School of Health Professions

BSc (Hons) Podiatry

Podiatrists are experts in foot and ankle health keeping people of all ages active. Choosing to become a podiatrist will give you a broad scope of practice with a scientific approach to diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of people with foot problems. A podiatry degree can launch a dynamic career and is a springboard to specialising in other areas of the profession such as sports medicine, injection therapy, independent prescribing, clinical research and podiatric surgery.

As a podiatry graduate you will be a highly skilled health professional who can work confidently with a variety of different patients in a range of settings. Six months after finishing the course 95 per cent of our graduates were in work or further study with an average salary of £22,000 according to the 2019 Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey (DLHE).

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Careers with this subject

Understanding where your degree subject could take you is an important first step in career planning. Due to the transferrable nature of the skills you gain from your studies, you may discover that there is a much wider range of opportunities open to you within this profession that you may first appreciate. Find out more about where your degree could take you.

Podiatry is a diverse profession, as are the employment opportunities, which include: working within the public sector such as the NHS or the Ministry of Defence; independent sector opportunities to establish your own business; non-clinical roles such as NHS management or technical sales and marketing; careers in teaching in academia; research or management of specialist patient groups such as dancers and athletes.

Advice from graduate Jack Loveday:

"Get as much experience as you can after graduating (or before) by shadowing other practitioners and seeing how they work. I did a lot of this and found that people were generally more than happy to have people sit in on their clinics."

Read more from Jack in his case study.

Some destinations of podiatry graduates include:

  • Working as a Podiatrist for the NHS, with on-going career progression
  • Podiatric surgery with further study
  • Ministry of Defence rehabilitation
  • NHS management/Head of Service/Senior Management
  • Academia/research PhD
  • Industry/technical advisor/sales
  • Working with specialist patient groups, for example, dancers and elite athletes to name but a few.

Throughout our three year degree, each year will involve a work-based learning placement, ensuring that you gain the experience needed to thrive in a healthcare career. Our most recent students have given an 89% satisfaction rate for their time spent on NHS work placements.

On top of the specialist skills and knowledge needed to flourish in a lower limb care vocation, graduates also developed soft-skills in:

  • Leadership and teamwork
  • Analytical skills and problem-solving
  • Effective communication
  • Research literacy

See the Royal College of Podiatry website for further insight.

Key features

  • Employability rates are high within the podiatry profession with potential to work in the NHS, but also as an independent practitioner. 95 per cent of our students go on to work or study, with an average starting salary of £22,000 a year (2019 Discover Uni*).
  • The course has been designed, and continues to be developed, by expert educationalists, service-users and carers.
  • Work-based learning is an integral part of the course and you spend 1,000 hours in clinical practice during your three years.
  • Opportunities to attend vascular ward rounds at Derriford Hospital.
  • Observe an independent practitioner working in the private sector.
  • A Ministry of Defence placement is available for high achievers.
  • Practitioners with specialist roles are invited to lecture regularly in years 2 and 3.

We feel that our course strongly benefits from having the views of our service-users in the development of new strategies and module design. This is achieved through our school forum where our service-users are invited to contribute to curriculum development and decision-making.

Please note: In order to successfully complete your course and be eligible to apply for a professional registration you must complete a specified number of practice placement hours along with your theoretical study. This is a requirement of the HCPC. Therefore you will only be able to take personal holidays during the specified leave periods for your course. This includes induction week where it is vital you attend ALL sessions.

Course details
  • Year 1

  • In your first year, you'll learn the key concepts and theories of podiatric practice including anatomy, biomechanics, physiology and podiatric medicine. We teach you techniques to assess the neurological and vascular systems of the lower limb and introduce you to gait analysis. Undertaking essential shared learning with other healthcare students gives you a broad perspective of multidisciplinary work and you gain practice skills through supervised placements in NHS-based training clinics.

    Core modules

    • Introduction to Podiatric Practice (Including Placement) (STPOD401)

      This practice-based learning module introduces the clinical environment, professional behaviour, evidence-based practice and record keeping.

    • An Introduction to Podiatric Clinical Practice (STPOD402)

      This module focuses on disorders of the skin including wounds. Assessment of neurological and vascular impairment will be introduced. Learners will be introduced to skin debridement and enucleation using simulated callus. Principles of padding and strapping will also be taught.

