BSc (Hons) Cardiothoracic Practice

Join a degree, delivered in conjunction with Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital, for practitioners from a range of care backgrounds who wish to specialise in intensive or longer-term management of cardiothoracic care.

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    • Overview

      Course Length: 3-5 Years Part-Time
      Start Dates: September 2022, February 2023
      Subjects: Health and Social Care
      Location: Edge Hill University
      Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital

      Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital logo

      Please note, this programme is closed to further applications for February 2022 entry.

      This degree is a contemporary programme for registered practitioners working in contexts that demand expertise in the specific area of cardiothoracic care.

      The result of a joint initiative between Edge Hill University and Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, the course is designed to be reflective of inter-professional care and will involve completing a significant project which has the potential to advance practice.

      From a specialist perspective, the depth and breadth of learning will be achieved by familiarising you with the many clinical innovations within cardiothoracic care, covering both acute and emergency care treatment and longer-term management, and providing an in-depth exploration of the complexities of patients’ long-term care needs. In addition, there will be a strong emphasis on patient safety, effective communication and team working, as well as the development of research skills to support the application of appropriate evidence and research-based care to meet the standards of good practice.

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      In Depth

      What will I study?

      You will focus on the journey of patients who present as a cardiothoracic emergency or follow the journey of the care needs of patients who have ongoing cardiothoracic disease and require long-term health care intervention.

      You will also consider patient safety and the prevention of harm, as well as the delivery of compassionate care to the cardiothoracic patient and their family.

      Core modules within the degree will introduce you to the skills and methods of research and subsequently involve the completion of an advancing practice project. You will also gain enhanced self-awareness through the use of reflection.

      If you wish, you can substitute a cardiothoracic module with an alternative selected from the Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine’s wider undergraduate professional development portfolio.

      How will I study?

      The course is designed for busy professionals to study on a part-time basis while in employment.

      Modules are delivered face-to-face using a combination of lectures, seminars, group discussion, case study examination, practical teaching and objective structured clinical examinations (OSCEs). Additional support is available via a virtual learning environment.

      How will I be assessed?

      You will be assessed through a combination of written assignments, presentations and case studies.

      Who will be teaching me?

      The cardiothoracic-specific elements of the programme will be hosted and delivered by Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital’s Education team. The remaining modules are delivered by staff based at Edge Hill University. The teaching team will draw upon a range of field specific experts to inform delivery.

      This eclectic mix of academics and clinically based practitioners with teaching qualifications, reflects the expertise that underpins knowledge in this area. Specialist subject speakers will inform specific aspects of course delivery.

      A Great Study Environment

      Edge Hill University

      The Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine is one of the leading providers of education and training for health and social care professionals in the North West of England.

      Offering some of the best facilities for health, social care and medicine students in the country, the outstanding teaching and learning resources include leading edge clinical skills facilities, an 860-seat lecture theatre, and a variety of teaching rooms and social learning spaces.

      The faculty is home to a thriving research culture which includes a series of staff and student conference programmes, guest lectures and seminars, as well as active research groups.

      Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital

      Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital is a leading national cardiothoracic care provider of integrated healthcare services for patients and their families across community and acute care settings. It was rated outstanding in its community health services for adults in the Care Quality Commission’s inspection report published in July 2019.

      The Education Centre at Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital comprises seminar, classroom and lecture theatre spaces, in addition to clinically equipped skill rooms (app supported) with simulation devices, mannequins and mock bed spaces.


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      HEA3102Research Methods (20 credits)

      Research Methods is designed to enable you to develop an understanding of the research process, the nature and variety of research methods, together with the need for an evidence base to guide the decision-making process. The module encourages you to appreciate that qualitative and quantitative methods as equally valuable and often complementary. You will be involved, wherever possible, in using and applying research methods rather than merely talking about them.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HEA3161Advancing Practice Project (40 credits)

      Advancing Practice Project enables you to develop the ability to work independently on a sustained piece of work. You will suggest an area of practice from within your clinical area that would benefit from an in-depth review from an evidence based practice, system redesign or staff/ service user education perspective. You will conduct a review of existing literature and discuss your approach to implementing the outcomes of the review in terms of leadership and change management. A fundamental aspect of the project is the dissemination of the change in practice and its implications for practice. Academic supervision will encourage reflection as well as the integration of theory and practice.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      You will select a minimum of 40 credits from the following modules:

      HEA3131Patient and Family Centred Cardiothoracic Care (10 credits)

      Patient and Family Centred Cardiothoracic Care focuses on developing  your knowledge and delivery of holistic compassionate care to the cardiothoracic patient and their family. You will critically analyse the steps of cardiothoracic patient care pathways from admission to discharge. Key learning themes, underpinned by patient shadowing, stories and reflective accounts, will raise your awareness of the fundamental care needs of patients and their families during times of illness. Special focus will be given to the consideration of the impact of learning disability, deprivation of liberty, mental capacity, dementia care and safeguarding of vulnerable adults.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HEA3245Principles of Cardiothoracic Care (30 credits)

      Principles of Cardiothoracic Care equips you with knowledge to inform the assessment and management of individuals affected by a range of cardiothoracic conditions requiring either medical or surgical interventions. You will critically examine the cardiothoracic assessment of a patient, applying your knowledge of anatomy and pathophysiology and exploring the range of care needs in order to generate a plan of action to manage care. The module also entails critical appraisal and analysis of effective care delivery.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HEA3250Safe from Harm (Cardiothoracic Care) (20 credits)

      Safe from Harm (Cardiothoracic Care) equips you with knowledge pertaining to patient safety and the prevention of harm. You will gain an understanding of national drivers in patient safety and local ‘safe from harm’ initiatives, including governance and quality assurance. The module will also develop your awareness of common risks in practice, including how to plan for their avoidance and how to manage risk to avoid complication through appropriate action planning.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Practical(s): 50%.

