Nursing - Mental Health BSc (Hons)

Full-time undergraduate (3 years)

Chelmsford, Cambridge

September, January

January start available in Chelmsford.


Overview

Empower and support patients in their journey to recovery. Join our full-time, Nursing & Midwifery Council Mental Health Nursing degree course, and develop practical skills and knowledge with a range of clinical placements. Study in our cutting-edge skill laboratories in Cambridge or Chelmsford, and become a part of our nurturing nursing community. When you graduate, you’ll be ready to start your career as a registered mental health nurse.

Full description

Careers

All our nursing courses require approval by the UK Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), and you’ll be eligible to apply for registration with them when you graduate.

98% of our graduates were employed six months after completing their degrees. Many of our students get job offers from their placement areas before they even graduate. To find out more, read some of our graduates' employability case studies.

You’ll graduate with the confidence you need to work in this challenging but rewarding field. Besides the necessary clinical expertise, you’ll have developed your people skills and be an effective team member. As a registered mental health nurse, you could work in the community or a hospital. You might choose a role in acute in-patient care, assertive outreach, home treatment, early intervention, or a community mental health team.

Modules & assessment

Year one, core modules

  • Essential Knowledge and Skills for Person-centred Care
    Introducing you to the fundamental aspects of person-centred care for safe, compassionate and effective nursing care. You’ll explore the NMC Code (2018) and begin to grasp the basics of the NMC Future Nurse Standards of Proficiency for Registered Nurses (2018). Using a person and family-centred care approach through the use of family based scenarios, you’ll be supported to begin to explore the context of health, ill health and disability, and health care needs across the lifespan. Recognising the diversity of the patient population we’ll support you to understand the need for ethical, legal and professional values to ensure equality within health care delivery. The scenarios will include healthcare related to adult, child, mental health and learning disability patients. You’ll gain an understanding of bioscience and physiology, alongside a range of physical health care needs that often co-exist with other health care issues. You’ll build an awareness of the nursing care of patients with mental illness, obesity, asthma, diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and cardiovascular disease. All of this will be underpinned by an introduction to professionalism and the key tenets of nursing.
  • Essential Nursing Skills and Practice 1
    In your first core placement you’ll have the opportunity to work alongside health care teams and Practice Supervisors who’ll support you in developing a range of knowledge and skills. You’ll encounter patients with a wide range of health care needs and develop understanding around accountability, professionalism, assessment and care planning, providing and evaluating care and improving safety and quality of care. This may be the first time you have worked in a practice setting and we’ll support you to consolidate the learning that took place in the prior theory module. We’ll prepare you in our simulated skills labs for skills such as taking and recording vital signs, personal care, basic life support and introduction to safe drug administration. You’ll be exposed to real-life situations and begin to develop communication and relationship skills, as well as a range of physical skills, as set out in the NMC (2018) Standards of Proficiency for Pre-registration Nurses. In this practice module you’ll benefit from sharing classroom learning with students from adult, mental health and child nursing fields.
  • Exploring and Promoting Health and Wellbeing
    We’ll support you to develop a greater understanding of health and well-being. Promoting health and preventing ill health is a key role of the registered nurse. You’ll explore the importance of epidemiology and the impact of environmental factors that affect our health. You’ll discuss current and topical public health programmes and health promotion frameworks. An understanding of local services will help you to appreciate the promotion of health and prevention of ill health amongst your local population. You’ll have the opportunity to consider your own health and the nurse’s place as a healthy role model in supporting the health education of patients. Building on the learning of previous bioscience topics, you’ll explore a further range of bioscience systems and consider the prevention, biopsychosocial impact and care of some common conditions such as breast cancer, teenage pregnancy, Down’s syndrome and depression. You’ll gain an understanding of the role of the accountable professional, safeguarding, and responsibilities around duty of candour, patient advocacy and autonomy.
  • Medicines Calculations for Safe Practice 1
    Patient safety is at the heart of nursing and it is a requirement of the professional regulator (the Nursing and Midwifery Council) that by the point of entry to register, nurses must demonstrate competency in numeracy skills in the safe administration of drugs (NMC, 2018). This includes being competent in basic medicines calculations relating to: tablets and capsules, liquid medicines and injections. Safe Medicate is an online learning and assessment package focusing on medicines calculations. You’ll be given login information for this software at the beginning of the course and can have unlimited access to this e-learning platform, practice questions, and formative assessments. A professional requirement of the course is that you become proficient in medicine calculations. Each year, you’ll undertake an online medicine calculations module which offers the opportunity for unlimited practice related to a variety of medicine calculations. You’ll be required to undertake a minimum of 6 formative assessments prior to the summative assessment. When you take your exam in your first year, you’ll be required to get a pass mark of 80%.
  • Essential Nursing Skills and Practice 2
    In your second core placement you’ll continue to have the opportunity to work alongside health care teams and practice supervisors who’ll support you in developing a range of knowledge and skills. You’ll encounter patients with a wide range of health care needs and develop understanding around accountability, professionalism, assessment and care planning, providing and evaluating care and improving safety and quality of care. We’ll support you to consolidate the learning that took place in the prior theory module. We’ll prepare you in our simulated skills labs for skills such as pain assessment, injections, physical and mental health first aid. You’ll be exposed to real life situations and continue to develop communication and relationship skills, as well as a range of physical skills, as set out in the NMC (2018) Standards of Proficiency for Pre-registration Nurses. In this practice module you’ll benefit from sharing classroom learning with students from adult, mental health and child nursing fields.

