Nursing (Mental Health)

BSc (Hons)

2023/24 Full-time Undergraduate course


Bachelor of Science with Honours


Faculty of Life and Health Sciences


School of Nursing and Paramedic Science


Magee campus

UCAS code:

The UCAS code for Ulster University is U20

Start date:

September 2023

Students from England, Scotland, Wales or EU (except the Republic of Ireland)

Unfortunately, Ulster University is not in a position to accept applications from students from England, Scotland, Wales or EU (except the Republic of Ireland) for this course due to regulations issued by the Department of Health Northern Ireland.

Further information on Department of Health funded courses

With this degree you could become:

  • Mental Health Nurse
  • Child and Adolescent Mental Health Nurse
  • Forensic Mental Health Nurse
  • Mental Health Nurse Care of the Older Person
  • Community Addictions Nurse
  • Community Mental Health Nurse
  • Mental Health Practitioner

Graduates from this course are now working for:

  • Numerous opportunities in the public
  • private and third sectors.


Mental Health Nursing is a, proactive and humanising profession, delivering valuable contributions to effective and equitable mental health services.


This three-year course is designed to prepare you for the professional role of a registered Nurse (Mental Health) who will have the skills to respond to the mental health needs of individuals in partnership with them, their families, significant others and their community.

Successful students will be eligible to register with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) which will permit them to practice as a Registered Nurse (Mental Health) in the United Kingdom.

We have delivered nursing programmes for 45 years and our courses provide excellence in teaching and research with innovative approaches to learning.

Career prospects for our nursing graduates are excellent, with the majority moving rapidly into posts within the NHS and independent sectors. Our Mental Health Nurse graduates are working in hospitals, community settings, education and research, striving to elevate the profession through the delivery of exceptional care.

From September 2020 pre-registration nursing programmes are aligned to the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) UK Standards for Education and training (2018).

Sign up to hear more about Ulster

About this course


Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) standards for nurse education and training (2018). Theoretical modules and practice learning are integrated in an equal balance so that learning occurs 50% of the time in practice while the other 50% occurs in university. Each year of the course must be successfully completed before a student is permitted to progress to the next year.

The course will equip the graduate Mental Health Nurse with the knowledge, skills, attitude and values to work in partnership with individuals to respond to their holistic healthcare care needs. Throughout the course students will learn to practice person-centred, evidence-based mental health nursing care in a compassionate and respectful way that promotes dignity and wellbeing. Students will grow to appreciate that mental health nursing involves not only a valuing of optimal mental health as a necessary requirement for wellbeing and effective living, but also as a fundamental right of each person irrespective of their orientations and circumstances.

Students also develop invaluable transferable skills such as team working, communication and relationship management skills as well as creative thinking and critical analysis. These are skills which are highly valued by future employers. Graduate nurses will have the ability to act with professionalism and integrity and work within agreed professional, ethical and legal frameworks to lead nursing care.

Practice learning enables students to develop the knowledge and skills required to provide safe compassionate and effective person-centred care. Practice learning experiences occur in a wide range of community and hospital settings across the 24-hour period, seven days per week and provide comprehensive exposure to a multitude of care experiences. Students are supported in their learning experience by clinical practitioners prepared for the role and university staff.

Our programmes will also provide you with a solid foundation for further postgraduate study. Many graduates apply to undertake further study leading to additional NMC recognised qualifications such as specialist practice nursing or apply for entry to research studies, such as MPhil/PhD.


Students on the BSc (Hons) Nursing (Mental Health) programme are subject to a number of attendance regulations. These are underpinned by the University Programme Regulations and statutory requirements, the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC, 2018) Standards for Education and Training, and the Department of Health, who fund student tuition fees for the BSc (Hons) Nursing Mental Health course.

Start dates

  • September 2023

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

The modular structure of our teaching, learning and assessment is designed to enable students to develop their knowledge, skills and understanding of nursing in an inclusive and collaborative way. A blended approach to learning, teaching and assessment embraces both face to face teaching methods and the use of technology to enhance the student experience in learning and assessment.

