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Course overview

Develop, deliver and direct high quality midwifery services, helping the drive towards improving maternity and health outcomes for women and their families.

This course aims to equip midwives and maternity nurses with the knowledge and skills required to lead practice change, follow a career in research and/or higher education, or work at senior and strategic levels in today's midwifery and healthcare services.

To achieve this, our Division of Midwifery offers a learning environment that facilitates the development of reflective, analytical and evidence-based critical thinking to challenge existing midwifery practice, challenge maternity service provision and lead and manage change.

We are a small Division, with a real sense of community. Our experienced teaching staff get to know you as an individual and provide dedicated student support throughout the study programme.

Our programme prepares and supports you to go into research or research as part of your practice based role.

Why choose this course?

Expert teaching

Staff in the Division of Midwifery are internationally-recognised for their teaching excellence.

86%

of research activity is rated as world-leading and internationally excellent with significant impact on people's health and well-being

School of Health Sciences, REF 2014

Course content

You will study in depth the art and science of midwifery, evidence informed midwifery practice, research skills and methodology and the ethical, political, legal, economic, multi-professional and global context in which contemporary midwifery is practised.

Modules

Semester one

Introduction to Research Methodology and Design (20 credits) 20 credits

The aim of this module is to provide you with a detailed and nuanced understanding of research, design and project implementation within maternity settings. A secondary aim is that you will gain a critical appreciation of evidence-based guidelines, their development, dissemination and implementation.

Using Evidence to Challenge the Unnecessary Medicalisation of Normal Childbirth (20 credits) 20 credits

The aim of this module is to provide you with opportunities to develop your knowledge of empowerment in midwifery practice by evaluating how women with normal pregnancies and births are cared for within the context of risk. Evaluation of perceived complications during pregnancy and birth will be explored to enable you to challenge inappropriate medicalisation of childbirth e.g. post-dates, older women or term breech birth being classified as high risk cases.

The Concepts of Perinatal Mental Health for Health Care Professionals (20 credits) 20 credits

You will analyse knowledge and critical understanding in the concept of perinatal mental health in order to advance the wider context of practice.

This module considers the social and physical factors that could influence the normal emotional changes during pregnancy and childbirth. This includes:

  • challenges to mental well-being during the antenatal, intrapartum and postnatal periods;
  • the risk factors e.g. domestic abuse, safeguarding, drug and alcohol misuse, learning disability;
  • advanced knowledge of common mental health disorders;
  • local national and international policies related to the care of women with mental health problems;
  • the midwives’ or nurses’ role in foetal loss and bereavement support;
  • the multi-professional team working and collaboration with other agencies;
  • collaborative working in promoting positive infant mental health and wellbeing, specifically focusing on attachment, bonding and behavioural assessment;
  • the identification, assessment and referral pathways for women with mental health issues;
  • reflection on the latest evidence around, mental health and well-being of the family unit to include fathers and partners.

Semester two

Research Skills for Maternal and Newborn Health Practice (20 credits) 20 credits

The aim of this module is to support you in transferring the skills and understanding learnt in a previous introductory research module to develop your own primary or secondary research protocol.

You will consider:

  • qualitative data analysis: handling the data
  • qualitative data analysis: understanding the data and finding meaning
  • service user involvement in research and involving key stakeholders: policy-makers, commissioners, NGOs etc.
  • qualitative meta-synthesis; purpose and techniques
  • quantitative meta-analysis; purpose and techniques
  • dissemination of research findings; impact and clinical applicability. Changing practice: models of change in health research, including guidelines and hierarchy of approaches to changing professional practice; basic implementation science
  • research leadership, governance and ethical approval 
Contemporary Issues in Infant Feeding and Nutrition (20 credits) 20 credits

This module aims to develop a critical understanding of the influences and inequalities in infant feeding and nutrition.

You will consider:

  • the mother-baby dyad from preconception to the second year of life
  • social, cultural and political influences on infant feeding
  • infant feeding culture in the UK and internationally
  • international code for breastmilk substitutes
  • the evidence that underpins infant feeding practice and how to keep up to date
  • strategic planning and management around infant feeding
  • global public health perspectives on infant feeding and nutrition
Maternal and Newborn health in a Global Context (20 credits) 20 credits

This module aims to extend your knowledge of global maternal and newborn health issues through exploration of current evidence and a critique of social policy. You will compare and contrast healthcare systems and practices in an international context. You will gain an understanding of the current debates in global health development and how they apply to the delivery of midwifery care. This includes examining the cultural and social challenges to accessing maternity care and identifying alternative clinical management of adverse events and emergencies in a low resource setting. The module also considers the role of women’s and/or human rights and feminism in the context of global maternal health.

