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  1. Nursing: Mental Health
    1. 2016
    2. 2017

Mental Health Nursing

BSc (Hons) |
This degree prepares you for a fulfilling and rewarding career in mental health nursing. You will learn to provide holistic compassionate care and support with people mental health problems to manage and improve their physical and emotional health and well being.

Key Information

Start date

September 2016


Full-time: 3 years



Full-time: Tuition fees for home and EU students studying the BSc (Hons) in Mental Health Nursing are paid by the NHS.


Full-time: This course is not currently available to non-EU students.

UCAS code


Who is it for?

The BSc Mental Health Nursing degree is designed for students who are looking for a rewarding and lifelong career within the Nursing profession. Mental Health Nurses should be patient and compassionate in-order to recognise patients’ needs and the appropriate treatment. Students learn through a range of methods including academic study, simulated learning and clinical placements.


Mental health nursing is a rewarding career where you can make a real difference to the lives of people of all ages who experience mental health problems.

Mental health nursing focuses on the provision of holistic care that enables people with mental health problems to be physically safe and emotionally secure. It is all about helping people to make positive changes to their lives and about supporting them on their journey of recovery.

As a student on the BSc (Hons) Mental Health Nursing course you will combine theoretical study with clinical experience working with London's diverse population in leading hospitals and community settings. Specialist facilities at City include a state-of-the-art Clinical Skills Centre, where you will partake in simulated learning in preparation for your practice placements.

If you have already graduated with a primary degree, City also offers a two year fast-track PG Dip Mental Health Nursing.

Requirements and how to apply

Entry requirements

Due to the high demand for places on NHS funded courses, as well as meeting the stated academic entry requirements, applicants will be required to attend a selection day held at City University London. You will be asked to complete numeracy and literacy tests as well as the NHS Constitution Assessment, which is used to demonstrate that your values match those of the NHS Constitution. For further information and example tests, please visit our Selection Day page.

The conditions of the offer will be made via UCAS. The following are examples of typical offers that are made:

  • 'A' Level - 300 UCAS tariff points, with at least 200 gained at A2. 'A' or 'AS' Levels in Biological Sciences, Social Sciences and Health and Social Care are preferred.
  • IB - 32 points.
  • Access to HE Diploma - Pass in a QAA recognised Access to HE Diploma in a Nursing, Midwifery, Health or Social Care subject  NOT Nutrition or Paramedic Studies. Full award (60 credits) of which a minimum of 45 credits must be at Level 3 including 21 credits at Distinction; 15 credits at Level 2.
  • BTEC - DDM (Health and Social Care or Science-related subject only).

Unless studying towards an Access to HE Diploma in a relevant subject, all applicants must have 5 GCSEs including Mathematics and English Language at A*-C.

From 2016 entry onwards, Access to HE Diploma applicants must hold both GCSE English Language and Mathematics at grade C or above at the point of application.

Please note: we will not accept any equivalent qualification, only GCSEs.

English requirements

Please note that due to changes in the UKVI's list of SELTs we are no longer able to accept TOEFL as evidence of English language for students who require a CAS as of April 2014.

If your first language is not English, we will require evidence of English language proficiency. Minimum requirements are:

  • IELTS: 7 overall with a minimum of 7.0 in each component.

Visa requirements

If you are not from the European Economic Area / Switzerland and you are coming to study in the UK you may need to apply for a visa or entry clearance to come to the UK to study.  

The way that you apply may vary depending on the length of your course; there are different rules for:

  • Students on courses of more than 6 months
  • Students on courses of less than 6 months
  • Students on a pre-sessional English Language course

Please note: If you require a Tier 4 student visa to study in the UK, you cannot undertake any City University London courses on a part-time basis.

For more information see our main Visa page.

How to apply

Applications for degree courses must be made through UCAS. You can apply through your school or college using the Apply system, which enables you to submit your application directly to the UCAS website.

Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS)
Rosehill, New Barn Lane,
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire GL52 3LZ

UCAS Customer Service Unit telephone numbers:

  • For callers in the UK: 0871 468 0 468
  • For callers outside the UK: +44 (0)871 468 0 468
  • For callers with hearing difficulties
  • From the UK use the Text Relay service on 18001 0871 468 0 468
  • From outside the UK dial +44 151 494 1260 (text phone) and then ask the operator to dial 0871 468 0 468.

You can apply for up to five universities on the form. Please take care to enter the correct course code, particularly for subjects with a foundation year or with BSc and BEng options. UCAS has implemented an 'invisibility of choices' policy so that, on the initial application and while you are receiving decisions, each university can only see their entry and not those of other universities you have chosen. This ensures that your application for a course at City University London is considered solely on your academic and personal qualities. You should submit your completed application form to UCAS with a £21 application fee. If you want to apply to City only, you can make a single choice application at a reduced rate of £11. The UCAS code for City University London is C60.

