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FdA Health and Wellbeing (Nursing Associate) (Higher Apprenticeship)

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RS2725 Open Day (5) (2)
Institution code: 

Hospital Placement Locations: 
Various employers

Two years full-time. 

Typical start dates February and September 2022

Course Options: 
Professional Placement
Typical Offer: 

80 UCAS tariff points (or above), CDD (A-Level), MMP (BTEC), Pass A*-C (T Level). 

Please see Entry Requirements below.

Apprentice Nursing Associates (ANA) on the FdA Health and Wellbeing course at the University benefit from close working relationships with the lecturing team and other experts in the field of health and care from our practice partners in the NHS and other local health and care providers.

  • As an ANA you will benefit from placements throughout your course to develop your practical skills and gain experience in a practice setting.
  • You will have the opportunity to regularly meet and talk to people in the industry. This might be as a guest lecturer or on a practice placement.   
  • Graduates can progress to a range of careers outside of adult nursing including further training for midwifery, health visiting and school nursing.
  • Benefit from excellent links with local hospitals and the NHS.
  • Our brand new Health and Wellbeing building with dedicated specialist nursing facilities.



The University of Suffolk has a great deal of experience in running Foundation Degrees as well as a number of pre-registration programmes including  nursing, midwifery, radiography and social work programmes and this experience, alongside with significant input from employers, has informed the structure and content of this new programme.

A key aspect is the partnership between the University and local health care providers within the NHS, Private, Voluntary and Independent Sectors.  This partnership enables you to learn whilst in employment combining classroom based theory and practical experience from work-based learning.

Apprentice Nursing Associates (ANA) on the FdA Health and Wellbeing course at the University benefit from close working relationships with the lecturing team and other experts in the field of health and care from our practice partners in the NHS and other local health and care providers. You will benefit from the fact that academic staff here get to know every student as an individual, and will support you through your academic journey with us.

Clinical Skills

Studying at the University of Suffolk is an excellent choice for someone looking for a fulfilling and rewarding career. You will be made to feel welcome from the first day by friendly, enthusiastic and committed staff. You will be studying in a modern learning environment, being taught by experts.

Our Pre-Registration ANA course sits within the School of Health and Sports Science and has the 6 C’s of nursing (Department of Health and National Health Service Commissioning Board, 2012) and the NHS Values (Department of Health, 2015) at its heart. The School of Health and Sports Science is committed to embedding these values into everything we do.

Base sites are used for clinical practice placements and some theoretical sessions. Clinical placements offer the opportunity to gain a variety of practice experiences, typically offering the following areas/specialities:

• Primary Care
• Acute wards in NHS Trust Hospitals
• Specialist care areas
• Out-patient departments
• Placements in the voluntary and private sector

While in practice you will be allocated practice supervisors and a practice assessor.  Practice placements are comprised of a variety of shift patterns; long days (12.5 hours), early, late and night shifts.  At times you will also be expected to work weekends to ensure that you spend the maximum amount of time with your allocated practice supervisors and a practice assessor. 

Further information about the University's relationship with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) is available in the PSRB register


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Course modules

Full downloadable information regarding all University of Suffolk courses, including Key Facts, Course Aims, Course Structure and Assessment, is available in the Definitive Course Record.

Introduction to Professional Practice (Mandatory)

This module introduces you to the experience of Higher Education (HE) and your preparation for clinical practice to develop a sound foundation on which to develop key literacy and study skills. These will include information technology, problem solving and reflection. These skills will give you time management and organizational skills, with the aim of raising your confidence to enable development of personal qualities, beliefs and values associated with developing professional responsibility to meet the NMC (2018) Code of Professional Practice. You will be introduced to evidence-based practice. The module will also facilitate opportunities for your personal and professional development, including self-awareness, resilience, and working within teams.

Human Anatomy and Physiology (Mandatory)

This module aims to provide students with an introduction to human anatomy and physiology. The emphasis of this module will be based upon normal biological function. It will enable students to have a clearer understanding of anatomy and physiology and will therefore aid the development of problem-solving skills in practice.

The emphasis of this module will be on human structure, function, and homeostasis as a basis for physiological health to enable you to gain an appropriate understanding of human processes in health and illness. These disciplines are fundamental to your ability to make informed, rational assessments of an individual's needs. The module aims to provide students with a sound knowledge base from which to build upon throughout the Foundation Degree programme.

Inclusive Communication for Professional Practice (Mandatory)

This module is designed to enable students to respect and gain understanding of the changing nature of health and social care roles and boundaries to assist in gaining skills in functioning as effective members of a team.  It will also develop and enhance the fundamental communication and interpersonal skills required to facilitate effective therapeutic relationships with a diverse range of service users across the lifespan within health and social care settings. You will develop an understanding of personal and team communication to enhance and contextualise safe, effective care delivery with the service user at the centre.

Foundations of Acute and Long-Term Conditions (Mandatory)

The changing levels of ill health within the population pose a challenge to health workers who care for the needs of individuals and communities. This module recognises the need for sound underpinning knowledge to address these challenges.  It will introduce the student to fundamental bio-psycho-social theories of ill health. The students will be exposed to new learning opportunities, which will facilitate and extend previously learned core knowledge, skills, values, and attitudes, which form the basis of their current practice.

