Echocardiography PGCert

Year of entry

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Start date
11th September 2023
Delivery type
On campus
12 months part time
Entry requirements
A bachelor degree with a 2:2 (hons)
Full entry requirements
English language requirements
IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.5
UK fees
£4,250 (total)
International fees
£9,333 (total)

Course overview

The University of Leeds PG Cert Echocardiography is a theory based programme which teaches students the science and technology of ultrasound, fundamentals of Echocardiography and pathologies.

Demand for cardiac specialists currently outstrips supply, meaning you’ll be in a strong position in your future career. Echocardiography specialists work in a challenging and stimulating hospital environment, combining caring for patients with analytical problem solving to ensure excellent healthcare and patient support.

Echocardiographers use ultrasound technology to examine a patient’s heart. This is achieved using a transducer that sends ultrasound waves through the patient's chest to structures in the heart; valves, chambers and other vessels. The readings are sent to a machine that translates them into a live image, which can be recorded and used to diagnose a variety of conditions.

Make an impact

Our PG Cert Echocardiography course is designed to match the professional development needs of healthcare professionals working with patients with conditions such as: ischaemic heart disease, heart failure, adult congenital heart disease, cardiomyopathies and pericardial disease. It develops highly competent practitioners/ advanced practitioners who will make a real contribution to modern healthcare services.

Course highlights

  • Develop specialist clinical expertise underpinned by in-depth theoretical knowledge, including the opportunity to apply learning to work based issues in echocardiography and echocardiography pathology;

  • You will have the opportunity to acquire an in-depth theoretical knowledge and understanding of the underlying scientific and technological principles of diagnostic ultrasound and a critical understanding of current and emergent diagnostic imaging equipment and technology;

  • Learn the skills and knowledge which will enable you to perform a range of clinical examinations to high standards of diagnostic accuracy and safety;

  • Develop an understanding of the evidence and research base of the discipline;

  • Gain access to research cardiologists specifically researching into cardiac ultrasound;

  • Our research active cardiac physiologists will teach you on the course, which allows up-to-date and research-led teaching.

This specialist course will appeal to a range of healthcare professionals including Cardiac Physiologists, GPs, Cardiac Nurse Specialists, Physician Associates, Radiographers and Allied Health Professionals.

Course details

To gain the PG Cert qualification you will complete two modules:

The Fundamentals of Echocardiography module provides the opportunity to apply learning to work based issues in echocardiography. This module will provide you with a vehicle for theoretical knowledge and practical skill development and for the use of imaging in the investigation or treatment of a range of diseases or conditions. You will build your study and skill development around echocardiography which directly relates to your own working circumstances and previous experience.

Aspects covered include: critical evaluation of the clinical role of echocardiography & Doppler; evaluation and critical appraisal of service provision/relationship with patients/reporting and documentation; critical evaluation of the importance of imaging physics & instrumentation; The evaluation and appraisal of doppler physics, fluid dynamics & instrumentation; critical evaluation of recording methods; recognition of cardiac anatomy & physiology and cardiac functional parameters.

The Echocardiography Pathology module covers many areas of echocardiography pathology essentials for physiologists to operate in the clinical setting on a daily basis. This module is particularly relevant if you are a practicing cardiac physiologist or allied health professional who works within and are involved with cardiac patients requiring cardiac ultrasound.

Aspects covered include: mitral, aortic, tricuspid and pulmonary valve disease plus pericardial disease; cardiomyopathies; coronary artery disease associated with systolic LV function; MI and its complications; pulmonary hypertension and RV functional assessment; diseases of the aorta plus adult congenital heart disease.

This is a 9 month course with teaching during 2 x one week long intensive study weeks in Leeds, one in semester 1 and the other in semester 2. International students will require just one short term study visa because both study weeks are within a six month period. You will complete the rest of your study from your home country and submit your assessment online.

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.

Year 1 compulsory modules

Module Name Credits
Echocardiography Pathology 30
Fundamentals of Echocardiography 30

For more information and a full list of typical modules available on this course, please read Echocardiography PGCert in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

The course content is specifically designed to meet the learning outcomes set by accredited professional bodies, to support the requirement to attain both postgraduate and professional body exams. The curriculum content is designed to fit the British Society of Echocardiography (BSE) curriculum.

On completion of the course you will be able to:

  • critically evaluate and apply detailed subject knowledge and professional competencies which are underpinned by relevant research and evidence based practice.

