School of Nursing and Midwifery

BSc (Hons) Nursing (Adult)

Make a difference to someone’s life when it matters most. Our degree will prepare you to care for adults of all ages with acute/long-term illness, in a multitude of healthcare settings. You'll be ready to play a vital role in health promotion and disease prevention, as well as nursing sick and injured adults back to health. Working closely with professionals, patients and their families, you’ll gain the experience and skills needed to join the 96% of our graduates working as professional nurses*

You will distinguish yourself with a degree from one of the first institutions to offer the new Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) standards for nursing education and you’ll practice your clinical and communication skills both in the clinical environment and the safe, supervised setting of our Clinical Skills Resource Centre (CSRC). You will have the option to study at Plymouth, our Knowledge Spa Campus, Truro or at our new School of Nursing in Exeter.

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First choice for health

Delivered by professional experts, our programmes are tailored to you and your career. Together, we address today's most challenging healthcare issues, through research-informed teaching and active, real-world learning.


Careers with this subject

Key features

  • Distinguish yourself with a degree from one of the first institutions to offer the new Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) standards for nursing education. Plymouth has been teaching the most up-to-date curriculum since 2011 and embraces innovative ideas to shape the nursing workforce of tomorrow. 
  • Practice your clinical and communication skills in the safe, supervised setting of our Clinical Skills Resource Centre (CSRC) which features specially designed replicas of hospital wards and emergency rooms, with patient-simulators.
  • Enjoy an accessible approach to your theoretical studies, with the option of studying in Plymouth, our Knowledge Spa campus, Truro or at our new University of Plymouth School of Nursing in Exeter.
  • Participate in the best and most varied hands-on experience within an appropriate clinical environment. Please note that you may need to live away from home during this period – find out more by viewing our School of Nursing and Midwifery Host Trusts.
  • Know that your learning is always current and follows best practice, through the internationally renowned research that constantly feeds into our teaching, to reflect today’s dynamic healthcare delivery environment.
  • Ensure you’re supported by appropriately qualified staff with an in-depth knowledge of your subject area - our staff are predominantly nurses registered with the  NMC. You’ll also benefit from our staff’s passion for teaching, research and the nursing profession.

Course details

  • Year 1
  • Your first year introduces the basics of nursing and helps you develop key skills and knowledge to prepare you for practice. You’ll do two practice placements which give you the chance to experience working in different healthcare settings. Gaining insights into multi-professional teamwork within healthcare, you’ll learn that nursing is not just about the ‘doing’, but also about the thinking, reflection and provision of evidence to enable you to provide a safe and positive experience of caring.

    Core modules
    • ADN401 Core Concepts of Health

      The module introduces students to understanding health as applied to individuals, communities and populations based on a bio-psycho-social model.

    • ADN402 Introduction to Adult Nursing Care

      A module which reflects the philosophy that care is client-centred, taking place within both acute and community settings.

    • NRS403 Ways of Knowing

      To introduce and engage students with key teaching and learning strategies to enable identification and development of the skills necessary to become confident academic citizens as an integral part of the BSc Nursing programme.

    • NRS404 Professional Issues and Clinical Risk

      This module will introduce the concepts of professional nursing practice and clinical risk, enabling students to utilise legal and ethical principles to gain knowledge insight and application as part of their own professional responsibility and accountability.

    • NRS405 Biology for Nursing Practice

      This module will prepare students to understand key human body systems and how they relate to fundamental elements of nursing care.

    • NRS406 Skills and Practice for Nursing

      This module introduces the student to healthcare practice and provides the opportunity to develop the core skills that are central to, or are a prerequisite for, clinical practice.

  • Year 2
  • In your second year, your enhanced knowledge will allow you to make more contributions to assessing, planning and delivering safe and compassionate person-centred care. You’ll have an increased responsibility in practice, and will develop competence in your core skills in hospital and community settings, public health, acute care, assessment and care delivery. You’ll learn to critically analyse and interpret data then apply it to your professional practice, enabling you to measure and deliver high quality care.

    Core modules
    • ADN202 Adult Nursing 2: Developing Nursing Care

      This module builds on knowledge and skills gained from the year one adult nursing module to enable students to facilitate nursing care for patients in a variety of settings. It focuses on exploring the concepts of nursing assessments and their application to nursing care.

    • ADN203 The Biological and Therapeutic Basis for Adult Nursing Care

      This module builds on the studies of biosciences in year one, developing a sound understanding of the normal and abnormal anatomy and physiology relevant to nursing adult patients, and the related therapeutic management including pharmacological and other treatment modalities. Studies will be related to nursing assessment and interventions.

