Undergraduate BSc (Hons)

Learning Disabilities Nursing and Social Work (Integrated Practice)

School of Health and Society




Three year

Next enrolment

September 2024


In a nutshell

This exciting and innovative course offers you the opportunity to study for, and to register as, both a Nurse (Learning Disabilities) and a Social Worker (Generic). You will gain the professional qualifications required as well as the knowledge, skills and experience required for working in health and social care settings, primarily with people who have learning disabilities, though placements in other social care settings meet the needs of a generic Social Work qualification.

Half of the time, the course is spent on placement where you will be supported by qualified practitioners. You will relate the theories of the professions to real-world practice and demonstrate your knowledge and skills through direct work with people with learning disabilities, their families and communities. 

When you qualify, you will be able to register as a qualified nurse (learning disability) with the Nursing and Midwifery Council and to Social Work England as a social worker. 

We are extremely proud that our course is ranked 2nd in The Guardian University Guide 2024 in the UK. (2nd out of 72 higher education providers providing Social Work degrees.)

Programme review for 2024/25 academic year 

This programme is currently undergoing a scheduled programme review, which may alter advertised modules for the 2024/25 academic year. Programme reviews are a standard part of the University’s approach to quality assurance. It means our courses are kept up-to-date to maintain high standards, enhance your student experience, and meet the requirements of our professional regulatory body - the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

Once the review is completed and approved by the NMC, the course website page will be updated to reflect any approved changes. Approved changes will be communicated to applicants to the course starting in 2024/2025. 

Integrated Practice Blog Image - Claire and Lewis - their story

Hear from graduates Claire and Lewis

You will study:

  • Study a number of related topics including sociology, psychology, social policy, law and ethics, risk and abuse, health promotion and human growth and development.
  • Be supported by qualified practitioners, including nurses and social workers.
  • Complete over 2,300 hours on placement which will give you valuable industry opportunity.

options available


students accepted

Course accreditations

This is for you if...


You have a strong desire to work with people with learning disabilities


You have excellent communication skills


You are a compassionate and caring character

Course details

All about the course

This course incorporates all the requirements of study for the generic social work and registered nurse in learning disabilities qualifications. It recognises that people with learning disabilities may have health and social care needs that require differing levels of support and intervention. An emphasis is placed on the empowerment, enablement and independence of people to meet these needs within their own communities.

Core principles of nursing and social work care delivery are explored from a theoretical and practical perspective. This includes: an understanding of human growth and development from physical, psychological and sociological perspectives; an application of legal, ethical and moral frameworks to social work and nursing practice; an appreciation of the wider context of health and social policy; using evidence based practice and research skills to inform decision making; an exploration of learning disabilities from a socio-political perspective both nationally and internationally to inform integrated professional practice.

Year one

Foundations in Nursing and Social Work

You will learn the essential knowledge, skills, values and attitudes in order to best meet the needs of individuals, families and communities and develop key principles and concepts underpinning professional practice. 

Law and Social Policy in Health and Wellbeing

You will gain an understanding of the historical development of health and welfare services and how this has shaped the legislative framework relating to the delivery of health and social care today. In addition, you will develop an awareness of factors that impact on health and wellbeing across society and develop and apply concepts and approach to health promotion within a diverse society.

Interprofessional Practice in Learning Disabilities

This module will teach you how to identify the nature of learning disabilities including causation, impact, complexity and the support needed by individuals, families and communities, taking into account relevant bio-psycho-social perspectives. In addition, you will develop an understanding of the role of nurses, social workers and other professionals who support people with a learning disability, and ways in which discrimination, oppression and exclusion can be addressed whilst promoting empowerment, inclusion and person-centred thinking and practice.

Year two

Promoting Wellbeing Across the Lifespan – Theory

You will learn to understand how to improve and maintain the mental, physical and behavioural health and well-being of people, families, communities and populations.
You will learn how to identify and respond to the social determinants of health and wellbeing along with their impact upon people from conception to death. You will examine the service systems that support children, families and people who require support to achieve and sustain wellbeing and enable you to develop assessment and planning skills. 

