Nursing Studies: Mental Health Nursing

MSc / Postgraduate Diploma / Postgraduate Certificate Mental Health

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Please note this course doesn't lead to registration as a mental health nurse. If you are looking for a mental health nursing postgraduate course, please visit our MSc Nursing course page.

Poor mental health affects a wide range of factors including our physical health, our relationships and our desire to take part in the world around us. Research highlights that poor mental health is an inevitable consequence of inequalities, adverse childhood experiences and trauma. How can we best respond to people whose lives are most affected by these factors? What are the key challenges faced by mental health service users and service providers? 

Students will learn about the importance of trauma-informed responses and responses that empower and support an individual in realizing their capabilities. We will explore the debates about diagnostic systems; dependence on the use of medications and the scarcity of talking therapies for people in mental distress.  How can we better plan for an inclusive mental health system that ensures there is no health without mental health? 

The MSc in Mental Health will provide structured learning to support the development of informed, inclusive and skilled practitioners and researchers. The course does not lead to a professional qualification (such as nursing, or counselling) but it does equip you for employment and progression in the mental health field. It would also benefit anyone likely to encounter people with mental health problems in the course of their daily work (e.g. housing officers, teachers, advice workers). The course covers current issues in mental health provision both in the UK and in a wider international context. 

You will benefit from an exciting and challenging educational experience provided by academics, practitioners and service users. Everyone contributing to the programme has expertise in some aspect of mental health, either through personal experience, research or work experience. We make use of a blended learning approach so that students can continue their learning outside the classroom. Learning and teaching includes interactive seminars and lectures, self- directed learning, presentations and discussions. 

Successful completion of each stage of the course could lead to either an MSc, PGDip or PGCert award. 

The MSc in Mental Health programme is suitable for a wide range of people likely to have contact with the general public. Increasingly public facing roles include the need to recognize and understand the challenges of providing support to others in mental crisis. It is also aimed at graduates who want to start a career in mental health or for practitioners seeking to improve their practice. It would  suit researchers and policy makers with an interest in improving outcomes for people experiencing mental distress. 

The course provides flexible options for study and individual modules for Continuing Professional Development (CPD) can be studied to meet the needs of a wide range of professionals including: 

  • Psychologists
  • Social Workers
  • Nurses
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Paramedics
  • Probation Officers
  • Police Officers
  • Medical Practitioners
  • Healthcare workers

PgCert/PgDip/MSc

The course will lead you through a sequence of modules that build up your knowledge and skills. You can exit the programme at various stages to obtain the awards of PGCert, PG Dip or MSc.

The programme is made up of Core and optional modules. The core modules are compulsory and will ensure that your award reflects the key knowledge and skills needed to respond to effectively to people in mental distress.

There are four core modules: 

Contemporary issues in mental health

This module will introduce you to the key challenges and debates that shape research, policy and practice in the mental health field.  You will learn how the different models of mental health inform how we view intervention. By the end of the module you will have more confidence in critiquing the assumptions, theories and practices that shape our perspectives on mental health. 

Mental Health Statutory Practice: Rights, Risks and Responsibilities

This module builds on the previous module and examines key aspects of mental health law, policy and service provision.  You will learn to navigate the potential ethical dilemmas arising from balancing an individual’s rights and freedoms against the risks and responsibilities that entails.. 

Understanding and assessing mental distress

This module will help you to identify signs of mental distress so that you can be more attuned to offering effective responses. The module focuses on what we know about assessing mental health and will help you to critique the different ways in which services articulate and classify mental distress. You will hear from service users and practitioners about potential responses to distressed individuals and their families.   

Research approaches and methods 

During the masters programme you will be required to read and comment on mental health research and how it is applied to practice settings. This module builds on that learning and equips you to complete a piece of research or review research in a particular aspect of mental health for your dissertation. In order to undertake your dissertation you will need to complete this module.

Dissertation 

 

To complete your masters you will need to write a dissertation – either in the form of a research project or literature review.  You will be guided on how to chose a fruitful focus for your work through individual and group tutorials.  There are 2 lengths of dissertation you can undertake – either 12000 or 18000 words. The option you chose will determine how many optional modules you need to take. 

Optional modules may include:

The mental health impacts of domestic violence and sexual abuse 

This module will consider the psychological impact of experiencing or perpetrating abuse.  You will learn how to identify the impact of abuse and respond to it from a trauma informed perspective.  

Safeguarding in Mental Health 

This module will explore the importance of safeguarding vulnerable adults and children in line with ethical practice and current legislation.  You will learn how to respond to safeguarding concerns and how to make appropriate choices in promoting interventions.   

