Physiotherapy - (Pre-registration) - MSc
Currently viewing course to start in 2023/24 Entry. Switch to 2024/25 Entry
Our Physiotherapy (pre-registration) Master's degree will develop your clinical leadership knowledge and skills over 3 different practice areas; including musculoskeletal, cardio respiratory and neurology. You will learn in specially built clinical skills rooms, with specialist space so you can get the best training possible....
Course is Full for 2023/24 Entry
Applications for this course are now closed. To start in January 2025, applications will open after January 2024.
Our Physiotherapy (pre-registration) Master's degree will develop your clinical leadership knowledge and skills over 3 different practice areas; including musculoskeletal, cardio respiratory and neurology. You will learn in specially built clinical skills rooms, with specialist space so you can get the best training possible.
The MSc Physiotherapy (pre-registration) is a qualifying programme for graduates with a suitable and relevant first degree and gives you an accelerated route into the profession. It is not for those who have already completed a qualification in Physiotherapy.
What's covered in this course?
Development of key skills, including communication, research and professionalism will enable you to become a compassionate and competent practitioner who can deliver effective, evidence-based and quality-driven care.
This course is accredited by:
Why Choose Us?
- Funding - Allied health profession students will receive at least £5,000 a year in additional funding for maintenance and associated study costs. Download the funding FAQs
- You will study at the region’s largest provider of qualified health and social care professionals to the NHS, and upon successful completion of the MSc (Pre-registration) Physiotherapy confers eligibility to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council and The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy.
- You will build your knowledge through a combination of academic and practice placement learning opportunities, blocks of practice placements - covering both traditional and emerging environments across multiple specialities, will enable you to be work ready for a diverse range of career opportunities within the physiotherapy profession
- You will be taught in a small cohort by specialist lecturers who are practising physiotherapists and can provide a relevant, up-to-date research informed curriculum with real life case studies.
- We work in partnership with service users and carers to inform the design of the programme as well as involving them in aspects of delivery, enabling you to directly interact with, and learn from, service users and carers
- You will develop effective team working and communication skills through inter-professional learning, projects and placements enabling you to facilitate group education and to work within a multi-disciplinary team.
- You will learn about business and innovation alongside clinical and health promotion topics, helping you to become an effective practitioner within the ever-changing healthcare environment
- You will study in our latest development, the £41 million home for the School of Health Sciences, where you’ll have access to state-of-the-art facilities and cutting-edge resources including mock clinical environments and online simulation learning
- Student loan finance - have you already studied an undergraduate degree but would like to do a second one in Physiotherapy? You may be eligible for funding.
Join us for an on-campus Open Day where you'll be able to meet us in person. Booking for the next event isn’t open yet. Register your interest below and we’ll email you as soon as booking goes live.
Next Event: 29 June 2024
You must have an Honours degree with a 2:1 or above in a relevant discipline such as biological sciences, physiology, sports science, chemistry and psychology. This list is not exhaustive and applicants with other subjects will be reviewed on an individual basis.
Please note, we may need to ask to see your undergraduate degree transcript and in some cases, will request further details about the content of individual modules.
You must also have GCSEs in mathematics and English at grade C or above.
If English is not your first language, you must have an IELTS score of 7.0, with no element below 6.5.
DBS Disclosure: satisfactory enhanced Disclosure and Barring Scheme (DBS) report
If you have lived outside the UK for six months or more in the past five years, we will need to see a criminal record check from the country you were living in. For applicants living in the Republic of Ireland, we will need to see an Irish Garda clearance.
Occupational Health Clearance: satisfactory occupational health clearance
A strong interest in working as a registered Physiotherapist with a demonstrated understanding of the role and the skills required to be a registered practitioner. It may be advantageous to have a caring capacity.
Any offer of a place is subject to satisfactory performance at interview.