Dissertation

The dissertation module is studied across both semester 1 and semester 2

Dissertation (60 credits) 60 credits

This is an investigatory module that develops your research capabilities in the field of midwifery.    

Student led seminars provide you with the opportunity to develop, present and discuss with peers your protocols regarding the format of their dissertation i.e. empirical research project, modified systematic review, audit/service evaluation or critical review and subsequent development.

Independent study will be guided by an academic supervisor and individual tutorials, culminating in the submission of a unique and substantial piece of work in the form of a dissertation.

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Thursday 16 July 2020.

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Enquiry-based learning
  • Tutorials
  • eLearning
  • Group study

How you will be assessed

  • Case studies
  • Literature review
  • Assignments
  • Dissertation

Your work will be assessed during or at the end of each module through a variety of means.

To complete a module and gain its credits you will need to make sure you attend your timetabled sessions and get over the 50% pass mark.

In order to achieve the MSc, you will need a total of 180 credits. You must have achieved a satisfactory academic standard for postgraduate study i.e. weighted course average of at least 50% to progress to the dissertation module.

Contact time and study hours

You are expected to work roughly 10 hours for each credit on the course including teaching and independent study, so a 20 credit module should take around 200 hours to complete.

Full-time students will study 3 modules per semester (alongside working on your dissertation project across both semesters).

Modules are usually taught over 8 weeks. There are approximately 3 hours of timetabled teaching hours per module each week.The rest of your time outside of timetabled teaching is for self-directed study. Please note teaching days vary depending on the module.

 

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2021 entry.

Undergraduate degree2:2 degree (or above)
Professional qualification

UK students must provide confirmation of registration as a midwife.

Work experience

You are expected to demonstrate a commitment to the practice of maternity and healthcare through your current professional/practitioner role.

Applying

Our step-by-step guide covers everything you need to know about applying.

How to apply

Fees

UK students

To be confirmed in 2020 *

International students

To be confirmed in 2020 *

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland starting your course in the 2021/22 academic year, you will pay international tuition fees.

This does not apply to Irish students, who will be charged tuition fees at the same rate as UK students. UK nationals living in the EU, EEA and Switzerland will also continue to be eligible for ‘home’ fee status at UK universities until 31 December 2027.

For further guidance, check our Brexit information for future students.

Additional costs

As a student on this course, you should factor some additional costs into your budget, such as printing, alongside your tuition fees and living expenses. You should be able to access most of the books you’ll need through our libraries, though you may wish to purchase your own copies or more specific titles.

Funding

We offer the Commonwealth Shared Scholarship for this degree programme. 

There are many ways to fund your postgraduate course, from scholarships to government loans.

The University also offers masters scholarships for international and EU students. Our step-by-step guide contains everything you need to know about funding postgraduate study.

Postgraduate funding

Careers

We offer individual careers support for all postgraduate students.

Expert staff can help you research career options and job vacancies, build your CV or résumé, develop your interview skills and meet employers.

More than 1,500 employers advertise graduate jobs and internships through our online vacancy service. We host regular careers fairs, including specialist fairs for different sectors.

Graduate destinations

This course enables midwives and maternity nurses across the globe to advance their careers and operate at senior levels be it in clinical practice, higher education, management or research.

Graduate destinations include posts as clinical managers, consultant midwives, lecturers, practice development midwives, research midwives and specialist midwives.

Many of our students decide to continue their education by studying for a PhD in Midwifery.

Career progression

96.9% of postgraduates from the School of Health Sciences secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. The average annual salary for these graduates was £29,708.*

*HESA Graduate Outcomes 2020. The Graduate Outcomes % is derived using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time within the UK.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for NHS trusts (such as clinical specialists, advanced practitioners, modern matrons), universities (such as lecturers and senior academics, lecturer practitioners, researchers) and in private practice.

Two masters graduates proudly holding their certificates
The University has been awarded Gold for outstanding teaching and learning (2017/18). Our teaching is of the highest quality found in the UK.

The Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) is a national grading system, introduced by the government in England. It assesses the quality of teaching at universities and how well they ensure excellent outcomes for their students in terms of graduate-level employment or further study.

This content was last updated on Thursday 16 July 2020. Every effort has been made to ensure that this information is accurate, but changes are likely to occur given the interval between the date of publishing and course start date. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply.