Glasgow Caledonian University


About Glasgow Caledonian University

Glasgow Caledonian University is one of Scotland's largest universities with over 18,000 students and is one of the most respected modern universities[1]. The history of the university can be traced back to 1875 but GCU was officially formed in 1993, one of the most recognisable staff & alumni in its history is former Prime Minister Gordon Brown. The university has grown quickly in its 25 year history and a recent review by the UK's Higher Education Statistics Agency placed GCU as top in Glasgow, 2nd in Scotland and 11th in the UK for employability[2].

Physiotherapy at Glasgow Caledonian University

The undergraduate physiotherapy programme aims to develop the skills required to practice physiotherapy as a profession across many clinical disciplines over 4 years. The course outline is as follows:

Year 1: Human Movement: Anatomy & Examination/Biomechanics and Physical Activity, Fundamentals of Human Physiology, Foundations of Inter-professional Practice and Health Perspectives in Physiotherapy Practice

Year 2: Neuromusculoskeletal Management, Cardiopulmonary Practice, Neurorehabilitation, Working in Inter-professional Teams, Methodology & Research for Effective Practice, Applied Physiology for Physiotherapy, Practice Education Placement

Year 3: Practice Education Placements, Elective Placement, Lifespan, Activity, Fitness & Health, Enhancing Physiotherapy Practice and Teams in Inter-professional Practice

Year 4: Honours Project, Leadership in Inter-professional Teams, Practice Education Placements

The practical elements of course are assessed across 7 placements, each lasting 4 weeks however the final 3rd year placement is elective. This provides excellent opportunities for students to branch out to less common, more specialist areas of physiotherapy and cand include placements abroad.

This course was the first in the UK to be accredited for a Doctorate in Physiotherapy (pre-registration) by the HCPC in 2017.

Postgraduate Study

In today’s fast-moving and demanding world, gaining a postgraduate qualification can be a very smart career move. At Glasgow Caledonian University, you can take full-time and part-time postgraduate programmes via distance learning, online study and day release. With a strong reputation for applied research in a range of areas, we also offer rewarding research opportunities.

MSc Physiotherapy (pre-registration)

Students start the course in January each year and the study period covers 25 consecutive months
Year 1:
Neuromusculoskeletal Therapeutics
Health Promotion
Cardiovascular and Respiratory Care
Health Related Activity and Fitness
Practice Education 1
Interprofessional Context of Practice
Neuromusculoskeletal practice 2

Year 2
Practice placements 2 and 3
Practice placements 4 and 5
Elective Placement
Working in Organizations; Interprofessional and Critical Perspectives
Practice placements 7 and 8

Msc Physiotherapy (1year)

Students are normally required to undertake the following modules:

Advancing Practice (1 and 2)
Evaluating Evidence to Develop Research and Inform Practice
Advanced Leadership for Health and Social Care Practitioners


  • The Institute forApplied Health Research works in areas of increasing importance such as healthy ageing; the management of long-term health conditions including stroke, MS and diabetes; HIV and sexual health; addictions, violence and public risk.
  • To best meet societal challenges through the Institute for Sustainable Engineering and Technology Research, GCU’s research spans Urban Environments and Efficient Systems.GCU's position as a world-class research institution has been reaffirmed by the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) results.
  • To best meet societal challenges through theInstitute for Society and Social Justice Research, GCU’s research spans Social Innovation and Equalities and Justice.This research includes a significant impact on intimate partner violence practice in Scotland, including the development of new interventions for offenders, and challenging perceptions of poverty.

Case Studies:

Physiopedia Projects

The Glasgow Caledonian University started collaboration with Physiopedia in 2015. They are working together on the following projects:


  1. World Ranking Guide. Top 10 New Universities in the UK. [ONLINE] Accessed 22/04/2015
  2. HESA. 2011/12 Performance Indicators. [ONLINE] accessed on 22/04/2015