Peninsula Medical School

BSc (Hons) Diagnostic Radiography

Do you want to make a difference to patient care? Radiography is one of the core diagnostic healthcare roles, helping patients get the treatment they need. It is also at the forefront of technological developments, offering a dynamic career full of potential. With hands-on, interprofessional learning and patient care at its heart, this innovative, evidence-based course, will give you the knowledge, skills and confidence to become an outstanding radiographer for the modern health care setting.

Careers with this subject

Diagnostic radiographer utilise the latest technology to look inside the body to identify causes of illness, safeguarding patients by utilising radiation regulations. They operate a range of imaging technology to capture, interpret and report findings. They compare image results pre- and post-treatment, and work closely with doctors and specialists to inform treatment.
Diagnostic Radiographers work with a wide range of conditions to help other clinicians develop treatment plans for patients. They use a range of imaging techniques to identify: 
  • Fractures and breaks
  • Cancers
  • Internal injuries or conditions
  • Heart and lung health 
  • Brain injuries
  • Stroke
  • Multi-sclerosis
  • Eye, ear or throat issues
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Arthritis
  • Tumours
  • Joint damages
  • Scoliosis
  • Soft tissue damage
  • Stomach conditions
  • Accidents.
Within the radiography profession there are a multitude of job opportunities. You could work in the NHS, within the public or private sector. For example:
  • NHS hospitals
  • Specialist departments such as radiology and A&E
  • Outpatients departments
  • Operating theatres
  • Armed Forces
  • Veterinary practices
  • Private practice
  • GP surgeries
  • Education and academia
  • Research
  • Leadership roles
  • Voluntary roles
For more information visit radiographers careers

Key features

  • Train using advanced medical imaging technology, at the forefront of modern patient care.
  • Learn using state of the art teaching facilities.
  • Receive an ipad for the duration of your course. 
  • Take part in expert-led discussions around clinical case studies and the latest medical science breakthroughs, through our structured small groups teaching approach, including enquiry-based learning. These are also a great opportunity to learn from other students’ knowledge and experience.
  • Develop empathic, technical and professional healthcare skills in a practical, innovative modern training programme.
  • Benefit from close relationships and training with our hospital partners, including the Peninsula Trauma Centre, Derriford Hospital and the Peninsula Radiology Academy.
  • Train alongside other health profession students to enrich your experience and understanding of different healthcare roles.
  • Learn from real patients from the outset, with clinical placements starting in the first semester of Year 1.
  • Practise your clinical and communication skills in the safe setting of our Clinical Skills Resource Centre (CSRC), which features specially designed replicas of hospital wards and emergency rooms, with high-specification patient-simulators.
  • Utilise online systems to support your learning including the student logbook, custom-made for our students to access lecture notes, online assessment systems and lecture sessions.
  • Deepen your understanding of the structure and functionality of the human body at our Life Sciences Resource Centre (LSRC), with expert-led life science sessions helping you apply this information to radiography.
  • In Year 1, students will study in Plymouth, with all of their clinical placements within daily commute. In Years 2 and 3, all students will complete a semester in Plymouth for the academic delivery, and then a semester on clinical placement in the South West and other locations.
  • Nurturing critical thinking and a caring approach to your practice, we’ll help you develop the clinical and communication, teamwork and leadership skills for a top career in radiography. 
  • The University of Plymouth BSc (Hons) Diagnostic Radiography is approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and College of Radiographers (CoR), and once you have graduated you will be eligible to apply for HCPC registration as a diagnostic radiographer.

Course details

  • Year 1

  • You will learn what it means to be a Radiographer, the professional responsibility this brings and your contribution to frontline patient care. These skills will be supported by basic sciences, including physics and biology to help you understand patient health, disease and the variety of diagnostic imaging equipment in use today. Plymouth-based placements will be in local healthcare providing institutions where you will develop a greater understanding of your future role and the skills required to succeed. Small group, enquiry-based learning will use patient focused scenarios to help you to bring all these new skills together, whilst aiding your development of life-long learning skills.
    The following table provides a breakdown of time spent on placement, versus other learning activities throughout the course.
    Year of study Planned activity* Independent study Placement
    Year 1 60 % 20% 20%
    Year 2 20% 25% 55%
    Year 3 20% 25% 55%

    *Scheduled learning and teaching activity, including simulation.

