Programme Structure

The Mary Seacole programme is six months long with 100 hours of online study, plus three full-day behavioural workshops currently delivered virtually.

The programme is delivered nationally with multiple intakes a year, or you can check with your organisation if they deliver this through our local licence. 

Learning is accessed through:

  • The NHS Leadership Academy’s virtual campus, which includes programme films, interactive content, discussion forums and online resources
  • Three one day skills workshops working with expert facilitators currently delivered virtually

The programme is delivered in 12 units, each taking between five and ten hours of online study time:

  • Units 1-8 cover leadership fundamentals and build on each other as the programme progresses
  • Units 9-12 are flexible and can be taken at any point in the programme. These relate to the core management skills of:
    • Fundamentals of Finance
    • Recruitment and selection
    • Fundamentals of HR
    • Appraisals and annual review


Assessment is based on:

  • online activity and contributing to the online discussion forums throughout the programme
  • attendance to all three workshops
  • submission of a 2,000-word assignment demonstrating how you’ve developed and applied your leadership

Successful completion will lead to an NHS Leadership Academy Award in Healthcare Leadership.

If you have questions about any of the above, or want to talk to us about your learning needs, please contact our friendly team by email at [email protected].

How do I join the programme as part of the apprenticeship?

You can also join the programme as part of an apprenticeship offered by one of NHS Leadership Academy’s partner providers.

Apprenticeships are available in a range of disciplines including Leadership and Management, Digital, Project Management, Sustainability and many more.

They incorporate the Mary Seacole programme as part of the apprenticeship or offer it as an optional extra. This offers learners the opportunity to gain a recognised qualification from the apprenticeship and NHS Leadership Academy’s leadership development programme in one course. Find out more about these apprenticeships and how they work.

Next: Key information