FdSc Veterinary Nursing
Year of entry
3 YRS (FT)
to our purpose built and fully equipped veterinary nursing clinical suite
of 16 weeks providing experience in an RCVS approved veterinary practice each year
from a personalised tutor on a rural friendly campus
Why choose? this course?
Veterinary Nurses have a key role within the multidisciplinary veterinary team in providing evidence-based nursing care for their patients. If you want to work with companion animals and their owners to improve their wellbeing, and would thrive in an environment that is challenging, varied but immensely rewarding, this is the course for you.
- study a course delivered by a supportive, small team of experts who will guide you with your studies to ensure that you achieve your professional and personal goals
- apply theory to practice in our clinical suite - equipped with a range of veterinary equipment and training manikins - throughout your studies
- develop your clinical skills in a veterinary training practice
- be mentored in practice by a Clinical Coach during your 16-week placement blocks and be supported by a Clinical Placement Support Tutor from the University Veterinary Nursing Team.
Key course features
- On programme completion, you will be eligible to apply for registration with the RCVS, and use the post-nominal letters RVN.
- Be part of a small collaborative learning community with staff and students.
- Teaching sessions are based on student-centred methods within a practical environment.
- This course is accredited by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS)*
What you will study
YEAR 1 (LEVEL 4)
In this first year of study, you will develop a range of skills and the underpinning knowledge that are essential for working in the veterinary industry. There are four modules to be studied in the first year of your programme. All modules are core modules.
- Anatomy and Physiology in Health and Disease: This module will develop the student’s knowledge and understanding of animal anatomy and physiology at both systems and cellular level. The module will integrate physiology and pathophysiology to develop a student’s understanding of disease states.
- Foundations of Patient Care: A diverse module which introduces the student to evidence-based patient care and will cover a wide range of topics and skills, which are essential for the veterinary nurse in practice. The student will develop an understanding and set of skills to safely handle and restrain animals for a range of procedures that are required in practice. Modifications that a veterinary nurse can introduce to ensure patients are as comfortable and stress-free as possible in the veterinary environment will be explored with the theory and practice of nursing care plans being central to positive patient outcomes.
- Foundations of Nursing Practice: The module aims to equip the student with a knowledge and an understanding of wound management, bandaging techniques and first aid procedures. The importance of fluid therapy in patient treatment and recovery will be covered. Physical therapy will also be covered in this module and the benefits it can have on patient outcomes. Another area that is important for veterinary nurses to be knowledgeable and confident in is veterinary medicines and the legislation and requirements around this topic. An introductory to pharmacology and pharmacodynamics will be covered in this module.
- Professional and Academic Development 1: In this module, the student will be introduced to the RCVS Nursing Progress Log (NPL), the RCVS day one competences (DOC) and day one skills (DOS). This module prepares the student for their first placement in veterinary practice as well as developing essential skills required for their academic studies, which will be used and extended on throughout the programme.
YEAR 2 (LEVEL 4/5)
Four core modules this year to be studied, two at level 4 and two at level 5. This year’s modules begin to focus on specific and specialist skills that the veterinary nurse will become confident in practice.
- Diagnostic Procedures and Parasitology: Diagnostic procedures are essential for a correct patient diagnosis within the veterinary practice. Veterinary nurses routinely assist under the direction of the veterinary surgeon in a range of diagnostic procedures. Students will gain an understanding of the principles which will enable them to safely use a range of imaging techniques and laboratory tests. This module will also cover the important topic of parasitology, focussing on identification methods, life cycles and strategies to treat and control them.
- Nursing the Medical and Infectious Patient: Students will develop knowledge on a range of diseases and medical conditions that are relevant to veterinary practice. For evidence-based nursing strategies to be successful it is important for veterinary nurses to have an understanding of the different pathogens, and how they manifest into disease states. Nursing care strategies using evidence-based and innovative therapies will inform the holistic nursing care delivered to patients for improved patient outcomes.
- Professional and Academic Development 2: This module builds and extends on the Professional and Academic Development module in year one of study. The module will further develop a range of communication styles, for specific audiences with an introduction to reflective logs. The student will be introduced to the academic process of article and research paper writing, covering types of data collection, methodologies and research study designs.
- Anaesthesia and Surgical Nursing Practice: Registered veterinary nurses play an essential role within the surgical environment. Theatre nurses will prepare the theatre, equipment and patients for aseptic surgery and often will assist the veterinary surgeon at the surgical site. The role of monitoring and maintaining the patient under anaesthetic is also in the nurses' domain, under the veterinary surgeon’s direction. This module will cover all aspects of surgical nursing and anaesthesia, from the preparation of the patient through to the recovery.
