Postgraduate Diploma in Neurosurgery
The online Neurosurgery Postgraduate Diploma is designed for healthcare professionals in the UK and overseas who want to specialise in Neurosurgery and develop both theoretical knowledge and research skills.
Neurosurgery is a competitive and demanding speciality, requiring a broad knowledge of anatomy, neurology and physiology, in addition to critical appraisal and research skills. Neurosurgical trainees and specialist CNS nurses require specialist qualifications to progress their careers in neurosurgery.
Next intake: 2022 MarchKey Facts
Entry into a Neurosurgery postgraduate course is highly competitive. With stringent criteria for entrance into specialty training, a postgraduate qualification in this field is highly desirable.
The course is suitable for doctors of all grades and nurses, in particular clinical nurse specialists wanting to specialise in neurosurgery. Healthcare professionals working within a relevant clinical setting, both UK and overseas, with a related healthcare science degree (including international qualifications) are eligible to apply for the two-year PGDip course.
On completion of our neurosurgery courses students will be able to:
- Apply conceptual and practical knowledge of neurosurgical conditions in both emergency and elective settings.
- Critically appraise current developments and guidance in neurosurgery.
- Critically apply an advanced knowledge of neurosurgical conditions to healthcare decision making.
- Critically evaluate current research in neurosurgery.
- Demonstrate reflection and creativity in addressing complex problems in acute neurosurgery.
- Exercise initiative and personal responsibility in decision making in complex situations.
- Professional/vocational skills.
- Deliver management strategies for the examination and treatment of individuals in a trauma setting.
- Demonstrate the ability to prioritise care and minimise and manage risk in emergency care.
- Demonstrate leadership skills of teams in multidisciplinary care.
University of Buckingham
The University of Buckingham is the only independent university in the UK with a Royal Charter, and also one of the smallest with around 2,700 students, who study for honours degrees in two intensive years of study. The University houses it's own medical school and was ranked first for student satisfaction in 2018, 2019 and 2020 by the Complete University Guide.
Accreditors and Endorsers
UEMS - European Union of Medical Specialists
This postgraduate diploma has also been accredited by the European Union of Medical Specialists (UEMS)
Miss Caroline Hayhurst
Current Role: Consultant Neurosurgeon at the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, UK.
Subspecialty Interests: Skull base and pituitary surgery
- Honorary Lecturer with Cardiff University
Mr Ramez Wadie Kirollos
Current Role: Senior Consultant Neurosurgeon, National Neuroscience Institute (NNI), Singapore, Tan Tock Seng Hospital, Singapore General Hospital, KK Women & Children Hospital
Subspecialty Interests: Neurovascular and...
Miss Kathrin Joanna Whitehouse
Current Role: Consultant neurosurgeon at the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, UK.
Subspecialty Interests: Neuro-oncology
- Reviewer for journal “World Neurosurgery” and “British Journal of...
Mr Amr Mohamed
Current Role: Consultant neurosurgeon at the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, UK.
Subspecialty Interests: Endoscopic pituitary and skull base surgeries
Next intake: 2022 March Key Facts
Why Study with Learna
We have over 10 years’ experience delivering online courses, giving you access to flexible, affordable distance learning in partnership with world-leading educators.
Value for money
Distance learning allows us to work with the worldwide industry-leading professionals.
Get a PgDip from £3,900 or an MSc from £7,500 - the most affordable courses of their kind in the UK.
Pay in instalments.
Boost your career
Get a postgraduate qualification in just 1 calendar year instead of 2 academic years.
40% of our alumni reported an increase in salary 2 years after studying with us.
Learn online. No fixed study times mean you can log in and learn whenever and wherever.
Multidisciplinary - study in a group of doctors, nurses, pharmacists and other healthcare professionals.
15:1 student tutor ratio. We have a 92% student satisfaction rate.
Who is this course for?
The neurosurgery online course is suitable for doctors of all grades and nurses, in particular healthcare professionals and clinical nurses specialists wanting to specialise in neurosurgery.
How Will I Learn?
You will be supported throughout your studies by a committed team of internationally recognised educational experts.
Our courses are conducted entirely online through self-directed distance learning. You’ll receive guidance throughout your course with tutor-stimulated academic discussions, which are based on clinically-rich case scenarios.
These usually occur within groups of 10-20 students, allowing you to clearly communicate with both your tutor and fellow students.
CurriculumThe Neurosurgery MSc is a one year course, consisting of six modules (120 credits).
