BSc (Hons) 

Accredited by University College Birmingham


Course Award

BSc (Hons)


3 years full-time




Please see placements section below


September (2021)


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School of Education, Health and Community
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£44m invested in flagship facilities, including physiotherapy, to support your future career opportunities

We work with over 1,000 employers to find you the right work placement

This course is open for 2021 entry only.

Whether it’s helping patients recover from surgery, sports injuries, accidents and strokes or supporting people with disabilities and long-term illness, the role of a physiotherapist cannot be underestimated. Our Physiotherapy degree will give you the empowering skills to kick-start your career in this rewarding, science-led field.

Gaining a strong foundation of anatomical knowledge, you will learn how to diagnose and rehabilitate across a range of conditions, as well as how to prevent illness and disease and apply your wealth of knowledge to complex situations. You will gain substantial practical experience honing your physiotherapy skills through work placements in a range of real-life environments. This hands-on education is not only essential for the course, but enables you to experience the dynamic areas where a physiotherapist may work. Plus you will have access to some of the most cutting-edge training facilities in the country, including our purpose-built simulation suite and strength and conditioning suite.

Crucially, upon successful graduation, you should be eligible to apply for registration for the title of Physiotherapist with the Heatlh Care Professions Council (HCPC) and then the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP), opening up a wide range of career possibilities for you within a whole host of dynamic health and social settings.

Why should I choose this course?

  • INDUSTRY APPROVED – You will be able to apply for registration with the HCPC and CSP when you graduate
  • WORK PLACEMENTS – Experience the exciting and dynamic areas of the profession by undertaking 1,000 hours of work placements across a broad range of settings
  • PRACTICAL APPLICATION – Hone your practical skills in our state-of-the-art facilities, along with the chance to develop, advertise, manage and lead a ‘pop-up’ physiotherapy practice at the University
  • EXPERT TEACHING – Get excellent support from our experienced academic lecturers and guest lecturers with clinical expertise in a variety of areas

Our facilities

University College Birmingham offers a variety of cutting-edge facilities to support your physiotherapy training, including our purpose-built Health Skills and Simulation Suite.

Course breakdown

  • Year 1
  • Year 2
  • Year 3


Human Anatomy and Physiology

Excellent knowledge and understanding of the human body and its function is essential for a career in physiotherapy. This year-long module will cover the whole musculoskeletal system, nervous system and cardiovascular system. Innovative teaching techniques and digital technology enhances your learning experience.

Academic and Professional Development

This module facilitates your transition to higher education through a structured delivery of academic study skills relating specifically to your physiotherapy programme. The scope of the module will extend beyond that of lectures and will invite you to play a central role in your own academic development, aided by online screencasts and virtual classrooms. Study skills will focus on written English and maths specific to physiotherapy, scientific enquiry and towards improving achievement.

Musculoskeletal Studies 1

This module introduces basic skills in musculoskeletal assessment, including the assessment of joints, muscles and ligaments, developing clinical reasoning skills based on functional anatomical knowledge. You will get to practise your manual techniques, including handling skills, positioning and accessory movements. Manual therapy will be introduced and you will have the opportunity to practise this in our open access teaching rooms.

Health across the Lifespan

This engaging module looks at the human lifespan and the challenges that occur from a physiotherapy perspective, from embryonic development, birth and early childhood development, through to adolescent biological and emotional maturity. Adulthood brings many changes to our bodies, from maximal fitness to cancer, life-limiting diseases and fluctuating mental health. The ageing process is complex and poses many challenges as we struggle to maintain independence and what happens when we can no longer care for ourselves. The biomedical, behavioural, physical and social science bases of physiotherapy practice are investigated in this fast-moving module.

Placements 1 and 2

Once you have completed the necessary inductions and preparation, you will be on placement for 2.5 days per week, commencing in week 3 of the semester. This placement will allow you to gain first-hand insight into the role of a physiotherapist. Your role will be observational at the start, but as you gain skills learned in your other modules, you will be able to apply these immediately. Your development will be rapid, and you will gain skills and knowledge that will be further developed in your second year.


Neurological Studies

This module includes an introduction to physiotherapy approaches to enhance movement and minimise impairment in a range of neurological conditions. You will gain understanding of life-long conditions and the complex management required, as well as learning basic assessment and rehabilitation skills through practical lessons and taught sessions. The impact of neurological conditions will be discussed through the perspective of the patient, their families and from society as a whole.

Cardiovascular and Respiratory Studies 1

Prevention and healthy living will be promoted in this empowering module. Many medical conditions are a result of unhealthy lifestyles. This module will look at the health of our surrounding communities, touching on inequalities in health and services available to support people potentially at risk of developing cardiovascular and respiratory conditions. Accompanying this, you will gain knowledge and insight into cardiovascular pathologies and respiratory conditions, learning the key skills in assessment and management of conditions.