    Core modules

    • Foundations of Healthcare Science Practice and Workplace Learning (BHCS1007Z)

      This module provides an introductory framework for Healthcare Science practice, being the major vehicle for the understanding, acquisition and development of the theoretical, practical and personal attributes necessary for a Healthcare Science Practitioner.

    • Enquiry-Based Learning 1 (RAD410)

      This year-long, enquiry-based learning module provides a small-group, facilitated setting for students to apply their learning from taught modules to clinically relevant scenarios. 

    • Foundations in Diagnostic Radiography (RAD411)

      This module will provide an overview of what it is to be a Diagnostic Radiographer. It will highlight the requirements of the role within the NHS and how it fits within the wider healthcare team. It will introduce the regulations that govern the profession and medical physics and will also address how the subsequent learning within the programme relates to these requirements. This module also includes an introduction to Evidence-Based Practice. Radiographic technique will also be learned using simulation techniques.

    • Medical Imaging Science 1 (RAD412)

      This module forms an introduction to the radiobiological principles on which the practice of Diagnostic Radiography is based. This includes physics and image formation on commonly used radiographic equipment. This module will also cover relevant legislation and rules that govern Radiographic practice.

    • Medical Imaging Science 2 (RAD413)

      This module will build on the principles and theories of RAD412, RAD414 and BHCS1007 and will explore them from a more applied perspective, as relevant to Radiographic practice. Image formation and Physics will also be expanded to include other imaging modalities (Magnetic resonance, Ultrasound and nuclear medicine)

    • Human Structure and Function (RAD414)

      This module will introduce students to a number of core human science topics, underpinning later requirements for image interpretation and patient care. These will include anatomy, physiology and other relevant biomedical science, e.g. Pharmacology, Immunology, biochemistry and genetics to Radiography training.

    • Disease and Trauma for Imaging (RAD415)

      This module will build on biomedical science learning in both Semester 1 and 2, allowing students to develop an understanding of the principles of pathophysiology.

    • Interprofessional Learning 1 (HIPL400)

  • Year 2

  • The second year of training focuses further on applying your skills to the real world. In addition, you will learn about patient assessment alongside other healthcare professionals. Longer clinical placements within the region will allow you to develop your skills in the work place, taking an active role in patient management. You will also further develop your understanding and importance of the medical images you have taken. Enquiry-based learning tutorials will help you consolidate and apply these taught skills through clinical scenario discussions.

    Core modules

    • Enquiry-Based Learning 2 (RAD510)

      This semester-long, enquiry-based learning module provides a small-group, facilitated setting for students to apply their learning from taught modules to clinically relevant scenarios.

    • Clinical Application of Radiographic Theory 1 (RAD511)

      This module allows students to apply their learning in clinical practice. They will also work towards passing a range of competencies using an Entrustable assessment strategy and completing a reflective portfolio to address HCPC professionalism criteria. This module also incudes a self-directed programme of study focussing on evaluating a range of imaging-focused cases to determine quality, efficacy and their impact on patient management.

    • Medical Imaging Science 3 (RAD512)

      This module builds on the principles and theories of RAD412, RAD413 and BHCS1007 and with a further evaluation of various cross-sectional imaging modalities to identify advantages, disadvantages and a range of related issues of each modality. This includes the contrast media used for each modality

    • Interprofessional Patient Care (RAD513)

      This interprofessional module focuses on patient care and allows students to develop their clinical skills from BHCS1007 and RAD512. This includes a broader range of skills and the opportunity to work with students on other health care professions programmes. Students will develop their understanding of Evidence-Based Practice from RAD411.

    • Applied Biomedical Sciences for Imaging (RAD514)

      This module uses the lifecycle to apply students' understanding of anatomy and medical imaging, from year 1, to more clinical scenarios and changes with age and pregnancy. This will allow students to better understand regional anatomy and pathology/trauma and how these present in imaging and to develop the application of students' understanding of safeguarding in relation to imaging and other sensitive imagining issues.

    • Interprofessional Learning 2 (HIPL500)

  • Final year

  • This final year is all about the transition from student to practising healthcare professional. You will learn how to deal with more complex problems during longer clinical placements and conduct an NHS quality improvement or research project, this will advance your understanding of how imaging departments are run and the challenges they face. Outside of placements you will gain a greater knowledge of patient assessment, clinical emergencies and interpretation of imaging investigations. Year 3 will also guide you in career choices beyond that of employment, where your ambition may take you in a more specialised or diverse environment.

