BSc (Hons) in Nursing - Mental Health


Program Description


Mental Health nursing is a challenging yet rewarding profession where you can make a real difference to people’s lives.

As a student Mental Health nurse, you’ll pursue a thought-provoking and challenging academic course along with gaining experience in a wide range of practical learning. Our course curriculum is informed by the latest research and encourages you to take an evidence-based approach to nursing care.

This forward thinking and innovative course will help you to achieve the requirements for registration in the UK as a nurse within the Mental Health field of practice. You’ll leave us as a confident and capable practitioner, able to carry outsafe, effective and person-centred care while making valuable contributions to people's lives.

We have excellent relationships with our partner NHS Board, NHS Forth Valley. We work together to ensure that our course remains clinically excellent and our students get the best possible experience while they’re studying.

Our Mental Health course is based on the firm belief that mental health and wellbeing services must provide excellent care which respect the intrinsic value of people and communities in which they live. This philosophy is firmly held by all members of the course team.

Feedback from our clinical partners tells us that, as newly-qualified nurses, our students are seen as committed, enthusiastic and adaptable. Also confident, with the flexibility required to meet current service needs.

Top reasons to study with us

# 1We’re the highest ranked provider of Mental Health Nursing in Scotland, (The Complete University Guide, 2016).

# 2The University of Stirling has won Student Nursing Times Awards in 2012, 2013, 2015. 2016, 2017 and 2018.

# 3Our curriculum is informed by ground-breaking research: we’re 1st in Scotland for Health Sciences (REF2014)

Professional accreditation

The course is approved by the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Prizes or awards

Students can be nominated for The Student Nursing Times Awards. These are the only awards to celebrate the very best in student nurses and nurse education, recognising educational establishments and honouring those who are committed to developing new nursing talent. The University of Stirling has won Student Nursing Times Awards in 2012, 2013, 2015. 2016, 2017 and 2018.

Stirling final-year student Robert Murray picked up the award for Student Nurse of the Year: Mental Health in 2016.

Course details

You'll study alongside Adult Nursing students to gain an understanding of how health and social care professionals work together to bring about the best in patient-centred care.

Each year meets the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) requirement of 50% theory and 50% practice. You’ll be introduced to the fundamentals of nursing, and then progress to specialist areas of mental health nursing such as therapeutic skills, recovery and leadership skills.

Through our partnerships with a diverse range of health and social care organisations, students will have the opportunity to put their theory into practice. Students may work both day and night shifts to coincide with the patterns of the area and their allocated practice mentor. You’ll also have the choice of undertaking a national or international placement.

As a student, you’re encouraged to demonstrate a growing appreciation of life sciences, health and wellbeing, social and behavioural sciences, values, law, ethics nursing care and compassion, communication and quality improvement. You'll also learn about the principles and application of recovery focused care and trauma informed practice. These themes are coupled with evidence-informed clinical and relationship based skills as the basis of our course.

Our course will develop your critical and reflective thinking and in doing so improve your self-awareness, self-confidence and personal resilience.

Advances in knowledge require that Mental Health Nurses continually incorporate new research findings into their practice; this awareness is embedded in our course. Your ability to incorporate evidence-based, outcomes-orientated practice is part of our course philosophy.

Course objectives

The overarching course outcomes reflect the NMC Standards for Pre‐registration Nursing Education (NMC, 2010) and will aim to ensure our graduate nurses are able to:

  1. Deliver high-quality essential care to all.
  2. Deliver complex care to service users across their field of practice.
  3. Act to safeguard the public, and be responsible and accountable for safe, person‐centred, evidence‐based nursing practice.
  4. Act with professionalism and integrity, and work within agreed professional, ethical and legal frameworks and processes to maintain and improve standards.
  5. Practise in a compassionate, respectful way, maintaining dignity and wellbeing and communicating effectively.
  6. Act on their understanding of how people’s lifestyles, environments and the location of care delivery influence their health and wellbeing.
  7. Seek out every opportunity to promote health and prevent illness.
  8. Work in partnership with other health and social care professionals and agencies, service users, carers and families ensuring that decisions about care are shared.
  9. Use leadership skills to supervise and manage others and contribute to planning, designing, delivering and improving future services.


We've been awarded five-star excellence for our teaching by the QS World University Rankings 2017/18. A wide range of approaches to teaching and learning is used on this course. We take a student-centred approach which uses small group teaching (enquiry-based learning) along with lectures, seminars, group work and clinical skills teaching.


Each semester you’ll be assessed by a range of methods including exams, essays, reports, clinical skills assessments, presentations and assessments of practice. You need to pass these before progressing to the next semester.

Work placement opportunities

Internships may be available through the Scottish Government’s one-year job guarantee scheme.

Find out more on the NHS Education for Scotland website.

Study abroad

There’s the opportunity for you to take some of your practice learning experiences abroad. At the end of years one and two you get three independent study weeks which you can use to attend an elective practice learning experience overseas.

Current international partner universities include:

  • University of South Florida, Tampa, USA
  • University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain
  • Paracelsus University, Austria

We also have a practice learning agreement in place with EMSMedical Centre in Nazareth, Israel.


Student Recruitment and Admissions

+44 (0) 1786 467046

Fees - 2020/1

Students domiciled in Scotland/EUFees are paid by the Scottish Government Health Directorate (SGHD)

Students domiciled in England, Wales and Northern Ireland£9,250*

Students domiciled overseas (non-EU)£15,600

Last updated Nov 2020

About the School

At the University of Stirling, being the difference is in our DNA – providing education with a purpose and carrying out research that helps to shape society.

At the University of Stirling, being the difference is in our DNA – providing education with a purpose and carrying out research that helps to shape society. Read less