Mental Health (Top-Up) BSc (Hons)

Distance learning undergraduate (Up to 3 years)

Distance learning

January, September


Already a qualified mental health or learning disabilities nurse with a diploma? Further your understanding of contemporary mental health issues and top-up your qualification to a full BSc (Hons) on our distance learning course - all while you continue to work.

Full description


As a qualified professional, our course will prepare you to take the next step in your career. Not only will you further your experience and expertise, you'll develop the confidence to mentor pre-registration students and gain a degree - often a prerequisite for managerial positions.

Modules & assessment

Core modules

  • Research Methodology
    You will learn to be analytical and insightful regarding research reports. You will gain an invaluable skill for anyone who wishes to provide effective and appropriate care in their individual sphere of practice. In addition, today's practitioner is required to work in a multi professional, multi-agency world which requires skills and insight into the efficacy of research. This module will revisit existing knowledge of the research process and assist you in further developing skills of critical analysis and ethical appraisal of published work.
  • Undergraduate Major Project
    The undergraduate major project enables you to raise and address significant questions relating to your chosen topic/issue. You'll be supported by a tutor with similar interests and research profile. This module requires autonomous study and it is your chance to demonstrate that you have met our University’s expectations and are ready to graduate.

Optional modules

  • Enhanced Assessment in Mental Health
    You will explore the complexities of assessment strategies and techniques relevant to your specialism. You will also learn to critically appraise the application of theoretical principles, and enhance your clinical reasoning. You'll be able to adapt your study to suit your own practice and learning needs, incorporating local policies, guidance and directives.
  • Evidence-based Mental-Health Nursing
    This module will help you understand how to engage more effectively with your service users and their carers. We will look at a wide range of interventions, ranging from prevention to treatment and continuing development – but always centred around care, compassion, dignity and respect. You will also analyse how socially inclusive practice influences participation and the outcomes of interventions.
  • Mentorship Preparation
    This module develops the skills you need to support and assess learners in practice. If you're a registered healthcare professional, it will help you to meet your professional body's requirements for mentorship/practice educator, and to enter the local register of mentors. Our mentorship preparation modules have been designed to develop future mentors who will be able to offer skilled, compassionate and effective support for learners in the workplace, underpinned by the value base of their profession and those enshrined in the NHS Constitution (Department of Health, 2013).
  • Caring for People with Dementia
    If you have a professional interest in caring for people with dementia, or if you work in this area, our course will enhance your understanding and skills. You will learn person-centred approaches which are underpinned by respect for individuality, personal choice and family support. The module covers how changes in the brain can affect a person with dementia, and how dementia is assessed and diagnosed. Broader ethical and legal issues are explored, together with how contemporary research and policy issues contribute to best practice and service provision.


Assessments are your chance to show that you've developed the skills and knowledge we set out to teach on each of our course modules.

While studying the modules, you'll work on assignments. There'll be regular, constructive feedback from your course tutors to let you know how you're doing. We also offer tutorials throughout the course so that when it comes to doing your summative assessments, you're ready for them.

We offer six modules on this course: you'll take the two core modules, as well as two of the optional modules.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

The Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine and Social Care is the largest in ARU, with over 7,000 students. Our Faculty is teeming with expertise and primed to meet the demand for creating health professionals, teachers, doctors, scientists and educators for the three districts we serve: Chelmsford, Cambridge and Peterborough.

We have been training undergraduates for professional roles for over 25 years, with a reputation for quality, dedication and ambition balanced with student satisfaction.

We know that to give our students the very best experiential learning, prior to getting into the workplace, simulation is second to none, for safe, realistic, learning environments. We have invested heavily in purpose built simulated wards, science labs and skills space, to support our students through their learning.

Where can I study?

Distance learning
Person using laptop

Study at a time that suits you, using our online learning management system.

More about distance learning

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK & EU students, distance learning (total cost)


How do I pay my fees?

You can pay your fees in the following ways.

Tuition fee loan

You can take out a tuition fee loan, which you won’t need to start repaying until after your graduate. Or alternatively, there's the option to pay your fees upfront.

Loans and fee payments


We offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships, which provide extra financial support while you’re at university. Some of these cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Explore ARU scholarships

Funding for UK & EU students

Most new undergraduate students can apply for government funding to support their studies and university life. This includes Tuition Fee Loans and Maintenance Loans. There are additional grants available for specific groups of students, such as those with disabilities or dependants.

Entry requirements

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Important additional notes

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements. Other equivalent qualifications may be accepted for entry to this course, please email for further information.

We don't accept AS level qualifications on their own for entry to our undergraduate degree courses. However for some degree courses a small number of tariff points from AS levels are accepted as long as they're combined with tariff points from A levels or other equivalent level 3 qualifications in other subjects.

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UK & EU applicants

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