*Statistics are quoted from the results of the National Student Survey 2015
Midwifery is a rewarding and unique career, during which you will be in the privileged position of working closely with women and their families during pregnancy and childbirth, promoting health and wellbeing. The diversity of the midwife’s role in meeting the physical, psychological and cultural needs of the woman mean that as a student midwife, no two days will be the same. If you think you have the qualities and commitment needed to undertake the BSc (Hons) Midwifery degree course, then we would love to hear from you.
Our programme is a three year full-time course which will award you with a BSc (Hons) Midwifery degree and registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). Our course is also BFI accredited by Unicef.
Our academic staff are enthusiastic, experienced midwives, skilled facilitators of learning, with a wide variety of expertise. You will work in an environment that fosters key principles of adult learning, as well as individual support for learning and skills development.
Over the course of your studies you will be supported by our Careers and Employability Service to ensure our midwifery graduates are well-prepared for employment and consistently achieve 98-100% employment at the point of registration.
Each year there is one annual intake of student midwives in September who have the opportunity to practice midwifery skills in a simulated environment in our purpose built midwifery clinical skills laboratory. Each of the three years comprise periods of theory and applied practice and students are placed on one of three NHS Trust sites:
Placements are organised by a central placements department at the University of Northampton.
The University of Northampton are recognised as number one for social enterprise with the awarding of Ashoka U Changemaker Campus status. The Midwifery course at the University of Northampton provides you with the opportunity to volunteer for up to 75 hours in years one and two, giving you the opportunity to give something back to your community or a cause you believe in by giving your time for free. The benefits you bring to an organisation as a volunteer will be invaluable, and many charities and not-for-profit organisations couldn’t survive without volunteers, but don’t forget that it also brings invaluable experience to you and your employability.
Values Based Recruitment
- The University of Northampton School of Health supports the Values stated in the NHS Constitution.
- Please visit the Health Education England website for more details.
- These values are utilised in our recruitment and selection processes.
Values Based Recruitment is an approach which attracts and selects students, trainees or employees on the basis that their individual values and behaviours align with the values of the NHS Constitution.
The purpose of VBR is to ensure that the future and current NHS Workforce is selected against the values of the NHS Constitution so that we recruit for the right workforce not only with the right skills and in the right numbers but with the right values to support effective team working in delivering excellent patient care and experience.
Park Campus, the larger of the two campuses, is set in 80 acres of open green parkland, occupying an impressive and spacious site.
Facilities available on-site include a sports hall, restaurant, Students’ Union, Student Centre, shop, bar and nightclub. Safe and secure accommodation for more than 1,300 students is spread throughout Park Campus, with the majority placed within our student village combining stunning green spaces with welcoming Halls of Residence.
A Multi-Faith Chaplaincy and Medical Centre (providing a full GP service and free counselling) are also available at Park Campus.
Park Campus is within easy walking distance of a busy, local shopping area, complete with banks, supermarkets, shops and pubs.
The University of Northampton
Boughton Green Road
The course provides a structure within which the course team can deliver a curriculum for the education of student midwives to an appropriate clinical, professional and academic standard.
The programme provides a clear framework for the learning and teaching of healthcare professionals with a view to an expected outcome of a dynamic, contemporary, effective and collaborative practitioner.
On completion of the programme it is expected that you will:
- undertake the role of the midwife employing a sound knowledge base through engagement with the research process and utilising a range of core and specialist midwifery skills
- demonstrate an ability to build relationships with other professionals and partnerships with women and their families
- provide holistic, woman-centred midwifery care promoting normality, to include organising care for a small caseload of women
- question and explore current practice to enable the continuous evaluation and development of effective midwifery care; demonstrate how reflection has resulted in new learning about self and others in order to enhance contemporary practice.
In the first year you will be prepared for undertaking independent study, academic writing skills, development of self-awareness and communication skills through a variety of media. There will also be an introduction to Information Services (I.S.). You will be equipped with basic clinical skills and learn principles of Basic Life Support to ensure that you can begin to participate in basic midwifery care provision. Foundations of anatomy and physiology, the midwives role in public health and care of women throughout childbearing will also be included together with best evidence to underpin practice. As a student midwife you have entered into a professional culture, therefore, you will also be introduced to what it means to be working as a professional and the implications for you both personally and professionally.
