BSc (Hons) Mental Health Nursing (Advanced Standing)

Many nurses may wish to undertake training for a different part of the nursing register at some point in their career. This course provides a conversion opportunity for those who wish to move from one part of the nursing register to mental health nursing.

  • UCAS Code:
  • Institution:
  • Delivery:
    Full time according to Funding Council definitions

Why study BSc (Hons) Mental Health Nursing (Advanced Standing) at BU? 

  • Successful completion of this 2-year course will lead to a qualification in BSc (Hons) Mental Health Nursing. 95% of our nursing graduates are employed or in further study within 15 months of finishing their studies.
  • Acceptance onto the course depends on factors such as the initial field of registration, holding a nursing degree qualification and the date of the applicant’s original registration  
  • One in four people will struggle with mental health issues at some point during their life. It is a rapidly expanding area of nursing that needs caring, compassionate and competent professionals
  • This course will teach you how to deliver high-quality nursing care, to enable, educate, and encourage those experiencing mental health problems to progress towards recovery  
  • Practical experience takes a central role in the course, with 50% of the course spent in practice placements to gain nursing experience in a variety of healthcare environments.
  • Newly built skills facilities include simulated hospital wards and community home settings, allowing you to learn and practice. 

Find out more about the content of this course.

Not sure which nursing course is for you? Read our guide to nursing courses at BU. 

Course accreditation 

Accredited by the Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC), this course will prepare you to be eligible to register and practice as a mental health nurse and to graduate with a BSc (Hons) Mental Health Nursing degree.

Key information

Next start date:

September 2023, September 2024


Bournemouth University, Lansdowne Campus


2 years including mandatory full-time placements


Nursing & Midwifery Council

Entry requirements:

For September 2023 entry: 2:2 in a Nursing Degree. Applicants need to be a qualified nurse in the UK and have worked as a nurse for at least one year before the start of the course in their initial field of registration. For more information check out our full entry requirements.

International entry requirements:

For September 2023 entry: If English is not your first language you will need IELTS (Academic) 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in writing and 7.0 in all other components. For more information check out our international entry requirements.

Course details

This course prepares you to work in a variety of mental health settings with a diverse range of people. You will gain experience within inter-professional practice and develop skills in mental health nursing across the lifespan.

Located within the Department of Nursing Science, the BSc (Hons) Mental Health Nursing course is part of the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences' Nursing Framework, which also offers BSc (Hons) Adult Nursing and BSc (Hons) Children & Young People’s Nursing courses, all with advanced standing options.

We have developed this course as part of a co-ordinated suite of nursing courses to enhance student learning and prepare you for practice. Our approach to interprofessional education means that throughout the course students will take part in shared workshops, lectures and learning events with other students on health related courses.

However as a mental health nursing student, there will be aspects of the course where you will be taught by staff who have specific mental health nursing experience and you will be taught in groups with other mental health nursing students, so that your learning is tailored and specific to your chosen field of expertise. Your placements and assessments will also be field specific and you will use mental health nursing case scenarios to apply learning to mental health nursing practice.

You will be taught by a range of staff with relevant expertise and knowledge appropriate to the content of the units. This will include senior academic staff, qualified professional practitioners, demonstrators and technicians. You will also benefit from regular guest lectures from local healthcare services and workshops run by service users (patients and carers) who are part of the teaching team.

Contact hours and assessment

Details of the assessment methods and contact hours for each unit of the course can be found in the programme specification.

Download the programme specification (pdf 1.1mb)


As a Nursing student, you will spend 50% of your time on the course in a practice placement setting, and the remaining 50% studying – whether at home, at the library or attending lectures on campus or online, seminars or working under the guidance of our demonstrators in the Practice Skills suite.

The Practice simulation suites are a great way for you to try your hand at practical skills before you go on placement, as they provide a safe environment and allow you to continually work on skills necessary in the workplace, as you can see in our course video

Throughout the course you will gain experience of caring for clients in a variety of setting, such as elderly care, medical, surgical, community and critical care.

Find out more about Health & Social Care placements

Entry requirements

2023 entry

General entry requirements
  • 2:2 in a Nursing degree

  • Students need to be qualified as a nurse in the UK and have worked as a nurse for at least a year before the start of the course in their initial field of registration.