Year two, core modules

  • Exploring the Values, Theories and Evidence Underpinning Mental Health Assessment and Practice
    You’ll explore the nature of mental illness and the values that underpin mental health nursing practice within a biopsychosocial, cultural and historical context. You’ll consider the issues that may be essential to service users’ lives, particularly with regard to mental health and wellbeing. You’ll learn the ethical theories, legal principles and values that are relevant for professional practice in mental health. Evidence-based assessment and care planning strategies to meet the holistic needs of service users and carers are central to this module. You’ll challenge your pre-existing values, beliefs and opinions. You’ll develop core principles that support a philosophy of recovery led and service user focused care across the life course. You’ll learn to champion mental health service users through advocacy and empowerment and discuss ethical issues surrounding constraint and seclusion. You’ll study psycho-pathology and understand the symptoms of mental health disorders and comorbidity across the life-course. Access to services – including LGBTQ and other minority groups will be explored. You’ll examine legislation and policy relating to mental health care that will help you to safeguard yourself and service users.
  • Developing Mental Health Nursing Practice 1
    In this practice module you’ll consolidate your learning in a skills lab and practice environment. By now you’ll have cared for many patients and have an understanding of some of the physical and communication skills that can improve the mental health service user experience. You’ll advance your communication skills through techniques such as motivational interviewing, solution focused therapy, de-escalation strategies and positive reinforcement strategies. In the skills lab you’ll have the opportunity to practise physical skills such as passing feeding tubes, managing catheters, removing sutures, wound care, oxygen therapy and the symptom management in end of life care. You’ll be supported to practise with increased confidence as you progress through your placement and will continue to have the opportunity to work alongside health care teams and Practice Supervisors who will support you in developing new knowledge and skills. You’ll continue to practise and develop your communication and relationship skills, as well as a range of physical skills.
  • Medicines Calculations for Safe Practice 2
    Patient safety is at the heart of nursing and it is a requirement of the professional regulator (the Nursing and Midwifery Council) that by the point of entry to register, nurses must demonstrate competency in numeracy skills in the safe administration of drugs (NMC, 2018). This includes being competent in basic medicines calculations relating to: tablets and capsules, liquid medicines, injections, and IV infusions. Safe Medicate is an online learning and assessment package focusing on medicines calculations. A professional requirement of the course is that you become proficient in medicine calculations. You’ll undertake this online medicine calculations module which offers the opportunity for unlimited practice related to a variety of medicine calculations. You’ll be required to undertake a minimum of 6 formative assessments prior to the summative assessment. When you take your exam in your second year, you’ll be required to get a pass mark of 90%.
  • Therapeutic engagement in mental health nursing
    We’ll develop you as a therapeutic practitioner, championing the acquisition of skills and knowledge around therapeutic engagement and evidence based interventions within mental health care across the life course. You’ll engage with service users and their carers in care planning and contemporary therapeutic interventions. You’ll learn that interventions need to be timely, appropriate and responsive to maximise the benefits and promote on-going recovery. You’ll explore how practice-based evidence can both challenge and assist clinical decision making. You’ll learn about role of the nurse in supporting and maintaining growth and change in people recovering from a range of mental health symptoms and conditions. We’ll support you to develop advanced skills in person–centred care You’ll consider therapeutic strategies/interventions and psychoeducation for people living with mental health problems in relation to complex conditions such as, dementia, long term mental ill health, child and adolescent mental health issues, perinatal mental health and people with Learning Disability and Mental Health services. We’ll enhance your competence in planning recovery focused care.
  • Developing Mental Health Nursing Practice 2
    In this practice module you’ll consolidate the learning that took place in the theory module, as well as develop your communication and physical skills from previous placements. Practice learning will be in a mental health setting where you’ll be working alongside a person experiencing mental health distress and take a whole person approach. Mental health service users also experience physical illness and you’ll be expected to care for patients with these needs. Managing seizures, tracheostomy care, IV fluid management, venepuncture and cannulation, neuro-observations, cardiac monitoring and surgical care are amongst some of the skills that you’ll practise in the skills lab. You’ll be supported to practise with increased confidence as you progress through your placement and will have the opportunity to work alongside health care teams and Practice Supervisors who will support you in developing new knowledge and skills. You’ll be supported by Practice Supervisors and assessment will be undertaken by a Practice Assessor who will maintain contact with an Academic Assessor (an academic staff member from ARU). Confirmation will be required that you have actively participated in care (with minimal guidance) and are performing with increasing confidence and competence.