Accreditation for Prior (Experiential) Learning (AP(E)L)
- Accreditation for Prior (Experiential) learning (AP(E)L) is a process by which individuals can gain credit towards qualifications based on past achievements. This can be gained either through formal study - Accreditation for Prior Learning (APL) or by learning through experience - Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL). Claims for accreditation should, where possible, be made prior to enrolment in the programme. Claims cannot be considered after the first six weeks of each stage of the programme. The responsibility for making the claim and providing the evidence rests with the applicant
- It is important to be aware that any application for APL credit in respect of postgraduate studies must be based on prior learning or experience at a suitably advanced level. This means that it is not normally possible to accredit prior learning at level, even if the content may appear similar. Accreditation can be for entry onto a programme or credit for (s) within a programme
- There are University Regulations which govern the amount of credit which can be allowed for any award. Therefore, in some cases, credit cannot be given even though you can provide evidence of appropriate prior learning. Staff in the Academic Development Department (ADD) will be able to advise on this: Tel: 0121 331 7011
Fees & How to Apply
Annual and modular tuition fees shown are applicable to the first year of study. The University reserves the right to increase fees for subsequent years of study in line with increases in inflation (capped at 5%) or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament. View fees for continuing students.
Starting: Jan 2024
- Full Time
- 2 years
- £9,250 in 2023/24
- Applications Closed
Sorry, this course is not available to International students.
Applications for this course will open on 1 January 2023 and close on 31 May 2023. If you are invited to and attend an interview, you will be notified of the outcome by the 31 July 2023.
Access to computer equipment
You will require use of a laptop, and most students do prefer to have their own. However, you can borrow a laptop from the university or use one of our shared computer rooms.
You will receive £5 print credit in each year of your course, available after enrolment.
All essential field trips and associated travel costs will be included in your course fees.
Access to Microsoft Office 365
Every student at the University can download a free copy of Microsoft Office 365 to use whilst at university and for 18 months after graduation.
You will be able to download SPSS and Nvivo to your home computer to support with your studies and research.
Subscriptions to key journals and websites are available through our library.
You will require a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for this course. Your first DBS check is included in your fees.
Clothing and safety equipment (mandatory)
For practice learning opportunities, you will be expected to adhere to the BCU HELS Faculty Dress Code and/or the dress code for the relevant placement provider(s). This may involve the purchase of new items of clothing and/or shoes.
Placement expenses (mandatory)
There may be some costs for travel or temporary accommodation associated with placements. The NHS Learning Support Fund can help with these costs. Information about what the fund covers and eligibility criteria can be found online.
Excess printing (optional)
Once you have spent your £5 credit, additional printing on campus costs from 5p per sheet.
All module key texts will be in the University library, but in limited numbers. You may choose to purchase a copy.
You may wish to purchase subscriptions to additional journals and websites.
You may wish to join a union or professional body related to this course.
Specialist equipment (mandatory)
This course requires the purchase of a stethoscope. We will advise you on this at the start of the course. They cost approximately £80-100.
Accommodation and living costs
The cost of accommodation and other living costs are not included within your course fees. More information on the cost of accommodation can be found in our accommodation pages.
Applications for this course are now closed. To start in January 2025, applications will open after January 2024.
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 and also provides evidence of a good command of written English.
Here are the key areas you’ll need to address in order to be considered
Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest? Tell us about your commitment to studying physiotherapy.
Career as a physiotherapist
Demonstrate an awareness of the breadth of the role of the physiotherapist and the skills required of a registered practitioner. Show us that you have an interest in and the ability to work with people in a caring role.
Work experience, physiotherapy shadowing and employment history
It is vital that you talk about any paid or voluntary work experience that is relevant to physiotherapy, highlighting and reflecting on the skills and experience gained and how this will be useful in your chosen career as a physiotherapist.
School/college or university experience
Highlight skills gained at school/college/university, eg summer schools, mentoring activities, society roles.
Non-accredited skills or achievement
eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.
You should also 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.
All students studying this physiotherapy course will be expected to demonstrate the core values of the NHS Constitution. This will be assessed as part of the interview process (see below).
Your application will need to be supported by two references.
Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) and Occupational health
All offers made are subject to satisfactory health and enhanced criminal record checks.
After you accept the offer of a place, the link to download the Occupational Health form will be included in an email notifying you how to apply for DBS.
Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Checks
We expect all health and social care students to act in an honest and trustworthy manner and that your conduct, behaviour and attitudes are compatible at all times with your professional Code of Conduct. The Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC) set criminal record checks as a requirement for entry to educational courses leading to an application for professional registration.
Before you commence on the course we will judge your good character through an enhanced DBS clearance. You are required to pay for the cost of this DBS check. No convictions or cautions are considered as ‘spent’ under the ‘exceptions’ allowed under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, 1974. There is no time limit to some parts of the record.
Once you have fully enrolled on your course you must inform us about any involvement you have had with the Police or Social Services, including motoring offences.
If you have lived outside the UK for six months or more in the past five years, we will need to see a criminal record check from the country you were living in. For applicants living in the Republic of Ireland, we will need to see an Irish Garda clearance. You are required to pay for the cost of obtaining this clearance. The cost varies by country. More information on DBS including EU/overseas applications.
The Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC) set ‘good health’ requirements for entry to educational courses leading to professional registration. Good health is necessary to undertake practice and means that students must be capable of safe and effective practice with supervision throughout their course of study.
Expert advice to confirm good health will be received from the Occupational Health Department at Birmingham City University. If necessary, you will be invited for a medical examination and specialist advice may be requested. When students are required to attend Occupational Health for immunisations and vaccinations they will be asked to sign an agreement which states they will attend all required appointments. Failure to attend one or more appointment will result in additional costs to the student.
The health requirement is not a bar to registering for people with disabilities.
Once you have enrolled your course you are required to complete an annual declaration confirming that you continue to have at the point of re-enrolment.
The Interview process
Interviews are vital in ensuring your suitability for the programme in terms of your academic ability and understanding, evidence of oral communication skills, and motivation to pursue a career in Physiotherapy. It is also a way of finding out more about BCU and offers an opportunity to meet some of the programme team. Please allow sufficient time to participate in this event. Interview days will include both a group discussion and individual interviews and will involve input from clinical practice partners and service users.
Information about the group discussion
This will take the format of a group discussion based on a current and topical issue relevant to the healthcare sector.
Applicants will be randomly allocated to a group. All groups will contain physiotherapy and dietetic applicants.
Informal observation of the group will take place the interview team.
Information about the individual interviews
The individual interview will consist of a series of multiple mini-interviews. There will be 5 stations each with a different focus which may include:
- Profession specific knowledge, skills, behaviours and values (2 stations)
- Practical activity
- Understanding and application of NHS core values
- Reflection on group activity
Each station will be scored by the interview team.
Course in Depth
In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 180 credits):
This is one of the two inter-professional modules in the programme, delivered by HCPC registered healthcare professional tutors and other specialists from Birmingham City University. This module will emphasise the underpinning philosophies of inter professional collaboration and communication within health and social care, enabling shared learning across professional boundaries and facilitating the contextualisation of the knowledge, skills and behaviours needed to deliver optimal care within a dynamic healthcare environment.
This module is designed to enhance your prior knowledge of the structure and function of the human body, in order to build a foundation for physiotherapy practice with the emphasis on a client centred approach. Taught in parallel with neuromusculoskeletal integrated practice, the content of the module is focused around four main themes; structure and function, pathophysiology, movement analysis and exercise in health and rehabilitation.
This module is designed to prepare you for practice within the field of neuromusculoskeletal physiotherapy. Taught in parallel with the Foundations of Physiotherapy practice module which incorporates the study of musculoskeletal anatomy and physiology, this module will encourage you to integrate this knowledge to the assessment, treatment and management of common problems affecting the musculoskeletal system. The role of evidence based education and advice to clients and their carers as part of a management plan will be explored.