Interprofessional Practice Across the Lifespan - Practice

This module will enable you to achieve key roles and outcomes in practice. 

Decision Making in Learning Disabilities - Theory

This module will help you to learn how to work collaboratively across inter-professional settings and boundaries in order to maximise the health and social wellbeing of children and adults who have a learning disability, irrespective of the degree or complexity of their impairments. It will teach you how to develop your skills in relation to working in partnership with individuals, families and other professionals, in order to develop and sustain a person-centred focus on the child or adult who has a learning disability.

Decision Making in Learning Disabilities - Practice

During this module, you will need to demonstrate competencies and outcomes outlined by the Nursing and Midwifery Council/General Social Care Council for progression.

Improving Quality of Care in Integrated Care Systems

You will learn how to provide and evaluate care. You will develop knowledge and skills that enable you to take the lead in providing evidence based, compassionate and safe nursing interventions. You will learn to ensure that care provided is person centred and of a consistently high standard across a range of care settings. You will learn how to make a key contribution to the continuous monitoring and quality improvement of care and treatment in order to enhance health and wellbeing outcomes and people's experience of nursing and social care.

Year three

Comparative Perspectives

This module provides an opportunity for you to study and reflect on historical, political, social and economic factors in service systems from a European and international perspective and to critically review differing perspectives. In so doing, you are better able to locate and critically analyse contemporary British provision within a wider international context.

Developing Evidence-Based Practice with Learning Disabilities

You will be introduced to different ways of defining research problems; acquainting you with key principles of research and evidence-based practice. You will explore a range of research methodologies and skills to enable you to undertake an analysis of research data and consider the implications for professional practice. 

Integrated Professional Practice

You will develop an understanding of how to utilise your acquired knowledge, skills and values in the transition from student to qualified professional practitioner. This module will help you to prepare for a career in learning disability services by providing you with opportunities to further develop your understanding and skills so central to working sensitively and responsively with people who have a learning disability and their families, and to enable you to become professional and autonomous practitioners, managing yourself and others effectively through personal and professional reflection and supervision.

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.

What will I be doing?


A variety of teaching and learning methods are used, including:

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Directed study
  • Problem-based learning
  • Individual tutorials

Placements represent a fundamental aspect of the course and you will gain experience in a diverse range of settings including NHS, local authority, secure settings and the independent sector. You will complete over 2,300 hours on placement which will give you valuable insight and experience of supporting people in the real world.

The university makes every effort to assist students in finding a placement but is unable to guarantee that a placement opportunity will be available or that students will have access to the placement of their choice. There is a nationally recognised shortage of placements and availability is dependent upon external providers who are able to offer a limited number of placements opportunities. If you are unable to take up a placement opportunity you will need to return any funding that you receive from the Student Loan Company if you are not actively attending the programme.


  • Written assignments
  • Presentations
  • Direct observations of practice
  • Open book exam

School of Health and Society

The School of Health and Society is a forward-thinking, dynamic school with a commitment to lifelong learning and real world impact.

Our courses are informed by the latest research and we work closely with organisations from both the public and private sector to ensure our teaching is at the forefront of practice.

Simulation Suite

Our simulation suite provides you with the opportunity to tackle real-life scenarios in a safe and supported environment. Set up like a hospital ward, the suite contains hi-tech patient simulators that can mimic everything from the common cold to a major heart condition.

The equipment includes:

  • Emergency Care Patient Simulators: Anatomically correct, feature-rich mannequins, which can be used for the physical demonstration of various clinical signs including bleeding, breathing, blinking eyes and convulsions.
  • iStan Patient Simulators: A step up from the ECS, the iStan adds an essential human element to patient simulation. It moves, breathes, can cry out or moan with pain, providing a realistic patient for you to practice on
  • Pedia Patient Simulator: A complete reproduction of a six-year-old child enabling you to practice paediatric scenarios
  • Baby simulator: This mannequin makes it possible to interact with our most vulnerable patients - in a safe, realistic learning environment

All the simulation equipment can be linked up to a hi-tech computer and audio-visual aids. Groups of students get to role-play a wide range of different scenarios, with a lab co-ordinator observing, running and intervening in the scenario remotely.

