Specialist Community Public Health Nursing Additional Field of Practice (SCPHN) (Health Visiting)

Key information

Start date:

Dates by arrangement

Attendance dates:
Dates by arrangement
Time commitment:
75 academic hours and 375 practice hours
This is a practice based module with access to online learning
Contact details:
  • Level
    7 (postgraduate)
  • Credits
  • Module code

Module overview

This module will enable Specialist Community Public Health Nurses who have successfully completed a programme in public health and are currently registered as a school nurse, to apply their knowledge and skills to the additional field of practice of health visiting. On successful completion the SCPHN would be equipped to work in the additional field of practice of health visiting.

Learning outcomes

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

  • Demonstrate professional autonomy to adapt responses to the health and wellbeing of people within the home and communities whilst being sensitive to different cultural perspectives and advocating for those who are most vulnerable.
  • Critique, generate and apply evidence and information that seeks to promote health and prevent ill health and disability and propose and evaluate public health interventions.
  • Identify, highlight and address inequalities whilst actively seeking to uphold human rights and recognising that all families are unique.
  • Lead on creating the best foundation for the long term sustainability of the health and wellbeing of children, parents, carers families and communities by developing trusting relationships with families and the use of advanced communication and assessment skills.
  • Promote and actively seek out opportunities to improve health visiting services and the quality of care provided whilst promoting healthy environments, cultures and attitudes for infants and children.
  • Lead on providing, managing and coordinating care through collaborative working with interdisciplinary and interagency teams to ensure a smooth transition between services whilst working in partnership with families, communities and populations.

Course content

  • To be informed by High Impact Areas in Health Visiting and BFI themes.
  • Decision making in complex and unpredictable environments.
  • The impact of equality, diversity inclusion on areas of professional practice.
  • Promoting and supporting continuous education and development of individuals and teams within a positive learning culture.
  • Knowledge and application of theories of normal and atypical child development when working with infants, children and families.
  • Child, adolescent and adult sexual and reproductive health and contraception.
  • Infant and child nutrition and healthy weight.
  • Supporting parents and carers of a child with a life changing or life limiting diagnosis to access services and resources.
  • Bereaved parents.
  • Medicines management and management of minor illnesses and injuries.
  • Partnership working with midwives and school nurses in times of transition.

Learning and teaching methods

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to: 

  • Apply the current theoretical and methodological approaches to build a sound knowledge base.
  • Prepare practitioners to have an inquiring attitude and empower them with an ongoing curiosity regarding new and emerging research that informs their health visiting practice.
  • Equip practitioners with the skills to build upon previous expertise.
  • Challenge values, beliefs and assumptions in relation to working in partnership with families with children under 5.

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • Observation
  • Participation and demonstration of skills
  • Professional conversation and reflection
  • Clinical supervision
  • Contribution to inter-professional forums in practice
  • Online learning materials.


The assessment strategy is designed to: provide practitioners with the opportunity to demonstrate critical analysis of evidence based theory with the acquisition of practice skills in the field of health visiting.

In the practice assessment document, practitioners will identify the strengths, challenges, opportunities and barriers (SCOB) to their learning at two key points in their learning journey. This will enable them to set their learning objectives, agree a plan for achieving them with their Practice Assessor and evaluate their progress. 

Formative assessment

In practice, practitioners will undergo a process of continuous formative assessment by their Practice Assessor and Practice Supervisor. There will be progress reviews in practice with the practitioner, their Practice Assessor and Academic Assessor on a minimum of two occasions throughout the module where practitioners will be encouraged to self-assess their progress to date.

Summative assessment 

Part A Written assignment

Practitioners will submit three 1000 word reflective accounts which demonstrate their ability to systematically analyse need and engage with families and professionals in the additional field of health visiting practice. 

Each 1000 word account will be a critical appraisal of a different practice experience within the field of health visiting. These three accounts must evidence how competency has been achieved in all four field-specific spheres of health visiting practice:

  • Sphere C Promoting human rights and addressing inequalities: assessment, surveillance and intervention
  • Sphere D Population health: enabling, supporting and improving health outcomes of people across the life course
  • Sphere E Advancing public health services and promoting healthy places, environments and cultures
  • Sphere F Leading and collaborating: from investment to action and dissemination

All three reflections must achieve a pass mark - 100%. 

Part B Practice Assessment Document

A practice assessment document of evidence which demonstrates the achievement of SCPHN spheres in health visiting. The evidence in the practice assessment document should contextualise the practitioner’s learning and demonstrate their application of knowledge and skills to the Health Visiting pathway of professional practice. Assessment in practice is measured against the Standards of Proficiency for SCPHN (NMC 2022) – Pass/Fail 

Course leader

Sarah Roberts profile image

Sarah Roberts

Lecturer, Pathway Lead for Health Visiting

Reading list

Take a look at the module reading list.

Entry requirements

Live registration on part 3 of the NMC register as a school nurse.

Fees and funding


How to apply

Please download and fill in an application form. 

Please note: 

  1. Applications typically close six weeks before the start of the module or earlier if we reach a maximum number of applications. If we still have spaces on the course, we may extend the application deadline date.
  2. It is important to ensure that you complete all sections and answer all questions, incomplete forms will cause a delay and may result in you missing out on an available place.
  3. If you are registered on a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) course then you will need to complete an application form for each CPD module you wish to apply for.

Send your completed application to postreg_admin@surrey.ac.uk.

Terms and conditions

When you accept an offer of a place at the University of Surrey, you are agreeing to comply with our policies and regulations and our terms and conditions. You are also confirming you have read and understood the University's prospective student privacy notice.

If your sponsoring healthcare provider is funding you for this module, by submitting an application you agree to allow all information regarding your module (for example your exam results) to be shared with the sponsoring provider.

Cancellation policy

If you withdraw less than seven days before the module commences or do not attend on the first day (without informing the module administrator) the full cost of the module will be charged. Withdrawals after the module commences will also be charged.

Module availability

Places are confirmed approximately one month before the module start date. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability, student demand and/or class size caps. 


Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. The University of Surrey has used its reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to module content) may occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the module. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for a module with us. Read the full disclaimer.

Course location and contact details

Campus location

Kate Granger Building

Our Medicine (Graduate Entry) BMBS degree, nursing and midwifery, and health science courses are taught at the Kate Granger Building (30 Priestley Road), on the Surrey Research Park.

Additional information

Depending on the subject and content, modules will mainly be delivered via a combination of face-to-face and online.

Some modules may be taught at: Stag Hill campus, University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey GU2 7XH.

Post-registration Administration team

University of Surrey
Surrey GU2 7XH