Inclusive and reflective practice 

This module offers the chance to learn about the key principles and theories underpinning inclusive and reflective practice.  It explores the value of personal development and relational approaches to engaging with others. 

Migration and Mental Health 

This module offers the chance to gain a critical understanding of mental health needs of migrant and refugee/asylum seeking populations and contextualise the challenges for health/social care service responses. You will examine global mental health challenges that  impact the lives of migrants and asylum seekers.

Students undertaking the MSc Mental Health will be graduates entering the field or experienced practitioners who will bring their existing knowledge and skills to the course. It will provide the opportunity to share and learn from other practitioners from across the health and social care sector. Many jobs in this field require that you have work experience as well as knowledge of the key aspects of mental health care.  Please note that we do not provide you with work experience so this is an aspect of your development that you will need to organize.  We can give you advice on the type of volunteering or paid work that will enhance your employability. 

During your studies you will be accumulating the key knowledge and skills needed to demonstrate that you are equipped to respond effectively to needs of people in mental distress.  Evidence of your learning along with any work-based experience you are able to arrange for yourself will improve your job applications or enhance your prospects of career progression. 

The MSc Mental Health is designed to enhance the possibility of career progression and promotes the habits and value of life-long learning. 

You will be required to complete a number of 20 credit modules as you progress through the course. Each module requires four full days on campus along with some guided off-site learning and 170 hours of self-directed study. If you are full time that will mean committing to approximately 16 days on campus each term, except in term three where you will be on campus for four days plus some tutorial meetings as you undertake a dissertation. 

The course will usually follow this pattern for full time students:

Trimester one - 60 credits

  • Module 1 
  • Module 2
  • Optional Module
Trimester two - 60 credits
  • Module 3
  • Module 4
  • Optional Module
Trimester three - 60 credits
  • Optional module
  • 40 credit Dissertation (12,000 words) OR
  • 60 credit Dissertation (18,000) words)

The course will usually follow this pattern for part time students:

Year one
  • Module 1 (trimester one)
  • Module 3 (trimester two)
  • Optional Module (trimester three)
Year two
  • Module 2 (trimester one)
  • Module 4 (trimester two)
  • Optional Module (trimester three)
Year three
  • Optional module (trimester one)
  • Dissertation (trimester two)
  • Dissertation (trimester three)

Fees

2020/21 tuition fees for this course

 UK/EUOverseas
Part-time £885 per module £1,535 per module

Alumni of Canterbury Christ Church University are eligible for a 20% discount on this course, subject to terms and conditions.

Tuition fees for all courses which last more than one academic year are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

There will be an annual inflationary increase in tuition fees for this course where the course lasts more than one academic year. For further information read the 2020/21 Tuition fee statements and continuing fee information.

Government loans of up to £11,222 are available for some postgraduate Master’s courses for students starting their course from 1 August 2020. Loans are subject to both personal and course eligibility criteria.

The rules around course eligibility mean that in some cases it may depend on how you are studying (full-time or part-time) as to whether you can apply for a postgraduate loan. To check whether your course is eligible, you can  email the Student Fees Team or call 01227 923 948.

Read more about  postgraduate masters student loans.

Students may self-fund their course or a sponsor may fund or part-fund. Bursaries, scholarships and fee discounts may also be available.

Further information

 

Additional course costs

Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students are expected to meet.

Costs applicable to all students

CategoryDescription
Text books Own purchase text books
Travel to other sites Where travel to other sites is required, this will be payable by the student
Library Fees and Fines Where students fail to return loaned items within the required time they will be responsible for the cost of any library fees and fines applicable
Printing & Photocopying The cost of printing and photocopying undertaken by students to support their individual learning are payable by the student
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire / photography are additional costs payable by the student

General principle policy

The University’s general principles policy for additional course fees are set out here

CategoryIs the cost Included in the tuition fee?Is the cost an additional cost to students?
Field trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) The costs of Field trips are not included in the Tuition fee unless the trip is a compulsory element of the module. Yes, unless the Field trip is a compulsory element of the module.
Travel and accommodation costs for placements  This varies depending on the Course - please refer to individual course webpages for further information about additional costs of travel and accommodation for placements.

This varies depending on the Course - please refer to individual course webpages for further information about additional costs of travel and accommodation for placements.

Purchase of own text books

No – students are expected to purchase their own text books. Yes – students are expected to purchase their own text books.