  • develop effective and appropriate management plans for service users with chronic cardiac conditions and critically analyse the impact of echocardiography in adults.

  • work at an advanced level, within a multi-professional team to improve the outcomes of service users undertaking echocardiograms.

  • provide advanced practice within professional boundaries and the guidance of professional bodies, working at an advanced level within your scope of practice and recognising the need for lifelong learning.

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.


You will be assessed in a range of different ways. Some of these include:

  • You will be required to identify case studies that highlight current practice and critically evaluate the particular case in both an essay and presentation, thus applying theory to advanced practice.

  • The role of cardiac physiologists is expanding and you will be able to apply these changes to the cases discussed within practice and apply your advancing knowledge to the changing clinical environment.

  • The use of essay / presentation will allow students from differing professional backgrounds to choose a case studies. This will allow you to apply your own professional knowledge and experience.

  • Essays for the Echocardiography Pathology modules will be 3500 words in the format of a journal and your will be actively encouraged to submit for publication in subject specific journals.

  • Presentations will be 15 minutes with 5 minutes questioning.

  • Your knowledge will be assessed by a marked workbook for the Fundamentals of Echocardiography module.


Entry requirements

GCSE English language and Maths grade C/4 or above or equivalent

Relevant undergraduate degree in a related field including BSc (Hons) Clinical Physiology (Cardiology) or BSc (Hons) Healthcare Science (Cardiac Physiology) or equivalent e.g. HNC/D Medical Physics & Physiological Measurement (MPPM). Degree at 2:2 or greater.

Applicants would normally be from within a clinically related area but applications are welcomed from people without this type of experience. For those without experience it is advised that you contact the team for further advice prior to application.

English language requirements

IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.5. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for this programme may be able to study our postgraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

This pre-sessional course is designed with a progression route to your degree programme and you’ll learn academic English in the context of your subject area. To find out more, read Language for Science (6 weeks) and Language for Science: General Science (10 weeks)

We also offer online pre-sessionals alongside our on-campus pre-sessionals. You could study a part-time online course starting in January, or a full-time course in summer. Find out more about online pre-sessionals.

You can also study pre-sessionals for longer periods – read about our postgraduate pre-sessional English courses.

How to apply

Applications are considered on the basis of the applicant’s qualifications and experience. Applications may close before the deadline date if numbers accepted reach capacity.

Deadline for applications is 26 August 2023 for home applicants and 31 July 2023 for international applicants.

You will need:

A reference indicating managerial consent in support of your application including indication that you have experience in a suitably related clinical role. The reference should be provided on a headed document with either a stamp from the institution or an electronic signature.

You should demonstrate through the supporting statement how the course will be of direct benefit to your personal and professional development.

The ‘Apply’ link at the top of this page takes you to information on applying for taught programmes and to the University's online application system.

If you're unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Admissions policy

School of Medicine Taught Postgraduate Policy 2023

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UK: £4,250 (total)

International: £9,333 (total)

Read more about paying fees and charges.

For fees information for international taught postgraduate students, read Masters fees.

Part-time fees
Fees for part-time courses are normally calculated based on the number of credits you study in a year compared to the equivalent full-time course. For example, if you study half the course credits in a year, you will pay half the full-time course fees for that year.

Additional cost information

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 about additional costs.

Scholarships and financial support

Career opportunities

Cardiac disease is a major problem of the Western world. In the UK the demand for cardiac physiologists is greater than the number practising, ensuring a continued future for registered professionals.

The NHS employs the majority of cardiac physiologists. Some cardiac specialists work in the private sector and in GP surgeries. Opportunities arise for cardiac physiologists to work in industry as application specialists, supporting clients in using and troubleshooting equipment.

Cardiac physiologists work largely autonomously, making clinical decisions and providing clinical reports. As well as conducting diagnostic assessments and providing treatment. Cardiac physiologists roles can also include being a consultant, counsellor, advisor, educator, facilitator, researcher and therapist.

Alumni profile: Zoe Needham

Classes were interactive and encouraged you to really think about the physics involved in echocardiography, I now understand the science behind image optimisation!
Zoe Needham, Highly Specialist Cardiac Physiologist
Find out more about Zoe Needham's time at Leeds

Student profile: Jane Rogerson

I really enjoyed the wide range of speakers from congenital specialists, cardiology research fellows, technical specialists from industry, research lecturers and the course lecturers.
Find out more about Jane Rogerson's time at Leeds