Mental Health Nursing | Abertay University

Nursing (Mental Health Nursing)
BSc (Hons)

Join Scotland’s only undergraduate honours-level nursing programme with a sole focus on mental health.

Course detail

Start Date



4 years (full-time)

Degree Classification

BSc (Hons)



Why Study Mental Health Nursing?

Join Scotland’s only undergraduate honours-level nursing programme with a sole focus on mental health. This degree is grounded in a commitment to recovery as a guiding principle, with a strong focus on the delivery of research-informed, person-centred care.

This mental health nursing degree will provide you with a thought-provoking and contemporary programme of study, carefully crafted to equip you with the knowledge, skills and experience you need to practice as a mental health nurse.

Get set to explore a fascinating range of topics, including physical health and wellbeing, anatomy, physiology and human biology, as you take a journey to become an experienced recovery focused practitioner.

Throughout your degree, you’ll enjoy a consistently high level of support from a team of tutors and lecturers from a variety of clinical backgrounds, some of whom continue to work in practice. This is complemented by practitioners and colleagues from counselling and nursing.

This programme is accredited by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) and leads to registration as a Mental Health Nurse.

Your Journey Starts Here

This mental health nursing programme is modern, dynamic and forward looking, committed to shaping well-rounded graduates committed to providing excellent mental health care in what can be a challenging, but also very rewarding work environment.

Hospital environment - patient lying in bed and 4 Nursing staff standing around the bed

Entry Requirements

Please note: All applicants must attend for interview and, if successful, must undergo health screening and criminal records checks. Enrolled students are required to make an annual declaration of good health and good character. The University must affirm this declaration before registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) is possible.

English and Maths

All applicants must have passes in English in one of the following: National 5 C and GCSE grade C/4.

All applicants must have passes in Maths/Lifeskills Maths in one of the following: National 5 C and GCSE grade C/4.

Please visit our 
Entry from College pages for suitable College courses.

Qualification TypeGrade RequirementsEssential Subjects
Irish HighersH2H3H3H3-
International Baccalaureate29 Points-
BTEC Extended DiplomaDMMApplied Science, Health & Social Care
SWAPABBAccess to: Nursing, Humanities & Primary Education, Life
HNC/HNDOur Entry from College

Information for International Applicants

Please provide certified proof of your English language level. Our accredited International English Foundation Course can help. To further enhance your academic English, Intensive English for Academic Purposes can help you achieve your potential.

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English Language Requirements

Explore English language requirements for entry to Abertay University.

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English Language Courses

Discover the range of English language courses on offer at Abertay University.

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Visa Information

Learn more about visa requirements for studying at Abertay University.

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Not sure if you're eligible for entry?

If you have the potential and motivation to study at university, regardless of your background or personal circumstances, we welcome your application.

We understand some people have faced extra challenges before applying to university, which is why we consider the background in which your academic grades have been achieved when making an offer.

If you expect to receive passes in three Scottish Highers (grades A-C) and have either ...

  • been in care
  • participated in a targeted aspiration-raising programme such as LIFT OFF, LEAPS, FOCUS West, or Aspire North
  • no family background of going to university
  • attended a school or lived in an area where not many people go to university

... we encourage you to submit an application.

Key Modules (2017/18)

Interpersonal Skills for Mental Health Nurses (MHN001)

This module emphasises the importance of effective communication and interpersonal skills in healt

Mental Health Nursing (MHN002)

This module takes a lifespan approach outlining organisation of mental health services, describin

Introduction to Mental Health Nursing (MHN003)

This introductory module explores the role and responsibilities of the mental health nurse in tod

Physical Health and Well-Being (MHN004)

This module explores the role of the mental health nurse in the delivery of physical health ca

Anatomy, Physiology and Human Biology (MHN005)

An introduction to the human body which is focussed on structure, organisation and function.

Mental Health Nursing Practice 1 (MHN006)

This module is delivered in the classroom and in the clinical skills suite. Taught sessions a

Mental Health Nursing : Acute Care (MHN007)

This module explores the issues relating to the acute presentation of mental health problems, consid

Evidence-Based Practice (MHN008)

This module builds on knowledge and skills developed in MC0701A focussing on the development o

Nursing Older People (MHN009)

This module provides the student with an overview of key issues in n

Professional Issues 1 (MHN010)

This module is designed to help nursing students examine the notion of rights and how legislation se

Public Health (MHN011)

This module explores some of the key issues in the field of public health.

Mental Health Nursing Practice 2 (MHN012)

This module further prepares mental health nursing students for registration with the Nursing and

Professional Issues 2 (MHN013)

This module explores key professional issues for the registered nurse

Pharmacology and Medicines Management (MHN014)

This module enables student nurses to develop their understanding of pharmacology and the releva

Evidence-Based Practice 2 (MHN015)

To provide students with an enhanced understanding evidence based practice.