In the second year you will build upon your existing knowledge and skills and you will gain a more in-depth understanding of midwifery care as you apply your knowledge in practice and begin to explain and justify care decisions. The focus will be on the provision of individualised, non-discriminatory woman centred care, development of research knowledge in order to utilise evidence based practice in the promotion of normal midwifery care and the development of insight and understanding when caring for women and babies with complex health needs.
In the third year of your course you will continue to enhance existing knowledge and skills and gain confidence and competence in order to undertake the future role of the midwife. You will undertake an in-depth project focussing on audit as well as the completion of modules which focus upon care and management issues including obstetric emergencies. It is also important that you revisit your professional role as you prepare to become a qualified midwife and therefore topics of leadership and employability will be explored. Towards the end of the year you will be encouraged to gain a wider experience of the place of midwifery within the health service, by working alongside practitioners in managerial/leadership roles.
Additionally at each level you will engage with medicines management and Baby Friendly Initiative (BFI) learning, alongside undertaking of relevant assessments in these areas. Medicines management is a key to Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) requirements.
Practice opportunities will be within the maternity services settings, with experienced midwives. Student midwives will also have opportunities to work within healthcare centres to develop their role within the multi-professional team and to promote shared learning. Student midwives will be expected to participate in the full range of twenty four hour care, both in ante/postnatal settings and in the delivery suite. Long days, early and late shifts are necessary along with weekend duty. Night duty will be undertaken each year, either in rotation with a mentor or with another experienced midwife. When working in the community setting all students are expected to participate in the ‘on-call’ rotas with support from midwives and will need to have the ability to commute between their NHS Trust host site, community and the University locations.
Throughout your course you will gain experience, develop and enhance your clinical skills within all areas of maternity care including labour ward, community and the ante/postnatal wards and:
- in year one in the gynaecology area in order to develop an understanding of health problems which may affect childbearing women.
- in year two in the Special Care Baby Unit.
- in your final year, you will also have experience in an acute adult setting, either Accident and Emergency or Intensive Care Units.
- mental health experience will be encompassed within all care settings, throughout the three years of the course.
Course modules (16/17)
Introduction to Midwifery Practice
- Module code: MID1020P
- Core module Y
Contemporary midwifery practice encompasses a wide range of clinical events in various clinical placement areas. The student will be directly supervised by a midwife (or relevant Health Care Professional) within the maternity and gynaecological services. The clinical placement offers the student an opportunity to participate in caring for women and their families.
Essentials of Midwifery
- Module code: MID1021
- Core module Y
Midwives care for women and their families throughout the childbirth continuum. This module provides students with a sound knowledge of anatomy and physiology; an introduction to midwifery care in the ante, intra and postnatal periods, including care of the neonate.
- Module code: MID1022
- Core module Y
All Healthcare Professionals have a duty to the Public and must practice within legal and professional frameworks that govern professional practice, therefore, the student midwife must have a working knowledge of legal, ethical and professional issues in order to meet the expectations of the profession and the Public.
Public Health and the Midwife
- Module code: MID1023
- Core module Y
Over recent decades public health has become high profile on the Government's agenda, with concerns raised regarding the health inequalities between various groups of the population. By adopting a public health role midwives can make a positive contribution to improving the health of women and their communities.
Developing Midwifery Practice
- Module code: MID2025P
- Core module Y
Contemporary midwifery practice encompasses a wide range of clinical events in various clinical placement areas. The student will work alongside midwives and within the multi-disciplinary team to enhance and develop skills and knowledge within the maternity services including neonatal care.
Promoting Normality through Research
- Module code: MID2026
- Core module Y
Midwives require the acquisition of practical application of research to ensure they practice evidence-based care in order to promote normality. This module builds upon previous research concepts introduced within the first year in order to develop in-depth knowledge of research.