    Core modules

    • Service and Quality Improvement Project (RAD611)

      This module requires students to undertake a comprehensive project focussing on improving patient care and/or service delivery, relevant to the current or recent placement experience and informed by the SCoR Research Strategy. The choice will be student led but the project will be supervised by existing placement providers or academic staff. The project aim will be to inform some aspect of Radiographic practice at one of the current placement locales and the student will be the primary author.

    • Clinical Enquiry and Reasoning (RAD612)

      This module focuses on the identification of common imaging abnormalities that may be seen within the clinical setting. Students will develop the skills to interpret a range of diagnostic images and identify important conditions that may require additional or senior assistance. This module will also provide students with an understanding of advanced practice should they wish to pursue a reporting role post qualification.

    • Interprofessional Management of Patients in Crisis (RAD613)

      This interprofessional module builds on the Interprofessional Patient Care module to develop their clinical and interprofessional skills further. This includes a broader range of skills and the opportunity to work with students on other health care professions programmes. It also includes further development of their Clinical Skills training, including intravenous cannulation and Medicines Management. It will also critically discuss leadership and approaches in health and social care practice and the potential impact on the service user experience and interprofessional teams.

    • Clinical Application of Radiographic Theory 2 (RAD614)

      This module allows students to apply their learning in clinical practice. They will also work towards passing a range of competencies using an Entrustables assessment strategy and completing a reflective portfolio to address HCPC professionalism criteria. This will be carried out to a higher standard than expected in Year 2. This module also includes a self-directed programme of study focussing on evaluating a range of imaging focussed cases to determine quality, efficacy and their impact on patient management. Students will learn how to interpret a range of diagnostic images and identify important conditions that may require additional or senior assistance. This module will also provide students with experience for advanced practice should they wish to pursue a reporting role post qualification.

    • Interprofessional Learning 3 (HIPL600)

Every undergraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the course aims, the course structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest course structure and may be subject to change:

BSc Hons Diagnostic Radiography Programme Specification 23 24 4656

The modules shown for this course are those currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new modules. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to amendment from time to time as part of the University’s curriculum enrichment programme and in line with changes in the University’s policies and requirements.

