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School of Nursing and Midwifery

BSc (Hons) Nursing (Mental Health)

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UCAS tariff 104 - 120
UCAS course code B761
Institution code P60
Duration

3 years

(with placements)
Course type

Full-time

Study location Plymouth, Exeter and Truro

Mental health nurses have a unique and profound impact on the lives of the people they care for, building and maintaining therapeutic relationships across all aspects of people’s lives. You'll gain the clinical and communication skills required to support the individual within their own recovery process. You'll develop the knowledge and experience to work within community, primary and acute care settings, and gain the confidence to help clients take the first steps to changing their lives.

Your career as a healthcare professional starts here

Providing students with skills and support to meet the needs of 21st-century careers


On successful completion you are eligible to apply for registration with the NMC as a ‘Registered Nurse – Mental Health level 1'.

Healthcare connections - shutterstock 645533764

Interprofessional learning
Experience an interprofessional learning environment across our health programmes that will prepare you for life as a healthcare professional.


The NHS Learning Support Fund provides additional funding for eligible healthcare students.

Careers with this subject

Mental health nurses support a person’s recovery to gain increased control over their conditions to establish trusting and effective relationships. They promote health and wellbeing through personalised treatment to improve the quality of their patient’s lives. They work in a multidisciplinary team, using evidence-based practice.
Mental health nurses work with a wide range of conditions to help to improve patient’s health and overall quality of life, where possible.
  • Addition issues
    This relates to a range of substance misuse, it is possible to be addicted to anything. You may work with people with drug, alcohol, gambling, smoking, work, internet, solvent or shopping addictions.
  • Anxiety disorders
    This can have a debilitating effect on an individual’s day to day life. They may suffer from occasional anxiety or from repeated episodes that can be difficult to control. Some disorders you may work with include generalised anxiety, social anxiety, specific phobias or separation anxiety.
  • Depression
    Depression can affect people in many ways. Mental health nurses work with people who may be majorly depressed, have melancholy, suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder and many more.
  • Eating disorders
    Mental health nurses work with people with anorexia nervosa, bulimia and binge eating disorder, OSFED, ARFID to help people create better relationships with food.
  • Personality disorders
    Someone with a personality disorder thinks, feels, behaves or relates to others very differently from the average person. Some disorders you might encounter include paranoid, schizoid, antisocial, borderline, dependent and many more.
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorders
    Mental health nurses work with a wide range of people that may be suffering from a form of OCD. Some of the most common conditions include excessive cleaning, checking, counting, ordering, arranging, hoarding and many more.
  • Post-traumatic stress
    This condition is triggered by a terrifying event for a person that has either experienced or witnessed it. Symptoms can include flashbacks, nightmares, severe anxiety and uncontrollable thoughts.
  • Perinatal mental health issues
    This relates to problems experienced right after and up to a year after the birth of a baby, and can affect both parents. Mental health nurses work with those suffering from postnatal depression and other conditions, to support new parents.
Mental health nursing is a broad discipline, you could work with people and children of all ages such as:
  • people who may be suicidal
  • people who may be isolated
  • people who may be vulnerable
  • people who may be homeless
  • people who may be from minority communities
  • veterans
  • people who may be encountering relationship difficulties
  • people with legal or financial problems
  • people who are in poverty
  • people with pre-existing medical conditions
  • people who are unhappy
  • people who may be experiencing family conflicts.
Within the nursing profession there are a multitude of job opportunities. You could work in the NHS, within the public or private sector. For example:
  • NHS hospitals
  • Public health and policy making
  • Communities
  • Patient’s homes
  • Outpatient units
  • Private practice
  • GP surgeries
  • Prisons
  • Armed Forces
  • Specialist units
  • Secure residential units
  • Community centres
  • Education and academia
  • Research
  • Leadership roles
  • Voluntary roles

Advice from graduate Rebecca Richards:

"Do it, but know why you want to: you’ll need that when you’re up all night, or stressed out. It’s not an easy course; it challenges and changes you in a lot of different ways, so you have to want to be there."

Key features

Achieve a bachelors honours degree and register as a nurse with the in mental health enabling you to progress on to a rewarding career and work in a range of healthcare settings nationally or internationally. You’ll have a balanced learning experience with a wide and innovative range of teaching and assessment methods both in academic study and in practice. Your time with us will enable you to work with a range of allied health professions and other fields of nursing.
  • Experience a course that teaches contemporary and innovative mental health practice.
  • Focus on developing your interpersonal skills and the importance of building therapeutic relationships.
  • Equip yourself with the knowledge and confidence to graduate with professional status as a registered mental health nurse.
  • Qualify with outstanding employment opportunities in a profession that offers excellent career progression.
  • Enjoy an accessible approach to your theoretical studies, with the option of studying in Plymouth, our Knowledge Spa campus in Truro or at our University of Plymouth School of Nursing in Exeter.
  • Students in Plymouth train and practice their professional healthcare skills in an inspiring purpose-built environment, InterCity Place.
  • Experience clinical placements across Devon, Cornwall and Somerset designed to maximise your range of experiences and clinical skills.
  • Learn from experienced doctors and professors in their field.

Course details

  • Year 1

  • Your first year introduces you to being an accountable professional, whilst developing the knowledge and skills required to become a confident, academic and independent learner. You will gain an understanding of human development, key body systems and their relationship to nursing care. A range of effective therapeutic interpersonal skills to promote engagement and helpful collaborative person-centred conversations will be nurtured within the theory and the two practice components during the year. You will be introduced to the importance of assessing, planning, providing and evaluating health and wellbeing in a broad range of contexts. You will learn and develop the values, knowledge and skills required for the successful achievement of the standards of proficiency required for the first NMC progression point. Modules will have field specific application.

    Core modules

    • Being an Accountable Professional (NRS410)

      This module will introduce students to the nursing profession, professional standards, the use of evidence and the role of social media in health care practice.

    • Communication and Therapeutic Relationships (NRS411)

      This module supports students to develop basic, person-centred communication skills enabling them to engage effectively with individuals and their families/carers utilising a range of collaborative interpersonal skills and adopting therapeutic and ethical frameworks that can be applied in health and social care.

    • Applied Human Biology Across the Lifespan (NRS414)

      This module will develop students' understanding of human development, key body systems and their relationship to nursing care.

    • Assessing and Planning Nursing Care (NRS416)

      This module introduces students to assessing health and wellbeing, it explores different models of understanding health, ill health and the interconnection between physical and mental health. It enables the student to work in partnership to plan and evaluate nursing care for a variety of health conditions and needs.

    • Providing and Evaluating Care (NRS417)

      This module introduces the student to the values, knowledge and skills required for nursing practice in a range of settings.

    • Interprofessional Learning 1 (HIPL400)

  • Year 2

  • In your second year you will be introduced to research methodology and methods in order to develop your knowledge of the application of research-based evidence to professional practice. You will study the pathophysiological processes involved in commonly encountered health conditions to support nursing interventions. Your knowledge and understanding of co-ordinating care for complex health needs will be developed, as well as in relation to public health, policies and legislation. You will become a knowledgeable practitioner with an understanding of pharmacology and safe practice in the management of medicines. The theory and two practice components of the year will develop your values, knowledge and skills required for the successful achievement of the standards of proficiency required for the second NMC progression point. Modules will have field specific application.

    Core modules

    • Applied Pathophysiology (NRS501)

      Within this module, students will study the pathophysiological processes involved in commonly encountered health conditions.

    • Introduction to Evidence-Informed Decision Making (NRS502)

      The module introduces students to research methodology and methods in order to develop their knowledge of the application of research-based evidence to professional practice. The module is based upon the premise that knowledge and understanding of key research designs is an essential pre-requisite of evidence-informed decision making (EIDM).

    • Promoting Health and Preventing Ill Health (NRS503)

      This module aims to develop the student's knowledge and skills in relation to public health, policies and legislation. Students will explore the social, economic, political and ecological challenges that are faced in public health at an international, national and local level. The student will develop an understanding of their professional role in relation to public health.

    • Pharmacology and Medicines Optimisation (NRS504)

      This module will develop students' knowledge of medications, pharmacology and working to support medication adherence.

    • Developing Nursing Practice (NRS507)

      This module develops the students' values, knowledge and skills required for nursing practice in a range of settings.

    • Interprofessional Learning 2 (HIPL500)

  • Final year

  • Year three allows you to critically explore the concepts of management, leadership and working in teams. You will extend your knowledge around critical appraisal and the importance of research evidence to professional practice. Within four field specific modules you will develop knowledge and skills in a range of key therapeutic approaches for working with people with serious mental health problems or complex needs, and appropriate service approaches. You will develop your knowledge and understanding of the ‘lived experience’ of those engaging with mental health and social care services and develop your competence in nursing clients with complex needs in a range of care settings. You will build on and develop the values, knowledge and skills required for the successful achievement of the final NMC progression point. Your final module will provide you with the opportunity to demonstrate your ability to perform as a capable and autonomous practitioner, fit for registration in your field of nursing practice.

