Faculty of Health and Social Care

Children's nursing programmes

What do children’s nurses do?

Children’s nurses care for sick babies, children and young people, in both hospital and community settings. Children’s nurses provide care that ranges from the highly technical to care appropriate to children with more long-term health care related problems. In addition, children’s nursing has a proper emphasis on positive health in childhood and not just on situations where health goes wrong.

At all times children’s nurses work in close collaboration with the child’s family as well as with medical and paramedical staff. Children’s nursing sees the family as the central unit of care. In this way, the child cannot be fully understood outside the social matrix that is the family. To any parent, grandparent, sibling and friend, a child is a thing of absolute value. It is the love in which children are known and understood that makes children so important in our society and their lives to be of such value.

Those who work with children and especially with sick children recognise the privilege of so doing, there is no field of work in any place or with any purpose or at any level that is more important than the care of the sick child.

Working with children can be rewarding, enjoyable and fun. However, working with sick children can also be emotionally challenging. Children’s nurses can be found working in the most difficulty of situations. It does take a special person to work with children in pain, distress and fear and for whom the world has been turned upside-down by their illness or injuries.

Children’s nursing is orientated to the child’s specific needs as a child and must be flexible enough to deal with the very different needs of babies, children and young people. We look for applicants, who can think independently, can operate alone when required to do so and outside the conventions of health care practice when the individual and unique needs of a child and family demand it.

Children’s nurses need a lively and active mind and a real enthusiasm for the study, as well as for the practice of nursing. We look for applicants who have already begun to study children’s nursing and have developed a keen interest and enthusiasm for their academic development and progress within this field.

Nursing the child may suit people who have a genuine love for children and are able to cope with the challenges associated with caring for the sick child. The programme of study is demanding, requiring a sense of commitment together with a keen mind and a caring disposition.

Placement information

We use placements in an around Hull, Grimsby and Scunthorpe. Our students have to be prepared to travel throughout the Humberside area. We use a very wide range of placements but all students will be provided with experience in the following areas:

  • Community child nursing
  • High dependency child nursing
  • Acute medical and surgical child nursing
  • Neonatal nursing

Students will work with children of all ages, with premature babies, pre-school children, school age children and adolescents. We do not recognise an upper age limit to our field of practice but it should be understood that this merges and overlaps with adult nursing. People do not suddenly stop being children and children’s nurses have to be able to work with young adults. In addition, children’s nurses work intimately with parents, grandparents and others and in so doing must be able to communicate therapeutically with all ages of people, including the elderly.


Fifty percent of curricular hours are assigned to study. Students study a wide range of material but should expect to focus on the following:

  • The nature, characterises of and normal development of the child
  • Promoting and encouraging child health
  • The principles of children’s nursing
  • Clinical skills applied to the care of the child
  • Care of the sick baby
  • High dependency care
  • Medical and surgical nursing
  • Research, teaching and professional development in nursing

We welcome applications from people with a genuine love of children; a lively interest in the study of children’s nursing and a preparedness to face experiences that will test and challenge them but that will ultimately lead to a keen sense of personal fulfilment.


For the degree course we require 300 points, with at least three A levels at grade BBB or an equivalent Pass on the Access HE Diploma with 30 of the 45 Level 3 graded units at distinction .

We also require English Language GCSE grade C as an individual subject. Maths and Science GCSE grade C or above, or unless inherent in a current course of study.

Relevant Experience -You must clearly provide evidence in your personal statement that you are gaining child care experience either through paid or voluntary experience. This experience must not include any involvement with family or friends. It is also expected to be in addition to placements undertaken as part of the student's current course of study. Evidence of this experience will be required in the form of a reference.

All applicants are required to provide supporting evidence of their interest in children's nursing, attend for interview, be in good health, complete a health questionnaire and be prepared to undergo a medical examination. All candidates will be screened for convictions, cautions, reprimands or final warnings that are not "protected" as defined by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (as amended in 2013).


The three-year full-time course is funded by the NHS Bursary scheme. It consists entirely of compulsory modules.

On successful completion of the theory and practice elements of the course, you are recommended to the Nursing and Midwifery Council for registration as a Level 1 nurse.

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