The curriculum promotes enquiry based learning and critical thinking across all years and modules and creates opportunities for active learning through evolving technologies and creative approaches. Lectures introduce key themes and seminars and tutorials enable students to examine topics further in smaller groups. Students are encouraged to connect theory to practice through, practical workshops, simulation, group work, roleplay, presentations, debate and reflection that focusses on self-development and the real world examples. Learning and assessment in practice is evidenced and catalogued through the completion of a practice assessment document. Formative assessments inform students of their progress and identifies areas that require development in a structured student focussed manner and contribute to the summative assessment.

The content for each course is summarised on the relevant course page, along with an overview of the modules that make up the course.

Each course is approved by the University and meets the expectations of:

Attendance and Independent Study

As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements - usually in the form of a timetable. For full-time courses, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until near the start date and may be subject to change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. For part-time courses which require attendance on particular days and times, an expectation of the days of attendance will often be included in the letter of offer. A course handbook is also made available.

Courses comprise modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by its credit rating. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort. Undergraduate courses typically contain 10- or 20-credit modules and postgraduate course typically 15- or 30-credit modules.

The normal study load expectation for an undergraduate full-time course of study in the standard academic year is 120 credit points. This amounts to around 36-42 hours of expected teaching and learning per week, inclusive of attendance requirements for lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical work, fieldwork or other scheduled classes, private study, and assessment. Part-time study load is the same as full-time pro-rata, with each credit point representing 10 hours of student effort.

Postgraduate Masters courses typically comprise 180 credits, taken in three semesters when studied full-time. A Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) comprises 60 credits and can usually be completed on a part-time basis in one year. A 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) can usually be completed on a part-time basis in two years.

Class contact times vary by course and type of module. Typically, for a module predominantly delivered through lectures you can expect at least 3 contact hours per week (lectures/seminars/tutorials). Laboratory classes often require a greater intensity of attendance in blocks. Some modules may combine lecture and laboratory. The precise model will depend on the course you apply for and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. Prospective students will be consulted about any significant changes.


Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module. Assessment can be via one method or a combination e.g. examination and coursework . Assessment is designed to assess your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes. You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessment. The precise assessment will depend on the module and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.

Coursework can take many forms, for example: essay, report, seminar paper, test, presentation, dissertation, design, artefacts, portfolio, journal, group work. The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the course you apply for and the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification and the assessment timetable. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.

Normally, a module will have four learning outcomes, and no more than two items of assessment. An item of assessment can comprise more than one task. The notional workload and the equivalence across types of assessment is standardised.

Calculation of the Final Award

The class of Honours awarded in Bachelor’s degrees is usually determined by calculation of an aggregate mark based on performance across the modules at Levels 5 and 6 (which correspond to the second and third year of full-time attendance).

Level 6 modules contribute 70% of the aggregate mark and Level 5 contributes 30% to the calculation of the class of the award. Classification of integrated Masters degrees with Honours include a Level 7 component. The calculation in this case is: 50% Level 7, 30% Level 6, 20% Level 5. At least half the Level 5 modules must be studied at the University for Level 5 to be included in the calculation of the class.

All other qualifications have an overall grade determined by results in modules from the final level of study. In Masters degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.

Figures correct for academic year 2019-2020.

Academic profile

The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 59% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.

Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (25%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (20%) or Lecturers (55%).

We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic staff (81%) are accredited fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) by Advanced HE - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.

The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise.  The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff.  This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.

Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.

Figures correct for academic year 2021-2022.

Magee campus


Enjoy student life in one of Europe's most vibrant cities.

Find out more - information about accommodation  

Sports Facilities

Our facilities in Magee cater for many sports ranging from archery to volleyball, and are open to students and members of the public all year round.

Find out more - information about sport  

Student Wellbeing

At Student Wellbeing we provide many services to help students through their time at Ulster University.

Find out more - information about student wellbeing  

Derry ~ Londonderry Campus Location

Campus Address

Ulster University,
Northland Rd,
BT48 7JL

T: 02870 123 456

Standard entry conditions

We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.

