Programme Specification

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1 Programme Specification GENERAL INFORMATION Awarding Institution//Body Teaching Institution Validated/Franchised (if appropriate) Programme accredited by (including date of accreditation) Programme approved by (including date & minute number of Senate) Final award Programme title UCAS code (if applicable) Subject Benchmark Statement Intended level of completed programme (in line with FHEQ) Duration of programme & mode of study University of Bath University of Bath n/a The Pharmacist Prescribing Programme (PA50249) is accredited by the General Pharmaceutical Council (for three years to April 2014) Modular Programme in Advanced and Specialist Practice: Initial Approval: Department Courses Committee: Faculty Board of Studies for Science: Senate: (M12875 (2)) Full Approval: Faculty of Science Teaching and Quality Committee: 25 March 2009 Programme Approval Panel: 29 June 2009 Postgraduate Certificate in Advanced and Specialist Healthcare Practice Postgraduate Diploma in Advanced and Specialist Healthcare Practice MSc in Advanced and Specialist Healthcare Practice Standalone CPD Modular Programme in Advanced and Specialist Practice n/a n/a Level 7: Masters degree Part time distance learning CPD programme. Minimum period of study is six weeks (for one 3-credit unit); maximum period of study leading to an award (from date of first unit enrolment) is 10 years. Date of Specification preparation/revision 17 July May 2012, , Applicable to cohorts (e.g. for students commencing in September 2007 or 2007/ /09) For students commencing September Synopsis and academic coherence of programme The Modular Programme in Advanced and Specialist Practice is a modular, M-level, programme which is designed to meet the career-long professional development needs of pharmacists and a range of other health practitioners who are interested in enhancing their clinical and practice expertise to support their development for advanced and senior roles within their respective health economies and systems. Page 1

2 Participants enrol on discrete units within the programme and on completion of the units receive credit at the M-level. When they have accumulated sufficient credit for an award they may apply for one of the awards, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or MSc in Advanced and Specialist Healthcare Practice. Each unit comprises a blend of web-based learning resources and online discussion events designed to support the development of online communities of practitioners. Occasional face to face events support networking between professionals and enable the students to engage with ideas and concepts at the forefront of service delivery. Whilst studying units on the programme, participants will explore and engage with a range of current and leading edge practices, policies, and developments in science, and critically evaluate their potential and/or impacts on service delivery for patient care. The programme has the following underpinning principles: Assessment orientated to achieving real-work, practice-based improvements Embracing continuing professional development through reflective practice Grounded in gathering, evaluating and using evidence to inform decision making Orientated to governance, risk and patient-safety agendas Educational aims of the programme The Programme aims to develop advanced pharmacist and other healthcare practitioners through the provision of a flexible framework for learning in the areas of research, leadership, professional practice, management and education. As such the programme will bridge the clinical and practice based role with key theories, policies and evidence for leading change and enhancement of healthcare practice. Intended learning outcomes (including teaching, learning and assessment methods, specifying those applicable for interim awards where appropriate) Knowledge & Understanding: 1. Identify, critically review and manage issues of governance, risk and safety in the provision of patient care (T/F/A); (PgCert, PgDip, MSc) 2. Critically evaluate evidence and use appropriately to inform all decision making processes (T/F/A); (PgCert, PgDip, MSc) 3. Evaluate, critically review, commission and make sense of research (T/F/A; (MSc) Teaching and Learning Methods: Web based study guide Learning in practice Online synchronous and asynchronous discussions Face to face workshops Assessment: Portfolio Work-based project Dissertation (MSc) Intellectual Skills: 4. Critically evaluate, challenge and manage change in their clinical / practice context (T/F/A); (PgCert, PgDip, MSc)_ 5. Critically review and manage complexity in their clinical / practice context (T/F/A); (PgCert, PgDip, MSc) 6. Design and conduct audit and research in a practice context (T/F/A); (MSc) Teaching and Learning Methods: Web based study guide Page 2

