MSc Physiotherapy (Pre-registration)

Accredited by the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) and approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)

Course details

Online Application

September 2017 (Carlisle-Fusehill Street)

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If you're interested in physiotherapy, then we're here to give you the knowledge and skills to be able to register with the Health and Care Professions Council. Our accelerated programme will help you become a practicing physiotherapist with only two years of study, rather than the traditional three. You'll use your existing academic skills to study patient management in core areas of physiotherapy, including cardiorespiratory, musculoskeletal and neurology.

We offer a blend of academic study and practical experience, including five placement opportunities in a variety of settings across North West England, Southern Scotland and the Isle of Man. After 1000 hours of supervised clinical practice, combined with the research and theory learnt in the classroom, you'll have everything you need to be a fully-registered and qualified physiotherapy practitioner.

2017 Entry

From 2017 the government will cease to provide bursaries for undergraduate NHS courses. Students will have access to the standard student support package of tuition fee loans and support for living costs, rather than getting an NHS grant. This information is based on the understanding provided by The Council of Deans for Health and may be subject to change as further details are released by the government.

How we can support you

If you enrol onto an undergraduate NHS programme in 2017, we’ll cover the costs of your:

  • Uniform
  • DBS check**
  • Occupational Health check
  • Travel costs for placements of up to £300 each year

This is in addition to any government support agreed.

**Paid on successful enrolment onto course

This programme is validated by both the Health and Care Professions Council and the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, ensuring eligibility to register with both organisations. We cover core areas of current practice and embrace the values of the NHS Constitution, such as treating people with respect, dignity and compassion.

All modules have been designed with reference to related organisations, including the HCPC, CSP and NHS to ensure relevance to contemporary practice. In addition, five clinical placements are integrated throughout the course. These do not carry academic credit but must be successfully completed in order to achieve the award.

The programme adopts an evaluative and evidence-based approach to physiotherapy practice. You'll work collaboratively with students from other professional disciplines and be involved in peer assessment. A series of mandatory training events including basic life support and infection control will be timetabled over the two years.


Year one

Compulsory modules

  • Applied Science for Physiotherapy Practice 
  • Physiotherapy Practice - Assessment and Evaluation 
  • Scholarship and Research Methods 
  • Applied Physiotherapy (Neuromusculoskeletal Practice) 
  • Applied Physiotherapy Practice (Acute Care Pathways) 
  • Practice Placement Observation (PPO)
  • Introduction to Physiotherapy Practice
  • Physiotherapy Practice 2
  • Physiotherapy Practice 3

Year two

Compulsory modules

  • Applied Physiotherapy (Complex and Enduring Conditions)
  • Advanced Professional Practice Business and Enterprise
  • Physiotherapy Dissertation
  • Physiotherapy Practice 4
  • Physiotherapy Practice 5
  • Physiotherapy Practice 6

Programme Specification

For a detailed summary of all course content please read our programme specification for this course.

Download the programme specification (PDF)

See course specific entry requirements listed below.

Selection criteria

In addition to a minimum of 5 GCSE at grade C or above, achieved in one sitting, which must include English language and mathematics, you will need to meet the following requirements.

You will hold:

  • An existing BSc (Hons) degree in a relevant science-based subject, normally at 2i (upper class second) level. Examples of relevant subjects include sports rehabilitation, sports therapy, human biology, biomedical sciences, anatomy and physiology, etc.


  • An existing qualification in nursing, midwifery or relevant Allied Health Profession, gained through study to BSc (Hons) level.
  • A recognised practitioner qualification in e.g: osteopathy or chiropractic.

In addition, you will have gained:

  • Work experience or observation in one or more relevant clinical or voluntary settings. One of these would ideally be within the UK NHS, or equivalent service for international students.

You will be able to demonstrate:

  • Study to level 6 within the past 5 year (to the start of the programme).
  • A good basic knowledge of human anatomy and physiology, which will be assessed at interview.

Other entry qualifications

Non-standard entrants are required to demonstrate ability to benefit from and to successfully complete the course.

These candidates will need to show evidence of continuous professional development within the last 5 years; relevant work experience; and demonstrate the motivation and ability to succeed. All applicants will need to provide evidence of academic ability to Level 6.

Work Experience

All applicants are strongly advised to seek work experience in physiotherapy prior to application / interview to gain a full understanding of current physiotherapy practice.

Overseas students and language requirements

We welcome applications from overseas students. If English is not your first language, we also require that you achieve IELTS with an overall mark of 7 (with no less than 6.5 in any one component).

Applicants who are selected for interview are invited to attend the Fusehill Street campus in Carlisle for an information session and campus tour, followed by a group activity assessment, an assessment of human anatomy and physiology knowledge and an individual interview.