Sophisticated computer equipment can also provide detailed physiological information for each of the simulators under observation. The suite will help you develop the clinical skills you need but also the high-level communication skills that will make a real difference to your patients.

Take a 360 tour of the Simulation Suite facilities.

Service Users and Carers Group (SU&C)

Our Nursing Service Users and Carers Group (SU&C) is a collective group of service users, carers and parents who have past and current lived experience of engaging with local healthcare services and or providing care for family or friends. The group shares their breadth and wealth of expertise and diverse lived experiences in an open genuine, generous and frank manner with students to ensure that the voices of the public, patients and carers are fully heard and represented in the nursing curriculum.

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

This course is approved by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) and the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) with graduates eligible to apply for registered status with both regulatory bodies. The professions of nursing and social work offer a broad range of generic and specialist posts in local authorities, NHS and private and voluntary sector organisations.

A taste of what you could become

A qualified nurse

A social worker

A health care assistant

And more...

Career Links

We have formed strong and varied partnerships with a large number NHS Trusts and social work agencies in the north west which means your learning is informed by current practice and developments. You will undertake your practical placements in a variety of settings depending on what area you wish to specialise in which include hospitals, community settings, third sector and private health care organisations.


What you need to know

Applicant profile 

Applicants should demonstrate a clear desire and commitment to work with people with learning disabilities. This may be achieved through demonstration of various activities including: personal experience of caring for people with learning disabilities, exposure to working in environments where people with learning disabilities attend, desirable personal characteristics/attitudes, insightful perceptions of nursing and social work, an insight into career opportunities, an appreciation of the the contributions nurses and social work make to care, relevance of recent study no more than five years ago, hobbies, involvement in voluntary activities, relevance of involvement in college/work activities, an appreciation of the value of life experiences.

As part of the application process, you may be invited to complete an assessment or online activity – if this is the case we will contact you with further details.

You are required to have knowledge and understanding of the needs of people with learning disabilities and their families

English language requirements

International applicants will be required to show proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0 overall, with a minimum of 5.5 in reading, writing and speaking is required for this course.

Standard entry requirements

Police clearance

All offers on this course are made subject to police clearance. The university adheres fully to the DBS Code of Practice.

Health clearance

All offers on this course are subject to a mandatory health clearance.


GCSE maths and English minimum grade C/grade 4 required or Level 2 equivalents - Key Skills Level 2 English and Key Skills Level 2 Mathematics

You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below

UCAS tariff points

112 points


A level

112 points from a minimum of three A2 subjects.


BTEC National Diploma




If applying to start from September 2024, you will need T- Level – Health/Healthcare Science - Merit

Access to HE

112 UCAS points

Health and Social Care related subjects preferred. 

International Baccalaureate

112 UCAS tariff points equivalent. 

Scottish Highers

Equivalent to 112 UCAS points.


Irish Leaving Certificate

Equivalence to UCAS 112 points

To include specific grades: 
English – Higher H6 (D3), Ordinary O5(C3)
Maths – Higher H6 (D3), Ordinary O5(C3)

Alternative entry requirements

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.

To be considered for the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme you must have already achieved or be working towards GCSE Maths and English Grade C/4 (or equivalent).

How much?

Additional funding support for healthcare students

The NHS Learning Support Fund is available to students studying the following courses:

  • Diagnostic Radiography
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Physiotherapy
  • Podiatry
  • Prosthetics and Orthotics
  • Midwifery
  • Nursing (adult, child, mental health, learning disability, joint nursing/social work)

Visit the NHSBSA website for further information. 

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home 2024/25 £9,250.00per year
Full-time international 2024/25 £17,040.00per year

Additional costs

Visit our DBS, Occupational Health clearance, immunisations and uniforms page for more information.

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Apply now


Still have some questions? Register for one of our Open Days or contact us:

By email: enquiries@salford.ac.uk
By phone: +44 (0)161 295 4545

Enrolment dates

September 2024

September 2025

UCAS information

Course ID BL76

Institution S03