3 Learning in practice Online synchronous and asynchronous discussions Face to face workshops Assessment: Portfolio Work-based project Dissertation (MSc) Professional Practical Skills: 7. Develop and support others to work effectively and pragmatically in the practice context and critically review the impacts of such development (T/F/A); (PgCert, PgDip, MSc) 8. Foster and develop high level leadership skills and effective inter-professional working (T/F/A); (PgCert, PgDip, MSc) 9. Contribute to developments in their therapeutic specialism or area of practice at an advanced level and critically review its efficacy and use (T/F/A); (MSc) Teaching and Learning Methods: Web based study guide Learning in practice Online synchronous and asynchronous discussions Face to face workshops Assessment: Portfolio Work-based project Dissertation (MSc) Transferable/Key Skills: 10. Reflect, plan and act to develop their individual knowledge and skills to perform at an enhanced level in practice and to reflect on and evaluate their own practice (T/F/A); (PgCert, PgDip, MSc) 11. Communicate effectively at an appropriate level to a variety of stakeholders (T/F/A); (PgCert, PgDip, MSc) 12. Identify and lead innovation and service development relevant to their practice specialism or area of practice and evaluate its impact (T/F/A); (MSc) Teaching and Learning Methods: Web based study guide Learning in practice Online synchronous and asynchronous discussions Face to face workshops Assessment: Portfolio Work-based project Dissertation (MSc) Structure and content of the programme (including potential stopping off points) Programme Format and Structure The programme provides learning which meets the needs of mid-career and senior practising pharmacists and other senior health professionals. The programme is fully modular and places particular emphasis on the development of advanced skills for leadership, research and practice. It contributes to the development of senior pharmacists and Page 3

4 other health professionals who are working toward consultant level or equivalent posts. Students may study individual units for their CPD. When they have accumulated sufficient credit for an award they may apply for one of the awards, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or MSc in Advanced and Specialist Healthcare Practice. On successful completion of each individual unit of study the student will be presented with a Certificate of Completion which confirms that they have attained credit at the M level. To receive the award of postgraduate certificate students must successfully complete 30 credits worth of study. Students must demonstrate satisfactory completion of programme level learning outcomes 1,2,4,5,7,8,10 and 11. To receive the award of postgraduate diploma students must successfully complete 60 credits worth of study. Students must demonstrate satisfactory completion of programme level learning outcomes 1,2,4,5,7,8, 9,10 and 11. To receive the award of MSc students must successfully complete 90 credits worth of study, which must include 30 credits worth of work which demonstrates the design and implementation of small scale research. The nature and area of the research project(s) will be determined after discussion with the Director of Studies. Students must demonstrate satisfactory completion of programme level learning outcomes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12. Scheme of Study The programme adopts an integrated modular approach to enable flexibility for learners to start at a number of different times during the year and to work on discrete projects over longer periods of time. For induction purposes there are two main starting points for joining the programme, October and March. However, students may opt to start at different times dependent on the programme schedule and in consultation with the Director of Studies. All students starting units on the programme will complete a mini online induction to introduce them to the programme Virtual Learning Environment and learning resources, introduce them to the community of other learners on that unit and facilitate their conversations with their Study Adviser. Students who are making an APEL claim, or have been away from learning for a while or who wish to develop their general skills prior to undertaking their first unit are encouraged to start their learning with a 3 credit unit PA50275 Advanced Professional Development 1. This unit will provide an introduction to returning to learning, support their induction to the programme and help them to plan their learning on the programme. This will be supplemented by online resources, supporting flexibility for learners to start in the CPD mode at various times during the year. Most units are 12 credits in value and the duration of these units is 5 months from when the student enrolled. Each unit is normally assessed by a significant, practice-facing project aimed at developing skills and knowledge for advanced practice. The duration of the unit allows sufficient time for the identification, development and implementation of the practice-based projects (including attainment of the necessary approvals for the work, specifically governance approvals). Participants can also select up to three 6 credit units (or the 18-credit unit in Pharmacist Prescribing Programme) from those units already offered in the advanced programmes. For example, those following the prescribing route may choose to pick smaller units in therapeutic areas which impinge on their area of prescribing practice, such as GI Therapeutics, Cardiovascular Therapeutics or Respiratory Therapeutics; and units which provide a broad overview of topics such as Minor Ailments, Special Groups and Public Health. These units will be of 12 weeks duration from the date of enrolment. A schedule of available units will be published annually to enable students to plan a coherent study programme and to fit their study more easily around their practice and work commitments. When students have completed over 18 credits (if considering registration for the Pg Certificate) and over 42 credits (if considering registration for the Pg Diploma) they will be counselled about joining a particular award route. For those wishing to complete a Pg Certificate or Diploma, and who have completed the initial 3 credit unit, will be able to complete a final 3 credit unit PA50276 Advanced Page 4