    • Human Anatomy and Physiology (STPOD403)

      Introduces the fundamentals of human anatomy and physiology.

    • Lower Limb Studies 1 (STPOD404)

      This module concentrates on lower limb anatomy and how normal gait and movement is enabled. The theory underpinning assessment of the lower limb is explored.

    • Person-centred Care (Including Placement) (STPOD405)

      This module explores enabling patient choice by shared decision making, personal health budgets, supported self-management and community based support. This module includes a placement-based element of learning in the practice environment.

    • Professional and Inter-professional Working (STPOD406)

      This module develops understanding of professional practice and the inherent standards expected of health care professionals. The value of inter-professional working is introduced.

  • Year 2

  • In your second year, you'll increase your knowledge of podiatric practice for children and older people. Learn about the complexity of foot function and how to recognise and treat pathologies of the foot and ankle. You will gain a good understanding of systemic conditions that impact on the health and function of the lower limb, and build your confidence and the personal skills required to work as a podiatrist in a placement setting. Your skills in the treatment of lower-limb disorders through the application of physical and mechanical therapies, pharmacology and surgery are developed. You learn the research skills required to develop your own research proposal and to support practice with evidence-based learning.

    Core modules

    • Project Studies (SOHP503)

      This module develops knowledge and skills related to evidence-based practice and lifelong learning. The content is designed to enable the students to understand different research designs, to evaluate the research literature and to prepare them to undertake research at undergraduate level. Meets all or part of HCPC Standards of Proficiency: 2b.1, 3a.

    • Development and Maturation of the Lower Limb (STPOD501)

      This module focuses on development of the lower limb from birth to adulthood and how this influences function. Recognition of conditions relating to the lower limb, which impact on mobility and stability through the life cycle will be explored.

    • Systemic Disorders of the Lower Limb (STPOD502)

      During this module theory is developed associated with patients presenting with common systemic or acquired disorders that may cause lower limb pathologies.

    • Musculoskeletal Conditions and Applied Biomechanics in the Foot and Lower Limb (including Placement) (STPOD503)

      This module develops knowledge of the aetiology and pathology of musculoskeletal conditions of the foot and lower limb. This module includes a placement-based element of learning in the practice environment.

    • Gait, Footwear and Orthoses (STPOD504)

      This module explores assessment and management of foot and ankle disorders responsive to footwear / orthotic therapy.

    • Lower Limb Studies 2 (STPOD505)

      This module develops knowledge of pathological conditions including malignancies pertaining to skin and nail units.

  • Final year

  • In your final year, you’ll undertake patient-focused clinical practice and theory addressing contemporary health issues and complex medical cases. You will also carry out a supervised project in an area that you’re interested in. Modules in the final year are enhanced by external specialist clinicians who are invited to share their skills and knowledge. A business and leadership module at the end of this year equips you with the tools for independent practice. At the end of your studies, you are an autonomous practitioner who is confident to practice your professional skills in the clinical, pharmacological and surgical management of patients in either the NHS or as an independent practitioner.

    Core modules

    • Project (SOHP605)

      This module consolidates knowledge and skills related to evidence-based practice and lifelong learning. The content will support the students to undertake research at undergraduate level, to discuss their findings in the context of the contemporary evidence base and to evaluate the implications of their activities on their future practice.

    • Pharmacology (STPOD601)

      This module focuses on the pharmacological approach to patient management. On successful completion of this module, the student will achieve the Prescription Only Medicines (POM) annotation on the HCPC register.

    • Minor Surgery (STPOD602)

      This module develops skills and knowledge in the formation of assessment and management options to carry out minor surgical techniques in suitable patients.

    • Complex Podiatric Medicine (Including Placement) (STPOD603)

      Skills in diagnosis and podiatric management of patients presenting with complex conditions and comorbidities will be developed.

    • Leadership and Clinical Education (STPOD604)

      This module focuses on theories of leadership, communication in difficult circumstances, and clinical governance. Student will develop and prepare for future roles as clinical educators.

