear more about the placement experience for paramedic science students in this video.

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+

Graduate jobs

This course will enable you to work confidently and effectively in a wide variety of contexts. You might start your post-registration career in the health service, but you might also want to start a career in the military or with independent ambulance services.

Our alumni are enjoying stimulating and rewarding roles as a paramedic for organisations such as the NHS, military, private sector, abroad and in the lifeboat service.

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  >>


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.


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

Skills Practice and Clinical Enhancement facility

The SPACE (Skills Practice And Clinical Enhancement) learning facility lets you further practice the skills taught in class, at your own pace and convenience.

It is fully stocked with the specialist items and equipment needed for procedures such as taking blood pressure, giving an injection, abdominal examination of a pregnant woman and caring for ill babies in an incubator.

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 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.

Meet our staff

Our teaching staff have extensive clinical and academic experience; including advanced practice and critical care which directly relates to your clinical development.

The dedicated paramedic team have not only worked in core areas of paramedic practice within the ambulance service, but also in advanced practice settings, emergency care and critical care - experience that they'll be able to share with you on the course.

We also have close ties with the College of Paramedic Practice, the professional body for the sector, and have a very active research culture.

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