5 Professional Development 2 which provides a summation of their development as an advanced practitioner during their studies on the programme. Routes through the programme: Modular Programme in Advanced & Specialist Practice Join programme and complete Individual units For CPD After 18 credits discuss Progress with Study Adviser Complete 30 credits of study at the M-level Postgraduate Certificate After 42 credits discuss Progress with Study Adviser Complete study and leave with award Complete A further 30 credits of study at the M-level Postgraduate Diploma Complete 30 credits of small scale research projects at the M-level MSc Complete study and leave with credit Students who complete units and leave with credit only are permitted to re-register on the programme and undertake other units of study until they have attained enough credit to register for a specific award (if they wish). There are a number different Study Pathways through the programme, for example: Example of a typical Pg Certificate in Advanced and Specialist Healthcare Practice 6cr Example of a typical Pg Diploma in Advanced and Specialist Healthcare Practice 6cr 6cr Example of a typical MSc in Advanced and Specialist Healthcare Practice 6cr AND OR 18cr 30cr 6cr Page 5

6 Programme Content The list of units available on this programme is as follows: PA50269 Leadership in health 12 credits PA50270 Research design and methods for practice 12 credits PA50271 Managing in health 12 credits PA50272 Supporting education, training and development in health contexts 12 credits PA50273 Advanced Clinical Practice 1 12 credits PA50274 Advanced Clinical Practice 2 12 credits PA50275 Advanced Professional Development 1 3 credits PA50276 Advanced Professional Development 2 3 credits The following units are designated as individual research project units and help students to attain learning outcomes 3, 6 and 12 which are required for completion of the MSc award: PA50277 Master s Research Project and Dissertation 30 credits PA50278 Masters short project 1 (18 credits) PA50279 Masters short project 2 (12 credits) In addition, units from the Advanced Programmes in Pharmaceutical Practice and Therapeutics may also be studied, subject to availability: PA50186 Cardiovascular Therapeutics 6 credits PA50187 Gastro Intestinal Therapeutics 6 credits PA50188 Oncology 6 credits PA50190 Public Health Pharmacy 6 credits PA50199 Respiratory Therapeutics 6 credits PA50200 Mental Health 6 credits PA50201 Endocrinology 6 credits PA50202 Neurology 6 credits PA50216 Medicines Management in General Practice 6 credits PA50217 Medicines Management in the NHS 6 credits PA50221 Prescribing for Special Groups 6 credits PA50223 Surgery 6 credits PA50232 Palliative Care 6 credits PA50233 Infections 6 credits PA50235 Management of Minor Ailments 6 credits PA50240 Using Evidence in Practice 6 credits PA50249 Pharmacist Prescribing Programme 18 credits In addition, the following CPD units may also be studied, subject to availability: PA10295 Medicines Management in General Practice for Pharmacy Technicians 6 credits PA50296 Drug Safety 6 credits Units offered by other Departments in the University can also be studied, subject to approval by the relevant Director of Studies and in discussion with the Study Adviser: From the School for Health: FH50082 Evidence into Practice 6 credits FH50105 Research Design and Methods 12 credits FH50079 Introduction to Practice Based research 6 credits FH50007 Governance and Organisational change 6 credits Mode of Delivery The programme will be delivered by a blend of approaches including web based distance learning resources (textual study guides, web links, audio, video and self-paced tutorials), online discussion events, practice -based learning, and occasional face-to-face Conferences. Web based learning materials are delivered through a virtual learning environment (VLE)(Moodle) which provides the platform for the online discussion events, delivery of learning resources and overall learner support infrastructure for each Page 6

7 unit, and for the programme as a whole. The VLE is the main interface for students with the University enabling them to contact their Study Adviser the Unit Convenor and Unit Tutors and, crucially, the other students studying the unit. Study Guides The Study Guide presents a summary of the key information that students will need to know in order to undertake the assessment at the end of each Unit. The Programme VLE From the VLE students are able to access a range of web based resources, look at past assessment questions, test their own progress and submit all assignments and assessments. They can use the profile facility to find and share expertise both within and outside of units. An online induction is provided to all students who join a unit to ensure that they can find their way around the VLE and use its full functionality. Students can use the VLE as a workspace for shared working, personal reflection, and being in contact synchronously and asynchronously. Online Discussion Events At regular points during the units there are scheduled online discussion events. These run over a two-week period and comprise a series of online activities (e-tivities) which students will work on in groups. These etivities present topics for discussion and group problem solving and are moderated by members of the programme team on a regular basis. These etivities comprise either discussion fora, group working in a wiki, group discussion on a synchronous chat or through video synchronous technology (webinar) dependent on the nature of the learning activity. These online events are crucial in building and sustaining communities of practice in each unit studied. They are also essential for maintaining programme coherence. Practice-Based Learning All units in this Programme are designed to encourage the student to reflect on work-based issues and challenges and to apply knowledge and experience gained from the web-based resources to solve real-work problems, such as leading change, enhancing the management of services, developing practice-based audit and research, etc. In many assessments, students will work in peer-learning sets to group-problem-solve problems and challenges in practice. Details of work placements / work-based learning / industrial training / study abroad requirements All units will be assessed by undertaking projects which are directly relevant to the work place (and work) of the student. For students studying on the Practice Certificate in Independent Prescribing, or Pg Certificate / Diploma in Prescribing & Therapeutics the work-based learning will be supervised by a Designated Medical Practitioner (DMP) which is a requirement of the Department of Health. Students must obtain the support of their employer, the DMP and their local Non-Medical Prescribing lead prior to joining this programme. Details of support available to students (e.g. induction programmes, programme information, resources) As this is a very flexible programme aimed at mid-career and senior health professionals, a range of support strategies have been designed to help learners to make choices about their programmes of study and to help keep them going once they have started. Different types of student support are available depending on the unit being studied. Support includes a combination of the roles discussed below. Each new student will be allocated a university-based Study Adviser when they enrol for a CPD unit. The role of the Adviser is to provide guidance on the cohesion of their study on the programme and to keep them informed of unit developments and opportunities for learning. The key mechanism for this will be the use of Learning Needs Analysis and Personal Development Planning to provide personalised and self-directed learning opportunities. The study adviser is the key and first point of contact for students studying on this programme. Page 7

8 Before commencing studies on their first unit, all students will be asked to work their way through our online induction to ensure that they are familiar with the programme virtual learning environment and understand the key processes which work at the unit level. At this point all students will be provided with a short Student Handbook which contains key information about how the Modular Programme in Advanced and Specialist Healthcare Practice works and who they can go to for help. A full e-student Handbook will be available on the programme virtual learning environment. Twice a year the 3 credit unit Advanced Professional Development 1 will be offered and this will provide a more focused induction to learning in the practice context. Students who are returning to learning after a significant break, or who are making an APEL claim will be strongly encouraged to start their learning with this unit. A face to face induction may also be offered as an option and this will address both programme and unit activities. This will be offered dependent on demand. Whilst studying on individual units, emphasis will be placed on the importance of other learners to the learning process, especially on a programme looking at developing practice across healthcare professionals. To support the establishment of such communities of practice, students will be encouraged to share their practices and ideas for developments through online discussion events embedded into each unit and which are facilitated by the unit convenor. These peer support teams will be embedded in the curriculum for each unit. Each unit will comprise web-based study guides and supporting resources and all learning will be facilitated by the Unit Convenor, who will also moderate the online discussions. The Unit Convenor is a key point of contact for the students and they will provide key academic input to the students via the programmes virtual learning environment. We will expect all students to seek support from their practice base by identifying a work-based coach to give them feedback and advice on things such as governance procedures when conducting work for the assessments on this course. We will provide advice and guidance to these work-based coaches. Twice a year there will be face to face conferences based on all of the Units being run at that time. These workshops will provide the opportunity for the learners to come together in person, discuss and share ideas about developing practice and to learn and practice new skills. Students completing the research units will be given an internal supervisor and will need to agree a practice based supervisor to support them in undertaking these small scale research projects. Students studying the units in Advanced Practice will be given support by a clinical reader, typically a senior clinician or academic specialist, who has up to date knowledge of the area of clinical practice under study. The Programme Director of Studies will work with the Study Advisers to ensure that the students are well supported on their learning. There is also a range of specialist student support services that will offer both information and advice to support these staff working with their students, as well as take referrals to work more directly with the students. Students can also self-refer to these services. These services can provide information, advice and support in relation to accommodation, emotional difficulties, assessment of needs and provision of support relating to disability, student funding, general welfare, academic problems, student discipline and complaints, careers, international students, spiritual matters, part time work, security and personal safety. The Students Union can also provide advocacy for students. More information about these services can be accessed via the Student Support and Resources web pages Page 8

