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Healthcare Science Practitioner (Biomedical Science) Degree Apprenticeship

BSc (Hons)

School - School of Environment & Life Sciences

Subject area - Biomedical Science

The cost of the apprenticeship will be covered by your employer and/or the Government. You will need to cover the cost of any study materials plus travel to and from campus if required. Please note, due to the nature of apprenticeships and how they are funded (by the government and the employer), apprentices will not be eligible for student finance - this includes tuition fee loans and maintenance loans.

Start Dates(s): September


The apprenticeship takes three years to complete. The University of Salford has consulted with employers regarding the programme length and mode of delivery

In Brief:

  • The Degree Apprenticeship route will allow you to work and study for your degree at the same time as well as taking advantage of employer and government funding.
  • With the Degree Apprenticeship, your employer and/or the Government will pay your tuition fees and you will be earning a salary.
  • Newly refurbished and well-equipped teaching and research laboratories for practical work
  • A part-time only course

Course Summary

The BSc (Hons) Biomedical Science (pathology lab based) degree has been developed through consultation with pathology laboratory employers and is co-delivered, meeting the requirements for a Healthcare Science Practitioner (Biomedical Scientist) apprenticeship through completion of an approved Biomedical Science degree*. 

The apprenticeship route integrates traditional academic learning on a degree programme with work based learning through employment in a suitable approved pathology laboratory. It provides a new route for developing and retaining the future pathology laboratory workforce that is complementary to the academic route, ensuring that graduating apprentices are competent Biomedical Scientists able to meet the future needs of employers.

*subject to programme accreditation with IBMS

Please note, due to the nature of apprenticeships and how they are funded (by the government and the employer), apprentices will not be eligible for student finance - this includes tuition fee loans and maintenance loans.

Discover our £3m Bodmer Laboratories 

Find out more about the School of Environment and Life Sciences

Course Details

To undertake this programme, you will already be employed in a pathology laboratory (which holds Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS) pre-registration training approval), perhaps as a medical laboratory assistant or similar role, and aspire to have a career as a Biomedical Scientist. The University of Salford apprenticeship degree programme is designed to work in partnership with pathology laboratories so that you can complete your studies whilst continuing in your normal job.

Course Structure

You will need to attend University for the equivalent of about one day per week across three trimesters per year and apprentices will be expected to undertake significant additional learning online. It is suggested that a further 10% allowance be given by the employer for work towards completion of the IBMS registration portfolio. 

Apprentices will take between 2-4 different core and specialist modules at any one time, with more modules being taken concurrently in first year. In addition, work based modules are taken at each level.

Year 1                        

This module will look at the multidisciplinary nature of cell biology and the basic structure of cells, focusing on animal cells. It will help you develop a theoretical knowledge of the fundamental physiological and biochemical functions carried out by cells.                        
This module will help you develop an understanding of genes and genetics, and their influence on evolution and development. It looks at the basic principles of molecular genetics, and the function and evolution of genes in organisms.                        
This module focuses on the basic principles involved in the build-up of molecules from atoms: the formation, properties and importance of bio-organic molecules, the diverse nature of micro-organisms and their structure, function and importance.                        
This module aims to provide you with a systems-led approach to understand basic human anatomy and embryology. You will gain an in depth understanding of structure-function relationships of key systems in the human body through the study of gross anatomy and tissue histology.                        
Learn, by observation, investigation and comparison, to facilitate and develop effective use of laboratory apparatus in the performance of basic techniques. You will also develop practical laboratory skills relevant to cell, organismal, micro- and molecular biology and physiology which will form a basis        for  competence  in        biological        and biochemical experimental work.                        
In this module you will develop practical learning and presentation methods which can be applied generically during study in year 1 and beyond as well as an appreciation of Personal Development Planning and effective data handling, calculation and numerical skills. Additionally, you will be introduced        to        the portfolio as a learning resource and shown how to relate this to professional practice. This is a workplace based module in conjunction with tutorials.              

Year 2                        

The aim of this module is to encourage an awareness of the physiological nature of life in humans and develop an understanding of form, function and adaptation in organ systems central to the maintenance of life and interaction with the environment.                        
This module will introduce you to some basic concepts of recombinant DNA technology at both the theoretical and practical level. It will provide you with a solid grounding of the different mechanisms involved in the control of gene expression in pro- and eukaryotes, and how dysfunction in these processes  can  lead  to        human        genetic        disorders. Additionally, you will be introduced to the concepts of genomics and bioinformatics and DNA instability and mutation and their role in human pathologies such as cancer.                        
The aim of this module is to study the principles of haematology and blood transfusion, selected important diseases associated with them and their application in the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases.                        
The aim of this module is to introduce you to the concepts of chemical and biochemical tests and their relevance to clinical diagnostics, to develop your knowledge and understanding about biochemical changes in disease, and to learn practical techniques in clinical biochemistry.                        
This module will develop an understanding of the pathophysiology of selected organ systems; develop an understanding of the principles of a range of diagnostic procedures as well as allowing some diagnostic tests to be performed and others to be observed during hospital visits. It also provides the        basis        for        understanding the pharmacological and complementary treatments of these conditions.                        
In level 5, apprentices based within a blood sciences or biochemistry training labwill NOT be required to take the H&T module. Content from thismodule will instead be incorporated into the work based trainingprogramme (40 credit LID-1 module).            