The module aims to address the investigation, diagnosis and management of brain and spine trauma, including critical appraisal of the evidence-base and neurosurgical approaches appropriate for CNS trauma.
A systematic approach to the assessment and management of trauma patients.
- Assessment of head injury
- Primary and secondary brain injury
- Management of intracranial pressure
- Natural history of severe head injury
- Principles of spinal injury
- Principles of neurorehabilitation
- Demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of the assessment and investigation of patients with head and spine trauma.
- Critically interpret the evidence base to demonstrate application of knowledge to the management of traumatic brain and spine injury.
- Exercise initiative, personal responsibility and ethical decision-making in brain and spine trauma.
- Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the evidence relating to the management of patients presenting with head and spine trauma.
To provide healthcare professionals with the skills and knowledge to assess and manage patients with suspected brain and spine tumours.
Applying a systematic approach to the assessment of patients with suspected mass lesions and gain an understanding of the spectrum of central nervous system neoplasia; the presentation and outcome.
- Basics and investigations
- Tumour presentations
- High grade glioma
- Low grade glioma
- Extrinsic lesions
- Pituitary tumours
- Critically interpret and apply the evidence base in the assessment and management of patients with central nervous systems tumours.
- Demonstrate skills to appraise and reflect upon the differing needs of patients with central nervous system tumours.
- Critically apply combined professional knowledge of neuro-oncology to improve delivery in complex situations.
- Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the evidence relating to the diagnosis, investigation and management of patients presenting with neuro-oncological disorders.
- Demonstrate leadership skills in coordinating academic activities, engaging and responding to colleagues' academic interrogation.
To provide students with the skills and knowledge to assess and manage patients presenting with cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) disorders and paediatric patients.
This module applies a systematic approach to the understanding of CSF physiology and pathological processes causing raised intracranial pressure in both adults and children. The module also develops understanding of core conditions in paediatric neurosurgery, including the assessment of the acutely unwell child and imaging.
- CSF physiology and raised intracranial pressure
- Adult hydrocephalus
- CNS embryology and developmental disorders
- Paediatric tumours of CNS
- CNS infection
- Assessment and considerations of the paediatric surgical patient
- Critically interpret and apply the evidence base in the assessment and management of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) disorders in children.
- Demonstrate skills to appraise, reflect upon, and adapt treatments to a range of cerebrospinal fluid disorders in children and adults.
- Critically apply combined professional knowledge of cerebrospinal fluid disorders and paediatrics to improve delivery in complex situations.
- Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the evidence base relating to the diagnosis, investigation and management of CSF disorders/paediatric neurosurgery.
To provide healthcare professionals with the skills and knowledge to assess and manage patients with vascular disorders of the central nervous system.
Using a systematic approach to the assessment and management of patients with vascular disorders of the CNS, this module covers the core conditions in vascular neurosurgery, including aneurysmal brain haemorrhage, ischaemic and haemorrhagic stroke and explores the evidence base for interventions.
- Neurosurgical vascular anatomy, imaging and clinical correlation
- Cerebral blood flow and subarachnoid haemorrhage
- Cerebral aneurysms
- Vascular anomalies
- Assessment and management of spontaneous ICH
- Assessment and neurosurgical management of cerebral ischaemia
- Critically interpret and apply the evidence base in the assessment and management of vascular disorders of the central nervous system.
- Critically appraise, reflect upon, and adapt treatment depending on the evidence-base for vascular pathology of the central nervous system.
- Critically apply combined professional knowledge of neuro-vascular disorders to improve delivery in complex situations.
- Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the evidence base relating to the diagnosis, investigation and management of neuro-vascular disorders.
To provide students with the skills and knowledge to assess and manage patients with conditions affecting the spine.
This module covers the range of spinal degenerative conditions, how they present and appropriate investigations.
- Spinal anatomy and imaging
- Spinal trauma and instability
- Spinal tumours
- Degenerative lumbar spine
- Degenerative spine – cervical and thoracic
- Spinal infection and vascular abnormalities
- Critically analyse the evidence base and available treatments to plan and manage common spinal conditions.
- Critically appraise common spinal conditions including appropriate examination, assessment and management.
- Evaluate and apply evidence based practice to the delivery of spinal services and outcome assessment.
- Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of spinal anatomy and its relation to pathology.
- Critically appraise and evaluate the evidence relating to the diagnosis, investigation and management of spinal disorders.
To provide students with the skills and knowledge to assess and manage the acutely unwell neurosurgical inpatient..
This module covers the range of medical emergencies associated with neurosurgical diseases. Students will review common neurosurgical emergencies and review the evidence base for interventions.
