New nursing curriculum for 2019
The Nursing and Midwifery Council plan to introduce new national educational standards for nursing in 2018. As such, we intend to commence a new curriculum in September 2019, based on these standards. This page will be updated as the new curriculum is confirmed.
Highlights of Nursing at Nottingham
- International opportunities; elective placement and ERASMUS funded European placement
- Some placement choices and a placement exchange scheme
- Tailor your learning with third year optional modules
- Benefit from the option to study extra qualifications, i.e. the Dementia Certificate
- Resilience based clinical supervision
- First year will be 37 weeks, allowing more time to enjoy the University experience with a longer summer holiday
- Wednesday afternoons are free for participation in sports and clubs, when not in practice
We are one of a small number of schools in the UK which score highly in both teaching and research. We were rated ‘Gold’ in the 2017 Teaching Exercise Framework, ranked 8th in the UK for our research power (2014 Research Exercise Framework), and our students are outstanding, regularly winning local and national awards such as the Student Nursing Times Awards ‘Student Nurse of the Year’.
Our BSc Mental Health Nursing course is aimed at those who are committed to providing excellence in care to people who experience mental health problems. Mental health nurses make a vital contribution to supporting service users’ recovery, working alongside people to help them manage their distress and work towards individual goals.
Giving you three full years in your chosen specialism, this course is designed to build the skills and knowledge needed for a modern nursing career. We offer a person-centred approach, offering holistic care for the individual and their family - covering social, psychological and biological perspectives - and you will gain clinical experience in a supportive environment.
Students will learn a range of mental health nursing skills including communication skills, building rapport, and developing a therapeutic relationship. You will also learn about different psychological approaches and techniques that can help people learn how to manage their mental distress. These skills will be developed through role play, working in groups, understanding the underpinning theories, and on practice placements.
Alongside the huge range of University support services, particular care has been given to develop a course that supports you to become a confident and independent learner. As such, the course has been specially developed to provide the wide-ranging, high-level skills you need; not just in terms of the practical work you will do, but also by sharpening your creativity, critical judgement and ability to lead.
The Division of Nursing sits within the School of Health Sciences, which is a research active school. All our teaching staff are experts in the field, with many having published key nursing textbooks or having national or international research profiles.
The majority of study takes place at the Queen’s Medical Centre, Nottingham, where we have a clinical skills centre and drop in facilities where students can practice in a simulated environment.
Students benefit from taking part in simulations which enable them to practice mental health nursing care with patients (actors) in a safe environment. Mental Health students also have the opportunity to work alongside child field students, participating in simulated scenarios with young people who experience emotional distress.
In addition, students can take advantage of the free HELM Open database, offering over 200 quality, peer-reviewed online learning and teaching resources.
Getting to our Nottingham campus is easy, with a wide range of transport links available, from the tram – with stops at both Queen’s Medical Centre and University Park Campus – to a number of public bus services.
Year one aligns with the standard university terms and does not extend into the summer holiday period. You will have one placement in first year, lasting four weeks, and you will also have Wednesday afternoons free. Having just four weeks in placement means university catered accommodation, as opposed to non-catered, accommodation, becomes a more viable option.
Clinical skill development is an essential part of any nursing course. This will occur both in teaching and practice. In the first year, you will study in a clinical learning environment with experts through experience, expert nurses and university lecturers to develop communication and extended nursing skills to prepare you for nursing practice.
Your learning will encompass a range of different subjects, including:
- biological sciences
- professional nursing
- clinical learning
- evidence for nursing practice
This will enable you to meet patients’ mental, physical, cognitive and behavioural needs.
Years two and three
In years two and three you will continue to develop your nursing knowledge and skills in psychology, sociology, biological sciences and pharmacology to enable you to apply these when assessing, planning, implementing and evaluating nursing care. You will also develop critical thinking so you can apply the practical nursing skills you’ve learnt to make decisions about the people you are caring for.
You will experience a variety of placement opportunities in some of the Midlands’ leading healthcare trusts, receiving resilience based clinical supervision to prepare you for registered nursing practice.
An example of the clinical skills you will learn are:
- How to assess mental health and wellbeing status in adults and young people, including depression, mania and psychosis
- Take a history, observe and assess signs of mental and emotional distress
- An understanding of behavioural approaches to care
In year three you have the opportunity to select optional modules. You can choose these to either help guide your career or to expand your knowledge and skills. You also have a degree of choice for your final management placement which will help you decide your future career, or work in an area of practice you’ve not yet experienced.
Once you have successfully completed the course you will be eligible to register with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) as a registered nurse (mental health).
You are required to have one of the following:
A levels are required at grades BBB with at least one being biology, chemistry, physics, physical education, psychology or sociology. General studies will not be accepted.
CACHE Technical Level 3 Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care
An overall grade B is required. All science modules need to have achieved a B or greater.
Level 3 Extended Diploma Sport & Exercise Science
We would require DDM grading for acceptance.
Scottish Advanced Highers
Advanced Highers BB to include a science, plus BBBBB at Highers.
