We are very excited to announce the launch of our new academic pathways and modules commencing in September 2022! Visit our web pages to apply.

The Royal Marsden School

Independent Prescribing



Delivery method

Face to face and online

Academic credits and level

40 credits at level 7

Length of module

It runs over more than 12 weeks

Estimated hours of study

400 hours

Course availability

Apply now

Course summary

Independent prescribing is a widely integrated part of healthcare delivery in the United Kingdom (UK). Nurses, Midwives, and other Allied Healthcare Professionals are prescribing for a range of conditions both acute and long term which have been evaluated as clinically safe and appropriate and are well received by Service Users. 
This module is designed to meet the Nursing and Midwifery Council Standards (NMC) for prescribing (NMC 2018) and A Competency Framework for all Prescribers (RPS 2016). Registrants who complete the module can demonstrate that they meet the standards and can apply to have their entry on the register recorded as an Independent Prescriber. 

You will learn to utilise enhanced consultation skills to support your decision-making, consideration of complex differential diagnoses, and development of an evidence-based and holistic management plan. 

During this module you will also gain a robust understanding of clinical pharmacology and application to prescribing practice to ensure patient safety and public protection. You will also consider budgetary and other influences upon your responsibilities as a prescriber in relation to cost-effectiveness.  

Key topics

This programme will enable you to:

  • Gain the knowledge and skills required to become a competent and effective independent prescriber and to meet the standards set out by the Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC, 2018)
  • Enhance your role in providing timely access to medicines and to improve patient experience and patient safety through the delivery of evidence-based prescribing and deprescribing
  • Develop a systematic and critical approach to the assessment and diagnosis of service users through robust clinical reasoning and decision-making skills
  • Nurture a reflective approach to your independent prescribing practice to continually improve clinical care through the application of contemporary research/evidence.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the module you should be able to demonstrate achievement of the following learning outcomes:

  • Critically consider and apply effective communication and clinical reasoning skills in the systematic and comprehensive assessment of an individual (patient) through the age ranges using a person-centred approach. (Dimension 1) 
  • Critically reflect in the use of a holistic approach and current knowledge to design an appropriate evidence-based treatment plan utilising pharmacological and non-pharmacological approaches.  (Dimension 2)
  • Critically evaluate relevant data, information, and personal factors in order to enable an individual (patient) to make an informed choice about their treatment and support adherence. (Dimension 3 & 5)    
  • Plan implementation, recording and monitoring of safe, evidence-based, clinically appropriate & effective prescribing practice adapting the management plan appropriately in complex situations. (Dimension 4 & 6) 
  • Critically appraise own practice through a reflective approach to evaluate own knowledge & skills and develop a plan for own learning needs in order to minimise risk and ensure safe practice (Dimension 7 & 9)
  • Critically appraise and apply current legal, regulatory, & professional frameworks to prescribing practice demonstrating an awareness of ethical issues and influences on prescribing decisions (Dimension 8)  
  • Critically analyse the contribution of teamwork to safe prescribing practice and appraises the importance of reviewing own and others prescribing practice through appropriate measures. (Dimensions 9 & 10)


On-line Iive interactive sessions every Wednesday from 25 January until 12 July 2023 except for:
Face to face at The Royal Marsden School, Chelsea on 18 January, 8 March, and 17 May 2023
On-line Exam: 10 May 2023
Submission date: 19 July 2023

Entry requirements

1. Applicants must be an NMC  or HCPC registered healthcare professional who has been qualified for at least one year.
2. Applicants must be able to demonstrate the ability to study at Level 7. 
3. Applicants will normally have completed a physical assessment and history taking module or have a proven track record of the ability to assess and diagnose in their area of practice.  Verification of applicant’s track record is normally required from their line manager and/or in consultation with the programme lead.  
4. Applicants must have the support of their line manager and a suitably qualified and prepared Practice Assessor who can commit to 78 hours of supervision as a minimum. The Practice Assessor will be referred to as the Designated Prescribing Practitioner (DPP) and must meet the competencies set out in the Competency Framework for Designated Prescribing Practitioners (RPS 2019). The applicant should also have a named Practice Supervisor to meet the requirements of the Standards for Student Supervision and Assessment (SSSA) unless there are exceptional circumstances (NMC 2018).  Other Practice supervisors may contribute to student learning although it is not a requirement that they meet the DPP competencies.



  • Online Portfolio of practice that includes competency assessment document 
  • Case study assignment 4000 words 
  • Exam A Numeracy 
  • Exam B Pharmacology 

Student support

Tutorials with the module leader or personal tutor are available if students require additional help with the planning and writing of their assignments. Email and telephone support is also available from the module leader/personal tutor. The Royal Marsden School uses an online environment called Moodle which students must access during their studies to support and enhance our courses. The site provides resources and communication tools. All students will be provided with a username and password to access module-specific sections as well as general learning support such as study skills and library resources. Students also have access to the David Adams Library and Electronic Resource Centre. 

To get the best from the live video-conferencing sessions and enable you to participate fully you should have access to a computer or laptop with a camera and microphone. If you have any concerns or need help, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Related pathways

This stand-alone module also forms part of these pathways:

  • PG Cert/PG Dip/MSc in Cancer Care
  • PG Dip/MSc Advanced Clinical Practice in Cancer Care