A level

Grades BBC

Applied General Qualifications

Overall BTEC National Extended Diploma (RQF) award profile DMM

Overall BTEC Extended Diploma (QCF) award profile DDD

Irish Leaving Certificate

112 UCAS tariff points to include a minimum of five subjects (four of which must be at higher level) to include English, Maths and Science at H6 if studied at Higher Level or 04 if studied at Ordinary Level

Irish Leaving Certificate UCAS Equivalency

International Baccalaureate

Overall International Baccalaureate profile minimum 25 points (12 at higher level)

Access to Higher Education (HE)

Overall profile of 63% (120 credit NI Access course), to include one Level 3 Science module; a 20 credit Level 2 Mathematics module passed at 40% or successful completion of NICATS Mathematics as part of the pre-2021 Access Diploma.

Overall profile of 15 D and 30 M (60 credit GB Access course).


GCSE profile to include Grade C or 4 (or above) in English, Mathematics and Science

Pass in Level 2 Essential Skills Communication will be accepted as equivalent to GCSE English

Pass in Level 2 Essential Skills Application of Number will be accepted as equivalent to GCSE Maths

English Language Requirements

English Language requirements for international applicants
The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS overall score of 7.0 with minimum 6.5 in writing and 7.0 in the reading, listening and speaking section.


OET Certificate confirming C+ grade in writing and minimum B grade in reading, listening and speaking sections.

Additional Entry Requirements

Satisfactory Health and Access NI checks will be required.

These will be organised by the University and you will receive the relevant information if you gain a place on the course.

Acceptable alternative qualifications include:

Pass HND with overall Merit to include 45 Distinctions in Level 5 credits/units.

Pass HNC with overall Distinction to include 75 Distinctions in Level 4 credits/units.

You may also meet the course entry requirements with combinations of the different qualifications to the same standard as recognised by the University (provided subject requirements as noted above are met). Examples of acceptable combinations include:

2 A Levels and BTEC Subsidiary Diploma

OCR National Diploma and BTEC Subsidiary Diploma

2 A Levels and Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma

A Level and BTEC National Diploma

How we select our students

STAGE 1 –You must apply through UCAS by the closing date of 25 January 2023 (18:00 hours). Applications received after this deadline will not be considered.

STAGE 2 -A Consent & Declaration form will be sent to you by email. If you receive this from both Ulster and Queen’s, you must complete both and return to the relevant institution.

STAGE 3 - Interview –we will invite you to complete a recorded online interview through the Modern Hire platform. Interviews will take place in February 2023.

NB: It is assumed that if you submit your video interview for assessment, that you were 'fit' to create this. If unwell a request should be made for an alternative date and this will be accommodated, where possible.

STAGE 4 - Offers: Applicants who pass the interview are ranked by interview score. Offers are normally made in April. You should note that, if you have applied to both Ulster and QUB, it is possible to receive an offer from one institution and not the other.

Those applicants who do not receive an offer in the first round are placed on a 'reserve list' in case places become available later in the summer. You should note that there is no guarantee that additional places will become available.

Please note if you are unsuccessful at any of the above stages you will be notified via UCAS.

The tuition fee is fully funded by the Department of Health for students who have been habitually resident in Northern Ireland for three years prior to the commencement of the course, and students who are Republic of Ireland nationals. Students from England, Scotland, Wales and the rest of the EU are not eligible for this funding.

A non means tested bursary is also available. The bursary is intended to assist with daily living costs incurred while on training and is awarded for each year of the three-year course (paid in monthly instalments). Students who commenced in 2022/23 will receive approximately £5,000 per year.


Applicants may apply to Year 2 from another HEI (via if the following criteria is met:

  • Pass Year 1 of current BSc Hons Nursing degree programme with an overall average of 60% and a mark of 60% or over in half of the credits taken
  • Have completed a minimum of 710 approved Practice Learning hours
  • A Level grades BCC or equivalent - Pass GCSE Mathematics, English and Single Award Science at grade C or above or equivalent

Applicants who meet/can meet the above criteria will be required to complete an APL application form to map their previous learning against the new programme at Ulster. Only applicants who successfully complete the APL process will be invited to interview.