Mature applicants: We recognise that mature applicants may have a wealth of experience rather than formal qualifications, so we’ll consider your application on these merits if it’s included in your application. You’ll need to apply to BU in the usual way through UCAS and you may be invited to an interview to discuss your suitability for the course based on the experience you tell us about in your application

Deferred entry: We are happy to consider applicants for deferred entry. If you have already submitted your application, please submit your deferral request through our website.

International entry requirements

You can find details of the international qualifications we accept, and what level of study they apply to, on our entry requirements for non-UK students' page.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you will need to provide evidence that you can understand English to a satisfactory level. English language requirements for this course are normally:

For September 2023 entry: If English is not your first language you will need IELTS (Academic) 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in writing and 7.0 in all other components. The NMC also accept the Occupational English Test (OET). 

View further information about our English language requirements.

Language testing applicants from Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada and the USA

​All overseas applicants are required to meet the NMC standard for English language regardless of where they come from. This makes sure that all applicants meet the same standard in a system that is equitable, fair and non-discriminatory. There are no current plans by the NMC to waive the IELTS requirements for these countries.

Non-academic entry requirements

Occupational Health Checks

Nursing is physically and mentally demanding and you will need to be mentally and physically able to undertake your chosen course. Places are offered subject to passing an OH check, and this will be carried out by the Dorset Healthcare University NHS Foundation Trust. Health conditions need to be dealt with on an individual basis e.g. deafness, blindness, eczema (or other dermatological allergic reactions) on exposed areas, epilepsy, back problems, or mental health conditions, eating disorders and other disabilities. These do not automatically exclude you but please ensure that you fully disclose your condition to OH. The University can then consider the recommendations made by OH and whether reasonable adjustments can be made to support you on your chosen course. If you require more guidance please contact us for more information.

You will be required to provide a record of your immunity status or be vaccinated or have the required blood tests. You may need to ask your GP or current OH department or find your childhood vaccination record for details of your past immunisation records. You should be aware that there may be charges made (for which you will be liable) relating to your gaining the appropriate immunity required prior to starting your training programme.

Refusing immunisations

The university has an expectation that all students will comply with the vaccination programme as it is Public Health England requirement for health care workers to have certain immunisations. This ensures that you will be able to undertake the wide range of training placements that your course will require and aims to keep you, as well as the people in your care as safe as possible. Please note that at this time Covid-19 vaccinations are not a mandatory requirement for healthcare workers and so are therefore not a mandatory requirement for healthcare students either. Occasionally some vaccinations are contraindicated in certain medical conditions. Occupational Health (OH) will advise the University in these cases. The University will consider students on an individual basis. Refusal to have immunisations will may result in the student not being allowed to attend practice placement and being withdrawn from the course. There is no opportunity to appeal against the requirements of the immunisation policy.

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check (previously known as CRB) All successful applicants will be subject to an Enhanced Disclosure and Barred List check; this will be a condition of offer and will need to be completed prior to commencing the course. Please see the Government website for the most up to date information.
Terms of Expectations

It is important that you understand what will be expected of you as a student studying for both an academic award and professional qualification in nursing. You must agree to adhere to the Student Nurse Terms of Expectation for studying at Bournemouth University as detailed in this document. Failure to comply with these expectations could lead to disciplinary action.

Your application

We are pleased to offer a Master's MSc Mental Health Nursing course which is open for applications, as well as the BSc (Hons) Mental Health Nursing full degree route. 


Mental health issues are experienced by one in four people during their lifetime, giving you plenty of scope to make a real difference once you graduate, regardless of what area of the profession you go into. A diverse range of roles are open to you as a mental health nurse, allowing you to forge a career that you're truly passionate about. You can work within the NHS or in the private sector and can be based in a hospital environment or community setting.

Being able to educate those with mental health problems about how to work towards a recovery, as well as supporting their families, is important regardless of the job you have and this course will ensure you’re equipped to do exactly that.

Costs and fees

All fees are quoted in pounds sterling and are per year. Your tuition fees will be the same for each year of your course.You can find full information about funding your studies and paying your fees in our undergraduate fees and funding section, including NHS finance information. That’s also where you’ll find information about the scholarships and bursaries on offer.

Fees quoted are for tuition only unless stated otherwise, and we’re committed to ensuring there are no hidden extra costs while you’re at university – that’s why we’re clear about what you can expect us to cover, and what your cost of living will be.

Course changes

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Statistics shown throughout this page are taken from Unistats and BU institutional data unless otherwise stated.