Practice Learning 1 (Mandatory)

The practice learning element of the FdA Health and Wellbeing is an integral and essential part of the programme. This element of the programme will be supported by the theoretical concepts introduced and discussed during the theory component of the course.

The practice learning aspect of this programme is designed to facilitate the student in exploring how the theoretical components of the course relate to practice. The student will be expected to use these theoretical ideas to consider and develop their practice within their specific workplace. A practice learning book accompanies this module which outlines the tasks and activities that the student must complete in line with the policies and procedures of their work setting ensuring that equality of opportunity is always maintained.

Supporting the Safe Management of Medicines (Mandatory)

The purpose of this module is to enable students to develop an awareness of safe medicines management and to enhance their skills to support safe administration of medicines in a variety of settings. The module will provide students with knowledge and understanding of professional guidelines, legislation and ethical issues which impact on medicines administration.  The roles and responsibilities of the student in relation to the inter-professional team concerning safe medicines administration will be explored as well as the views of and potential impact on, the service user. 

Holistic Health and Wellbeing Across the Lifespan (Mandatory)

This module aims to introduce you to the changing health and social care landscape to enable appreciation of the challenges faced by society in supporting the health and wellbeing of the population. It aims to raise awareness of health inequalities and the social determinants of health whilst encouraging you to consider how these can be addressed within practice through promotion of health and wellbeing as a nursing associate.  It will also enable you to apply a holistic approach to care, taking into consideration physical, psychological, cognitive, emotional, and cultural needs across the lifespan. 

Research and Leadership for Professional Practice (Mandatory)

This module considers the role of research in underpinning health provision. The nursing associate needs to be able to describe the principles of research and understand how research findings are used to inform evidence-based practice. The role of developing leadership skills will also be explored to apply research informed evidence-based practice to ensure nursing associates are able to confidently supervise, support and motivate others through promoting reflection within the practice environment. This is to enable them to act as an ambassador for their profession to promote public confidence in health and care services through their review of the quality of care provided.

Practice Learning 2 (Mandatory)

The practice learning element of the FdA Health and Wellbeing is an integral and essential part of the programme. This element of the programme will be supported by the theoretical concepts introduced during the course. The practice learning aspect of this programme is designed to facilitate the student in exploring how these concepts and ideas relate to both theory and practice. The students will develop a reflective journal to explore their professional development in practice which considers the application of theory learnt in the second year, as well as the development of the required clinical skills within the PAD document.

Career opportunities

Graduates of the Foundation degree in Health and Wellbeing will be well placed to take advantage of a variety of career openings which exist in the health and care arena.

This programme is offered as a stand alone qualification and as part of the Higher Apprenticeship, and is mapped to the Assistant Practitioner Standard, enabling graduates to work as Assistant Practitioners, Senior Support Workers or Band 4 workers in the NHS, Private, Voluntary or Independent Sector. 

These are workers that deliver care to service users under the direct supervision of a registered practitioner, with a level of knowledge and skill beyond that of the traditional health and care support worker.  They take some tasks from registered professionals and may work across many of the traditional professional boundaries.   

Graduates completing the FdA in Health and Wellbeing will be eligible to apply to study on the Degree Apprenticeship Mental Health or Adult Nursing leading to registration.       

On graduation you will be eligible to register with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). This provides you with an extremely marketable and internationally recognised professional qualification, giving you the opportunity to work at home and abroad.

On qualification, local employment prospects are excellent. Equally, many of our graduates secure employment with prestigious trusts such as Addenbrookes, Royal Papworth Hospital, St. Thomas's Hospital and the Royal London Hospital.

ANAs are lifelong learners who seek to develop their skills and interests in a range of specialisms. Our graduates increasingly go on to study at Masters level, benefiting from the University of Suffolk's flexible Continuing Professional Development (CPD) provision.

Fees and finance

This Higher Apprenticeship is offered only to students undertaking the course as part of their employment. Apprenticeship training will therefore be funded directly by employers or by employers in partnership with Government. Apprentices will not be required to pay any tuition or course fees, and will not be eligible for any Student Finance England maintenance support.

Please see our Apprenticeship pages for more information about apprenticeship funding.

Entry requirements

Course options

Placements will be planned to provide opportunities to work in different settings and contexts with a variety of multi-professional teams in order to foster a positive practice learning experience. Students will have a range of placements throughout the course that reflect the varied working environments available to a Nursing Associate. The placement process will be informed by the NMC requirements of 1150 practice hours.


Senior Lecturer in Health Apprenticeships

Lecturer in Health Apprenticeships

Lecturer in Health Apprenticeships

Senior Lecturer in Operating Department Practice

Lecturer in Health Apprenticeships

Apprenticeship Practice Educator - Health and Sports Sciences (Assistant Practitioners and Nursing Associates)

Apprenticeship Practice Educator - Health and Sports Sciences (Assistant Practitioners and Nursing Associates)

Practice Education Facilitator and Associate Lecturer

Facilities and Resources

View the below video to find out more about our brand new Health and Wellbeing building.