Selection is initially based on academic profile, personal statement and academic reference. At interview we are looking for a good understanding of physiotherapy practice; excellent communication skills; motivation and commitment to pursuing physiotherapy as a career; and the potential to succeed as a health professional. Observational work experience or visits to two different workplaces would greatly enhance understanding of the role of physiotherapy in health and social care, enabling you to succeed at interview.

All places are offered subject to successful interview, as well as Disclosure and Barring Service clearance (DBS formerly CRB), medical fitness to practise and proof of qualifications.

Fitness to practise and health requirements

All offers of a place are subject to satisfactory health screening.   Further information will be provided following the offer of a place.

Please note that Professional Bodies such as the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) and the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) have certain requirements regarding health and character status of applicants and their ability to meet the required core professional competencies and to practise safely without direct supervision. Please read the NMC and HCPC information to find out more. Please ask us for advice and/or support as early as possible in the application process if you have any questions about this requirement.

For more information about core competencies and medical fitness to train please click here. There are fitness standards provided here for most programmes of study: health professions, social work and teaching.

In some instances, an applicant may be invited to attend a professional practice panel to discuss any recommended reasonable adjustments, and whether or not core professional competencies are achievable.

In order to be admitted and continue on the course, students must be deemed as medically fit for both practice and theory by the Occupational Health Department. If you have any concerns about a health condition/issue and its impact on your ability to undertake the course please contact the Occupational Health Department as early as possible in the application process.

Disclosure and Barring Service check
If you are offered a place we require you to comply with an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) background clearance check. Please see the DBS Policy for more details.

Values Based Recruitment

From 1 April 2015, all Higher Education Institutions delivering NHS funded training programmes will be required to assess students for their values using the core requirements set out in the Values Based Recruitment (VBR) framework. This assessment will take place as part of our recruitment process.

Making your application

Applications should be made online directly to the university - visit our website or contact for details and guidance. There is no official closing date but we would encourage you to apply as early as possible, as many courses are competitive.

What makes a good application?

We consider all aspects of your application, not simply your qualifications and grades. We look at your academic background and performance, relevant experience (particularly for professional courses where some voluntary or paid experience is required) and your reference. Above all, we look for motivation, commitment and potential - evidence that you can benefit from study at higher education level.

Make sure you include:

  • Relevant qualifications/evidence of ability: check our website for the specific entry requirements required for each course. Tell us your previous academic results and your projected grades.
  • A supportive reference, from an employer or your school or college.
  • A good personal statement.

Explain clearly what attracts you to the course and tell us about your wider interests and experience. If you are applying for a course that incorporates professional training and placements, you should include any relevant experience or visits you have made in the workplace. Highlight your individual strengths and qualities, personal skills, capacity for teamwork, contribution to the community and your enterprise, originality and determination. Select some activities which bring out these qualities.

What next?

When we receive your application, we will send you an acknowledgement and if you are successful at this stage you will get either - an offer (with an invitation to visit the campus to which you have applied), or - an invitation to interview on a particular date. If we are not able to offer you a place on your chosen course we will usually try to offer you a place on a similar course and will contact you to discuss this. Alternatively, if we think you are suitable, but cannot offer you a place on your preferred campus because of the level of competition, we will offer you a place at another campus if one is available.

And if I accept?

The admissions team will contact you and send further information from February onwards about accommodation, and from May/June onwards about preparing to join the university. If you have any other queries, please telephone the admissions offices for information and advice on 0845 6061144.

Deferred entry

We welcome applications for deferred entry on some courses. If you have specific plans during your year out, indicate these on your personal statement as they may be relevant to your course and could enhance your application.

International students

Please see the international pages of our website for full details of our entry requirements (including English-language skills) as well as contacts for advice and support.

From 2009 the UK Border Agency introduced a Points-Based Immigration System (PBS) for students coming to the UK from outside the European Economic Area (EEA).

Students entering higher education will need to obtain a Confirmation of Acceptance (CAS) plus finance confirmation to obtain a Tier 4 student visa.

UK education providers are licensed by the UK Border Agency. When students apply for their visa (or entry clearance) they will need a valid Certificate of Acceptance of Studies from the university. Please note that a CAS is not a guarantee that a visa will be issued.

See the following websites for further details:

You'll be qualified to work in a variety of NHS, education, private, voluntary and independent environments both in the UK and abroad. Some countries will require graduates to take an entry examination or assessment. The skills you learn will serve you well both in the clinical field and in any job requiring research, leadership or management skills.

Our Physiotherapy Skills Suite is a dedicated room for learning the required practical skills. We offer a range of practical facilities, including a Clinical Skills Laboratory based on a hospital ward, a human patient simulator for cardio-respiratory skills and a large sports hall for observational movement analysis and group exercise practice. You'll also have access to the Fusehill Street campus Physiotherapy and Sport Science laboratory, dedicated to the investigation of human performance from a clinical point of view.