Entry requirements

UCAS tariff


Please note the following information concerning entry requirements for this course:
  • None of the typical offers listed below are necessarily the threshold for interview selection. Other factors including the number of applications received may influence the threshold for interview selection.
  • We are only able to consider Level 3 qualifications completed within five years of the start of the application cycle. For example, qualifications completed since 2016 would still be valid when applying in September 2021.
Applicants need to achieve 5 GCSE passes (grade C/grade 4 or higher) which must include the following subjects:
  • English Language
  • Mathematics
  • Science
Plus one of the below Level 3 qualifications
Level 3 qualifications must include the equivalent of one A Level in one of the following subject:
Biology/Human Biology; Chemistry; Computing; Design and Technology; Electronics; Environmental Studies; Geography; Geology; Maths/Pure Maths/Further Maths; Life and Health Sciences; Physical Education; Physics; Psychology; Science (applied); Statistics.
GCE A level
The typical offer is BBC at GCE A level to include one science as listed above
BTEC National Extended Diploma
DMM in a relevant subject, which must contain units covering sufficient science as listed above
BTEC National Diploma
D*D* in a relevant subject, which must contain units covering sufficient science as listed above
Access to Higher Education Diploma
Pass an Access to Higher Education Diploma in a predominantly science subject area, meeting the following criteria: 
  • 60 credits overall to include 45 level 3 credits
  • You must achieve Distinction in 15 level 3 credits, and Merit in the remaining 30 level 3 credits
International Baccalaureate
28-30 points overall including Higher Level 5 in one science as listed above
Scottish Advanced Highers
BBC to include one science as listed above
Other UK qualifications
Other UK qualifications will be considered on an individual basis. Please contact the Admissions Team on for advice on suitability.
Applications from military veterans are welcomed and each application is assessed on an individual basis, as we realise that some military courses are not externally validated.
International Applicants
We welcome and encourage applications from suitably qualified international students who are either self-funded, supported by scholarships from their respective governments, or sponsored by scholarship programmes operated by the British Council and similar funding bodies.
International applicants need to meet the equivalent admissions criteria described for home students as outlined above. Applicants applying with overseas qualifications should contact the Admissions Team at prior to submitting an application through UCAS. In addition, international applicants need to be fully proficient in English language.
All teaching at our school is in English, so if you are an international applicant you must have one of the following English Language qualifications. If you are unsure whether your English Language qualification is suitable, please contact
If English is your first language, we will accept your home country’s equivalent of a GCSE grade A/8 in English Language providing it is at Level C1 or above according to the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR). 
  • GCSE or IGCSE grade A in English Language 
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) band 7.0 or above with no element below 6.5 taken within 12 months prior to entry. The University will no longer accept the IELTS indicator (online test). All applicants will have to take the IELTS test at an approved centre.
  • IB score of 5 in English B at the standard level.
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of 94 or above.
We know that university life is a challenge for any student but especially when you are a long way from home. You will find us friendly and supportive. We pride ourselves on being friendly and supportive, and have a nominated academic tutor to coordinate the induction and academic support provided to international students. International student advice also provide support and can assist you with any non-academic issues affecting international students. There are also student welfare support and counselling services, wardens and student health centres on hand if you need them.
Students who have an offer of a place should apply under for a Student (formerly Tier 4 General Student) visa. Further information is available on the UK Border Agency's website.
Re-sit Applicants
Re-sit applicants are considered for this course, with the following requirements: 
  • If you are applying with predicted grades, a minimum of CCC must be achieved on first sitting of A Level
  • Where CCC is not achieved on first sitting, applicants must re-sit the required qualifications and apply once suitable grades have been achieved
  • A Level or accepted equivalent qualifications must be completed in no more than 3 years of study, unless otherwise advised
  • A suitable qualification profile must be achieved on first re-sit attempt
We do not have an AS Level resit policy, however, full A Levels must be completed within the above timeframe.
For re-sit criteria of other qualifications, please contact the Admissions Team at
Selection and admissions process
Applications should be made through UCAS by the published deadline. This is typically the 15th January.
All decisions on applications are made by the Admissions Advisory Panel, which consists of academics, clinicians and senior members of the administrative team.
The University of Plymouth Medicine and Dentistry Admissions Team process applications as follows:
1. Shortlisting for interview– Applicants are considered for interview based on relevant academic qualifications alone. We do not currently consider personal statements or work experience when selecting for interview
The Admissions Advisory Panel consider many factors when choosing who will be invited to attend an interview, including the number of places available on the course and the number of applications received, alongside the academic profiles of all of our applicants
2. Interview – Successful applicants are invited to attend an interview process. We use Multiple Mini Interviews (MMI) as the format for our interviews.  Find out more about our medicine and dentistry selection and admissions process.
Following interviews, candidates are ranked based on the score achieved and the top performing applicants are offered a place on the course
3. Offer – Offers are made via UCAS. Within all offers, candidates are required to complete a series of health and police checks, full details of which are communicated to firm offer holders by the Admissions Team.
Practising as a doctor requires the highest standards and we take seriously our commitment to only enrol and teach students with the integrity required of the profession. Full details can be found on our Student Conduct and Fitness to Practise page.
The University is supportive of students with special needs and disabilities. Applicants are encouraged to disclose any needs or disability so that appropriate adjustments can be made in learning support and their individual needs met. A comprehensive procedure is in place involving Student Services and the Admissions team to ensure that all applicants are treated equitably
The Diagnostic Radiography programmes follow the guidance for Occupational Practitioners when providing adjustment for students in regulated professions.
The Faculty of Health has an Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee. The webpage associated with this committee has a link you can access for more information and support.
Students must be 18 years old or over at the start date of this programme.

Student Conduct and Fitness to Practise

Fees, costs and funding

Student 2023-2024 2024-2025
Home £9,250 £9,250
International £16,300 £18,100
Part time (Home) £770 £770
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per 10 credits. Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances. More information about fees and funding.

NHS Learning Support Fund (LSF)

Health students may be eligible to receive an additional £5000 each year
The NHS Learning Support Fund provides additional funding for eligible healthcare students. It is supplementary financial support to the mainstream student loans system and is intended to support students whilst they train and gain professional registration. The training grant is for £5,000. Find out more about the bursary.