    Core modules

    • Lived Experience (MHN601)

      This module will develop students knowledge and understanding of the lived experience of those engaging with mental health and social care services; fundamentally the module will enable development of skills to enhance well-being using value based frameworks.

    • Psychosocial Interventions to meet Complex Mental Health Needs (MHN602)

      This module develops knowledge and skills in a range of key therapeutic approaches for working with people with serious mental health problems or complex needs, and appropriate service approaches.

    • Developing Competence in Mental Health Nursing Practice (MHN603)

      This module develops the students values, knowledge and skills required for nursing practice and meeting the needs of clients with complex mental health problems.

    • Developing Knowledge and Skills for Evidence-Informed Decision Making (NRS602)

      The module is designed to extend students' knowledge around critical appraisal and the importance of research evidence to professional practice. This will be achieved through students identifying and evaluating a body of research-based evidence relevant to clinical practice.

    • Nursing Leadership, Management and Team Working (NRS604)

      This module critically explores the concepts of management, leadership and working in teams. It examines the role of the nurse to act as a change agent in response to professional practice challenges.

    • Interprofessional Learning 3 (HIPL600)

Every undergraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the course aims, the course structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest course structure and may be subject to change:

BSc Hons Nursing Programme Specification Standard Route 2023 24 6616

The modules shown for this course are those currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new modules. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to amendment from time to time as part of the University’s curriculum enrichment programme and in line with changes in the University’s policies and requirements.

Study locations

You will be able to study at one of three locations while completing clinical placements across Cornwall, Devon and Somerset
Please be aware that some final-year modules are only delivered at the Plymouth campus. If you choose to study this course at Exeter or Truro, you will be expected to travel to Plymouth complete these modules.

Entry requirements

UCAS tariff

104 - 120

GCSEs
5 GCSEs at Grade C/4 or above to include Mathematics, English, and Science. Consideration may be given to Functional Skills Level 2 in Mathematics. Please note we do not accept Functional Skills Level 2 in English, or Key Skills in Maths or English, or Adult Literacy/Numeracy.
Plus one of the following:
A levels
104–120 Tariff points to include a minimum of two A levels. Science, Health, or Social Science profile is preferred but any subject considered. General Studies excluded.
Access to HE Diploma
Pass an Access to HE Diploma with 33 Level 3 credits at Merit and/or Distinction, including 15 in Science or Social Science.
T level
Accepted pathway: Health. Typical offer will be confirmed once an application is received.
BTEC RQF National Extended Diploma/QCF Extended Diploma
DMM – Science, Health, or Social Science profile is preferred but any subject considered.
International Baccalaureate
26–30 points overall. Science, Health, or Social Science profile is preferred but any subject considered. English, Mathematics, and Science accepted within as GCSE equivalent at higher level = 4, standard level = 5
Degrees
Previous degrees are considered at a 2:2 or above. Science, Health, or Social Science profile is preferred but any subject considered.
We welcome applicants with international qualifications. To view other accepted qualifications please refer to our tariff glossary. .
If you are unsure whether you meet this criteria, or you have qualifications not listed here, please contact admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

Extended entry requirements

  • In addition to the above, evidence of academic study within the last five years is required. Ideally this should be one of the qualifications listed here, but the admissions team will assess on a case-by-case basis.
  • Meeting the academic minimum is the first stage of an application being considered. Applicants must also submit a strong personal statement in order to be considered further.
  • We will require an academic reference and an employer reference as part of the application process.
  • Attend an interview
  • You must pass disclosure and barring service and occupational health checks satisfactorily in order to be able to start this course.
  • If English is not your first language and you do not have GCSE English grade C/4 or above you will have to achieve an IELTS (or equivalent qualification) at the grade of at least 7.0 (at least 6.5 in all elements sections). English language requirements.
  • Students must be 18 years old or over by 31 December in the first year of the programme.