This module is designed to prepare you for practice within the field of cardio respiratory physiotherapy. A range of learning and teaching opportunities will enable you to develop a systematic understanding of the anatomy and physiology of the cardio respiratory system in both the non-diseased and disease states and understand the physical, psychological and social impact of acute and chronic cardiorespiratory pathology and dysfunction on the client and their relatives/carers.
This module is designed to prepare you for practice within the field of neurological physiotherapy by facilitating you to develop a reflective, problem- solving approach to the management of children and adults with neurological conditions. A range of learning and teaching opportunities will enable you to develop, integrate and synthesise your knowledge and understanding of neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, neuropathology and human movement to assess, plan, execute and evaluate rehabilitation programmes for individuals with a broad range of neurological dysfunction. The importance of clinical reasoning will again be emphasised (building upon skills introduced in previous modules) enabling you to select and apply appropriate therapeutic interventions underpinned by the principles of evidence based practice. Emphasis will be placed on evaluating practice through seeking evidence of personal and treatment effectiveness.
This second inter professional module will consolidate the links between your personal and professional development, whilst encouraging and enhancing a lifelong commitment to the concept of continuous quality improvement in a dynamic and ever-changing health and social care environment.
Through a flexible provision, you are encouraged to reflect critically upon your personal experiences as well and health and social care practice, and to appraise and apply concepts from the literature on best practice to issues of relevance for your profession and the needs of the service user.
This module builds upon your prior learning related to neuromusculoskeletal, respiratory and neurological physiotherapy and evidenced based practice gained from your year one modules and practice placements to further develop and integrate your knowledge, skills, behaviours and values with a focus on more specialist and complex, multi-pathological presentations. Attention is given to the further development and application of your clinical reasoning skills, the use of measurement and outcomes and understanding your role in Interprofessional collaboration throughout the client journey across a range of health and social care settings.
This double module forms the final component of your Healthcare Professional MSc. It provides you with the opportunity to complete a piece of work around a topic of interest in order to demonstrate competence in the planning, execution, analysis and evaluation of a Research Project, a Systematic Review, or an Audit or Service Evaluation linked to practice.
The focus of this module is on facilitating independent, critical study in your professional practice discipline. It will also serve those of you who wish to embark on Doctoral studies in the future. This module involves 400 hours of study.
You will complete a minimum of 1000 practice placement hours across the programme to meet the requirements of The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP), the professional body. This will be divided into weeks of practice placement time, with 12 being coordinated across the first year (2 X 6 week blocks) and 18 weeks (3x6 weeks) in the second year.
The purpose of the practice placement component of the programme is to enable and support students to develop the knowledge, skills and professional behaviour to manage a broad range of conditions relating to human movement through the practical application of academic learning. It should also enable the student to develop their understanding of the wide range of individuals who may benefit from physiotherapy and the diverse settings in which physiotherapy may be provided. Dedicated to providing students with a broad range of practice placement experience, the programme recognises and celebrates the differences in service configuration and the ways in which that the physiotherapy workforce is engaged. Therefore, the emphasis is on the overall profile of practice placement experience that each student undertakes.
For each placement, each student is assigned a named Practice Educator/s who is an HCPC registered Physiotherapist. The CSP supports a range of models of supervision, therefore the Practice Educator may be responsible for more than one student at any time. The Practice Educator will plan the placement and supervise the student(s) although other members of their team may contribute for maximum experience and learning.
The practice placement learning component of the programme has been developed with valuable input form stakeholders and in line with the Learning and Development Principles for CSP Accreditation of Qualifying Programmes in Physiotherapy (2015), HCPC Standards of Proficiency for Physiotherapists (2013) and the HCPC Standards of Education and Training (2014).
Practice placements will usually be based Practice Placement Providers in the greater West Midlands region, however, you may occasionally be allocated to other locations throughout the UK, depending on Practice Placement demand and availability. All placements that are external to the University will involve travel away from the main site. Depending on location, some placements may require you to seek more local accommodation, which may incur a cost. BCU cannot guarantee that you will be allocated as soon as you are eligible to progress to a Practice Placement, however, every effort is made to ensure that you are placed as soon as possible.
