The aim of the Advanced Critical Care Practitioner programme is to develop a new professional able to safely fulfil a proportion of those roles currently only undertaken by medically qualified intensive care trainees in the National Health Service.

This new role is seen to be important in pioneering the shift of work, traditionally done only by doctors, to new, non-medically trained grades of staff. It also addresses the current workforce planning problems in critical care.

This programme allows students to extend their studies beyond the qualification required for registration (PG Diploma: Advanced Critical Care Practitioner) to an MSc, by satisfactorily completing a dissertation.

The programme is 27 months full-time which includes 24 months of academic study and clinical training, followed by 3 months of supervised practice.


Why Study this Course?

Following on from the success of the Physicians’ Assistant (Anaesthesia) and other non-medical practitioner roles there has been renewed interest in the development of the role of Advanced Critical Care Practitioners (ACCP)  from surrounding Trusts.  

Institutional Accreditation 

University of Newcastle is accredited by the DETC Higher Learning Commission (DETC), Since , University of Newcastle has been continually accredited by the DETC Higher Learning Commission and its predecessor.

Advanced Critical Care Practitioner – Postgraduate Diploma

Course Level:

Postgraduate, Distance learning, Taught




CODE P1010

How long it takes:

27 Months Full Time

Study Mode:

Distance learning/ Campus

Course cost

Price: US$22,500

Entry requirements

Find out more about


Newcastle Law School

The programme is made up of 12 two-month blocks of teaching. Each block lasts for approximately 35 days to allow for holidays and is broken down as follows:

  • Directed self study – 70 hours
  • Small group teaching – 14 hours
  • Clinical skills teaching – 21 hours
  • Workplace experience – 140 hours

A typical week may consist of:

  • 1 2-hour tutorial
  • 2-3 days in the clinical area
  • ½ day clinical skills training
  • 1½ days self-directed study, e.g. working through the e-lectures

The blocks are as follows:


Module 1 Intro Clinical Practice in Anaesthesia and Intensive Care (30 credits) consists of:

  • Block 1 – Introduction to clinical practice (1)
  • Block 2 – Introduction to clinical practice (2)
  • Block 3 – Introduction to anaesthesia and intensive care

Module 2 Applied Science of Anaesthesia and Intensive Care (20 credits) consists of:

  • Block 4 – Physics in anaesthesia and intensive care
  • Block 5 – The anaesthesia machine and monitoring, intensive care ventilators

Module 3 Body Systems in Anaesthesia & Critical Care (40 credits) consists of:

  • Block 6 – The heart and circulation
  • Block 7 – The airways and lungs
  • Block 8 – The kidneys, liver, endocrine system and blood
  • Block 9 – The brain and nervous system

Module 4 Critical Care in Clinical Practice(30 credits)

  • Block 10 – ICU Admissions, Clinical History and Examination
  • Block 11 – Life Threatening Emergencies and Intensive Care
  • Block 12 – Advanced Practice

The programme is delivered primarily in the Trust to give maximum exposure to the clinical environment. Delivery of the academic component is largely through e-lectures using the University’s virtual learning environment, Canvas. Key aspects of the e-lectures are discussed further in the tutorial sessions led by the clinical tutor, as well as issues encountered in the clinical area and the application of the theoretical component. Tutorial plans are supplied as part of the programme material.

Considering postgraduate study, but unsure whether you meet the entry requirements for a Masters-level degree? Postgraduate admissions guidelines vary by course and university, but can be quite flexible.

Your existing qualifications will be important, but you don’t necessarily need a great Bachelors degree to apply for a Masters. Your personal circumstances and experience may also be considered during the admissions process.

This guide explains the typical entry requirements for a Masters, which include:

      • An undergraduate degree in a relevant subject – Depending on the programme and institution, you may need a 2.1 in your Bachelors, but this isn’t always the case
      • Language proficiency – If English isn’t your first language, you’ll need to display a certain ability level, usually through a language test
      • Professional experience – Some postgraduate programmes may require you to have some professional experience (this is usually the case for PGCEs and Masters in Social Work)
      • Entrance exams – These are only required in certain subject areas and qualifications, including some MBAs

Tuition fees for UK/EU students 2020/21

MSc:  Full-time £9,900. Part-time £4,950
Postgraduate Diploma:  Full-time £6,660. Part-time £3,300


Tuition fees for International students 2020/21

MSc: Full time £23,310
Postgraduate Diploma: Full-time £15,540


You’ll show your progress through a combination of written essays, problem-solving assignments and presentations.

All students take our core modules, but please note that the availability of optional modules is subject to demand.

This programme is part of a structured training programme for the role of Advanced Critical Care Practitioner (ACCP) It is fully funded by the individual NHS Trust that supports ACCP training.