Integrated Care for Women with Complex Needs
- Module code: MID2027
- Core module Y
The midwife's responsibilities and those of other healthcare professionals are inter-related and complimentary. Their skills, knowledge and experience are central to achieving high quality care and to identify and recognise maternal and fetal risk factors or complications.
Perinatal Mental Health
- Module code: MID2028
- Core module Y
Midwives play a vital role in promoting the emotional well-being of women and in ensuring that all women with a mental illness can access appropriate and timely care. Perinatal mental health during pregnancy and the postnatal period can have serious consequences for the health and wellbeing of a mother and her baby, as well as for her partner and other family members. This module will provide the student with the knowledge and skills to promote mental well-being in the mother and family as well as investigating the advice and care of women with existing mental health disorders; those who develop perinatal mental health complications during pregnancy or the postnatal period; and explore the organisation of mental health services both nationally and locally.
The Compromised Newborn
- Module code: MID2029
- Core module Y
The midwife's responsibilities and those of other health care professionals are inter-related and complimentary. Their skills, knowledge and experience are central to achieving high quality neonatal care; especially when neonatal health complications arise. Midwives are uniquely placed within the postnatal setting to provide appropriate evidenced based care to the compromised neonate.
- Module code: MID4004
- Core module Y
This module will enable the student to build on previously acquired research knowledge to demonstrate they are evidence-based practitioners. In addition, it aims to consolidate the student's ability to critically appraise literature and undertake a clinical audit.
Consolidating Midwifery Practice
- Module code: MID3024P
- Core module Y
Contemporary midwifery practice encompasses a wide range of clinical events in various clinical placement areas. The student will practice with indirect supervision within the maternity services. One placement will be in a high dependency clinical area where the student will be directly supervised by a nurse.
Care Planning and Management
- Module code: MID3025
- Core module Y
Midwives are required to lead practice in a variety of clinical situations. The focus is to provide individualised care for women and their families, underpinned by contemporary evidence.
Becoming a Midwife
- Module code: MID3026
- Core module Y
All midwives have a responsibility to ensure their practice is contemporary, evidence based, engage with supervision and fulfil professional requirements to be registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council.
Methods of Learning
The BSc (Hons) Midwifery course is a 37.5 hour programme running over 52 weeks of year. The programme is divided into modules which run for different lengths across the academic year. All consist of theory and practice with an overall ratio of theory to practice of 50:50 over the three years. Identified theory hours on the programme are a mixture of face to face contact in University and individual pre-class preparation and group work. Practice hours vary at different points in the academic year but range from 22.5 hours up to 30 hours per week in years one and two. Practice hours increase to 37.5 hours in year three in order to prepare student midwives for professional practice.
Clinical practice is undertaken in NHS Trust Partner sites in all areas of maternity care and also in relevant non-midwifery settings such as Gynaecology and Neonatal Special Care Baby Units.
A wide range of assessment is used including essays, workbooks, projects, both written and spoken examinations, care studies and presentations many of which will be submitted and marked electronically/online.
Practice assessments will be relevant to the module undertaken and related to the ‘Standards for Pre-Registration Midwifery Education’ (NMC, 2009). Students can expect two to three items of assessment per module and these are spread throughout the academic year.
Requirements to pass a module
In order to pass a module a student is required to obtain a minimum grade of ‘D-‘ in all assessments as this is a professional requirement. There is no compensation between theory and practice.
Where students fail a module, (having had a second opportunity), University decisions will be made in accordance with Undergraduate Modular Framework and Nursing and Midwifery Council regulations regarding continuation of the programme.
Facilities and Special Features
- The University of Northampton has been awarded the Certificate of Commitment in 2012 for Baby Friendly Initiative (BFI), Stage One accreditation in 2013 with a view to achieving accreditation in 2016.
- a purpose built midwifery specific clinical skills laboratory which affords students the opportunity to safely practice midwifery skills in a simulated environment – take a virtual tour of our midwifery lab
- our current students have set up a Midwifery Society with close links to the University’s Student Union which is accessible for all student midwives. Include the link to the UN Midwifery Society Facebook Page.
