Nursing Associate (Apprenticeship) FD

Year of entry

2024 course information
Start date
February 2025
Delivery type
On campus
24 months full time
Work placement
Typical A-level offer
3 A-level passes excluding Critical Thinking and General Studies or equivalent eg Level 3 Health/Social Care qualification.
Full entry requirements
Available to UK residents only

Course overview

Nursing Associate (Apprenticeship) FD

The Nursing Associate is a support role developed by the NHS. Nursing associates will work alongside existing healthcare support workers and fully-qualified, registered nurses to deliver hands-on care for patients.

The two-year foundation degree allows you to gain the technical knowledge, practical experience, and functional skills needed for both the nursing associate role, and your long-term career. The course is taught through a mix of academic learning at the University, days in practice at your existing place of work, and placement days in a variety of health and care settings.

You’ll be taught by experienced staff who are dedicated to helping you with all aspects of your progress. The course is designed to support your development as a nursing associate and to enable you to apply your learning directly to your work.

When you have completed the course, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge, understanding, skills, attitudes, and behaviours relevant to your role as a nursing associate, and will work to a nationally recognised code of conduct.


This apprenticeship programme is accredited by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). Apprentices who successfully complete the apprenticeship will be able to register with the NMC.

Lifelong Learning Centre support

We know that as a mature and/or part-time student, you may face unique challenges including balancing academic study with family and employment commitments. Whatever your concerns or questions, the Lifelong Learning Centre offers free, specialised and impartial guidance, advice from pre-application through to graduation and beyond.

We’ll welcome you into the LLC community, where you’ll be taught by our friendly and supportive staff, who are experienced in working with adult learners. The nature of the course allows you to fit study alongside your work and family commitments, and we’ll support you in doing so successfully.

Specialist facilities

You’ll have access to four specialist research and student libraries on campus. As a Lifelong Learning Centre student, you’ll have access to dedicated study and social spaces that are designed to be welcoming and accessible. The areas in Beech Grove House and the Marjorie and Arnold Ziff Building offer computer access, reference books and the space to socialise and work with your peers.

Course details

Learning outcomes for this course address the six key standards of proficiency set out by the Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC). These are:

  • being an accountable professional

  • promoting health and preventing ill-health

  • providing and monitoring care

  • working in teams

  • improving safety and quality of care

  • contributing to integrated care

There is a strong emphasis on your development of clinical practice, coupled with acquiring skills for successful study at university. Half of each year of the course is clinically based, and teaching across modules is designed to help and support you in your learning.

This course is delivered as an apprenticeship, meaning applicants must be employed in a suitable job role with time allocated within their contracted hours to work towards the apprenticeship content.

To achieve this apprenticeship, you must undertake and log a minimum of 2300 learning hours (as defined by the NMC) with:

  • at least 20% (460 hours) spent within academic study (university)
  • and 20% (460 hours) spent at external placements.

An individual learning plan for these hours will be discussed with you and your employers at the start of the course to ensure it works flexibly around personal and professional commitments.

University study will be delivered in weekly block teaching in a hybrid model of on campus/remote delivery.

Course structure

The list shown below represents typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our terms and conditions.

For more information and a full list of typical modules available on this course, please read Nursing Associate (Apprenticeship) FD in the course catalogue

Year 1 compulsory modules

Module Name Credits
Assessment in Practice 1 60
Professional Practice 1 20
Leadership and Care Delivery 20
Anatomy and Physiology for Clinical Practice 1 20

Year 2 compulsory modules

Module Name Credits
Anatomy and Physiology for Clinical Practice 2 20
Assessment in Practice 2 60
Professional Practice 2 20
Work based Research Project 20

Learning and teaching

On this course you’ll be taught by our expert academics, from lecturers through to professors. You may also be taught by industry professionals with years of experience, as well as trained postgraduate researchers, connecting you to some of the brightest minds on campus.


Assessment is an important way of enabling you to learn actively and feedback from tutors supports this process.

Our range of assessment methods help you to work to your strengths and to develop numerous transferable skills that can be applied to many contexts. Assessment methods may include: essays, journals, real life case studies, presentations, creative portfolios, and timed assessments.

Entry requirements

A-level: 3 A-level passes excluding Critical Thinking and General Studies or equivalent eg Level 3 Health/Social Care qualification.

GCSE: GCSE English and Maths at grade C/4 or above (or equivalent). We welcome applications from students with a wide range of qualifications.

Alternative qualification

Access to HE Diploma

60 credits overall, with 45 credits at Level 3, of which 30 must be at Merit and 15 at Pass.


Merit, Merit, Pass


T Level in Health – Merit

T Level in Healthcare Science - Merit

Alternative entry

Alternative Entry Scheme for mature applicants

If you are a mature applicant and you don't have the required Level 3 or GCSE qualifications, you can complete our Alternative Entry Scheme (subject to meeting the eligibility criteria for the scheme). As part of this, you may be asked to take tests in English and maths and to write an essay.

The Higher Apprenticeship requires that applicants who do not already hold GCSE English and maths at grade C/4 (or equivalent) will need to achieve Level 2 English and maths prior to taking their end-point assessment. Contact the Lifelong Learning Centre for more information.

English language requirements

IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.5 in any component.


UK: To be confirmed

The fees for this course are paid by your employer through the apprenticeship levy.

Please note you will not be eligible for a tuition fee loan from the Student Loan Company.

There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more on our living costs and budgeting page.

Scholarships and financial support

You will not be eligible for a tuition fee loan from the Student Loan Company. Explore other sources of financial support.


For guidance on applying to a Lifelong Learning Centre course, visit our admissions guidance page.

You must be currently employed in a healthcare setting in a levy-paying or non-levy paying institution and have the support of your employer. Applications for this course should be made via your line manager in the first instance. Employers should contact the Lifelong Learning Centre for more information.

The selection process will include an interview with your employer and the Lifelong Learning Centre to assess suitability. If you’re entering through the Alternative Entry Scheme, you will be sent details after your interview.

Once you’re made an offer you’ll be asked to engage with Kickstart. This is a pre-entry programme designed to ease your move into studying at the University of Leeds.

Admissions policy

University of Leeds Admissions Policy 2025

This course is taught by

Lifelong Learning Centre

Contact us

Nursing Associate (Apprenticeship) FD admissions

Telephone: +44 (0)113 343 3212

Career opportunities

A qualification from the University of Leeds counts: our graduates are highly valued by employers. When you complete your degree programme you will also become part of a network of highly employable graduates.

A University of Leeds degree will make you very attractive to employers and enhance your career prospects. Graduates of this course will have a solid platform for career development and further study. The course has been developed to meet workforce development needs identified by Healthcare trusts in the Yorkshire and Humber region. As a Foundation Degree graduate, you would be able to assume responsibility to deliver delegated elements of protocol-based health and social care and undertake clinical work in areas previously only within the remit of registered healthcare providers.

Careers support

Impartial information, advice, and guidance is available to all students enrolled on courses taught by the Lifelong Learning Centre. We have fully qualified careers advisers who offer employability support, advice on job applications, CVs, and preparation for interviews, together with guidance on career options following your graduation.

Study abroad and work placements

Clinical placements are required to meet Nursing and Midwifery Council requirements.