Physiotherapy BSc (Hons)

Start date
September
Duration
3 years
UCAS code
B160
Course Type
Undergraduate, Single Honours

The Physiotherapy BSc at Birmingham is a popular modular programme that offers both classroom and clinical-based experience. 

Our programme  covers theoretical disciplines including human anatomy and physiology; therapeutics; cardiorespiratory, neurological and musculoskeletal physiotherapy; psycho-social aspects of health care, as well as professional codes of conduct; cultural competence, ethics, research and study skills.

Practical skills for professional practice are taught and assessed throughout the course. You will take your first placement in Year 1 and undertake an additional five placements throughout the programme, completing a minimum of 1,000 hours.

Additionally, you will engage in learning opportunities involving other health professionals within the University and Hospital Trusts when on placement, which will enhance your multidisciplinary team-working skills.

Physiotherapists play a significant part in most health care teams, being involved in the maintenance and/or restoration of movement and function in a range of client groups.


Download the Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences Undergraduate programme brochure (PDF 487kb)

My placements really helped to prepare me for the working world and made the transition from university to full time employment seem a lot less daunting.

Rachel-Kim Dallimore, Principal Physiotherapist at Alexandra Hospital, Singapore

Why Study this Course?

There are plenty of reasons to study Physiotherapy BSc at Birmingham:

  • 1st for Physiotherapy – We are ranked first in the UK for Physiotherapy in The Complete University Guide 2019.
  • Placements – Students complete a minimum of 1,000 hours of placements throughout their programme, including placements in the first year (we are the only university to do this).
  • Pitch-side assistance training – students have the unique opportunity to be selected and trained to provide bronze level pitch-side first aid for the University’s elite sporting teams which contain many international-level athletes.
  • Accreditation – on successful completion of the course, students are eligible to apply for membership of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and to register with the Health and Care Professions Council.
  • We have strong and effective relationships with the NHS across the West Midlands region.

Modules

First year

Modules are centred on the practice of physiotherapy with the relevant theoretical aspects underpinning these. Practical skills are developed through practice on your peer group. Exploration of various topics relevant to your development as a health professional, such as; practical and study skills, professional codes of conduct, cultural competence, psychosocial basis of patient-centred care, will be taught in the first year. A four-week block of clinical experience will take place mid-way through the year, helping to integrate theory and practice. 

Terms are longer during your first and second years due to clinical placements.

Year 1

The following must be taken: 

Second year

This year introduces you to social aspects of health and illness, and continues your studies in professional development.  You will build upon your first year modules, developing knowledge and skills in cardio-respiratory, neurological, musculo-skeletal physiotherapy and research in practice. Two six-week clinical modules during the year enhance your clinical reasoning skills.

Terms are longer during your first and second years due to clinical placements.

Year 2

Third year

Your third year focuses on issues related to the context of health care. Research skills are refined in your project. Modules in this year will expand your knowledge of wider practice and complex integrated care. Three clinical placements, ranging from 4 weeks to 8 weeks in duration, take place in year three.

There are some opportunities available for students to complete the programme in six years through flexible route; contact admissions for further details.

Year 3

The modules listed on our website comprise the BSc Physiotherapy (Hons) Programme that has been approved and validated by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC UK). In the unlikely event that a change to a module is necessary, we will let you know as soon as we can.

Fees

Standard Home/EU student fees 2020-21

For UK students beginning their studies in September 2020, the University of Birmingham will charge the maximum approved tuition fee per year. The fees for your first year of study will therefore be £9,250. Visit our tuition fees page for more information.

Standard international student fees 2020-21

International fee
Fee Band (Undergraduate) Full-time
Band 3a (Laboratory) £22,260

Please note, there may be expenses incurred with travel and/or accommodation on clinical placements which are mandatory elements of the course. 

Learn more about fees and funding 
 
Scholarships
Learn more about our scholarships and awards

 


For EU students applying for the 2020/21 academic year

The UK Government has confirmed that EU students will continue to be eligible for 'home fee status' for entry in September 2020, and will continue to have access to financial support available via student loans for the duration of their course. For more information take a look at the gov.uk website.

EU Referendum

Answering your questions and concerns about the outcome of the EU referendum.

How To Apply

Apply through UCAS at www.ucas.com  
Learn more about applying

Standard offer

International Requirements



Number of A levels required:
3
Typical offer:
AAB
Required subjects and grades:
A level Biology/Human Biology or PE at grade A. Minimum of seven GCSEs grade 6/B or above including Mathematics, English and Science.

Specified subjects excluded for entry: We do not accept Applied Science, Citizenship Studies, Communication and Culture, Critical Studies, Critical Thinking, General Studies, Global Perspectives, Moving Image Arts, Science in Society, Use of Maths and World Development.

BTEC Diploma: 
BTEC Extended Diploma accepted in Sport & Exercise Science, Health Science, Health & Social Care and Applied Science. Grades required - D*D*D* with distinctions in all units. BTEC Extended Diplomas in other subjects will require an additional A level in Biology or PE at grade A.