Placements are compulsory and if you do not successfully meet the professional capabilities for all four placements, you will not meet the requirements for successful completion of the programme.
You will be required to fund all costs relating to placements, for example travel to and from the placement site, car parking charges and accommodation costs (if you choose to seek more local accommodation).
Download course specificationDownload now
This postgraduate physiotherapy degree course will be delivered full-time over two years, with each year comprising 45 weeks of learning – this is required to incorporate your practice based placements.
There will be a minimum of 1,000 hours in practice placements, ensuring that you have sufficient opportunity to achieve the required practice competencies, such that successful completion will ensure you can practice as an autonomous newly qualified practitioner.
We'll embed professional development throughout the course, ensuring that you are committed to the ethos of lifelong learning, and are prepared to meet the continued professional development requirements for the profession
Student Consent to act as a model during the programme
The development of practical and clinical skills is integral to your development as a physiotherapist. Participation in interactive practical classes (which involves the teaching, learning and practice of such skills) is therefore essential to your education as a physiotherapist. Students are asked to act as ‘models’ or ’service users’ for these teaching and learning processes, both in the university and during practice placements. Acting as a model may, by necessity, involve the removal of clothing that enables adequate observation and/or examination of the body. Therefore, before commencing practical classes, all students are given detailed information regarding this issue and are required to sign the relevant section of a consent form.
There are some circumstances in which it is possible for us to arrange for some students to work only with students of the same gender, in classes, but it is not possible to provide separate classes for the genders or to screen off sections of rooms to separate the genders. Please be assured that the programme team is willing to make any reasonable adjustments in order to overcome or minimise any concerns over such issues.
The issue of consent will be explained in more detail during the induction week and revisited throughout the programme. If you feel that there is an issue which may have an impact on your ability or willingness to act as a model, please contact the programme leader to discuss this. We will make every effort to put mechanisms in place to address your concerns.
Uniform and Equipment
You may be required to wear a uniform for practice placements. You will be fitted for the required uniform on commencement of your course. Given that your programme involves placement opportunities with the National Health Service (NHS), we wish to bring standard NHS advice to your attention with respect to dress code. For purposes of minimising the spread of infection and of cross contamination, this (dress) code includes the requirement that a short sleeved uniform is worn in many hospital and clinic contexts. Should you wish to discuss any concerns in connection to this prior to starting the course, please contact the programme lead in the first instance.
Additional costs that students may incur related to their studies are outlined below;
Student Membership of The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
BCU encourages all students on the programme to become student members of the CSP. Students are responsible for paying the student membership fee. The fee for student membership of the CSP is currently £39 per year. For further information regarding student membership including benefits and fees, visit the CSP website.
Information regarding membership of the CSP will be provided during the induction week and so please do not join prior to attending the induction week.
Costs associated with obtaining DBS clearance are payable by you. If you have lived outside the UK for six months or more in the past five years, you will also need to obtain a criminal record check from the country you were living in. For applicants living in the Republic of Ireland, we will need to see an Irish Garda clearance. You are required to pay for the cost of obtaining this clearance. The cost varies by country.
Students are instructed to wait until they have started the course before purchasing any books, as individual module co-ordinators may make particular recommendations and students may also be able to borrow books as required the University library.
Printing and photocopying costs
In addition to any book purchases, the MSc Physiotherapy programme utilises a range of bespoke teaching including worksheets, support notes and quizzes. All of this material will be available in electronic format, through Moodle sites. You will also be expected to access additional literature sources (i.e. scientific journals, government publications), as part of your directed and self-directed learning. You may wish to print some of this teaching material and literature and take account of the additional cost of doing so.
Costs associated with Practice Placement
You will be required to fund all costs relating to placements, for example travel to and from the placement site, car parking charges and accommodation costs (if you choose to seek more local accommodation).
Health and Care Professions Council
This course is approved by the Health and Care Professions Council, and will give you eligibility to apply for registration if you successfully complete the course.
