School of Health Sciences and Social Work

Short courses and CPD

Cert HE Paramedic Practice

  • Course Type: Certificate of Higher Education in Paramedic Practice
  • Venue: The University of Portsmouth
  • Hours: Short course

Why take this course?

Successful completion of this course leads to HCPC Paramedic registration. The feedback from the current students has been fantastic with wholehearted recommendations for those interested to undertake it. This course focuses on developing competent, skilled paramedic practitioners. Work-based learning is a key component and you’ll develop practical skills first in safe, simulated teaching environments, before being supervised in using these skills in practice.

Values and the NHS Constitution

We endeavour to recruit students to our health and social care courses who have the right values base and demonstrate appropriate behaviours. We embed the values of the NHS Constitution throughout our admissions processes and they are an essential part of the curricula. Find out more about the values we look for.

What will I experience?

On this course you can:

  • Perform IV cannulation, IO infusion and needle thoracocentesis
  • ECA’s and technician's will be able to give drugs up to the level of Paramedic, perform ILS to include iGel and manual defibrillation
  • The course will also include ALS and PALS resuscitation, chest decompression, 12 lead ECG recognition, trauma skills and intervention
  • Perform respiratory, cardiac, abdominal, cranial and peripheral nervous system assessments

What opportunities might it lead to?

This course will enable you to develop the ability to demonstrate leadership and clinical reasoning as a member of a multidisciplinary team. You will have the capacity to evaluate your own performance and the performance of peers and students by identifying strengths and weaknesses through reflection. You will be able to ensure that all statutory requirements are met in order to be eligible to apply for HCPC registration as a Paramedic. The development of clinical skills for safe practice is the key element of the curriculum. Clinical placements and learning are an essential and valued part of the programme. You will receive guidance, supervision and support from a team of dedicated mentors/registrants throughout a range of practice settings. Practice is valued equally with theory in the assessment strategy. You will be expected to demonstrate competency by reflecting on and analysing your clinical practice. The development of a portfolio, which reflects on competence, skills and knowledge, will demonstrate the integration of theory and practice.

Entry Criteria

Admission to this course is strictly limited to existing clinical staff from South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust and the Isle of Wight NHS Trust. Applicants should also be a current Institute of Healthcare and Development (IHCD) qualified Ambulance Technician or experienced Emergency Care Assistant (ECA) with 1 year minimum front line experience. Previous academic study undertaken and qualified within the last 5 years is required, with 72 points from 2 A Levels or equivalent, to include 32 points from a science based subject. Applicants will be required to submit a portfolio at interview. Applicants will be subject to an admissions test.

English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 7.0 with no component score below 6.5.

As well as being clinical staff all entrants on to this course have to demonstrate the following:

  • Current IHCD qualified Ambulance Technician or experienced ECA with 1 year minimum post course experience
  • Currently holds 3x GCSE Grades A*-C and/or O-levels Grades A-C (Math and English)
  • Previous and recent academic study undertaken and qualified within the last 5 years which must be a science based subject at NVQ, BTEC or Level 3 equivalency ie. Access to HE Diploma (Science, Health & Social Care or Nursing), to include a minimum of 21 level 3 credits in Science subjects at merit or above
  • Produce a portfolio of evidence based on a detailed list of criterion
  • Successfully complete an online level 4 Anatomy & Physiology examination.
  • Applicants whose first language is not English must have a proficiency in the English language at a minimum of IELTS band 7 with no component score below 6.5
  • International applicants are not accepted due to current funding arrangements and placement capacity

This couse is only available to Home/EU students.

Course structure

Units you will study include:

  • Introduction to Research
  • Paramedic Practice
  • Complex Patients
  • Clinical Assessment and Decision Making
  • Clinical Practice

Teaching and Assessment

You will be taught the key theoretical and practical concepts of paramedic practice, the integration of these concepts into clinical practice via high quality patient centred care and evidence based practice and research that contribute to the development of pre-hospital care.

You will understand the role of lifelong learning, reflection, continued professional development, peer support and multi professional working. You will learn the application of best practice and current knowledge and research to paramedic practice across the health and social care spectrum whilst recognising the contributions made by other health care professionals through partnership working.

You will also study a variety of approaches to patient assessment and therapeutic interventions.

How are you assessed?

Evaluation of knowledge and understanding is through coursework assignments such as an essay, examinations and reflective accounts. Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) is used to evaluate. You will develop your practical skills throughout the programme by applying your academic learning through part-task training and simulation and consolidated during clinical placement. 


Our aim is to enhance your learning and experiences through the use of innovative technologies. You’ll practise profession-specific skills on medical mannequins and experience clinical situations in a safe and supportive environment. The Centre is used to simulate real-life scenarios – a great way to prepare you for the real thing during placement. You will be part of the next generation of healthcare professionals so it’s important you get to practise your skills and gain relevant experience first-hand. You’ll be taking part in realistic clinical scenarios using state-of-the-art facilities. Act out examinations and treatments using our four beds of human patient simulators or our high-fidelity patient simulator. This is also a great way to assess your professional development.

More about our facilities




‌ David McGreachie, CertHE Paramedic Practice student

The facilities at the University are fantastic, ranging from a fully supported administrative base, IT department, extensive well situated library and state of the art modular wards containing human patient simulators, all set within a well-resourced realistic learning environment.


Applications for this programme will be available on the NHS jobs website. For more information about this course please contact  or phone +44 (0)23 9284 4440.

Download the Programme Specification for this course.