Data & Barring Service (DBS) Checks

This varies depending on the Course - please refer to individual course webpages for further information. This varies depending on the Course - please refer to individual course webpages for further information.

Occupational Health Checks

This varies depending on the Course - please refer to individual course webpages for further information. This varies depending on the Course - please refer to individual course webpages for further information.
Professional Body registration No - students are expected to pay for their own Professional Body registration, if applicable. Yes - students are expected to pay for their own Professional Body registration, if applicable.
Travel to other sites No – students are expected to pay for the cost of any travel to other University sites, however a mini bus service is provided free of charge between Old Sessions House and Polo Farm / Hall Place in Canterbury. Visit the shuttlebus webpage for more information. Yes - students are expected to pay for the cost of any travel to other University sites, however a mini bus service is provided free of charge between Old Sessions House and Polo Farm / Hall Place in Canterbury. Visit the shuttlebus webpage for more information.
Clothing / Kit Yes, where the clothing / kit is essential for Health & Safety reasons the cost is included in the tuition fee (a maximum of one set of clothing provided per student). Further information can be found on course webpages. Yes, where the clothing / kit is essential for Health & Safety reasons the cost is included in the tuition fee (a maximum of one set of clothing provided per student). Further information can be found on course webpages.
Learning materials Essential learning materials (excluding text books) in connection with the course are included in the Tuition Fee. Specific course related information can be found on course webpages. Students must pay for additional materials beyond the standard provision essential for the course, or where the costs are determined by the student’s area of interest and the outputs are retained by the student. Specific course related information can be found on course webpages.
Library fees and fines Yes – all Library fees and fines are an additional cost payable by the student. Yes – all Library fees and fines are an additional cost payable by the student.
Printing and photocopying A £15 print / photocopying credit is provided to all students each academic year on their University Smartcard. Any additional print / photocopying costs must be paid for by the student. A £15 print / photocopying credit is provided to all students each academic year on their University Smartcard. Any additional print / photocopying costs must be paid for by the student.
Social events The tuition fee does not include the cost of any social events, unless the event forms an essential part of the course. Yes, the costs of social events are an additional cost payable by the student unless the event forms an essential part of the course.
Graduation ceremonies IThe cost of the Graduation ceremony itself is included in the tuition fee for the student to attend the ceremony. However, guest tickets and robe hire/ photography are additional costs payable by the student or their guests. The cost of the Graduation ceremony itself is included in the tuition fee for the student to attend the ceremony. However, guest tickets and robe hire/ photography are additional costs payable by the student or their guests.

The assessments accommodate a broad range of learning styles and have been selected to enhance your capacity to apply theory to practice. Assessment activities include case studies, presentations, and essays. There are three points in the year when assignments are due in for marking. For modules taken in the first trimester assignments will be due for hand in early January. For modules taken in the second trimester work will be due in early May. Modules undertaken in the third trimester will be due in early August. You may be required to hand in plans or sections of an assignment during a trimester to help you prepare for the formal assignment. 

The full MSc Mental Health award is made of 180 credits. Each module carries 20 credits with the exception of the 40 or 60 credit bearing Dissertation/Project. 

The entry requirements for the Postgraduate Diploma/MSc in Mental Health are guided by the standards set by Canterbury Christ Church University Regulation and Credit Framework for the Conferment of Awards: 

You should normally hold a good honours degree, which is defined as a first class or second class honours degree, preferably in a relevant subject discipline. If your first degree is in an unrelated field you will need to provide information in your personal statement that supports your reasons for applying to switch disciplines. 

You will gain far more from this programme if you have experience of working with people who are in need of emotional and psychological support. If you do not have experience it will be important for you to try and obtain experience during your studies.  We do not arrange placements so you will need to seek volunteering or employment opportunities yourself.  

Please contact the Programme Director, suzanne.martin@canterbury.ac.uk, for further details.

Apply Direct / Part-time study

Location Length Start  
MSc Mental Health apply
Canterbury 1 year full-time September 2020
MSc Mental Health apply
Canterbury 3 years part-time September 2020

For further information, please read our guidance on how to apply online.

For more information, please contact suzanne.martin@canterbury.ac.uk

Fact file

UCAS institution code

  • C10

Length

  • 1 year full time

    3 years part time

Starts

  • September 2020

Entry requirements

  • You should normally hold a good honours degree at 2.2 or above, which is defined as a first class or second class honours degree, in a relevant subject discipline. See further entry requirements for alternative entry criteria.

Location

School

 

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Last edited: 28/02/2020 14:26:00