Diagnosis and Decision Making in Advanced Practice

This module supports your continued development of the advanced nurse/healthcare practitioner role in hospitals, community/primary care, prisons and care home settings.

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Key facts

  • Module codeADPP032
  • Start date 23 Sep 2024
  • Application deadline9 Sep 2024
  • Duration25 weeks
  • Credit value SCQF 40
  • SCQF level Level 11
  • Fees Home: £1,778; International: £4,156
  • Mode of study part time
  • Delivery blended


This module supports your continued development of the advanced nurse/healthcare practitioner role in hospitals, community/primary care, prisons and care home settings.

The module will facilitate you to develop the clinical knowledge and expertise in autonomous clinical decision-making and is aimed at practitioners working in or towards advanced healthcare practice.

The four pillars of Advanced Nursing Practice will be addressed throughout the module:

  • clinical practice;
  • Leadership;
  • facilitation of learning;
  • evidence, research and development.

The module is delivered primarily by clinical experts with a variety of face-to-face and online learning delivered through workshops, lectures and interactive discussions. The skills developed will be transferable to practice in consultations, diagnosis and decision making and management planning.

Flexible learning

This short course forms part of the MSc Advancing Practice. You can study other stand-alone continuing professional development (CPD) short courses from this degree:

If you’re interested in studying more than one module from this course, please email our Admissions team at postgraduate.admissions@stir.ac.uk to discuss your course of study.

Entrance requirements

Current professional registration with NMC, HCPC or GPC is required for entry to this module. Applicants are required to have a degree qualification.

Extensive clinical experience and evidence of undertaking a module in Advanced Clinical Assessment and Examination (Advancing Practice).


English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

  • IELTS Academic or UKVI 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each sub-skill.
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic) 61 overall with 56 in each sub-skill.
  • IBT TOEFL 80 overall with 18 in reading, 23 in writing, 19 in listening and 21 in speaking.

See our information on English language requirements for more details on the language tests we accept and options to waive these requirements.


On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:

  • Synthesise clinical data and patient information to determine early recognition of acute conditions and undertake autonomous clinical decisions to optimise patient outcomes.
  • Comprehensively demonstrate a systematic approach to urgent care presentations including exacerbation and complicating factors. 
  • Initiate and follow through with the management plan for an ‘acutely’ ill patient to either reassess, escalate, transfer or discharge.
  • Interpret and synthesise relevant clinical diagnostics to formulate an appropriate management plan.
  • Authorise and conduct appropriate interventions including safe and effective prescribing recognising local and National policies and guidelines.
  • Exercise autonomy in complex decision-making and recognise the degree of urgency and prioritisation of care management using the current evidence base.
  • Critically review the impact of interventions and modify management plans accordingly.

Delivery and assessment

The module is delivered using a range of approaches including face-to-face and online activities, which may include:

  • live lectures, webinars and workshops;
  • pre-recorded lectures and videos;
  • other activities such as reading, quizzes, and discussion boards.

Microsoft Teams and other tools will be used in the teaching of the module.

Assessment will be a combination of achievement of clinical competencies supported by a range of evidence required to underpin valid and reliable assessment of practice, and Objective Clinical Structured Examinations (OSCEs).

Module coordinator

Julia Scott


All modules can be linked to specific professional capability/competency frameworks within your practice area. You are encouraged to view your participation in the MSc Advancing Practice programme as a means of supporting your professional development plans (PDP) and career progression.

This module may be completed as a single credit-based module. Alternatively, you can use it as credit towards the MSc Advanced Practice.

Career opportunities

Completion of the Advanced Practice module provides an opportunity to develop transferable skills. This will optimise the ability of each student to impact the experience of individuals, families and service providers within a range of clinical, social and pastoral settings within the UK and internationally.

All modules are related to NHS Knowledge and Skills Framework (KSF), enabling you to clearly identify the core and specific dimensions within the KSF which can be achieved when you successfully complete your module/programme.

What next?

Contact us

If you have any questions about entry requirements for our continuing professional development and short courses, contact our Admissions team.

For all other questions, please use our enquiry form.