When to apply

Your application for entry in September 2016 should arrive at UCAS between 1 September 2015 and 15 January 2016. Applications that arrive after 15 January 2016 will be considered only at the University's discretion. When your application is acknowledged by UCAS, you will be sent a personal identification number so that you can access your records via Track on the UCAS website.


For general enquiries about the admissions process, please contact the
School of Health Sciences Admissions Office.

T: +44 (0)20 7040 5000

For student satisfaction, City is ranked second nationally for Nursing (National Student Survey, 2014)
years of teaching history

The Lord Mayor of London Scholarship

The importance of mental health nurses

Mental Health Nursing - Keep it in Mind

This video was produced by the RCN Mental Health Nursing Forum. It features members who speak about their work as mental health nurses, including Joanne McDonnell, who is head of nursing at Five Boroughs Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and a member of Mental Health Practice's editorial advisory board.


Half of your time as a student will be spent gaining practice experience through clinical placements and simulated practice. The clinical placement allows students to explore the journeys of service users including older people, the severely ill, those in recovery and those detained in secure settings. Placements are with the East London NHS Foundation Trust.

Clinical placements and Communities of Practice

Clinical placements are a vital factor in promoting understanding and development of professional skills. They help you become fit for practice, fit for purpose and fit for award by the time you complete your programme. Each placement provides you with educational opportunities to develop your professional skills.

Placements are undertaken within Communities of Practice. A Community of Practice is a group of healthcare practitioners, who share specific professional interests such as midwifery, mental health nursing, children's nursing, primary care and public health care or adult nursing.

Academic facilities

Simulated practice will enable you to practise your skills in a safe environment in preparation in transferring these skills to a 'real life' setting. Simulated practice will enable you to practise your skills within the safe environment of our specialist Clinical Skills Centre in preparation for your clinical placements within ‘real-life’ settings. At City we also use an innovative method of group work to support students and help them to develop the ability to understand and process the emotional impact of working in mental health.

Learn a language for free

We offer a free language course for City University London students.

Find out how to apply

Teaching and learning

The course is delivered by expert staff who are leaders in the field of mental health nursing, many of whom have written core textbooks used on the course. For example:

  • Mutsatsa, S (2015). Medicines Management in Mental Health Nursing (2nd ed). Sage Publishing
  • Blows W. T. (2010). The Biological Basis of Nursing (2nd ed). Oxford: Routledge
  • Callaghan P. and Gamble G. (eds) (2015). Oxford Handbook of Mental Health Nursing (2nd ed). Oxford: OUP
  • O'Carroll M. and  Park A. (2007) Essential Mental Health Nursing Skills. Edinburgh: Mosby

You will learn through a blended approach which includes face-to-face and online teaching and learning, e.g. lectures; facilitated group work; laboratory practicals; enquiry based learning; practice experience; simulated practice; guided independent study; student directed learning and online learning.

Simulated practice enables you to practise your skills in a safe environment, in preparation in transferring these skills to a 'real life' setting. Simulated practice will enable you to practise your skills within the safe environment of our specialist Clinical Skills Centre in preparation for your clinical placements within ‘real-life’ settings. At City we also use an innovative method of group work to support students and help them to develop the ability to understand and process the emotional impact of working in mental health.


Assessment includes multiple choice and short answer examinations, reflective essays, case study reports, laboratory reports, care studies, group presentations, drug calculation tests and a seen-scenario examination. Practice is assessed by your mentor and practice tutor and by an Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) in a simulated environment.

Assessment weightings by year

  • Year 1: 10%
  • Year 2: 30%
  • Year 3: 60%


Year 1

The first year focuses on relationship-centred care and considers the psychological, social and biological factors influencing health. We require that you undertake a practice placement.

Year 2

In the second year, you will continue to explore these themes in the context of acute and long-term care. You can also pursue specific clinical interests on a two week elective practice placement in addition to course clinical placements.

Year 3

In the third year, the emphasis is on leading and managing in professional practice. You will undertake a 6,000 word dissertation. As part of the clinical placement experience, you will spend the final 12 weeks of the course in practice, have a placement base and opportunities to identify practice experiences with your mentor.

Career prospects

On successful graduation you will gain registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), which provides an internationally recognised professional qualification enabling you to practice in the UK and overseas.

Additional registration within countries maybe required if you choose to work overseas.

Nursing is a life-long career where you can develop your skills and interests within a range of specialisms including the chance to go onto further advanced practice MSc study in a specialist area at City.

You will receive support from your personal tutor during the course and are encouraged to explore your personal career aspirations.

85% of graduates are in full time employment / further study

Destinations data for BSc Child Nursing

Information taken from Unistats

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