How well do you know your student nurses? Image © ruivalesousa
How well do you know your student nurses?
Image ©

This sounds simple, so I know you will be able to answer me… just tell me their name, their likes, dislikes, strengths and weaknesses.

But what course are they on? How are they funded? What could be a hurdle to their success as an SVN? Do they need to study further maths and English qualifications while at college? How long is their college course? When will they qualify? Are they employed or are they on placement?

This might seem silly. They’re an SVN – they’re all the same, yes?


We now have so many routes and course variations to becoming an RVN. This is excellent and shows other FE (Further Education) and HE (Higher Education) courses how to increase accessibility.

ROUTE 1: Level 3 Diploma – Further Education

This can be studied as:-

  • Day release
  • Full time
  • Block release

College courses can vary from:-

  • Day release –
    • 2 or 3 year course
    • 1 day a week
    • College day 7-10 hours long
  • Full time –
    • Two year course
    • 2 days per week (year 1)
    • 1 day per week (year 2)
  • Block release –
    • Attend 6 x 2 week blocks for residential study

ROUTE 2: Higher Education BSc or FdSc

  • Students attend for theory lectures for blocks
  • Then spend time in practice to gain experience and complete NPL (Nursing Progress Log)
  • The courses are from 2-4 years long, depending on the final qualification

How can you help your student VNs?

You can help your student by knowing their course structure and course deadlines. This will be available from their or their education institute – just ask for their Scheme of Work (SOW).

Do you know if they are employed by you or on a placement? This may alter:

  • rota
  • Health and Safety (H&S) induction
  • How many practice visits you receive

Finally, how are they funded?

Funding is dependent on age and previous qualifications. The age of previous qualifications is also noted and students may need to take Key Skills or Functional Skills to prove currency with Maths or English.

How the student is funded can alter their work load from college and the amount of visits the practice receives.

So – think back, do you know what your student needs to do to be successful?

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