Nursing Associate (NMC 2018) Apprenticeship

Level 5

Nursing Associates work closely with registered nurses to deliver high quality evidence-based healthcare. It is a nursing role that cares for patients/service users across the lifespan and in a range of settings. Its aim is to bridge the gap between health and care assistants and registered nurses. Nursing Associates are members of the nursing team and are accountable for their own practice. Nursing Associates provide care for people of all ages, backgrounds, cultures and beliefs. They provide care for people who have mental, physical, cognitive and behavioural care needs. On completion of the apprenticeship, students will be eligible to register with the Nursing Midwifery Council (NMC) as a Registered Nursing Associate.


Year One

  • Discovering my identity as a Nursing Associate
  • Professionalism and public protection for Nursing Associates
  • Exploring the evidence base for Nursing Associates
  • Developing competence in safe, effective administration and optimisation of medicines for Nursing Associates
  • Foundations of practice for Nursing Associates

Year Two

  • Developing my Nursing Associate identity towards becoming a registrant
  • Applying understanding of Nursing professionalism and protection of the public in Nursing
  • Interpreting the evidence base influencing Nursing Associate practice
  • Demonstrating competence in the safe, effective administration and optimisation of medicines for Nursing Associates
  • Advanced work-based learning for Nursing Associates.


24 months with End Point Assessment (EPA) afterwards.

Assessment strategy

Assessments focus on the apprentice’s ability to produce work in an appropriate style and format and to deliver information to a range of different audiences. Case study analysis, scenario based exercise, assessment in clinical practice and other group and individual activities take place across the modules. These will assess the apprentice’s critical thinking and problem-solving abilities in a health context and clinical practice. Apprentices are also prepared to take the EPA on completion of the programme.

Delivery model

Apprentices are taught in blocks of theory and blocks of clinical practice. The taught elements of the programme are delivered through interactive workshops, seminars, clinical skills and simulation enhanced through independent guided study. Typically, apprentices are engaged in learning activities away from their normal place of work for three days per week, with two days remaining within the workplace.

Apprentices learn in clinical practice through planned protected learning within their employment base. University tutors will work with employers to prepare for learning in the workplace that complies with NMC Standards for Student Supervision and Assessment (SSSA).

Apprentices will also have placements in a variety of external placements to complement their employment base. This could be in hospital, community, health or social care settings. Placements will be planned to ensure that the apprentices have experience of working with patients/service users with physical, mental, cognitive and behavioural needs. Apprentices will also have experience of working with adults, children and young people.

Entry requirements

  • Sponsored by an employer
  • Employed a minimum of 30 hours per week
  • Maths and English at Level 2
  • Evidence of level 3 study
  • Satisfactory DBS clearance
  • Satisfactory Occupational Health clearance.

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