The preparatory reading list is available to download.
This course is now closed to applications through Clearing. Please see our Clearing 2016 page to see other courses that may still be available.
Career opportunities are wide ranging upon qualification within and outside of the NHS. Initially after a period of preceptorship training and post-registration clinical experience, graduates can progress into such fields as clinical leadership, specialisms such as bereavement, teenage pregnancy and infant feeding, as well as education and research. Employment opportunities are available, both in the UK and abroad.
How to apply
For application information please see our how to apply page.
The following links may be useful for your application to the BSc (Hons) Midwifery course:
The University of Northampton Midwifery Skills Laboratory
The Role of the Midwife
Becoming a student midwife.
Royal College of Midwives
Standard entry requirements apply. A typical offer would consist of 280-300 UCAS tariff points, which can be as follows:
- only A-levels (A2) will be accepted as entry criteria (General Studies not included). A-levels need to be a minimum of grade of B/B/C or above
- one A-level must be in a science which includes biology, chemistry, physics, psychology or sociology
- AS (A1) levels and extended projects will not contribute to tariff points
- Access programmes must consist of a minimum of 60 credits in total (15 at Level 2 and 45 at Level 3)
- level 3 credits must be achieved at a minimum of 30 at Merit and 15 at Distinction achieved at level 3 in science
- the award of 3 distinctions (DDD) must be achieved
- Awards must have a science focus for example health and social care. If awards are in other areas then an additional level 3 science qualification should be gained.
- must be achieved at grade A and students must have an additional level 3 science qualification
Other qualifications may be considered and the advice would be to contact the Admissions Department to discuss these on an individual basis.
- applicants must have GCSEs that include Mathematics, English and Science at grade C or above or a recognised equivalent
- applicants must also have evidence of relevant, academically assessed study at Level 3 or 4, within the last three years
- health care work experience is also essential
- all offers of a place on the programme are subject to Successful Occupational Health Screening and a Clear DBS record
- from 2013, no applications for deferred places will be considered
Students must have relevant voluntary/work experience in a healthcare setting for a minimum of four weeks full time in order to be considered for entry to the programme. Examples as to how this can be achieved are:
- four weeks full time employment or work experience
- 20 days each consisting of work experience lasting 7.5 hours
- 150 hours of work experience, which must be gained within the UK
- hours, days and weeks of work experience do not need to be gained in one continuous placement and can be achieved through an accumulation of hours in different settings
Employment or work experience should be gained in a healthcare setting and evidence will need to be demonstrated by applicants prior to an offer of a place being confirmed. It is therefore suggested that applicants build a portfolio of evidence and request that their manager/mentor provides a summary of specific experience and skills gained (to include dates and times of attendance) on headed paper of the organisation.
Work experience examples that are recognised include:
- working/volunteering in a residential care home
- volunteering at a local Sure Start centre in relevant mother and baby groups
- working as a healthcare assistant in the hospital or community
- volunteering with a local National Childbirth Trust (NCT) group
- volunteer within a hospital setting
- volunteer as a receptionist at a general practice or health centre
Work experience not recognised includes:
- teaching for example, primary school
- childcare for example, nursery nurse
Fees and funding
Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 16/17 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.
|Part Time:||£1,280 per 20 credit module|
Examples of additional costs that may be incurred during the three years of the programme include:
- living costs: Running a car, travel or fuel costs, car parking costs at NHS Trust host sites (ranging at present from 50 pence per day to £10 per day), accommodation costs
- printing Costs: printing session resources, poster assessments, replacement practice documents (approx. £50.00)
- repeat modules: Currently to repeat a 20 credit module would cost approximately £550.00
- subscriptions: to a professional body/union, one example being, the Royal College of Midwives Membership (currently £1.67 for student midwives), Professional Midwifery journal(s) (approximately £40.00 annually for per subscription)
- purchase of learning resources: hand held device e.g. iPad/laptop, core text books, stationery.
- miscellaneous: additional uniforms for clinical practice (approx. £25.00), fob watch, non-attendance at mandatory training (approx. £85.00).