Rehabilitation Work (Visual Impairment) - BSc (Hons) / BSc - Top-Up Degree

Course Overview

The essential course information

Download the course factsheet
BSc (Hons) / BSc
  • BSc (Hons) Part Time (2 years)
  • BSc Part Time (1 year)
School of Allied and Public Health Professions
City South

This course is being updated for September 2015 starts. The revised course may include modules on complex needs, learning disability, mental health, dementia, research skills and advanced practitioner issues. For more details please contact:

Peter Cooke, Admissions Tutor Tel: 0121 202 4223.

This qualification enables Rehabilitation Workers to progress to degree level, and also provides essential Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for the profession. Students who successfully complete the Foundation Degree in Rehabilitation Work (Visual Impairment) can progress to this top-up degree (designed as part-time study) to obtain a BSc or BSc (Hons) in Rehabilitation Work (Visual Impairment).

The course takes new students in September each year. Students will typically study over two years, with a maximum study length of four years. Rehabilitation Workers who wish to attend certain teaching sessions to gather knowledge but do not wish to study for the credits will be welcome to attend individual modules for a fee and treat their learning as CPD.

Assessment can include presentations, written assignments and viva voce assessments which will be linked to the student's current practice. Some attendance at the University will be necessary for the modules; the amount will depend on the module. The teaching for different modules can occur in the same week, enabling students to attend the University for a few days in the same week and study two modules within that week.

The degree can either be completed to BSc level, which requires 60 credits at level 6, or to BSc (Hons) level, which requires 120 credits at level 6.

The course is aimed at workers who are already qualified as a Rehabilitation Worker (Visual Impairment), or a Rehabilitation Officer in appropriate employment. The course predominately looks at how to improve and reflect on your current practices.

Key Facts

  • Our staff have many years of experience both from working at Birmingham City University and as rehabilitation workers in the statutory and voluntary sector including national charities. This course also includes experienced external teaching staff on some modules.
  • You must be working or linked with people who are experiencing sight loss, or have a visual impairment.

Download the Course Programme Specification

Entry Requirements

Candidates must hold one of the following:

  • Foundation Degree in Rehabilitation Work (Visual Impairment) – Full award
  • Diploma in Higher Education in Rehabilitation Studies (Visual Impairment) – Full award
  • Foundation Degree in Health and Social Care in Rehabilitation Studies (Visual Impairment) – Full award
  • Rehabilitation Officer Certificate – Certificate plus a portfolio of evidence (see below)
  • Mobility Instructor and Technical Officer Certificates – Both certificates plus a portfolio of evidence (see below)

Portfolio of evidence

A Portfolio route has been devised for applicants who are already working in a social care setting and do not meet the formal entry requirements. To follow this route you are still expected to possess GCSE Maths or equivalent.

The Portfolio, which should be submitted four weeks after interview, should include:

  • Two written testimonies (one of which must be from your employer) supporting your application.
  • One reflective piece that draws on your current practice (2,500 – 3,000 words)

All pieces of work should be endorsed by your line manager.

Additional requirements

  • If English is not your first language an IELTS score of 6.0 overall (or equivalent) is required.
  • You must have access to and be able to use broadband internet and email facilities, as a proportion of the course is delivered through these media.
  • You must have access to people of all ages with a visual impairment through appropriate employment such as Social Services Departments, Educational Establishments and Voluntary Sector Organisations which provide rehabilitation services.
  • Places are subject to a Criminal Records Bureau Disclosure and registration with the Independent Safeguarding Authority.

You should be aware that qualifications, personal statement, interview, references, written exercise and where appropriate portfolio all form part of the selection criteria for this course.

How to Apply

Please apply directly to the University.

Download the following documents to apply online:

Tel: +44 (0) 121 331 5500

Fees and Finance

Fees for students from the UK or EU countries?
Start Mode Duration Award Fees
Sep 2015 PT 2 years BSc (Hons) TBC
Sep 2015 PT 1 year BSc TBC

UK/EU fees to be announced shortly

Register your details to receive an email once we've announced our UK/EU fees for 2015/16.

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.

* The BSc (Hons) qualification is worth 120 credits; the BSc is worth 60 credits.

Individual modules, contributing to CPD qualifications, can be taken - the cost is £600 per single module.

Financial Support

Postgraduate students must find ways of funding their tuition fees and living costs rather than relying on government grants and loans. We offer further information on possible financial support.

Postgraduate Open Event

Our next Postgraduate Open Day is on Wednesday 22 April 2015 (2-7pm). Registration will open early 2015 but in the meantime, why not sign up to BCYou! and receive email updates about the University.

PG Open Evening

Our postgraduate open event offers you the chance to:

  • Meet with lecturers and other prospective students to discuss study options
  • Meet and chat with our current students
  • Obtain advice on fees and funding opportunities.

93 per cent of our graduates find work or further study within six months (DLHE). Explore your potential at our open evening.

Who is it for?

Whether you are coming to the end of your undergraduate studies, or have been in your job for a while and want to progress in your career or change direction, a postgraduate qualification gives you the opportunity to stand out from the crowd in a competitive market.

Our graduates are already shaping the world in a variety of high-profile roles – and you could be next. Read some of our inspiring case studies.

For more information, visit our Open Days page or call our Course Enquiries Team on +44 (0)121 331 5595.

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.

Course Modules

Single modules are spread over four non-consecutive days.

Double modules are spread over eight non-consecutive days.

Modules commencing September 2013

Advanced O & M incorporating working with children (single module)
This module will include learning and teaching in relation to Orientation and Mobility, addressing travel needs for people that have complex needs, teaching children and young adults and current adaptive technology

Evidence-based Practice (double module)
This module will enable the student to gain knowledge and competence in using evidence-based practice. This is a double module that will examine research methods in relation to rehabilitation practice.

Techniques and Approaches to Management and Supervision (single module)
This module includes coaching and motivational strategies. Content will include models of management and links will be strong to rehabilitation practice. Risk and negligence will form part of the module. This will enable the student to gain knowledge and competence in how to assess and minimise risk.

Modules commencing September 2014

Person-centred Practice and Psychology (double module)
This core module includes applying psychological and person-centered theories to practice enabling students to develop their knowledge and skills of enabling, empowerment and advocacy.

Working with People who have Complex Needs and Impairments (single module)
This core module includes examining and evaluating methods of effective communication with people who have additional and complex needs

Advanced Low Vision Training (including eccentric viewing) (single module)
This module will include lighting, contrast sensitivity and application of viewing strategies.

There is a minimum number of students required on each module for it to run. We reserve the right to not run a module if the minimum number of students on that module is not achieved.

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.


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.
Prospective students from outside the UK


For an overview of our postgraduate courses and a range of other information please download our Postgraduate Prospectus (6Mb).