Information regarding our 2022/23 admissions cycle

Our updated course listings for the 2022/23 postgraduate admissions cycle will be published at the beginning of October. Applications for 2022 entry will be available shortly after this. Check our how to apply pages for updates.

Independent Prescribing (Short Course) / Course details

Year of entry: 2021

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Course description

Our Independent Prescribing course will enable pharmacists and NMC registrants to take on the role of an independent prescriber in their area of practice.

Pharmacists, nurses and midwives are taught together to facilitate multidisciplinary learning and working. This cohort will be delivered and assessed online, providing a flexible approach to learning by allowing students the benefit of studying this in their own time.

This 30-credit course is available for study at level 7 (master's level). The course runs over four months and usually has two intakes each year (October and March).

The course includes five mandatory webinars alongside 26 days, directed learning, which will be delivered through Blackboard.

In addition, you must undertake 90 hours of learning in practice with your Designated Prescribing Practitioner or Practice Assessor/Practice Supervisor. Please see Appendix A/B of the nomination pack (Word, 147KB) for details of roles and responsibilities.

Please note that successful completion of an accredited course is not a guarantee of annotation or of future employment as an independent prescriber.

You can view accreditation reports on the General Pharmaceutical Council website and the Nursing & Midwifery Council website , although in this accreditation year, these may not be the current versions.

Please check online for course dates, which are usually published four months before the start of a course, i.e. June for the October cohort and November for the March cohort.

If there are no dates for your preferred cohort, please contact us to enquire. Attendance at all workshops and assessments is mandatory, so you must confirm that you are able to attend them all before you apply.

Please check online for details of fees, which may be subject to change and apply only to the dates given.


The course aims to build on your experiences and encourage the development and application of new knowledge and skills in practice.

We aim to:

  • enable you to successfully meet the standards set out by the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) and the Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC), allowing you to apply for registration to practise as an independent prescriber;
  • produce competent prescribers who can provide safe, effective and evidence-based prescribing to address the needs of patients in practice;
  • enable pharmacists, nurses and midwives to develop the skills, knowledge and attributes required for safe and effective prescribing practice;
  • help you to develop a systematic, evidence-based and reflective approach to prescribing practice;
  • identify your own learning needs, develop as a critically reflective practitioner and advance your own learning to sustain continuing professional development, and work at the forefront of your profession.

Special features

Pharmacists can undertake the Independent Prescribing course as part of the PGDip/MSc Clinical Pharmacy .

NMC registrants may be able to use Independent Prescribing credits towards a larger award such as the MSc Advanced Clinical Practice .

Additional course information

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

You can find the answers to FAQs in Appendix D of our nomination pack  (Word, 132KB).

Teaching and learning

A range of teaching methods are used to develop the knowledge and understanding, practical skills, intellectual skills and personal qualities required to become a competent prescriber.

Learning is delivered online as weekly content designed to complement the online workshops.

The online material can be studied in your own time, and will involve directed reading, online discussion and directed activities during supervised practice. As such, you must be self-motivated to learn in your own, and time have a good level of IT skills to navigate Blackboard and the electronic portfolio.

A minimum of 90 hours' learning in practice under the supervision of a Designated Prescribing Practitioner or Practice Assessor/Practice Supervisor must be carried out during the four-month course. During this time, you will complete a reflective practice portfolio to document and reflect on your learning, and to evidence your development of the prescribing competencies.

Please note that this is an accelerated course that covers a large amount of learning in a very short space of time. You will need to engage fully with the course because you will need to complete 26 days of learning and 12 days of supervised practice in this timescale. On average, that's 14 hours of study and one full day of learning in practice each week of the course.

October 2021 cohort delivery

There will be a total of five mandatory online workshops:

  • 14 September 2021, 6-8pm
  • 5 October 2021, 9am-12.30pm
  • 2 November 2021, 9am-12.30pm
  • 30 November 2021, 9am-12.30pm
  • 4 January 2022, 9am-12.30pm

The nature of some assessments means that we schedule them during the course and you will have the opportunity to select a convenient slot from a range of options as follows:

  • Mock OSCE - during wc 6 December 2021
  • Final OSCE - during wc 24 January 2022
  • Case presentation - during wc 31 January 2022

The deadline for submission of the reflective practice portfolio will be 8 February 2022.

March 2022 cohort delivery

The course will start around the end of March and we will confirm delivery and assessment details around the end of October, The deadline for applications will be 1 December. 

Coursework and assessment

During the pandemic and in response to the requirements of social distancing, we have a revised assessment schedule:

  • two-station OSCE by webinar
  • case presentation by webinar
  • reflective practice portfolio
  • short answer questions on a range of pharmacology and governance topics submitted with the portfolio.

Course unit details

Course unit list

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Independent Prescribing PHAR61001 30 Mandatory
Independent Prescribing PHAR61002 30 Mandatory

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service.