How can I become a Podiatrist?

You need to complete a recognised course of study in order to be accepted for the Health Professions Council registration.

Currently, 13 university up and down the country offer full time and, in some cases, part time bachelor’s degrees in podiatry. The part time degree usually takes four and a half years compared to the full-time course which can take three or four years to complete dependant on the university you are studying at.

All the courses require work experience in the form of placements in private practice or the NHS. The courses all cover the required areas of local anaesthesia and pharmacology and clinical experience.

In England and Wales, the NHS usually fund places in all the institutions. Places in Scotland are funded by the Scottish Higher Education Funding Council. Some students are eligible for a means-tested bursary which are paid each semester to help with the cost of their living expenses.

Applying

All applications to universities offering full-time courses are required to be submitted online on the UCAS website.

Applications for part-time courses should be made directly to the university. Each university may have different entry requirements so checking with the university directly is recommended. However, the below points generally apply at each university:

School/College Leavers

  • The tariff point score ranges up to 300
  • A minimum of 2 (preferable 3) A-Levels are required. One should be science based but PE can be considered by some universities
  • The general entry level is 4 Highers for those students who are sitting Scottish Highers. One of these must be biology. Chemistry is also preferred

Mature Students (over 21)

  • Academic achievement in a science subject must be demonstrated to A-level standard or equivalent. A science subject is preferred
  • Recent academic study is expected

Consideration Points

Applications should prepare to travel for interviews as some universities require all suitable candidates to be interviewed.

Clinical shadowing of an HCP registered practitioner may also be required from some universities.

Any criminal convictions will need to be disclosed as some convictions will prohibit future employment in the NHS.

In most cases, it is a requirement of the NHS for the applicant to complete an occupational health assessment before a place is offered. This is to protect both patient and practitioner.