Irish Leaving Certificate
Six Higher Level subjects to be gained at a single sitting. Two subjects at H2 grade, plus four subjects at H3; to include English language, mathematics and biology.
Diploma with an overall score of 30 points.
Diploma with an overall score of 75%. All candidates must hold science credits of A level equivalence.
English and mathematics at level 4 (C) or above. Please note that Key Skills will not be accepted.
Understand how we show GCSE grades
The Extended Diploma in Health and Social Care (Health Studies) or Health Science should be passed with a minimum of DDM as the final award to include a minimum of 60 academic science credits, plus GCSE English and maths (level 4 (C) or above).
Other relevant Extended Diplomas may be considered if they include 60 credits out of the list below:
- Development through the Life Stages
- Anatomy and Physiology for Health and Social Care
- Sociological Perspectives for Health and Social Care
- Physiological Disorders
- Health Psychology
- Nutrition for Health and Social Care
- Complementary Therapies for Health and Social Care
- Human Inheritance for Health and Social Care
- Infection Prevention and Control
- Physiology of fluid balance
- Psychological perspectives for Health and Social Care
- Biochemistry for Health
- Science for Health
Access to HE Diploma
45 credits at level three (to include a minimum 30 credits at merit or above with at least 15 of these at distinction), with a minimum of 15 credits from science units at merit or above plus, GCSE English and maths (level 4 (C) or above).
We no longer accept Functional Skills qualifications in maths and English in lieu of GSCEs.
Distance learning Access to HE courses will also be accepted.
English language requirements
Nursing students need to be fluent in the English language in order to both understand and complete the course and to communicate effectively with patients and members of the multidisciplinary team.
For students whose first language is not English we require an IELTS score of 7.5 with no less than 7 in any element. Please note that a pass at GCSE English language with a 5 (B) or above will normally be regarded as meeting this requirement.
Flexible admissions policy
In recognition of our applicants’ varied experience and educational pathways, The University of Nottingham employs a flexible admissions policy. We consider applicants’ circumstances and broader achievements as part of the assessment process, but do not vary the offer from the grades advertised as a result of these.
Please see the University’s admissions policies and procedures for more information.
Notes for applicants
Entry qualifications should be regulated (see find a regulated qualification) and overseas qualifications are accepted at our discretion. Distance learning programme may be accepted if a recognised regulated qualification is awarded.
For all courses, selection is made on the basis of meeting entry requirements, academic potential and evidence of commitment to nursing. All offers are subject to being successful at the selection day, satisfactory health screening, and disclosure and barring service (DBS) clearance.
You can find out more information on our Advice for Nursing Applicants webpage.
Students will undertake six placements, lasting 4-10 weeks, plus an elective placement and a management placement.
You will have a range of allocations and experiences including community, private, voluntary and independent, acute care, crisis support, and mental healthcare of the older person. Additional experiences may include forensic services, including high secure hospital, child and adolescent mental health services, substance misuse and addition services, liaison psychiatry, and mother and baby mental health services.
Placements are located within:
- Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
- Nottingham City Care Partnership
- Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
- Derbyshire Community Health Service NHS Foundation Trust
- Private, voluntary or independent healthcare providers
We believe it’s important for you to gain experience not only in the local area, but also further afield, and you will have the opportunity to study nursing overseas, or elsewhere in the UK. This means you will:
- See how different trusts operate, giving you a wider perspective of the healthcare sector
- Broaden your practice experience and clinical skills
- Better prepare yourself for a nursing career, understanding the challenges that both patients and healthcare professionals face at various stages
- Make connections for future job opportunities and learn which role is suitable for you
During placements, you will be supported by experienced clinical mentors and participate in student forums.
During the second year of your course you will undertake a four-week elective placement.
Students arrange their own elective placement and can stay in the UK or have the potential to go anywhere in the world, provided the country is deemed safe to travel to and the student is able to fund their trip.
During the second year of your course you will undertake a four-week elective placement. Students arrange their own elective placement and have the potential to go anywhere in the world, provided the country is deemed safe to travel to and the student is able to fund their trip.
Previous students have undertaken placements in Australia, Barbados, Cape Verde, Germany, Ghana, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Kenya, Malawi, Nepal, New Zealand, Philippines, Romania, Seychelles, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Uganda and USA.
Elective placements could include working in areas as diverse as:
- The prison service
- Mental Health Charities
- Eating Disorders Services
- The Department of Health
As well as providing valuable experience, the elective placement also gives students the opportunity to experience a different field to the pathway they are studying. This helps students to develop their skills in caring for people with different health needs, allowing them to understand the challenges in differing fields of nursing.
In addition to the four week elective placement, students are also given the opportunity to apply for a 9-week Erasmus placement in Europe with one of our partner institutions.
The course is an integrated blend of modules reflecting the field of mental health nursing. Each module is informed by the latest academic thinking and has been designed to develop the real skills and knowledge you will need to become a registered nurse.