Deferred entry

Unfortunately we cannot permit deferred entry. However, if you have a query please contact the admissions team who will be able to explain the application process in more detail at admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

Direct entry to year 2

If you have achieved certificated learning in addition to the entry criteria required for your programme of study, it may be possible to accredit this learning towards your chosen course. Full details on how to make an application are available on our open access MOODLE site (download details on how to access the site and submit your claim and supporting evidence). Your application will then be assessed and you will receive confirmation by email on the status of your claim. Please contact the admissions team in the first instance who will be able to advise whether you are eligible at admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

Further information

Enhancing your application

Meeting the academic minimum does not guarantee you a place, you need to make sure that you are strong across all sections of your application form. Read more about enhancing your application

Interview days

Once your application has been received, we will consider your application to help us reach a decision. If successful at the initial screening stage, you will be invited to an interview. The majority of health courses interview applicants, as this is a requirement of many health regulatory bodies. This applies to all Universities and is vital to the progression of applications.
Interviews enable:
  • you to give the best account of your skills, experience and character.
  • us to decide whether you will thrive in the University of Plymouth’s culture.
  • us to explain more about the University, programme and how we work with our students.
Find out more about interview days: pre-work tasks, what to expect on the day of the interview and what happens after.

Screening

All offers are subject to satisfactory screening in terms of your health, welfare and disclosure and barring processes, before the start of your course.
Find out more about the screening

NHS constitution

University pre-registration programmes for health professionals are required to select their applicants using a ‘values based’ approach. As part of this process, your UCAS personal statement should include evidence of your personal commitment to NHS values laid out in the .

Fees, costs and funding

Student 2023-2024 2024-2025
Home £9,250 £9,250
International £16,300 £18,100
Part time (Home) £770 £770
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per 10 credits. Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances. More information about fees and funding.

Undergraduate Merit Scholarship for international students

Scholarship value: £2000 off your tuition fees in year one.
To recognise continued academic achievement, you may also receive:
  • 10% off the successive years tuition fee if an overall grade of 60% or above is maintained
  • 20% off the successive years tuition fee if an overall grade of 70% or above is maintained.
To be eligible you must:
  • achieve one grade above your academic offer.
  • meet our standard English Language requirements.
This scholarship will be offered automatically, providing you meet the eligibility criteria. A separate application will not be required.

Additional costs

This course is delivered by the School of Nursing and Midwifery and more details of any additional costs associated with our courses are listed on the following page: Additional costs for nursing and midwifery students.

How to apply

All applications for undergraduate courses are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service).
UCAS will ask for the information contained in the box at the top of this course page including the UCAS course code and the institution code.
To apply for this course and for more information about submitting an application including application deadline dates, please visit the UCAS website. The deadline for the receipt of international applications is 31 May 2023 for entry in September 2023.
Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office.

Deferred entry

Unfortunately we cannot permit deferred entry. However, if you have a query please refer to an experienced admissions administrator who will be able to explain the UCAS application process in more detail admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.
The School of Nursing and Midwifery at the University of Plymouth recognise that people may act out of character in times of trouble or distress. However, we will not tolerate inappropriate behaviour or language towards any of our staff during the admissions process. Hostile, aggressive, or otherwise inappropriate behaviour or language, whether expressed verbally or in writing, will be viewed seriously and may adversely affect the consideration of an application, appeal, or complaint. We reserve the right to reject an application from, or withdraw an offer to, an applicant who has behaved in an inappropriate manner.

Progression routes

International progression routes

The offers foundation, first-year and pre-masters programmes that lead to University of Plymouth degrees. Courses are specially designed for EU and international students who are missing the grades for direct entry to the University, and include full duration visa sponsorship. You can start in January, May or September, benefitting from small class sizes, top-quality tuition and 24/7 student support.
Find out more at plymouth.ac.uk/upic or contact our team at info@upic.plymouth.ac.uk
Foundation courses

Clinical Skills Resources

Placement experience and simulated practice will work hand-in-hand to enable you to become the best professional you can be.
At Plymouth, you’ll have access to state-of-the-art clinical simulation wards and equipment to allow you to develop a range of skills that are specific to the profession you are entering, in addition to a variety of basic health related skills, including:
  • physical examinations
  • patient and family interviews
  • diagnostic skills
  • washing hands
  • manual handling
  • observing and monitoring
  • blood pressure reading
  • injections
  • medication administration.

Placements

Experience nursing practice in a variety of clinical settings, whilst learning collaboratively within dynamic healthcare teams.
Practical experience is an integral part of the nursing course. In placements you will learn with a wide range of practice partners gaining clinical experience in the full range of healthcare conditions that affect people everyday.
Male nursing student

Advancing your career

Through evidence-informed theoretical study and a variety of clinical practice opportunities, our alumni have gained the skills, knowledge and experiences needed to succeed in the nursing profession. We also provide a range of post-registration courses to further develop your aspirations in nursing.

Student insight

Whether you're seeking practical advice, inspiration or a taste of mental health nursing at Plymouth our students offer you a comprehensive view of their journey.
Mental health nursing skills session. Nursing and midwifery facilities

Lecturers