100% OF OUR MENTAL HEALTH NURSING GRADUATES ARE IN EMPLOYMENT OR FURTHER STUDY SIX MONTHS AFTER GRADUATING
GRADUATE DESTINATION SURVEY 2016
Nursing is a demanding but rewarding profession that focuses on the care of people. As a mental health nurse, your role is promoting and supporting a person’s recovery and enabling them to have more involvement and control over their condition.
This three-year mental health nursing degree combines theory and practice in an innovative way, to focus on the care of people with mental health problems across a wide range of healthcare settings.
Successful completion of this Mental Health Nursing degree will allow you entry to the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) Register as a qualified Mental Health Nurse.
This Mental Health Nursing degree will develop the knowledge and skills you need to work with people of all ages and backgrounds who have mental health problems. As well as the theoretical elements of the course, you’ll spend 50% of your time in a variety of clinical settings in health boards and in the private sector.
You will study a mixture of Generic and Mental Health nursing modules over three years. This means you will have the skills to provide a basic level of care to all groups and specialist care for mental health patients.
Year One: Mental Health Nursing Degree
- Fundamentals of Care and Professional Practice – there are certain fundamental skills and values common to all fields of nursing practice. So in this module you will learn about what is meant by care, how to meet basic needs, professional codes, dignity and respect as well as skills such as manual handling, de-escalation and breakaway. Because these are all skills and knowledge that all nurses require this is a generic module where you learn with colleagues from all fields of nursing practice.
- Introduction to Evidence-Based Practice – All nurses need to practise in ways that are shown to be effective but we need to understand how to demonstrate effectiveness. This is another generic module in which you will learn about how evidence can take different forms and how to judge for yourselves whether a piece of evidence about practice is useful.
- Biopsychosocial Aspects of Health – Mental Health and Learning Disability nurses need to know how health and ill-health are not simply biological facts but are concerned with how we exist in our environments as human beings. Together with Learning Disability colleagues you will learn about various systems of the body and how they may influence the health of a person in biological, psychological and social way. So for example the kidney works biologically to filter the blood of a person and to produce urine but from a psychological and social perspective nurses need to understand the effects of incontinence on a person’s sense of self.
- Mental Health Problems and Contemporary Society – Mental Health nurses need to understand what is meant by the various diagnoses that people are given. You will learn about how mental illnesses are categorised. There are different theories of causation that are important for you to know. You will also star to learn about treatment options.
- Interpersonal Relationships in Mental Health Nursing – Communication is essential for Mental Health nurses in working with people. You will learn communication skills and learn about barriers to communication. You will consider different roles and relationships that may or may not be helpful in the nurse-patient relationship.
Year Two: Mental Health Nursing Degree
- Developing Nursing Skills – All nurses need to develop their skills in delivering care for people. This is a generic module where you will learn about protection of vulnerable people, health promotion, assessment skills and principles of equality and rights.
- Biopsychosocial Assessment and Planning of Care – In order to understand how to deliver care for people, Mental Health nurses have to be able to complete comprehensive assessments. This is a module in which you will learn about mental health assessment tools, Physical assessment, frameworks for assessment such as care and treatment planning (CTP) and the care programme approach (CPA) and how to turn an assessment into a plan of care.
- Recovery and Social Inclusion – Being able to live a full life as you wish to live it is often more important for people than cure. You will learn about tools and approaches such as the Recovery Star and the Tidal Model. How to help people to manage their own problems is an important part of this module as is working with people’s strengths as much as with their weaknesses.
- Specialist Groups in Mental Health – There are certain groups of people who receive the care of Mental Health nurses whose problems may be considered to require specialist skills. You will learn about Child and Adolescent Mental health Services (CAMHS) and be introduced to forensic and prison nursing. You will look at substance misuse and learn to develop risk assessment and management approaches.
Year Three: Mental Health Nursing
- Leadership, Management and Professionalism in Practice – Nurse education aims to equip all students with the skills to be an effective registered nurse. In this generic module you will learn about management approaches. You will learn about decision-making skills and other aspects of personal and professional development.
- Interventions and Helping Approaches in Mental Health Nursing – Mental Health nurses need to learn therapeutic skills to help people. You will learn some skills in cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), how to employ group work to help people, therapeutic approaches for people suffering from dementia as well as specialised interventions for adult survivors of sexual abuse and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
- Mental Health Law and Ethics – Mental Health nurses need to understand the legal powers involved in the role and the ethical issues in caring for people. You will learn about the Mental Health Act and the Mental Capacity Act, the Mental Health Measure (Wales). You will also learn about how different ethical theories can be applied to common dilemmas in mental health care.
- Psychopharmacology and Medication Management in Mental Health Nursing – Part of the role of a Mental Health nurse is to help people by using medication with them. It is important to understand the medication that we use. You will learn about how drugs work, how they interact with one another. You will also learn about consent and concordance and compliance along with the principles of medication management.
Each year of the mental health nursing degree lasts 42 weeks, and there’s an equal split between theory and practice, which is integrated throughout all our nursing courses.
The academic year is split into three terms. In term one you will study in a 10-week block in University (theory) followed by an eight-week block in clinical practice. In term two through to term eight you will study six weeks of theory in University followed by six-week block in clinical practice. In term nine you will spend 12 weeks in clinical practice.
You’ll study with students from all fields and other professions, as well as having sessions specific to your field. There’s also the requirement to work with clients and patients from other fields, so you can care for patients with multiple and complex needs.