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Educational aims

The aim of the Postgraduate Certificate in Advancing Healthcare Practice is to equip healthcare practitioners with the knowledge, skills, personal, professional, organisational insights and qualities necessary to advance healthcare practice on the basis of key concepts relating to healthcare change, skills, and practice development.

The qualification will focus on change, change agency and the issues that must be addressed if healthcare is to advance. Change is examined in the context of healthcare policy and agendas, change agency and inter-professional working, which is addressed in all three modules. Ways in which healthcare professionals might work with clients and consumers, as well as colleagues, are examined as part of innovation in healthcare.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding


  • The concepts, theoretical ideas and empirical research findings that underpin the complexity of the context within which healthcare innovation and improvement takes place.

  • The concepts and frameworks that can be critically examined, used and appraised in designing, implementing, evaluating and disseminating healthcare change and improvement.

Cognitive skills

Be able to:

  • Critically appraise and use a range of evidence and sources of information to strategically lead on and develop a case for health care innovation and  improvement.

  • Critically evaluate the effectiveness (including personal effectiveness) and impact of healthcare change within a multi-disciplinary/agency environment.

Practical and/or professional skills

Be able to:

  • Strategically and critically identify opportunities and strategies for collaborating with, supporting and motivating others (including service users/carers) in advancing healthcare practice.

Key skills

Be able to:

  • Critically identify and use a range of digital and information technologies both to support personal study and to support/direct advancements in healthcare practice.
  • Strategically identify and critically drawing upon a range of evidence, collaborate with other relevant stakeholders in a critical analysis of current practice and in developing a strategic plan for change.

Teaching, learning and assessment methods

Knowledge is located within practice, collegiate discussions and through the library or the web, so we lead you through a series of investigations designed to help you examine knowledge in use. Assessment here as in other areas is by coursework. This qualification focuses firmly upon skills and especially those used in practice. Your studies will use a series of practice-based and study group colleague linked investigations designed to help you to review your ability to work successfully with others in a timely way.

We use print-based guides to help you explore the contribution of concepts in practice and tutor group electronic forums to help you discuss the ways in which that discovered there might inform your theoretical understanding of the advancement of healthcare practice. We use a module-wide forum to introduce you to current and developing arguments about the nature of healthcare practice and what represents improvements there.

Our guides to your investigations in practice are rich with suggestions and advice for your local discussions with colleagues.