BTEC Diploma accepted in Sport & Exercise Science, Health Science, Health & Social Care, Applied Science, Sport Science, Sport when offered in combination with A level in Biology or PE. Grades required - D*D* plus grade A.

BTEC Subsidiary Diploma accepted when combined with 2 A levels to include Biology or PE. Grades required D* plus AB.

All BTEC students should contact us before submitting an application.

Access to Higher Education: Access to Science, Health Science or Physiotherapy: a minimum of 60 credits overall including 45 at Level 3, all with Distinctions. 36 Science credits at Level 3 (with 18 in Biology). English and Maths at GCSE grade 6/B or above.

International Baccalaureate Diploma: 6,6,5  in Higher level subjects plus 32 points overall. Higher level subjects need to include the required subjects as defined for the A-level qualification, where applicable.

Graduate Entry Requirements: A relevant degree at 2.1 plus minimum BBB at A level or an unrelated degree at 2.1 plus minimum BBB to include Biology at A level.

Non-academic conditions of entry:

We are looking for candidates who can enable effective patient care framed around good patient experiences. We would like to recruit candidates who are caring, compassionate, capable of putting patients before their organisation or self, work with others to deliver care which is tailored to a person and therefore improve their lives and lives of their families and carers. Ideally candidates should be open and honest and be able to communicate effectively and clearly with service users. We would like to recruit and train candidates who are innovative and safe and who will strive for excellence in care.  Candidates who apply should have a strong ethical stance on equality, non-discrimination and fairness (based on NHS constitution, 2013).

A satisfactory health declaration, including evidence of appropriate immunisations, and other regulatory checks (such as DBS - see below) are required from accepted candidates before registration for the programme. 

Students will be required to complete a successful Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check before admission to the programme.

For healthcare profession courses no convictions, cautions, reprimands or warnings are considered “spent”, this includes those that may have been received when a minor (i.e. under the age of 18).

Declaring any matter likely to be recorded on your enhanced DBS disclosure does not automatically rule you out from becoming a physiotherapist. However, you will have to provide information about this to enable us to make a decision about any offer made. 

Please note that not declaring in advance anything that you are aware of may have an impact on the outcome on the decisions we make regarding your application.   

All students will be required to sign the subject-specific Fitness to Practise Code of Conduct on entry, details of which will be forwarded with an offer letter.

We are influenced in our selection for the physiotherapy programme by a number of different factors, over and above your academic record. We like, for example to see evidence of your motivation for a career in physiotherapy, and your outside interests too are a pointer to whether you are the sort of person likely to make the most of the degree.

Achieving the minimum entry requirements does not guarantee an interview.

  1. Other qualifications are considered - learn more about entry requirements.
  2. Applicants must gain insight into the breadth of work of the physiotherapist prior to application to ensure informed decision making regarding choice of programme and future profession. This should include shadowing (observing) a physiotherapist and visiting websites related to physiotherapy such as that of the CSP, HPC and NHS. The University open days also provide opportunities to explore the scope of physiotherapy practice meet current physiotherapy students and gain an outline of the physiotherapy degree programme.
  3. Applicants will have been in education within the last 3 years.
  4. Evidence of IT and interpersonal skills development are required.
  5. All candidates offered a place will have been interviewed.
  6. Transfer applicants - we do not consider applicants who have studied, or are studying, physiotherapy elsewhere.
  7. Foundation degrees are usually not accepted.
  8. We take a positive view of what candidates with disabilities can achieve as future healthcare professionals and take seriously our obligation to make reasonable adjustments to ensure that all students with disabilities can successfully complete their studies. All applicants will be assessed up to and including the interview on the basis of the criteria outlined here regardless of any disability. If you declare a disability we will invite you to work with us together with the disability team, clinical colleagues and specialist services (RNIB, for example) to explore how best we can support your studies.
  9. Please contact us to discuss other qualifications not listed.

Applicants who take the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and meet our offer criteria will be made the typical offer for the programme, plus an alternative offer, which will be one grade lower plus a grade A in the EPQ.

 

International Students

IELTS: We have a limited number of places for International applicants each year. Applicants must achieve an IELTS qualification of 7.0 overall with no less than 6.5 in each band.

Standard English language requirements apply 
Learn more about international entry requirements

Depending on your chosen course of study, you may also be interested in one of our foundation pathways, which offer specially structured programmes for international students whose qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to UK universities. Further details can be found on Birmingham International Academy web pages.

As a Birmingham student you are part of an academic elite and will learn from world-leading experts. From the outset you will be encouraged to become an independent and self-motivated learner. We want you to be challenged and will encourage you to think for yourself.

How you will learn

This extremely popular programme is modular and comprises both University and clinically-based modules. A variety of teaching and learning methods are used within a supportive environment, with an emphasis on developing professionalism, team working and independent learning skills. There are aspects of inter-professional learning, both within the University and clinical environments. This shared learning will facilitate your ability to work collaboratively with other professionals in clinical settings. 


Placements

Practice education modules occur across all three years of the programme and assessment of your practice education is continuous.

Learning within the clinical arena is an important and compulsory part of the course. All students have to successfully complete a minimum of 1000 hours of practice education during the programme.