Year three, core modules

  • Nurses as Future Leaders
    We’ll encourage you to develop and realise your role as an accountable and responsible practitioner, embracing the role of leading and managing the planning and organisation of high-quality, multi-disciplinary care. Develop your skills of self-awareness, self-compassion, emotional intelligence, resilience, team building, motivating and coaching others as you learn to lead teams. These mechanisms will ensure that you begin to develop a sense of professional identity and values. You’ll consider clinical decision making and the tools to support this, techniques to resolve conflicts and manage complaints. You’ll explore root cause analysis to support practice- based decisions and quality assurance mechanisms such as, clinical governance, standard setting, and the use of audits. Supporting patient safety, you’ll learn the importance of whistleblowing, and highlighting and responding to poor and sub-standard practice. You’ll be supported in interview preparation technique and developing a professional profile and Curriculum Vitae, in preparation for applying for your first job as a qualified nurse.
  • Leading and Co-ordinating Care with Confidence
    We’ll support your transition to an autonomous practitioner in readiness for joining the Nursing and Midwifery Council register. You’ll practise with increased confidence and competence as you progress through your placement and will continue to have the opportunity to work alongside health care teams and practice supervisors. You’ll continue to practise and develop your communication and relationship skills, and a range of physical skills. You’ll enhance your skills around accountability, professionalism, assessment and care planning, providing and evaluating care, leading and managing nursing care, working in teams and improving safety and quality of care. By the end of your final placement, you’ll supervise and teach a junior learner/colleague in practice and organise and manage the care for a group/caseload of people with complex care needs. You’ll also complete a summative Medicines Management Assessment.
  • Undergraduate Major Project: Becoming an Independent Practitioner
    You’ll be supported to transition from student nurse to a qualified practitioner, ready to face the challenges in the modern health care setting. This involves adjusting to a new and challenging role, accepting additional and different responsibilities and further developing the complex skills required of a registered nurse. To improve the patient experience is one of the most rewarding aspects of a nurse’s role and requires insight, leadership, and understanding of evidence, resources, teamwork and planning. You’ll have the opportunity to review a wide range of literature to seek evidence to improve the patient experience and propose a plan for an innovative service improvement. Your service improvement plan will evidence consideration for any physical, human and financial constraints associated with the development that you have explored. Through this you’ll demonstrate intellectual flexibility and creative capability, in readiness for employment in the health care environment.
  • Medicines Calculations for Safe Practice 3
    Patient safety is at the heart of nursing and it is a requirement of the professional regulator (the Nursing and Midwifery Council) that by the point of entry to register, nurses must demonstrate competency in numeracy skills in the safe administration of drugs (NMC, 2018). This includes being competent in basic medicines calculations relating to: tablets and capsules, liquid medicines, injections, and IV infusions. Safe Medicate is an online learning and assessment package focusing on medicines calculations. A professional requirement of the course is that you become proficient in medicine calculations. You’ll undertake this online medicine calculations module which offers the opportunity for unlimited practice related to a variety of medicine calculations. You’ll be required to undertake a minimum of six formative assessments prior to the summative assessment. When you take your exam in your third year, you’ll be required to get a pass mark of 100%.