      You may also need to select an additional 20 credit module from the Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine’s CPD portfolio. If you study all three of the optional modules listed above, you will not be required to choose a further option from the wider portfolio.

      Optional modules provide an element of choice within the programme curriculum. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by timetabling requirements.

      For more information about each module, including the dates and times of module sessions, please visit


      You can expect to receive your timetable at enrolment. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day or evening of the week.


      Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of our published course information, however our programmes are subject to ongoing review and development. Changing circumstances may necessitate alteration to, or the cancellation of, courses.

      Changes may be necessary to comply with the requirements of accrediting bodies, revisions to subject benchmarks statements, to keep courses updated and contemporary, or as a result of student feedback. We reserve the right to make variations if we consider such action to be necessary or in the best interests of students.

      Entry Criteria

      Entry Requirements

      To join this programme, you should be working in an appropriate practice environment. For further advice on this, please contact either the Clinical Programme Lead or the Academic Programme Lead.

      You must be registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council or Health and Care Professions Council, have membership of a related professional organisation, or hold an overseas nursing or allied health professional qualification and IELTS 6.0 or equivalent (with 6.0 achieved in the written and spoken language element of the test, completed within the last two years).

      You should have 240 UK credits with 120 at level 4 (Cert HE) and 120 at level 5 (Dip HE). Alternatively, students who are over 21 will be considered if they can demonstrate the ability to study at degree level by the successful completion of a 20 credit Edge Hill University degree level module.

      Following successful application, you will have an individual pathway advice session with the Liverpool Heart and Chest Education Team to make an informed choice of module options.

      Recognition of Prior Learning

      Edge Hill University recognises learning gained elsewhere, whether through academic credit and qualifications acquired from other relevant courses of study or through recognition of an individual’s professional and employment experience (also referred to as ‘experiential learning’). This may include credit or learning undertaken at another university.

      Previous learning that is recognised in this way may be used towards meeting the entry requirements for a programme and/or for exemption from part of a programme. It is your responsibility to make a claim for recognition of prior learning. For guidance, please consult the University’s academic regulations (sections C7 and F3.1) or contact the faculty in which you are interested in studying.

      Career Prospects

      What are my career prospects?

      Undertaking this specific programme of study can serve to enhance your career progression in the area of cardiothoracic care.

      Successful completion of this award will ensure you are well-placed to either progress in your current role or pursue a change of career within associated areas.


      Tuition Fees

      Tuition fees for part-time study on this degree are £37.50-£39 per credit for UK students enrolling on the programme in academic year 2022/23.

      • HEA3102 Research Methods – £39 per credit, equivalent to £780 for this 20-credit module;
      • HEA3131 Patient and Family Centred Cardiothoracic Care – £37.50 per credit, equivalent to £375 for this 10-credit module;
      • HEA3245 Principles of Cardiothoracic Care – £37.50 per credit, equivalent to £1,125 for this 30-credit module;
      • HEA3250 Safe from Harm (Cardiothoracic Care) – £37.50 per credit, equivalent to £750 for this 20-credit module;;
      • HEA3161 Advancing Practice Project – £39 per credit, equivalent to £1,560 for this 40-credit module;
      • Additional Module Selected from the Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine’s Professional Development Portfolio – £39 per credit, equivalent to £780 for a 20-credit module.

      A total of 120 credits must be studied in order to complete this BSc (Hons) award.

      EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, as well as Irish nationals, may be eligible for the UK part-time tuition fee rate.

      The University may administer a small inflationary rise in tuition fees in subsequent academic years as you progress through the course.


      How to Apply

      There is an online application process for this programme.

      We are not accepting applications for the programme at this time. Please keep checking this page for updates.

      Visit for more information about the application process.

      Should you accept an offer of a place to study with us and formally enrol as a student, you will be subject to the provisions of the regulations, rules, codes, conditions and policies which apply to our students. These are available at

      Get in Touch

      If you have any questions about this programme, please contact:

      If you would like to talk to the programme leaders about the course in more detail, please contact:


      Course Changes

      Expand All This page outlines any material changes to course content, programme structure, assessment methods, entry criteria, and modes of study or delivery, implemented in the past two years.

      10th January 2020 - Withdrawal of Modules

      HEA3033 Cardiothoracic Critical Care (20 credits) and HEA3172 Management of Cardiothoracic Events within Critical Care (20 credits) removed as optional modules following the withdrawal of the Critical Care pathway.

      Covid-19 - Cardiothoracic Practice Essential Information

      Teaching and Learning at Edge Hill University in 2020

      In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, answers your questions and explains how teaching will work when you join us at Edge Hill University in September.

      Campus Facilities at Edge Hill University in 2020

      In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, explains how we’re preparing the campus for your arrival in September and the facilities that will be available.