Additional costs

Placements: All students within the Peninsula Medical School will spend time in placements away from university. The South West is a largely rural region, which often requires students to travel longer and further distances than may be expected when universities are in largely urban areas. In many cases students will stay away from home for the period of that placement time. Most students are eligible for reimbursement of additional travel and accommodation costs over normal daily travel costs. This support is part of the Learning Support Fund administered through the NHS Business Services Authority. International students are not eligible for support from the Learning Support fund and will need to fund their placement accommodation and travel.
Further information: More details of any additional costs associated with the faculty's courses are listed on the following page: Faculty of Health additional costs.

Continuing students

Please note some fees for continuing students may differ slightly.
Fees payable by continuing students can be found under ‘student support’ within your course Digital Learning Environment (DLE).

How to apply

All applications must be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).
Applications for this programme must reach UCAS between 07 September 2023 and 31 January 2024 – 18:00 (UK time).
Applicants may wish to consider our School of Biomedical Science courses for their other UCAS choices.
The UCAS code for the Faculty of Health is P60 PLYM.
For more information contact the Admissions Team:
Admissions Team
Faculty of Health
The John Bull Building
Plymouth Science Park
Tel: +44 1752 583222 Fax: +44 1752 517842

Progression routes

International progression routes

The University of Plymouth International College (UPIC) offers foundation, first-year and pre-masters programmes that lead to University of Plymouth degrees. Courses are specially designed for EU and international students who are missing the grades for direct entry to the University, and include full duration visa sponsorship. You can start in January, May or September, benefitting from small class sizes, top-quality tuition and 24/7 student support.

Assessment breakdown

Key features

diagnostic radiography
Train using advanced medical imaging technology
A side view of a nurse checking an x-ray.
Benefit from close relationships and training with our hospital partners
Radiography. xray x-ray. radiographer. 
Develop empathic, technical and professional healthcare skills
A hospital CT scanner.
Train alongside students from other health professions

Placements: hands-on experience

Placements are an integral part of our Diagnostic Radiography programme providing you with the opportunity to develop and apply the theoretical knowledge and skills you have learnt to a range of clinical settings and graduate with a broad range of clinical placement experience. In the first year you will be developing your professional identify and the placements are arranged so that you learn the pathways of your patients and the roles of other healthcare workers in this. This includes working with admin and portering staff, as well as on various wards, clinics and with clinical imaging assistants. These placements are full weeks and alternate Fridays throughout the year. Excellent communication is an essential part of your role as a diagnostic radiographer and the skills you learn in this first year will enable you to be comfortable as a student radiographer as you start your second year clinical placement.

The second year has a semester long placement from the beginning of September until the third week of January. In your academic semester you will also experience placements on weekends (interval placements) before returning to placement in June for another five weeks. 

The third year also has a semester long placement but this is between January and May and you continue with interval placements in first semester ( September to January). 

We aim to give you experience in the majority of areas where diagnostic radiography is carried out. This includes the peripheral hospitals and the independent sector, as well as the large teaching hospitals. Placements are located across the South West region, including Devon, Cornwall and Somerset and there are out of area placements in development. Due to the wide geographical spread of our placement opportunities, you will be expected to undertake placements outside the local area. This may require you to relocate and find secondary accommodation for the duration of the placement (see additional costs under the fees, costs and funding section).

As a trained diagnostic radiographer you’ll use x-ray and ultrasound machines, plus other forms of the latest imaging technology, to acquire images to help with the diagnosis of illnesses and injuries across a range of hospital departments.

Darina and Kirsty first year diagnostic radiography students

"The first time I visited the University of Plymouth, I knew that I would come back as a student. I felt wanted, valued and heard."
Darina and Kirsty talks about their experiences as a first year diagnostics radiography student.

Facilities at Peninsula Medical School

From the very latest electronic patient simulators and 3D human anatomy models to our web-based Managed Learning Environment and extensive library and learning facilities, you'll benefit from exceptional facilities throughout your degree.
Using the Anatomage Table
Virtual 360

Virtual tour

Explore our fantastic facilities, including our lecture theatres, cafe, learning resource centres and much more.

Teaching and learning

Our teaching approach balances the core knowledge and skills you need to practise as a doctor with the flexibility to focus on the specialist themes and topics that interest you the most.
Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery - Teaching and Learning