Musculoskeletal Studies II

Your skills will be further developed from the previous musculoskeletal module. You will be using clinical reasoning skills to further enhance your assessment, treatment and rehabilitation knowledge and learn to apply this knowledge to a range of case scenarios. You will extend your knowledge and understanding of more complex presentations, utilising the biopsychosocial approach to optimise the impact of physiotherapy interventions. A person-centred approach is embedded into these interventions, which is essential to prepare you for your practice placements.

Research for Physiotherapists

As the 21st century progresses and we move ever further into a digital age, having the knowledge and skills to navigate this area is vital to be an effective practitioner. This research module is based on the Topol Review, which will ensure students have a good knowledge of the digital future and will form the basis for the research project that will be taken in the final year. It aims to develop analytical thought through a range of research processes, allowing students to increase their appreciation of scientific and clinically-based research methods. Furthermore, this module aims to develop students’ critical thought of current research and practice and consider how the digital future will change the experiences of the service user.

Placements 3 and 4

Placements will be varied across different areas of physiotherapy practice. You will continue on placements for 2.5 days per week for 10 weeks, attending University College Birmingham for the rest of the week. Development is rapid as theory is put into practice. Through returning to the University for the rest of the week, you are further supported by our staff and will be encouraged to plan and reflect on your own learning.


Complexity in Physiotherapy Practice

This module continues to build upon your neurological physiotherapy skills. You will refine your therapeutic handling, and learn about the patient journeys faced by people affected by permanent impairment from neurological damage. You will utilise case studies and problem-solving skills to encourage professional thinking ‘outside the box’. You will be looking at opportunities for children and people with life-limiting neurological conditions in our local communities and review the access to these services, enabling education and employment when appropriate.

Cardiovascular and Respiratory Studies II

This module continues to look at the management of patients with conditions affecting the heart and lungs. This revealing module explores aspects of palliative care, as well as reviewing the management of the unwell patient in the intensive care setting. You will develop skills suitable for working in the acute setting using our simulation facilities, practising your respiratory management in a safe and engaging environment.

Research for Allied Health Professionals

This is a key project which will develop independent learning, problem solving, analysis and data presentation skills. Learners will deepen their knowledge in a selected area of the Topol Report and apply it to the profession, by choosing an area to be explored. This may be a review of a health care service, a clinical audit or a number of journal submissions on the same topic. All methods are supported by an additional poster presentation.

Placements 5 and 6

Year 3 placements are structured differently. Placements are arranged in blocks where you will attend placement for 5 weeks of each semester, with the modules taught around the placement. You will now be expected to practise with growing autonomy, developing and refining skills, to enable you to manage your own caseload.

The modules listed above for this course are regularly reviewed to ensure they are up to date and informed by industry as well as the latest teaching methods. On occasion, we may need to make unexpected changes to modules – if this occurs, we will contact all offer holders as soon as possible.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

A-levels: Grade profile of BBB, including grade B in biology or physical education.

BTEC: Grade profile of DDM from one of the following subjects: applied science, applied human biology, sports and exercise science (must include anatomy and physiology unit). This can be achieved from either an Extended Diploma or a combination of smaller BTEC qualifications.

If you are not studying an Extended Diploma in one of the related course subjects above, we will also consider 6, 9 or 12 Unit BTECs in the courses already stated providing you are also additionally studying an AS or A-level in biology or physical education at grade B.

Tariff: Other Level 3 qualifications are accepted at University College Birmingham for entry and a minimum of 128 UCAS Tariff points will be required from a vocationally relevant subject matter. To find out if your qualifications are suitable to apply, please contact our Admissions team on 0121 604 1040 or email

Access to Higher Education Diploma128 UCAS Tariff points including a minimum of 30 Level 3 credits at Distinction in one of the following subjects: health science, health professional, biomedical science, biosciences, science, science for health practitioners.

GCSEs: Please note all GCSE qualifications must have been achieved prior to applying for this course. Applications submitted without these requirements will not be considered.

GCSE/IGCSE maths, English language and science grades A*-C/9-4. GCSE equivalencies are not accepted for entry.

Students must also complete an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. University College Birmingham will coordinate and fund the completion of the DBS check.

Graduate Entry: A 2:2 or above in a related area will also be considered.


The Admissions team will use the entrance criteria, as well as your personal statement, reference and work experience information, to shortlist candidates for interview. All interviews will take place after the UCAS equal consideration deadline on 15 January.

Successful applicants will be invited to an interview which will comprise multiple mini interviews (MMIs). You will be assessed on your motivation and understanding of the role of a physiotherapist. You will also complete a series of case scenarios and tasks while being assessed on your performance by different assessors, who may include members of the health teaching team, patients, practice educators and experienced clinicians. This will give a fair insight into your abilities, giving you the opportunity to demonstrate more than just your academic ability. Further details of the process will be sent to you if you are shortlisted.