    • Critical Thinking and Problem-solving in Clinical Practice (Practice Module) (STPOD605)

      This module provides students with the opportunity to consolidate the range of skills required to care for patients presenting with complex medical disorders. Students will have the opportunity to attain the qualification necessary to enable them to apply to the HCPC to allow them to assume the role as an autonomous registered podiatry practitioner.

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 Podiatry programme specification 7190

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.

In light of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the changeable nature of the situation and any updates to government guidance, we may need to make further, last minute adjustments to how we deliver our teaching and learning on some or all of our programmes, at any time during the academic year. We want to reassure you that even if we do have to adjust the way in which we teach our programmes, we will be working to maintain the quality of the student learning experience and learning outcomes at all times.
Entry requirements

UCAS tariff

120 - 104

GCSE

Normally 5 GCSEs grade C/4 or above to include Mathematics, English and Science. Preference is given to applicants who have obtained these grades on application. Please note the institution may consider equivalent numeracy and literacy qualifications.

PLUS ONE OF THE FOLLOWING:

A levels
A minimum of 2 A levels or Level 3 qualifications to include grade C in one science subject from : Biology, Human Biology, PE, Sport, Psychology, Biochemistry, Biological Sciences, Health Sciences, Anatomy, Physiology, Nutrition, Applied Science, Foot Health. Excluding General Studies. Please contact the admissions team if you are not studying a second relevant subject.
 
IB
26–28 overall to include 5 at Higher Level in one subject: Biology, Human Biology, PE, Sport, Psychology, Biochemistry, Biological Sciences, Health Sciences, Anatomy, Physiology, Nutrition, Applied Science, Foot Health. Please contact the admissions team if you are not studying a second relevant subject.
English and Maths accepted within Higher Level = 4 Standard Level = 5
If overseas and not studying English within IB – MUST have IELTS
 
Access
Pass a named Access to HE Diploma (e.g. science, health, nursing, combined science) with at least 45 credits at Level 3, 33 at Merit/Distinction level including 15 Level 3 credits in Biology/Science/Social Science (Psychology/ Sociology).
 
18 Unit BTEC National Diploma/QCF Extended Diploma 
DMM-DDM – must have strong biology element.
Applied Science, Sports Science, PE – refer with these subjects. Please contact the admissions team if you are not studying a second relevant subject.

BTEC National Diploma modules
If you hold a BTEC qualification it is vital that you provide our Admissions team with details of the exact modules you have studied as part of the BTEC. Without this information, we may be unable to process your application quickly and you could experience significant delays in the progress of your application to study with us. Please explicitly state the full list of modules within your qualification at the time of application.

Equivalent qualifications may be considered. Alternatively, if you have any questions or concerns about meeting the entry requirements listed above we would encourage you to contact the Admissions Team on +44 1752 585858 or email admissions@plymouth.ac.uk, where a member of the team can offer you further advice.

For a full list of all acceptable qualifications please refer to our tariff glossary.

Extended entry requirements

In addition to the above, evidence of academic study within the last five years is required.

  • You must pass disclosure and barring service and occupational health checks satisfactorily in order to be able to start this course.
  • If English is not your first language and you do not have GCSE English grade C or above you will have to achieve an IELTS or equivalent qualification at the grades stated below.
  • IELTS - Overall average score of at least 7.0, with a score of at least 6.5 in each element (if you need to improve your English language to get onto a degree course at University of Plymouth, you can book a pre-sessional academic English course)
  • Meeting the academic minimum is the first stage of an application being considered. Applicants must also submit a strong personal statement in order to be considered further.
  • English language requirements
  • We welcome applicants with international qualifications. To view other accepted qualifications please refer to our tariff glossary.

Deferred entry

Unfortunately, we cannot permit deferred entry. However, if you have a query please refer to an experienced admissions administrator who will be able to explain the UCAS application process in more detail admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

International Application Deadline
Due to this programme requiring applicants to have an interview and meet non-academic conditions, the deadline for international applications is 30th June 2021 for September 2021 entry.

Fees, costs and funding

The UK is no longer part of the European Union. EU applicants should refer to our Brexit information to understand the implications.