You will be allocated to a range of diverse and exciting placements, where you will gain a variety of experiences with a wide range of client groups, under the guidance of skilled clinicians.

Placements vary as to the experience offered; you may work within the hospital environment, in community-based environments such as clinics or schools, and within the independent and voluntary sectors. You may experience a variety of working practices including extended hours and seven-day working.

You will carry out an elective clinical placement to develop learning and experience diversity in practice between your second and third year.

Please note, there may be expenses incurred with travel and/or accommodation on clinical placements which are mandatory elements of the course. 

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“I loved the course as it offered a real balance of supported learning, practical and hands-on experience.”

Katie Watson - Flow Physio & Pilates
Read more...

Your personal tutor

You will be assigned your own personal tutor who will get to know you as you progress through your studies. They will provide academic support and advice to enable you to make the most of your time here at Birmingham. We also have dedicated academic tutors who provide professional support, advice and guidance to students across a range of issues. They can meet with you to discuss extensions, disabilities, reasonable adjustments, extenuating circumstances, or talk through any problems you might be experiencing, and help you access wider support on campus and beyond.

During your first year it is important that you have a smooth transition into University. You will be able to talk to your tutors about this and discuss if there are particular areas where you need support. 

Seminars and tutorials

A wide variety of teaching methods to facilitate learning such as small group teaching sessions, tutorials, practical and seminar work are used. You are encouraged to take responsibility for your own learning through identification of your learning needs and development of self-directed study skills through enquiry-based learning.

Lecturers and world leading researchers

You will be taught by subject-leading academics and health professionals who are passionate about sharing their knowledge and expertise with you. You will become part of the School’s academic community, which includes professors, lecturers, visiting experts, postgraduate students and researchers.

Alongside their expertise in teaching and research, our world-leading academic staff act as consultants to schools, local education authorities, national governing bodies of sport, charities, businesses and government departments in the UK and abroad. This enables academics to bring a real-world perspective.

Resources and facilities

Our state-of-the-art sports centre sits on the corner of Bristol Road and Edgbaston Park Road, and is a gateway to the University for students, staff and our local community.

The £55 million centre encompasses a unique raft of facilities, including Birmingham’s first 50-metre swimming pool, as well as a large multi-sport arena, a range of activity and fitness studios, an extensive gym, six glass-backed squash courts and various other facilities. The centre underlines the University of Birmingham’s commitment to sport at all levels. In conjunction  with the new athletics track and astroturf facilities, it is a home for our many sports clubs, allowing them to train and compete at the highest level.

Contact Hours

Throughout your Physiotherapy degree you can expect between 11-14 hours of contact time per week varying from year to year as some modules have more of a guided independent study focus than others.

Assessment Methods

Studying at degree-level is likely to be very different from your previous experience of learning and teaching. You will be expected to think, discuss and engage critically with the subject and find things out for yourself. We will enable you to make this transition to a new style of learning, and the way that you are assessed during your studies will help you develop the essential skills you need to make a success of your time at Birmingham.

You’ll be assessed in a variety of ways, and these may be different with each module that you take. Assessment of learning uses treatment toolkits, seminars, practical demonstrations, practice placement assessments, essays, case studies, research reports, portfolio development, dissertation, written and practical examinations.

During your first year you will undergo a formal ‘transition’ review to see how you are getting on and if there are particular areas where you need support. This is in addition to the personal tutor who is based in your school or area and can help with any academic issues you encounter.

At the beginning of each module, you’ll be given information on how and when you’ll be assessed for that particular programme of study. You’ll receive feedback on each assessment within 15 working days, so that you can learn from and build on what you have done. You’ll be given feedback on any exams that you take; if you should fail an exam we will ensure that particularly detailed feedback is made available to enable you to learn for the future.

95.9% graduate employability rate 2016/17 Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey (DLHE)

Physiotherapists are key members of most health care teams and work in public and private sectors at home and abroad, although some countries do require further proof of competence to practise. There are opportunities to develop your practice clinically as a clinical specialist or consultant physiotherapist, or you may choose to enter the fields of education, research or industry.

Have a look at our Physiotherapy careers page to see what our students go on to do after completing their BSc Physiotherapy programme.

Your Birmingham degree is evidence of your ability to succeed in a demanding academic environment. Employers target Birmingham students for their drive, diversity, communication and problem-solving skills, their team-working abilities and cultural awareness, and our graduate employment statistics have continued to climb at a rate well above national trends. If you make the most of the wide range of services you will be able to develop your career from the moment you arrive.

Careers Network

Careers Network, our unique careers guidance service is tailored to your academic subject area. Our team source exclusive work experience opportunities to help you stand out amongst the competition, with mentoringglobal internships and placements available to you.  Once you have a career in your sights, one-to-one support with CVs and job applications will help give you the edge. In addition, our employer-endorsed award-winning Personal Skills Award (PSA) recognises your extra-curricular activities, and provides an accredited employability programme designed to improve your career prospects.

Professional Accreditation

You are eligible to apply to register with both the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and the Health Care Professions Council on successful completion of the programme.