What is a professional course?

Students who study on a professional course are being specifically prepared for their chosen career. Such courses are required to meet professional as well as academic standards. For Operating Department Practitioners and Paramedics these professional standards are governed by the statutory professional body, The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

For Healthcare Science students, you have a choice of membership with one of two professional bodies: the Registration Council for Clinical Physiologists (RCCP) or the National School of Healthcare Science (NSHCS). They provide the standards for both professional and educational aspects of your course. To meet these standards students must be able to demonstrate the attitudes, behaviour and commitments of their chosen profession.

Physician Associates currently have a voluntary register managed by the Royal College of Physicians, Faculty of Physician Associates.

Once graduates have successfully completed the course they'll be eligible for membership and registration with the relevant professional and statutory body (PSRB).

The PSRBs also monitor the quality of professional courses and supervision in practice. There is an expectation that all students are supervised by mentors who are positive role models, promoting the values inherent within the NHS Constitution and who deliver a high quality service to the public.

These NHS values are:

  • Working together for patients
  • Respect and dignity
  • Commitment to quality of care
  • Compassion
  • Improving lives
  • Everyone counts

Professional values

There are a number of key documents which inform the principles and values which underpin professional standards (for example The NHS Constitution 2013 and Compassion in Practice 2012). These are reflected in our health care courses and our practice assessment documentation.For any placement experience you must adhere to the confidentiality, privacy and professional boundaries expected of an operating department practitioner, paramedic science or healthcare science student.