Mental Health and Older People (MHN016)

This module provides the student with the necessary knowledge and skills to support older people e

Mental Health Nursing Practice 3 (MHN017)

This is the final practice maudlin the programme. By the of the module the student should be prac

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (MHN029)

This module provides an overview of the principles and methods of cognitive?behavioural therapy.

Collaborative Working in Health and Social Care (MHN019)

This module is designed to provide students with an insight into the complex , collaboration and t

Project (MHN020)

The module aims to provide the student with a chance to critically analyse a topic of interest with

Leadership (MHN021)

This module explores leadership specifically in relation to health and socail care.

How the Course Works

Learning and Assessment 

You’ll be taught by an enthusiastic and committed team of teachers, researchers and practitioners with extensive experience, and you’ll learn through a combination of lectures, practical classes, tutorials, independent study and online learning.

This is combined with clinical practice placements with NHS Tayside or NHS Fife, which provide valuable experience and the opportunity to put theory into practice through a process of mentoring, and the development of an ongoing achievement record.

Mental health nursing skills are developed through small group work, interactive, and reflective practice. In addition, you’ll benefit from the use of our interpersonal skills and clinical skills training suites.

Assessment types are varied to test a breadth of skills. This includes reports, reflective portfolios, essays, presentations – both oral and posters – appraisal of research, exams, class tests and case studies.

Performance on practice is assessed via placement reports.

For more information on the course content, please download the Programme Information - BSc (Honours) Nursing (Mental Health Nursing)

About Your Modules

The module information shown here describes the modules our students are taking this year. The modules do change over time to keep our programmes up-to-date and relevant. This means the exact modules you take could be different. If you receive an offer to study with us, you will receive a Programme Information document that sets out exactly which modules you can expect to take as part of your Abertay degree programme.

Please note: As well as Key Modules outlined above, you may also be required to choose Elective Modules.

Career opportunities

A mental health nursing degree is a great springboard for exploring opportunities in mental health and clinical areas – and this programme makes you extremely mobile. Graduates from this programme can go anywhere and the options are endless.

For example, you can go on to a career working in:

  • Community and hospital settings in the NHS
  • The private and third sectors caring for older people, children and adolescents
  • Substance misuse, acute care and forensic settings

There are also opportunities for further study on our masters and PhD programmes. Careers in research and education are also possible if you were to go on to further study.

Hospital environment - patient lying in bed and a male Nurse is listening to patients chest via the use of a stethoscope

Industry Links

We have strong links with people who have experienced mental distress and with those who provide informal care. Both groups contribute to teaching. In addition, we work closely with the local Health Boards, who provide practice placements and mentors for students, as well as specialist teaching.

You’ll complete approximately 20 weeks of practice in each of the first three years of the course, and are required to work across the Tayside and Fife region in a diverse range of settings.

This degree offers the option for a part-time paid work contract during Year 4, which provides an invaluable opportunity for networking and potential employment after you graduate.

Hospital environment - patient lying in bed and 2 Nursing staff administering medication via a drip


Rest of UK Abertay Scholarship - £2,300 per year for four years

This scholarship is intended to support students from England, Wales and Northern Ireland to study at Abertay. Scholarship is paid directly into your bank account in two instalments each year to support you with living and travel costs. No application necessary.

International Abertay Scholarship - £2,300 per year for four years

This scholarship is intended to support students from international countries (outside of the EU) to study at Abertay. Scholarship is paid directly into your bank account in two instalments each year to support you with living and travel costs. No application necessary.

In addition, we offer a range of corporate/philanthropic scholarships shown below, which are available to all students to support your studies with us.

The Lothian Family

A £5,000 award for undergraduate students with financial or social difficulties which may prevent them from studying at Abertay.

The Robert Reid Bursary

Two £500 awards for students who have overcome challenges to attend university.

Mental Health Nursing - Funding

Funding arrangements for nursing students are different to other courses.

Programme Fees for 2018

Scottish & EU students


Fees shown are payable annually and may be subject to increase each year.

Please see our Undergraduate Fees and Funding page for further details. 

English, Welsh & Northern Irish Students


Fees shown are payable annually and may be subject to increase each year.

Please see our Undergraduate Fees and Funding page for further details. 

International Students


We regret to advise this programme is not available to overseas (non-EU) students requiring a Tier 4 visa (as it is delivered part-time only).

Programme Leader - Mental Health Nursing

Mr Richard Craven

Mr Richard Craven

School of Social and Health Sciences | Lecturer

View profile

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Unistats collates comparable information in areas students have identified as important in making decisions about what and where to study. The core information it contains is called the Unistats dataset (formerly the Key Information Set (KIS)).

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