The above modules will be changing for September 2020 in line with the new NMC standards for nursing degrees

Assessment

To make sure you’re developing the skills and knowledge needed for professional practice, we use a range of assessment methods. These include essays, presentations, exams, case studies, project work and assessment of practice competencies in the clinical setting. We know feedback is essential for your progress and our lecturers take pride in giving you clear guidance on how to improve your expertise.

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?

Chelmsford
Tindal Building on our Chelmsford campus

Our striking, modern campus sits by the riverside in Chelmsford's University and Innovation Quarter.

Explore our Chelmsford campus

Cambridge
Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

Our campus is close to the centre of Cambridge, often described as the perfect student city.

Explore our Cambridge campus

Culture and diversity is therefore integral in our BSc (Hons) Mental Health Nursing program, where we uphold and explore the NHS values in a variety of settings. We along with our partner institutions and NHS Trusts embrace diversity and equality as well as your spiritual needs. We will encourage you to observe the essential practices associated with your particular faith. This includes, prayer, dress, and the carrying or wearing of spiritual symbols.

In order to protect patient, uniforms have to respect all NHS Trust policies related to infection control, health and safety and the NMC code. If you are worried that the dress code may impact on your spiritual beliefs do not hesitate to discuss this with your admissions tutor who will advise you.

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK & EU students starting 2020/21 (per year)

£9,250

Fee information

For more information about tuition fees, including the UK Government's commitment to EU students, please see our UK/EU funding pages

Additional Costs

  • Cost of Disclosure and Barring Services check
  • Travel expenses to placements
  • Books
  • An electronic tablet is required to access course content and undertake assessment in the practice setting
  • Sensible shoes (as per uniform policy) and fob watch
  • Printing
  • Cost of international placement experience (This is an optional experience).

How do I pay my fees?

You can pay your fees in the following ways.

Tuition fee loan

UK and EU students 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

Scholarships

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.

From September 2020, nursing, midwifery, operating department practitioner (ODP) and paramedic science students will receive funding of at least £5,000 a year to help with living costs. Some students may be eligible for more, and this money does not have to be repaid.

Entry requirements

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From the above information we will calculate requirements for Scottish/Irish Highers, International, European and Welsh Baccalaureate equivalents so that they are all equitable. We will also accept tariff points from other qualifications on the UCAS tariff such as the Cambridge Pre-U (subject requirements will be assumed to be the same as for A Level).

Applying

All applications must go via UCAS. We accept applications between September and 15 January for the following intake year. Late applications will be considered if places are available. 

International applicants

Due to restrictions in the availability of placements in the NHS (UK National Health Service) we are unable to consider applications from international students unless you have, and can produce evidence of, 'Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK' (or equivalent) and have lived in the UK for three years or more for reasons other than education prior to the course. EEA nationals are welcome to apply.

Interviews

If your application is shortlisted you'll be invited to attend an interview at our University. This will comprise of a talk about the course, a lecture and three mini multiple interviews (MMI). You'll be expected to send scanned copies of your original educational certificates and ID documentation prior to interview and bring the originals to the interview day.

The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)

An enhanced level Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) disclosure is a check with police forces and local authorities in the UK to ascertain whether or not you are suitable to work with certain groups of vulnerable people. These checks are required to be carried out on all prospective students to ensure the safety of our client group.
Further information on DBS disclosure will be sent at a later date if you are successful and firmly accept your place at ARU.

DBS re-checks: As a nursing student on the BSc Honours degree you will be required to undergo DBS screening each year.

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 answers@anglia.ac.uk 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 and EU students

Apply through UCAS

UCAScode: B760

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UK & EU applicants

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