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Professional Advocate Preparation

CPD and short courses (short course)

10 weeks

Module level: 7

Module credits: 15 credits

This course is delivered online.


Develop your clinical leadership skills as a healthcare practitioner, enabling you to undertake the role of Professional Advocate (PA).

If you’re a current healthcare practitioner who wishes to develop their clinical leadership skills, the Professional Advocate module is for you. We'll combine academic rigour with practical applications to create a forward-thinking, dynamic healthcare practitioner with the ability to lead the services in which you work.

Modern health and social care practice is a challenging place to work. Stress and burnout will almost certainly increase due to the exceptional pressure that many healthcare staff are experiencing during the COVID-19 pandemic (Kinman et al 2020; NHS Confederation 2020; West et al 2020). Our Professional Advocate module supports learning located primarily in the workplace to enable practising staff to become Professional Advocates (NHS England, 2017). The role of a PA and the use of A-EQUIP model (advocating for education and quality improvement) is part of the solution to supporting many of these issues.

We aim to develop your skills and expertise in the four functions of the Professional Advocate: education and development (formative function), restorative clinical supervision (RCS), monitoring, evaluation and quality control (normative function) and personal action for quality improvement.

Delivered over ten online study days, the course includes online activities supported by interactive sessions and key speakers. There is an emphasis on the support of healthcare staff in practice, building resilience using RCS, demonstrating the importance of having a safe and confidential space allowing time to reflect and make sense of workplace issues. You will develop skills to be an advocate for colleagues, patients, and your profession.

The assessment will include a portfolio of evidence, demonstrating how you've utilised your new skills and knowledge to support staff in practice by using all elements of the A-EQUIP model. As an applicant, you'll need to identify a clinical supervisor to sign off your clinical competency.

On successful completion of the module, you’ll be able to undertake the role of the Professional Advocate (PA) and be appointable as a Professional Advocate by your employing organisation. This module has been developed to meet the PA standards set by NHS England, including the mandated ten taught days.

Outline content
  • Background to the development of the A-EQUIP model
  • Four functions of the Professional Advocate
  • Education and Development (formative function)
  • Restorative Clinical Supervision
  • Monitoring, Evaluation and quality control (normative function)
  • Personal action for quality improvement
  • Fundamentals of leadership and its defining characteristics. Differences between leadership and management, and the role of the Professional Advocate
  • Leading change, and the key challenges that organisations and individual managers encounter in the organisation
  • Giving and receiving feedback
  • Promoting collaborative working and engaged followership behaviour

Who should attend?

The Professional Advocate Preparation module is for current healthcare practitioners who wish to develop their clinical leadership skills. Candidates will have a current live registration with a professional statutory regulatory body such as the NMC.

Evidence of Level 6 study is required as this is a Level 7 module.

This module would also be suitable for band 5 nurses in a development post, looking to apply for future SCPHN course.

If you're a midwife, please see our Professional Midwifery Advocate Preparation (PMA) course page for more details.


May 2024:

  • 15, 22, 29 May 2024
  • 5, 12, 19, 26 June
  • 3, 10, 17 July

Please be aware that there are limited places available for the May 2024 cohort.

Please check with your trust PNA lead to secure funding before applying.

Where you'll study

Where can I study?

This module is delivered fully online.

Fees & funding

Course fees

15 credits (Level 7) for courses starting in 2023/24


Funding for CPD

Please ask your manager or Education Lead about available funding before you apply.

Contact details

Linda Flack
[email protected]

CPD Admissions team
[email protected]

Entry requirements

You will need to evidence you have undertaken Level 6 study. 

You'll be a current healthcare practitioner, registered with a professional, statutory regulatory body such as the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

You'll be a healthcare professional, at Band 5 or above, and have also completed your preceptorship.

If you're a midwife, please see our Professional Midwifery Advocate Preparation (PMA) course page for more details.

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