9 Admissions criteria (including arrangements for APL/APEL) Admissions To join the programme and study stand-alone units for CPD students must: possess a BPharm or MPharm or equivalent professional or other degree be a currently registered health professional have at least 4 years full time equivalent experience post registration demonstrate a commitment to CPD by providing up-to-date records of formal professional bodyrecognised CPD activity meet the University s standard English language requirements and to provide documentary evidence of this standard provide a statement of support from their employer or practice base (or, in the case of independent contractors, a self-supporting statement including confirmation of access to a suitable learning environment) Students who do not possess all of the above admissions requirements will be permitted to take up to 24 credits from the programme for CPD. On successful completion of these credits such students will be permitted to register for a named award. In addition, to register for a named award students must: meet all the criteria above and provide an academic reference (If it is not possible for the student to provide a reference [due to the length of time since they last completed formal study] the Director of Studies has discretion to look at the students performance on the stand alone units and use this as an indication of academic performance]. APL Arrangements Candidates who have completed CPD for M-level credit are able to apply for credit to be transferred to this programme. An accreditation sub-committee of Faculty Board of Studies is established to oversee this activity. This credit must have been obtained within the last 5 years, must not exceed 50% of the final award being sought, must be recognised by the providing institution as being at FHEQ Level 7 (M level), and should not comprise work which has contributed to the award of a degree from another institution. Transcript results will be used to determine marks for the calculation of the award of distinction. Direct Entry Participants who have successfully completed a Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma in a cognate area, specifically in an area of health or health care practice, and have received the award within the last 5 years may apply for direct entry to a higher credited award. Applications for credit will be made to the APL sub-committee as above and credit will be awarded in line with the maxima set out in the relevant University Code of Practice. All APL cases will be considered on a case by case basis dependent on the nature of the programme studied, the years of experience of the practitioner and their current role, and fit with the learning outcomes of the Modular Programme in Advanced and Specialist Practice. APEL Arrangements In line with the relevant University Code of Practice, candidates who have several years of relevant professional practice experience may compile a portfolio of evidence to demonstrate that they have met the learning outcomes of a particular unit. Applications for APEL must be made against specific units and the portfolio must illustrate how the candidate has met the learning outcomes of that unit. The portfolio will be assessed by a member of staff in the Department, and if successful, the candidate will be awarded credit in relation to that specific unit. The process will start with a discussion with the Director of Studies about the candidate s suitability to undertake this work. A fee will be charged for formally assessing each portfolio (and for each unit). Candidates may submit APEL requests in respect of no more than 50% of the credit value of the final award they seek. There is a standard format and procedure for this and details can be found on the programme website. The marks awarded for the APEL portfolio(s) will be carried forward and used for the calculation of the award of distinction. All decisions of APEL will be scrutinised by the Accreditation sub-committee in accordance with the relevant University Code of Practice. Page 9

10 Summary of assessment and progression regulations This programme is fully compliant with NFAAR CPD. Indicators of quality and standards (e.g. professional accreditation) The Modular Programme in Advanced and Specialist Practice is part of the Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology s taught postgraduate provision and fits within the University s framework for academic quality. The Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology attained a top rating in the December 2008 Research Assessment Exercise and is ranked 4 th in the UK for the quality of its research. The Department works hard to ensure that its research quality is reflected in its teaching. Governance: The academic coherence of this programme is determined with the academic framework of the University of Bath via the Faculty Board of Studies and institution-wide committees. The programme management is overseen by the Programme Board of Management which comprises both internal and external members of the Department and includes both employer and student representation. Review and Monitoring: The academic performance of this programme is managed by the Programme Board of Management, the Department Courses Committee, Faculty Teaching and Quality Committee and ultimately Faculty Board of Studies. The equivalence of academic rigor is scrutinised by the Programmes External Examiner. The Pharmacist Prescribing Programme (part of the Advanced Programmes in Pharmaceutical Practice and Therapeutics and linked to this programme) is currently accredited by the General Pharmaceutical Council until Student Voice: Student feedback is essential to the effective running of this programme. Students have representation on the Programme Board of Management and through the workshop, conference and unit feedback processes. There is also an online staff student forum. Staff Development: All staff contributing to this programme receive support from the University to develop and enhance their learning and teaching, and research skills. Specifically staff participate in training in technologyenhanced learning essential for the support of distance learning students. To assure continuing excellence in its quality and standards, the University of Bath has a quality management framework 2 including: 1. A Quality Assurance Code of Practice 3, and associated regulations and policies. 2. A learning, teaching and quality committee structure 4 which monitors quality and standards 5 and instigates action for enhancement. 3. Staff development arrangements 6 that assist staff in enhancing their own performance as educators, as researchers or as professional support services staff. Students are involved in many of these processes 7. The emphasis here is upon the informed student voice - engaging with students as academic citizens to ensure they have opportunities to take an Page 10

11 active part in shaping their own learning. A more detailed overview of the University s Quality Management framework is set out in it Approach to Quality Management 8. The Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) periodically reviews the quality of the University of Bath s Learning and Teaching performance. At the last review by the QAA in November , the University was given the highest grading available, that of Confidence, in the soundness of the University s current and likely future management of both the academic standards of its awards and the quality of learning opportunities available to students. Sources of other information You can find out more about this programme at our website: You can find out more about the wider University experience by visiting the Department website: and the University website. If you have specific queries or questions about the programme you can contact the programme team via the Programme Administrative Officer on Page 11

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