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Nuclear Health Physics Monitor

Course Code: A2/0046/00

Level: 2
Subject area: Science

Qualification: Apprenticeship
Course type: Full-time
Duration: 24 months

About the course

A nuclear health physics monitor provides radiological monitoring services within the nuclear industry to protect people, the plant and the environment from the adverse effects of ionising radiation and contamination.

Nuclear health physics monitors use specialist instruments to carry out radiological protection monitoring for people by taking readings of surface and airborne contamination levels and radiation dose, recording the readings detected and responding accordingly. Nuclear health physics monitors work on nuclear sites (including waste management, decommissioning, and operational nuclear plants) and they may also support the nuclear site’s emergency response arrangements.

 

Within this Apprenticeship, you will have training sessions at City College Plymouth one day a week, term-time, to give you the skills and knowledge required to succeed in the industry. You will also receive direct training from the business you are employed by for your Apprenticeshipwho will work with the College to ensure you are reaching your maximum potential via regular workplace observations and reviews.

What you'll learn

An Apprenticeship is broken down into three learning categories: skills, knowledge and behaviours. For the Level Nuclear Health Physics Monitor Apprenticeship you will cover the following …

Knowledge:

  • the principles and implications of nuclear and radiological safety: nuclear safety is about preventing accidents and protecting people and the environment from radiation hazards; radiological safety is about protecting people and the environment from the harmful effects of ionising radiation
  • the fundamental principles and implications of radiation types, sources, hazards and appropriate radiological control measures
  • the purpose and limitations of different types of radiation protection monitoring instrumentation in order to measure, calculate and assess the significance by comparison with pre-specified levels of alpha, beta, gamma and neutron radiation where applicable;
  • the safety and security expectations of those working on nuclear licensed sites
  • the reason for and application of safety management systems such as Standard Operating Procedures and Risk Assessment
  • how human performance and human factors affect nuclear safety culture
  • the significance and relevance of company policy, legal requirements for the use and control of ionising radiation and other legislation and regulation on working practices.

Skills:

  • use specialist radiological protection instruments to monitor surface and airborne contamination using hand-held contamination rate-meters and installed and portable air samplers; monitor radiation dose rates using hand-held, installed and portable radiation detectors; monitor individuals for personal contamination and respond accordingly
  • respond to each of the above situations accordingly by measurement, calculation and assessment of the radiological significance by comparison with pre-specified levels to enable the appropriate advice to be given to minimise radiation exposure to people to as low as reasonably practicable (ALARP) using numerical calculations quickly, accurately and reliably to evaluate the significance of the radiological data produced
  • carry out functional tests of radiation protection monitoring instrumentation using calibrated radioactive sealed sources
  • respond appropriately to changes in radiological conditions using the ALARP principles;
  • record radiation protection monitoring and survey results in a variety of formats (e.g. written logs, IT)
  • undertake radiation-related work activities safely and competently
  • participate in emergency response to provide radiological contingency arrangements to protect personnel, plant and the environment, for example: respond to and take appropriate action in regard to emergency situations to monitor for environmental radiological releases; carryout criticality incident monitoring; use Forward Control Points (FCP) and Access Control Points (ACP) to respond to and recover from nuclear incidents, used provide effective radiological safety control to personnel entering and leaving incident areas with regard to protective clothing, respiratory protection and radiation dose authorisation.

Behaviours:

  • demonstrate a strong commitment to personal safety behaviours as set out in nuclear industry requirements; actively challenge unsafe practices; understand the relationship between nuclear and radiological safety and ensure this is reinforced in the workplace
  • ensure openness in relations with workers, customers and other stakeholders; promote and model the highest standards of professional conduct, ethics and integrity
  • work well under pressure, continuously strive for excellence and challenge poor performance or non-conformance in a tactful and diplomatic manner
  • follow rules, procedures and principles to ensure work completed is fit for purpose and pay attention to detail and carry out error checks throughout work activities
  • effective and appropriate communication via oral, written and electronic methods; working effectively with others, with regards for diversity and equality;
  • work reliably and effectively without close supervision, accepting responsibility for their own work.
Entry requirements

To undertake this Apprenticeship you will be required to undergo an assessment with the course tutor. This is nothing to worry about! The tutor will have a conversation with you in order to assess your employability skills and your willingness to learn. They will also want to find out about any prior knowledge you may have. The assessment may include a practical task and a short workbook of basic questions about the industry.

If you do not already hold a GCSE at a grade 4-9 (A-C) or Functional Skills (level 1-2) in English and maths then you will be asked to complete a short assessment to determine what level you are currently working at. The results from this, combined with your tutor meeting, will ascertain whether we will be able to accept you onto an Apprenticeship and work with you to find an employer to begin your learning journey.

Assessments/Exams

In order to finish this apprenticeship you will have to pass an end-point assessment. The end-point assessment is the name given to a series of tests you must take to prove your ability to do the job you have been training for. These tests take place at the end of the Apprenticeship following a period of training and development.

This Apprenticeship has an expected duration of 24 months, however, this may vary depending on your readiness to sit the end-point assessment.

What's next?

This apprenticeship will allow you to gain full-time employment as a qualified nuclear health physics monitor at a number of different nuclear sites. This would also give you the foundation to build a career in this sector and work up to a team leader position and higher roles within management.

Important information

By applying for this position you will go through the College’s assessment procedure and once successful, you will be assigned a Business Engagement Officer who will guide you into employment by supporting you to find the best-suited workplace.

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