    • ADN204 Skills and Practice for Adult Nursing (2)

      This module will build on the clinical, professional and transferable skills that were introduced in Year One. It will run over two terms and will integrate theoretical concepts with clinical skills rehearsal and patient care delivery.

    • ADN205 Promoting Public Health and Wellbeing

      This level 5 module focuses upon; the identification of local health needs; the impact of health inequalities on the wider determinants of health; promoting health with individuals, communities and populations; methods for encouraging behaviour change and barriers to change; working with other agencies to promote health; promoting equal access to services.

    • NRS204 Knowledge and Skills for Evidence-Informed Decision Making (1)

      The focus of the module is on developing students' knowledge and understanding of the application of research-based evidence to nursing practice. The module is based upon the premise that knowledge and understanding of key research designs is an essential pre-requisite of evidence-informed decision making (EIDM).

  • Final year
  • The learning, teaching and practice in your final year becomes more challenging, with more opportunities to show your commitment to delivering a high standard of care. Your knowledge will be more specialised, demanding higher level skills of synthesis, analysis and evaluation. You’ll develop vital management and leadership skills and have the courage to speak out for your patient. Your final year placements will focus on your transition from student to professional and your fitness for practice as a registered nurse.

    Core modules
    • ADN301 Adult Nursing: Competence in Nursing Care

      This final adult nursing module enables the student to develop competence in clinical care. It builds on knowledge and skills from previous modules to facilitate nursing care for patients with complex disorders in a variety of settings. It integrates knowledge of psychology, sociology, biology, pharmacology to underpin nursing care.

    • ADN302 Law and Ethics Applied to Nursing Practice

      This module will build upon the legal and ethical principles introduced in stages 1 & 2. Students will debate and explore legal and ethical concepts from both an individual and collective perspective to enable a rigorous decision making process.

    • ADN303 Year 3 - Skills and Practice for Adult Nursing (3)

      The module will provide students with an opportunity to apply knowledge and an appropriate repertoire of clinical skills that are essential for safe and effective nursing practice.

    • NRS301 Management, Leadership and Transition to Professional Practice

      This module critically explores the concepts of leadership, management and professional practice and how these influence the health and social care arena.

    • NRS302 Knowledge and Skills for Evidence-Informed Decision Making (2)

      This level 6 module focuses on (i) Extending knowledge of use of secondary research-based evidence in the form of systematic reviews and clinical guidelines; (ii) developing skills in critically appraising a body of evidence and constructing a literature review; (iii) identifying and developing practice-focused research questions.

The modules shown for this course are those currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new modules. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to amendment from time to time as part of the University’s curriculum enrichment programme and in line with changes in the University’s policies and requirements.

Entry requirements

UCAS tariff

104 - 120

5 GCSEs at Grade C/4 or above to include Mathematics, English, and Science. Please note the institution will also accept Functional Skills Level 2 (Numeracy) as an equivalent qualification to the GCSE Mathematics qualification.

Preference is given to applicants who have obtained these grades on application. If you do not have this GCSE profile please contact the Admissions Team directly on +44 (0)1752 585858 or email and they will be happy to advise you further.

UCAS tariff
120 points. A typical offer is 120 UCAS Tariff points to include 64 points from 2 A levels, excluding General Studies. Science, Health, or Social Science profile is preferred. If you need further advice please contact:

Pass a named Access to HE Diploma with at least 45 credits at level 3, 33 at merit/distinction level which must include 15 level 3 credits in science/social science (psychology/sociology). If you need further advice on this criteria please contact

18 Unit BTEC National Diploma/QCF Extended Diploma 
DDM must be health/science related.

BTEC National Diploma modules
If you hold a BTEC qualification it is vital that you provide our Admissions team with details of the exact modules you have studied as part of the BTEC. Without this information, we may be unable to process your application quickly and you could experience significant delays in the progress of your application to study with us. Please explicitly state the full list of modules within your qualification at the time of application.

28 overall to include a minimum of two higher levels at 4 preferably from biology/human biology, applied science, English and mathematics accepted within - higher level = 4, standard level = 5.

If overseas and not studying English within IB – MUST have IELTS: 7.0 overall with 7.0 in all elements.

Equivalent qualifications may be considered, please contact

Extended entry requirements

  • In addition to the above, evidence of academic study within the last five years is required.
  • Please note we do not accept Key Skills Level 2 in place of GCSE English or mathematics.
  • You must pass disclosure and barring service and occupational health checks satisfactorily in order to be able to start this course.
  • If English is not your first language and you do not have GCSE English grade C or above you will have to achieve an IELTS or equivalent qualification at the grades stated below.
  • IELTS - Overall average score of at least 7.0, with a score of at least 6.5 in each element.
  • Meeting the academic minimum is the first stage of an application being considered. Applicants must also submit a strong personal statement in order to be considered further.
  • English language requirements
  • For a full list of all acceptable qualifications please refer to our tariff glossary.