YEAR 3 (LEVEL 5)
The final four modules of the programme are delivered in this year. The modules are aimed at preparing the students for the veterinary workforce and highlighting the skills and professional opportunities that are available for Registered Veterinary Nurses, now and in their future careers.
- Emergency, Critical Care and Specialised Nursing: The diverse nature of veterinary practices, offers veterinary nurses exciting opportunities in the field of emergency, critical care and specialised nursing. This module aims to develop the student’s critical thinking process, knowledge and understanding for patients with complex needs, that require a high level of nursing care.
- Veterinary Nursing in the Community: This module reflects the changing domain of the veterinary nurse and provides an insight into future career possibilities for our students as they approach registration. The module will explore the term One Health / One Welfare and the relevance and application of them to the veterinary nurse and the contribution and impact that nurses can have in the community. Sustainability is now a major factor for businesses, in which our future nurses will have an influencing role. This module will explore ‘green’ initiatives that will benefit staff, clients and community.
- Leadership and Reflective Nursing: The aim of this module is to provide the student with reflective and leadership skills in order to make the transition from student to qualified veterinary nurse. The module will explore the different qualities required for leadership and how transformational leadership and being a skilled reflective practitioner will enhance satisfaction, performance and motivation of the multidisciplinary veterinary team, leading to a positive impact on animal patient care and outcomes.
- Clinical Skills and Professional Practice: This module aims to unify the skills developed throughout your work placement learning and academic studies at University in readiness for the responsibilities of employment as a Registered Veterinary Nurse. The concept of clinical governance will be explored and activities that veterinary nurses can undertake to ensure that the quality of their professional practice provides improved outcomes for their patients and clients. This module will cover the legal and ethical frameworks within the profession and the challenges and difficulties that may arise.
The information listed in this section is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal academic framework review, so may be subject to change.
Entry requirements & applying
In addition to the University’s tariff points for a Foundation degree (48-72 points), applicants are required to have at least 5 GCSEs at Grade 4 (C) or above including English Language, Mathematics and Science or equivalent qualifications.
Applicants are required to have 10 days referenced work experience in a veterinary practice. Applicants will also be considered if they have 5 days of work experience in a veterinary practice and 5 days experience within a relevant animal sector environment.
Suitable applicants will be invited to an interview.
Teaching & Assessment
Assessments methods are varied and designed to stretch and challenge all students. They are also linked to the skills and knowledge that will be required within the veterinary profession. Assessments may include:
- Designing an informative client leaflet
- Care plan report
- In-class test
- Literature review
- Group presentation
- Reflective logs
- Objective Structured Competency Examination (OSCE)
Contact hours: For level 4 modules, students will receive 36 hours of contact time and at level 5, contact time with students will be 30 hours.
Student-centred teaching will be the focus, using the clinical suite at the centre of all teaching sessions to enable a theory to practice learning experience.
Teaching and learning
Wrexham Glyndŵr University is committed to supporting our students to maximise their academic potential.
We offer workshops and support sessions in areas such as academic writing, effective note-making and preparing for assignments. Students can book appointments with academic skills tutors dedicated to helping deal with the practicalities of university work. Our Student Support section has more information on the help available.
In terms of particular needs, the University’s Inclusion team can provide appropriate guidance and support should any students require reasonable adjustments to be made because of a recognised prevailing disability, medical condition, or specific learning difference.
Our Careers & Employability service is there to help you make decisions and plan the next steps towards a bright future. From finding work or further study to working out your interests, skills and aspirations, they can provide you with the expert information, advice and guidance you need.
Qualifying and being registered as a Registered Veterinary Nurse (RVN) provides students with a range of career opportunities in:
- Small animal general practice
- Small animal referral hospitals
- Emergency and out-of-hours nursing
- Equine and mixed practice
- Patient rehabilitation and behaviour modification therapies
- District nursing
- Zoological environment
- Pharmaceutical industry
- Entrepreneurial and business opportunities
- Post graduate studies and research
Fees & funding
You do not have to pay your tuition fees upfront.
The fees you pay and the support available will depend on a number of different factors. Full information can be found on our fees & finance pages. You will also find information about what your fees include in the fee FAQs.
All fees are subject to any changes in government policy, view our undergraduate fees.
You can see the full programme specification here.
If you are applying as an European / International Student, and live outside of the UK, you should make your application through our online application system, Centurus.
For information about the university’s entry requirements for EU/international students, please visit our international section.
Qualifications that have made substantial progress towards meeting the accreditation standards. Once the first cohort of students completes the qualification, a provisionally accredited AO or HEI may apply to the RCVS for full accreditation. Students undertaking provisionally accredited qualifications may be required to pass the RCVS Pre-registration examination' (RCVS, July 2021).