Pre-course health and immunisation requirements

Students must complete a Pre-health Questionnaire to be submitted no later than 31 August 2020, and meet the Immunisation Requirements.

Non-academic entry requirements

It is expected that applicants gain voluntary work or work experience shadowing a physiotherapist in order to have a good, clear understanding of what the profession entails. It might be that you have work experience organised, but haven’t undertaken it yet. If so, please don’t let this stop you from applying – we just need to know what your plans are to demonstrate your commitment to and passion for the profession.

We do understand, however, that this is not always easy to obtain and if this is the case, we would encourage applicants to gain knowledge in other ways. You could speak with qualified physiotherapists, read industry publications or do some research online. Useful websites include the The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and NHS Health Careers.

EU/International students

For entry requirements for EU and international students, please visit the Country Specific Information page.

English Requirements: Overall IELTS score of 7.0 – a minimum of 7.0 in reading, listening and speaking, and a minimum of 6.5 in writing.

Key information

Teaching and assessment

Note: Indicative information only – actual timetables and assessment regimes will be issued at your induction.


Learning strategies include:

  • Practical lessons
  • Small seminars
  • Self-directed study
  • Placement learning opportunities


Assessment formats include:

  • Practical exams
  • OSCEs (Objective Structured Clinical Examinations)
  • Written multiple choice questions
  • Written assignments

Our teaching and assessment is underpinned by our Teaching, Learning and Assessment Strategy 2015-2020.

Uniform and kit costs

Physiotherapy students are required to wear uniforms on placements (trousers and tunic). These uniforms can be purchased through the Kick-Start scheme at no cost to the student (see the Kick-Start information tab below).

University College Birmingham will provide you with a polo shirt to be worn during practical and skills-based activities on campus.

Additional costs

The Chartered Society of Physiotherapists student membership costs £41.26 and can also be paid for through our Kick-Start scheme, as well as core reading books from the course reading list.

Additional course costs may include travel expenses to and from placements, parking charges and the occasional overnight accommodation costs for placements that are further away from Birmingham. To meet these course costs, student physiotherapists can apply for the NHS BSA Learning Support Fund.

All student physiotherapists are entitled to apply for £5,000 per year. There are additional means-tested funds available for students with dependants or in financial hardship situations.


As a new student studying this degree full-time, you will receive £300 per year via our Kick-Start Scheme (eligibility criteria applies). This scheme will support your studies and future career by contributing to course-related materials, uniform or selected items on campus. You might even qualify for an additional £500 per year.

Tuition fees

UK/EU students

If you are a UK/EU student enrolling on a full-time foundation degree or a BA/BSc in 2020/21, your fee for this academic year will be £9,250 per each full year. A half year tuition fee is £4,625. UK/EU students do not pay tuition fees for any placement periods.

International students

If you are an international student enrolling on a a full-time foundation degree or a BA/BSc in 2020/21, your fee for this academic year will be £11,500 per year.

If you complete a placement year, there will be an administration fee of £500 for a full year, or £250 for a half-year placement.


of graduate employers say relevant experience is essential to getting a job with them

Work placements

Work placements are vital for gaining real-life experience and for building your confidence and skills before you finish your course – and they may even lead to a job when you graduate. Our hired@UCB team can help find the ideal placement for you.

Our BSc Physiotherapy course requires you to spend at least 1,000 hours on practice placement throughout the degree in order to meet the requirements for registration with the CSP.

Work alongside experts in your sector

A snapshot of some of the employers we have worked with:

  • University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (Birmingham, Solihull)
  • Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (West Midlands)
  • Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust (West Midlands)
  • BMI Priory (Edgbaston)
  • Physio and Health Matters (Ross on Wye, Balsall Common)

Important information 

Please note that due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, it is unlikely that any first year students will be going into placement – this is likely to be the same for all universities. We understand this may be particularly disappointing for our Physiotherapy students as placement was planned for the first year.

If placements cannot go ahead, we will look to meet the practical element of your course in other ways – most likely through simulation, supported by our exceptional new facilities in Moss House.

Circumstances may change and we will continue to manage the situation in line with guidance issued.

Now more than ever, the knowledge and skills of the physiotherapist are required as part of a multi-disciplinary team. On this course, you will be taught by skilled physiotherapists and lecturers and supported in your early placement by experienced physiotherapy practice educators, preparing you for a long and rewarding career.

Vicky Wynne Assistant Dean, School of Education, Health and Community

Career opportunities

The example roles and salaries below are intended as a guide only.


Average Salary: £33,834

Senior physiotherapist

From £30,401 to £37,267

Clinical specialist/team leader

From £37,570 to £43,772

Sports physiotherapist

£23,000 – £45,000


We are here to support your career goals every step of the way. 


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Laura’s Story

Starting her career at Birmingham Children’s Hospital, Laura called on her longstanding clinical and teaching expertise to develop this new degree.

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