The final number of places available in Year 2 will not be confirmed until the end of June following the Board of Examiners. After interview applicants will be rank ordered according to interview score and offers made in accordance with the number of places available.

Exemptions and transferability

Registered Nurses wishing to gain a second nursing qualification may apply for admission with advanced standing and complete a shortened course. The exact length of their programme will be decided individually and will be determined by their previous academic and nursing qualifications through the APL process.

Careers & opportunities

Graduate employers

Graduates from this course are now working for:

  • Numerous opportunities in the public
  • private and third sectors.

Job roles

With this degree you could become:

  • Mental Health Nurse
  • Child and Adolescent Mental Health Nurse
  • Forensic Mental Health Nurse
  • Mental Health Nurse Care of the Older Person
  • Community Addictions Nurse
  • Community Mental Health Nurse
  • Mental Health Practitioner

Career options

This course will prepare you to become part of a profession which is compassionate, innovative, and dynamic. Career options include, working with individuals across the lifespan, in areas such as Child and Adolescent Mental Health, Care of the Older Person, Acute Care, Forensics and Addiction Treatment; however, this list is not exhaustive.

Graduates are now working in many innovative posts in the field of mental health care, including such activities as holding their own clinics, introducing evidence-based practice, initiating practice development activities, undertaking research and holding joint appointments between service and the University. Graduates are also qualified to apply for a range of postgraduate programmes in nursing such as the Postgraduate Diploma/MSc in Advanced Nursing, or MPhil/PhD. Following the relevant experience, graduates will be able to apply to undertake further study leading to additional NMC recognised qualifications such as specialist practice.

Work placement / study abroad

Students have the opportunity to undertake a practice learning experience outside the UK of up to 4 weeks . Students may undertake such experiences only where formalised agreements exist between the University and practice partners. All students will be prepared for such experiences and must have the essential language skills needed to participate in learning activities, and where relevant have the level of language required to safely and effectively engage in direct patient care.

Professional recognition

Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC)

Recognised by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) for the purpose of registration as a qualified nurse (mental health).


Start dates

  • September 2023

Fees and funding

2023/24 Fees

Fees for entry in 2023/24 have not yet been set. See our tuition fees page for the current fees for 2022/23 entry.

Scholarships, awards and prizes

There are numerous opportunities for recognition and awards during the course.

Additional mandatory costs

The amounts below are based on 2020 costs:

Health Screening and Vaccinations: £35 - £155 dependent on vaccinations required.

Access NI Enhanced Disclosure (criminal record check): £33

Uniform: Approximately £100

Practice Learning Handbook/Professional Award Badge: £20

Immediate Life Support (Resuscitation Council UK Certified): £45 (at time of publication)

Students will need to own a mobile devise (tablet) to be able to complete their E-portfolio

It is important to remember that costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges) and normal living will need to be covered in addition to tuition fees.

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses (in addition to tuition fees) we make every effort to highlight them above. We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals, as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free Wi-Fi are also available on each of the campuses.

There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.

Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as a part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs, as well as tuition fees.

See the tuition fees on our student guide for most up to date costs.


Admissions Office

Margaret Mellon / Emer Carlin

T: +44 (0)28 7167 5092 / +44 (0)28 7167 5146

E: /

International Admissions

T: +44 (0)28 7012 3333

For more information visit


‘I was always interested in a career with people, but it was when I volunteered with St John’s Ambulance that I was inspired by one of the nurses to explore a career in mental health nursing. This is an area where I felt that I could really make a difference. The course is very well structured and the idea of providing patient-centred care is instilled from the very start. The course offers a mix of classroom, tutorial and scenario based learning alongside a variety of placements. I now have a professional career, making a difference, as a mental health nurse. (Mental Health Nursing Graduate)

Back to Top