Typical modules include:
These modules are at the heart of developing your knowledge, skills and resilience in practice. Their aim is to develop your clinical skills so that you are competent in practice, but also integrate your learning within the other modules to enable holistic care. There will be an emphasis on small group working with experts from experience and experts from practice. Several clinical assessments will take place in this module, from the relatively simple (i.e. hand washing) to complex assessment skills.
Introduction to Professional Nursing
This module will consider what it means to be a professional nurse within current health practice, critically evaluating the role and purpose of modern nursing. The values and behaviours discussed in this module will be integrated and developed within clinical learning.
These modules will specifically explore how biological sciences can be applied to health and therefore will have a major clinical focus. You will develop understanding of the workings of the human body, common pathologies, genetics and the role of microbes in health and disease. Elements of the biological science teaching will be tailored to your field of nursing to enhance your learning.
Psychosocial Influences on Health
What influences health? This module will critically review the psychology and social influences on health. The learning within this module will be integrated into clinical learning to promote holistic health assessment.
In line with the new Nursing Standards this module will explore the pharmacological concepts and concepts of non-medical prescribing. On graduation, students will be what’s termed ‘prescribing ready’.
Leadership and Innovation
This module will focus on developing your leadership skills within practice and working as a team. It will also consider how innovation and change improve practice.
Evidence Based Practice
These modules will enable you to understand how evidence is generated, why it is generated and how it influences nursing practice. You will develop an understanding of research, audit, service evaluation and quality improvement. Skills such as finding and critiquing literature will enable you to review current nursing practice. It will help prepare you for the final dissertation.
Year Three Optional Modules (Mental Health)
- Child and Adolescent Mental Health
- Mental Health, Sport and Exercise
- Low Intensity Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
- Acute Care Management
- Transcultural Nursing
- High Dependency Care (Child)
- End of Life Care
- Developing Skills in Cancer Care
- Insight into Community and Primary Care
Extended Literature Review
The extended literature review provides opportunity to produce an individual and substantial piece of work, related to an area of interest within students' nursing field of practice. By its nature, it requires students to undertake independent work, which encourages individuality of thought and initiative.
The optional modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. The above list is a sample of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.
The above is a sample of the typical modules that we offer at the date of publication but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. This prospectus may be updated over the duration of the course, as modules may change due to developments in the curriculum or in the research interests of staff.
The 2018 Complete University Guide ranked us in the top 10 for nursing in the UK, while graduates benefit from both an academic qualification and a professional qualification that serves to enhance their employment opportunities.
Nursing graduates enjoy careers in a diverse range of settings, including both the NHS and the private, voluntary and independent sector, either locally or further afield.
Mental health nurses are the largest group of staff working in mental health services and you may choose to pursue a career in clinical care, teaching and research, or management. You can also continue studying with the University of Nottingham whilst in employment with our postgraduate and doctoral studies.
Find out more about the range of nursing careers.
For details of typical employment opportunities, check the RCN Bulletinand NHS Jobs website.
This course is recognised by the Nursing and Midwifery Council.
Average starting salary and career progression
A newly qualified nurse working in the NHS can expect to be employed at Band 5 with a salary ranging from £22,128 up to £28,746*. With career progression and development there is the prospect of applying for senior clinical posts, for example, Band 6 Ward Manager/Band 6 District Nurse (salary range £26,565-£35,577) and Band 7 Specialist Nurse (salary range £31,696-£41,787)*.
In 2017, 98.6% of undergraduates from the School of Health Sciences who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation. The average starting salary was £22,000**.
* Correct as of 1 April 2017.
** Known destinations of full-time home undergraduates who were available for work, 2016/17. Salaries are calculated based on the median of those in full-time paid employment within the UK.
Careers support and advice
Studying for a degree at the University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take.
Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.
Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.
The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers (Ranked in the top ten in The Graduate Market in 2013-2019, High Fliers Research).
Fees and funding
As a student on this course, you should factor some additional costs into your budget, alongside your tuition fees and living expenses. You should be able to access most of the books you’ll need through our libraries, though you may wish to purchase your own copies. If you undertake an elective placement, this is self-funded and costs will vary depending on location. You will need to pay £44 for an enhanced DBS check, and may wish to subscribe to the DBS update service for £13 per year.
Please note that these figures are approximate and subject to change.
Scholarships and bursaries
The University of Nottingham offers a wide range of bursaries and scholarships. These funds can provide you with an additional source of non-repayable financial help. For up to date information regarding tuition fees, visit our fees and finance pages.
Over one third of our UK students receive our means-tested core bursary, worth up to £2,000 a year. Full details can be found on our financial support pages.
* A 'home' student is one who meets certain UK residence criteria. These are the same criteria as apply to eligibility for home funding from Student Finance.
Our International Baccalaureate Diploma Excellence Scholarship is available for select students paying overseas fees who achieve 38 points or above in the International Baccalaureate Diploma. We also offer a range of High Achiever Prizes for students from selected countries, schools and colleges to help with the cost of tuition fees. Find out more about scholarships, fees and finance for international students.
This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.