- Assessment of postoperative deterioration
- Seizures and epilepsy
- Electrolyte disorders
- Endocrine emergencies
- Post-operative CNS infection
- Systemic post-operative complications
- Critically interpret and apply the evidence base in acute medical neurosurgical emergencies.
- Demonstrate an advanced knowledge of safe intervention and care in an acute neurosurgical setting.
- Reflect on learning from prior experience and challenge preconceptions in order to holistically integrate new knowledge in neurosurgical complications.
- Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the diagnosis, investigation and management of common complications of neurosurgical interventions.
- Implementation of evidence into practice.
- Coordinate, engage and evaluate clinical debate with colleagues.
The Neurosurgery Postgraduate Diploma course places assessments at the heart of the learning process through the employment of clinical scenarios to enhance problem-solving, critical analysis and evidence-based care. Since the scenarios act as a focus for learning and assessment, the two are intrinsically linked.
The modules on the course have the same assessment format and for all modules, you will be assigned a dedicated expert tutor. Your tutor will then facilitate case discussions with the group, whilst monitoring, assessing and marking your work throughout. You will also participate in a combination of module activities that may be group and/or individual based, dependent on the module.
These innovative teaching methods enable you to envisage the translation of your studies into your every day work and practice.
Due to the online nature of the course, you will be expected to regularly login and participate in the course - ideally on a daily basis. Students are recommended to spend around two hours per day on their studies. Our dedicated Student Support Team are also available to help with any problems you may face. From navigating our online platform to advising you on deadlines, our team can assist with any questions or challenges you may have along the way.
- Every week students are presented with two/three clinical case-based scenarios that are reflective of every day clinical practice and research.
- Your tutor will post a number of questions and prompts to aid students in a formal discussion of each case.
- These discussions are facilitated throughout by your tutor and are then assessed at the end of every module.
The reflective journal is used by students throughout each module to monitor personal progress. This is guided by weekly feedback from your tutor and is graded at the end of every module. The journal typically includes the following:
- Initial expectations and reasons for taking the course.
- Module and/or personal learning objectives.
- Description of events, issues and learning points within current personal practice.
- Change in every day practice due to knowledge gained on each module.
- A description of what has been learned during the module.
For this assessment, students will work on a group assignment and/or an individual assignment.
- Group assignments are designed to hone skills in the multidisciplinary, holistic approach to modern treatments and patient management by requiring group participation in a single piece of work.
- Individual assignments are designed to hone skills in academic career progression through such tasks as reviewing papers, developing scientific posters or abstracts, peer-reviewing, social media activities, patient information leaflets, and essays.
- Students are provided with case-based problems in the form of a one-hour timed examination.
- The exam consists of 30 'Single Best Answer' questions.
- Students are required to complete the exam online within the set time.
Since our courses are conducted entirely online, they are accessible to both UK and international registered healthcare professionals.
Applicants will typically hold a first degree or equivalent (including international qualifications) in a relevant professional healthcare field, such as a medical or nursing degree.
Registered healthcare professionals without these recognised qualifications will be considered on an individual basis and a wide range of prior experience may be taken into account. In some cases, applicants may be asked to submit a piece of work for assessment in order to confirm that they are able to work comfortably at postgraduate level, and demonstrate the requisite clinical and professional knowledge.
- A copy of your updated CV including your address and date of birth.
- A copy of your undergraduate degree certificate.
- The name and email address of someone who is able to provide a reference, this can be a work colleague, employer or former tutor.
- A detailed personal statement explaining why you would like to undertake the course.
- A copy of your proof of English competency (see below).
English Language Requirements
Proficiency in the English language is also essential to completing our courses. If English is NOT your first language, we ask for proof of competency during the application process. We are able to accept an IELTS overall score of 6.0 (with a minimum of 5.5 for each band) or an equivalent qualification.
If you do not meet these requirements, please don’t worry. The University of South Wales run a number of English Language Programmes at the Centre for International English to prepare you for your academic studies. You can also contact our admissions team on [email protected] for more information on the qualifications we accept.
Should you have already successfully completed the 1 year Postgraduate Diploma and wish to convert to the MSc and complete only the second year of the programme this is possible. Please contact our admissions department [email protected] to find out more.
Fee payments may be made via the following options:
|Deposit payable on acceptance†||£990||£990|
|1st May 2022||£990||£4,950|
|1st July 2022||£990|
|1st September 2022||£990|
|1st November 2022||£990|
|1st January 2023||£990|
† Deposits are non-refundable