New Student 2021-2022 2022-2023
Home £9,250 £9,250
International £14,200 £14,600
Part time (Home) N/A To be confirmed
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per a number of 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. For more information about fees and funding please visit www.plymouth.ac.uk/money.

Undergraduate Merit Scholarship for international students

Scholarship value: £2000 off your tuition fees in year one. 
To recognise continued academic achievement, you may also receive:

  • 10% off the successive years tuition fee if an overall grade of 60% or above is maintained
  • 20% off the successive years tuition fee if an overall grade of 70% or above is maintained.
To be eligible you must:
  • achieve one grade above your academic offer.
  • meet our standard English Language requirements.

This scholarship will be offered automatically, providing you meet the eligibility criteria. A separate application will not be required.

Further information about Scholarships for international students

Additional costs

Placements

All students within the School of Health Professions 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. Some students on these courses 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. However, this should be investigated by the student to make sure this applies to your chosen course of study.

It is difficult to give a precise estimate of placement costs for each individual programme, due to the geographical spread of placements, and duration. However it is recommended you attend an Open Day to find out more about what placement costs can be anticipated or discuss placement with a member of our admissions teams.

Despite these costs, clinical placements offer an excellent opportunity to learn from experienced clinicians and are recognised as an essential part of students' development towards becoming a registered practitioner.

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.

How to apply
All applications for undergraduate courses are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). 

UCAS will ask for the information contained in the box at the top of this course page including the UCAS course code and the institution code. 

Apply for this course on the UCAS website.

For more information about submitting an application including application deadline dates, please visit the UCAS website.

All NHS funded professional courses are required to select and interview their applicants using a ‘values based’ approach. As part of this process, your UCAS personal statement requires this additional information, which will demonstrate insight into your understanding of the importance of NHS values in your chosen professional discipline.
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.


Find out more at plymouth.ac.uk/upic or contact our team at info@upic.plymouth.ac.uk

Watch our BSc (Hons) Podiatry video

Programme Leader Dr Joanne Paton explains what's it like to study podiatry at the University of Plymouth.

The skills you need to be an allied health professional

We recently worked with Your Future Career on the 2020 Careers in Science and Healthcare campaign. A printed publication is enclosed within every copy of The New Scientist newspaper and the content is also available online. The campaign featured exclusive content about the importance of the science and healthcare industries from key thought leaders and industry voices – including Professor Sara Demain, Head of School of Health Professions.

Read more at Your Future Career

More information about studying with us

Further useful information about:

  • Our locations - where you'll be studying
  • Additional checks and screening for students
  • The NHS Constitution
  • Our peer assisted learning scheme.


Your placements

“Placements were an excellent way to get experience in clinical situations, allowing me to really develop my clinical skills and knowledge. Being able to work in a number of different Trusts also meant that I got to see lots of different types of practice and observe different ideas which I was then able to learn from and use myself when I started working.”
Zoe Boulton, Podiatry Graduate

You will have to achieve 1000 hours of work-based learning which will be spread across the three years.

Undergraduate International Merit Scholarship

This scholarship will be offered automatically, providing you meet the eligibility criteria. A separate application will not be required.

Scholarship value: £2000 off your tuition fees in year one.

To recognise continued academic achievement, you may also receive:

  • 10% off the successive years tuition fee if an overall grade of 60% or above is maintained
  • 20% off the successive years tuition fee if an overall grade of 70% or above is maintained.

To be eligible you must:

  • achieve one grade above your academic offer.
  • meet our standard English Language requirements.

Further information: please email us at: internationalscholarships@plymouth.ac.uk

International students

Thinking about coming to study in Plymouth? Find the answers to many of your questions here, as well as links to places where you can discover more.

Find out more about studying in Plymouth

English Language Centre

We offer a range of courses to help you develop your academic English language skills.

These include pre-sessional academic English courses for undergraduates, taught postgraduates and research students along with insessional language classes, tutorials and activities to support students who have English as a second language.

Find out how we can help you reach your potential.

People

* These are the latest results from the National Student Survey. Please note that the data published on Discover Uni (Unistats) is updated annually in September.

The results of the National Student Survey (NSS) and the Graduate Outcomes survey (formally DLHE) are made available to prospective students and their advisors through the Discover Uni (Unistats) website.