Year 3                        

In this module you will be introduced to medical and public health microbiology, practical skills, methods of isolation, identification and typing of bacteria from various sources.                        
This module aims to provide a framework for the development of detailed and specific knowledge of the role of cellular pathology in the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases. You will develop an understanding of theoretical principles and of current and new methodologies for microscopical preparation  and  analysis        of        cells        and tissues, in order to recognise pathological conditions.                        
This module looks at mammalian immunological mechanisms, the roles played by T and B cells/Lymphokines in generating an immune response and helps you develop an understanding of the genetics of antibody diversity, HIV pathogenesis and the current immunodiagnostic assays for infectious and non-infectious        diseases.                        
The aim of this module is to develop specialised knowledge and understanding of the pathobiology of viruses and cancers in order to appreciate analytical and pharmacological aspects of antiviral and anticancer treatments. You will also learn how modern analytical methods are applied in clinical chemistry/biochemistry.
You can then undertake a lab-based research project for 40 credits or a literature or data analysis project worth 20 credits plus an optional module from:                        
In level 6, apprentices based within a cellular sciences training lab will NOT be required to take the CP module. Those based in an infecrtion sciences training lab will NOT be required to take the MPHM module. Content from this module will instead be incorporated into the work based training programme (40 credit LID-2 module).        
In the final year, apprentices will undertake a work based research project that will contribute to a live project for their employer in collaboration with the university.        

Part-time structure                          

If you are studying part-time you select two to four modules from each year of study, completing the rest of the modules for the year in the following year. This leads to a maximum six-year duration for a part-time degree. If studying part-time you do not have the placement option.

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.

Entry Requirements

Qualification Entry requirements
European Baccalaureate Pass in Diploma of at least 60% including at least one science subject
You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below.
English Language and Maths at grade C or above
UCAS tariff points 104-112 points including A2 Biology or equivalent
GCE A level 104-112 points including A2 Biology or equivalent. A Pass in the Practical Element of Science A levels must be achieved.
BTEC National Diploma DMM- must include 4 good Science Modules
Scottish Highers 104-112 points from Higher Level including appropriate science subjects
Irish Leaving Certificate 104-112 points from Higher Level including a science subject
International Baccalaureate 30 points with at least one science subject from Group 4

Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)

We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.

There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.

We are able to accept apprentices onto the second year of the degree if they have the relevant qualifications (i.e. Foundation Degree qualification), We cannot accept entry directly onto Year 3.

English Language Requirements

Unfortunately we are unable to accept international students onto degree apprenticeship programmes, we can however accept international qualifications.

Applicant profile

We are looking for students who have a clear wish to become a biomedical scientist and who are motivated enough to undertake the degree and associated portfolio work to become a registered member of the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS). 

Applicants for the apprentice route will hold a current employment position in a pathology laboratory that is IBMS accredited and have their line manager’s support for their application so they may become eligible to the employer apprentice Levey.


Find out more about Biomedical Research at Salford

You will learn through a combination of:

  • Lectures
  • Laboratory classes
  • Small group tutorials
  • Research projects
  • Guided reading


You will be assigned a specific academic tutor and will benefit from a workplace mentor and training programme. This team will meet you regularly and will support your studies and completion of the IBMS registration portfolio. Each module will be assessed by coursework and/or end of module examination. Apprentices will also complete an EPA as part of their final work based module (EPA includes independent verification of the IBMS registration portfolio, a project-related oral presentation and a practical based assessment).



The programme structure will be delivered to degree apprentices on a part-time, day release basis subject to agreement by the employer and the university. 


The apprenticeship levy was introduced in April 2017 and requires all employers operating in the UK, with a pay bill of over £3 million each year to invest in apprenticeships.

The funding policy supports the changes to the way apprenticeships in England are paid for, underpinned by the apprenticeship levy of 0.5% of the annual pay bill for companies paying over £3 million per year.

There is also a co-investment model for companies who will not be paying into the levy. The government will cover 90% of the cost of the apprenticeship and the employer will only have to contribute the remaining 10%. Once payments have been declared to HMRC, employers will now have access to a digital  apprenticeship  account from which they will be able to access funding to pay for apprenticeship training.

The maximum amount of money allocated to each standard falls into one of 15 funding bands, ranging from £1,500 to £27,000. The Healthcare Science Practitioner standard has been allocated the following funding band:

Funding band: 15
Funding band maximum: £27,000

Find out more at

Working with the University of Salford: Degree Apprenticeships

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