Further information

Please note: We do not accept applications for deferred entry for this course.

BSc (Hons) Nursing (Adult) - sponsored students/direct entry year 2

Find out more about this direct route to continue with your studies to gain a degree in the adult health field of nursing.

Fees, costs and funding

New Student 2018 2019
Home/EU £9,250 £9,250
International £13,000 £13,400
Part time (Home/EU) To be confirmed To be confirmed
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per a number of credits. Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances.

Please be aware that there may be additional costs to undertaking your studies relating to printing of course materials, and requirement for an initial outlay for travel and accommodation in respect of practice placement. If you have any questions regarding these costs please contact

If you are studying on a programme where placements are integral to your study there are costs associated with travel and accommodation. Please speak with the programme admissions tutor to find out more.

How to apply

All applications for undergraduate courses are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). 

UCAS will ask for the information contained in the box at the top of this course page including the UCAS course code and the institution code. 

To apply for this course and for more information about submitting an application including application deadline dates, please visit the UCAS website.

Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email

Adult nursing information days

The adult nursing information day gives you the chance to find out more information about the BSc (Hons) Adult Nursing course offered at The Knowledge Spa, Truro or our new campus at the School of Nursing in Exeter. 

More information about nursing information day dates will be available on this page closer to the events.

Where can I study?

We offer you flexibility with the option to study in either Plymouth, Truro or Exeter:

  • Truro students will be based at The Knowledge Spa, our Truro School of Nursing. 

What do I need to know about applying?

All students need to apply through UCAS. Once you have applied and providing you meet our admissions criteria, we will invite you to a recruitment day.  

As well as allowing us to assess your skills, our recruitment days are a good chance for you find out more about the course, our facilities and the University in general. You'll also be able to talk to current students during the day.

Why we need more men to become nurses

If someone asks you to picture a doctor, it’s likely you’ll picture a man. If someone asks you to picture a nurse, it’s more likely you’ll picture a woman.

This unconscious bias is on the way to being addressed on the medical front as female medical student numbers have escalated in recent years – with women now accounting for over half of medical professionals at a training grade. Yet the amount of men training to become nurses has plateaued for decades at between 8-11 per cent.

Adult Nursing lecturer Kevin Hambridge explains his personal and professional experience of combating the stereotype.

Complimentary educational resources

To help, financially, with your transition into life as a student of the School of Nursing and Midwifery at University of Plymouth, the University provides the following:

  • we bear the cost for Occupational Health clearance and for Disclosure and Barring Service checks, which are a condition of any offer of a place on the programme. This potentially saves applicants in the region of £195 - £245 (circa £45 for DBS checks, and £150-£200 for Occupational Health) although in some cases the costs can be much higher
  • we supply e-books to all students on the programme, worth £138
  • we supply three tunics and three pairs of trousers, for use in the clinical environment, worth circa £60
  • the ‘Medincle’ medical spellchecker software is provided free of charge
  • books from the Skills for Health Training Package are provided for each student.

Let our graduates inspire you

Angela Foulds - Staff Nurse in Cardiology for the South Devon Health Care NHS Foundation Trust

"Adult nursing gave me a broad base and has been a great foundation to facilitate many different career pathways."

Read Angela's story

Opportunities for postgraduate study in nursing

Be at the forefront of changes to the traditional ways of working and become a Clinical Practitioner (CP) with our MSc Advanced Professional Practice (Clinical Practitioner).

You’ll be equipped with the knowledge and skills to assess, diagnose, treat and manage patients who present with undifferentiated and undiagnosed conditions, across all sectors of healthcare.

Certain clinicians can also exit as a non-medical prescriber, i.e. nurses, pharmacists and optometrists can become independent and/or supplementary prescribers, whilst radiographers, physiotherapists and podiatrists can become supplementary prescribers.

Study sessions for students by students: Peer Assisted Learning Scheme (PALS)

To complement your formal learning we offer regular sessions that provide the opportunity for you to learn with and from your peers. Share knowledge, discuss ideas, and ask questions in a relaxed and friendly environment

If you are a first or second year take the opportunity to study in a relaxed environment, along with other students on the same programme.

Find out more about how PALS can benefit your studies


*Source: official Higher Education Funding Council England data

**These are the latest results from the National Student Survey. Please note that the data published on Unistats is updated annually in September.

The results of the National Student Survey (NSS) and the Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey (DLHE) are made available to prospective students and their advisors through the Unistats website.