Enhancing your employability skills
Graduates will be eligible to apply for registration with the HCPC as a Physiotherapist. This will enable you to pursue careers within the NHS and private sector. Opportunities exist in hospitals, community settings as well as sports teams, uniformed services and the public or voluntary sectors.
Physiotherapists practice in a diverse range of settings and your placements will designed to maximise your exposure to a wide range of physiotherapy practice. This may include both health and social care settings based within the NHS, the private sector or voluntary sector, placements within industry or specialised educational settings.
Facilities & Staff
We have invested £340 million in our facilities, including an upgrade to our Skills and Simulation facilities at City South Campus. We boast up-to-date, innovative facilities that simulate the real situations that you may come across in the workplace. These resources are essential in offering you a hands-on introduction to health and social care practice.
This room can be used to practise a variety of skills but is primarily home to our Anatomage tables. An Anatomage table allows you to investigate anatomy digitally, from organs and muscles to skeletal forms and blood flow, the software includes real-life MRI scan data to help you develop your understanding of anatomy.
Our biomechanics laboratory is a long room with cameras mounted on the sides, and sensors in the floor. It’s used to record motion, evaluate people’s movements and analyse gait. It’s generally used by Sports courses and Biomedical Engineering.
Basic and Advanced Life Support
The Advanced Life Support area consists of four bays and was completed in the summer 2022. It is a high dependency unit with monitoring devices which can be attached to people or manikins with outputs shown on the digital screens. The Basic Life Support (BLS) area has dropdown tables which allow students to practice BLS on manikins. Manikins are connected wirelessly to tablets with software to allow the effectiveness of chest compressions to be measured. It’s intended that all Health, Sport and Life Science students will have access to BLS training going forward.
Sports Therapy Clinic and Practice Rooms
We have several small spaces for one-to-one practice and simulation of client sessions. We run a Sports Therapy Clinic on site for staff and students, where Sports Therapy students work alongside qualified staff to offer advice on injuries and sports massage.
The Fitness Suite
Designed specifically for sport students, the fitness suite contains industry-specification equipment, including a Technogym SkillMill curved treadmill and Olympic lifting platform, barbell and weight plates.
This large space is used for teaching and recreational purposes, and has a range of sports equipment from pre-marked courts, basketball hoops, score boards, and large nets to individual items such as mats and balls. It is also used for social events and clubs such as yoga by the Students’ Union.
Sports Physiology Research Room
This room contains an antigravity treadmill that allows the user to control how much of their body weight they are using (which is great for athletes who want to return to training following an injury), and a DEXA scanner which measures fat, muscle and bone density.
Human Physiology Laboratory
The Lab is home to The Altitude Centre - a selfcontained unit where the conditions can be specifically controlled, including temperature and air flow. This allows you to monitor how changes in environment can affect sporting performance.
Sports Therapy Rooms
We have a large, long room, as well as a smaller room, both with several therapy stations. It is one of the practical training facilities where you can practice working with clients in a larger group.
Nutrition Science Research Laboratory
This laboratory is used by staff or students doing specific projects such as analysing the chemistry of food in the later stages of their degree.
Nutrition Science Kitchen
Our kitchen has several workstations to allow you to wash, prepare and cook food. There are multi-coloured chopping boards (following food hygiene standard regulations) and a range of utensils and appliances. This space is used by a range of courses including Dietetics, Secondary Design and Technology and Sport. You may use this room to prepare certain meals for teaching basic cooking or baking skills to school children and exploring nutritional education, or protein high recipes for athletes.
Course Leader Msc (Pre-registration) Physiotherapy, Simulation Lead: School of Health Sciences
Jodie has been a HCPC registered Physiotherapist since 2006 after graduating from Oxford Brookes University. She has worked predominantly in NHS settings, completing the majority of her clinical work in London at Guy's and St Thomas’ NHS Trust. Jodie currently contributes to the teaching of all modules on the MSc Physiotherapy...More about Jodie