Nursing Studies (Second Registration) Mental Health Nursing PGCert – 2021 entry

Key information

Start date: October 2021

Full-time: 1 year

Why choose this course

At Surrey, we understand and accept mental health as a key component of healthcare provision, knowing that mental health affects us all and we can all expect to be impacted by it throughout our lives. On this course, we’ll shape you into a dynamic, driven and people-orientated nurse that can deal with a complex range of needs, while upholding the highest standard of provision for your service users. We’ll teach you to treat your patients as individuals, ensuring you take the time to understand who they are, what they need and how you can best provide them with care. 

By choosing to study with us, you’ll benefit from our hands-on curriculum, evenly split between theory and clinical placements. You’ll become part of a multidisciplinary team, learn directly from healthcare professionals and service users, be supported by clinicians while on placements, and begin your journey towards an enriching career as a mental health nurse. 

Our nursing courses are ranked top 5 in the UK by both the Complete University Guide 2020 and The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020. 

This course is ideal if you're an existing registrant looking to study for a second registration, in another field of nursing practice. On successful completion of this course, you’ll have the academic and practice requirements needed to apply for second registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) as a mental health nurse.

Lecturer spotlight: Laurence Drew

Read more

What you will study

We’ll teach you to recognise and actively promote mental health in your life, both professionally and personally. You’ll develop an understanding of the differences between people and work together with services users to break stigma and encourage people to access help and support across all ages. 

You’ll learn how to empower service users and aid in their recovery journeys, implementing creative therapies and psychosocial interventions, while managing medications. You’ll investigate barriers to recovery, including drug and alcohol abuse, and how these can be effectively overcome. You’ll become familiar with mental health policy in England, applying the principles of this in all your interactions with patients, their families and their carers. 

You’ll learn how to provide evidence-based care to individuals in crisis, assessing difficult situations and managing care through multiple agencies. You’ll be able to make informed decisions for service users, in collaboration with mental health services, families and carers, critically evaluating these choices to inform future practice. You’ll advocate for your patients, giving them the necessary tools to aid their recoveries. 

After graduating from this course, you’ll be a confident and efficient mental health practitioner, equipped with the clinical, analytical and reflective skills to effectively deliver care to patients, across a range of settings. 


Our facilities have recently undergone a multi-million pound investment, giving you access to the latest industry equipment including our Clinical Simulation Centre, consisting of two large wards, an operating theatre, a community flat and an ambulance bay. Here you’ll get to practise real scenarios using lifelike mannequins and actors as patients, learning the necessary skills to become a competent mental health nurse within a safe, facilitated environment. 

As one of our students, you’ll also get exclusive access to our independent clinical learning room. The room is set up each week with the necessary equipment required to practise the techniques you’ll be learning. 

Teaching staff 

We have a clinical-led focus to our teaching, ensuring everything you learn is up-to-date and relevant to an NHS care setting. Our teaching staff are all practising healthcare professionals working in the NHS, and many are active researchers, investigating topics such as cancer, dementia, ethics and compassionate practice. 

You’ll also be taught by guest lecturers made up of a multidisciplinary team of healthcare workers, and practice assessors and supervisors will support you during your placements. 


Clinical placements

You’ll spend half of your training in clinical placements, allowing you to develop your knowledge, skills and practice within healthcare settings, under the supervision of qualified practitioners. You’ll complete 30 placement hours a week, in addition to a dedicated day for study, for a duration of 26 weeks. 

Previous students have completed their placements in the NHS, with private healthcare organisations and with charities. These have been across several settings, including hospitals, residential homes and out in the wider community. 

How we allocate placements 

We’ll try to allocate you to a locality that's near where you live, taking into consideration your preferences. Understandably, all allocations are subject to availability and as such, may change. 

There may be opportunities to change your locality, but these are limited and are again dependent on capacity and availability. 

We’ll provide you with further information about localities at the start of your course and during your local induction to your practice environments.

Placement localities  

Your placements may take place across Hampshire, Surrey and Sussex, and these are divided into localities. For the duration of your course, you’ll typically be allocated one placement locality. The localities for this course are: 

This locality covers East Sussex and West Sussex, including Chichester, Brighton and Hove and Haywards Heath. You’ll be placed with the Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust. 

Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust 

The Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust provides care to people of all ages across Sussex who have mental health problems, learning disabilities or an addiction to drugs or alcohol. 

The Trust is home to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) and Chalkhill Hospital, a facility that treats children and young people (aged 12-18) experiencing emotional difficulties, mental health problems and eating disorders. The Hospital operates a day clinic and has a small inpatient ward. 

The Trust also provides community services through their crisis resolution and community mental health teams. This care is delivered in people’s homes or at local assessment and treatment centres, community clinics, GP surgeries and community hospitals. 

Areas of expertise in the Trust include: 

  • Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) 
  • Alcohol misuse 
  • Anorexia 
  • Anxiety 
  • Autism and Asperger syndrome 
  • Bipolar disorder 
  • Body dysmorphic disorder 
  • Dementia 
  • Depression 
  • Eating disorder 
  • Enduring or long-term mental health conditions 
  • Hoarding  
  • Learning disabilities 
  • Neuropsychiatric conditions 
  • Neurological conditions 
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder 
  • Offending behaviour 
  • Personality disorder 
  • Phobias 
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder 
  • Postnatal depression 
  • Psychosis 
  • Schizophrenia 
  • Self-harm 
  • Stress. 

This locality covers the entirety of Surrey and north-east Hampshire, including Aldershot, Farnborough and Guildford. You’ll be placed with the Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust. 

Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust 

The Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust is the leading provider of health and social care services for people of all ages with mental health difficulties and learning disabilities in Surrey and north-east Hampshire. The Trust also provides drug and alcohol services in Surrey and Brighton. 

Care is provided for people of all ages in community settings, hospitals and residential homes, with an emphasis on providing local treatment and support close to people's homes. 

The Trust operate:  

  • Addiction services  
  • Eating disorder services  
  • Forensic services  
  • Prison mental health in-reach 
  • Psychological services. 

Careers and graduate prospects

We offer careers information, advice and guidance to all students whilst studying with us, which is extended to our alumni for three years after leaving the University.

On successful completion of this course, you’ll have the academic and practice requirements needed to apply for second registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) as a mental health nurse. 

Our alumni can be found working for NHS trusts across the UK, with recent graduates working for the Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust and the Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust. 

Nursing is the largest healthcare profession in the UK and is home to a diverse range of roles in hospitals, practice surgeries, people’s homes and the wider community. There are also specialist areas that nurses occupy, in care homes, schools, mental health agencies, hospices, the military and in industry. Visit the NHS Careers website for further information.


Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability, student demand and/or class size caps. 

Important: In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, the University has had to change the delivery (and in some cases the content) of its programmes, together with certain University services and facilities for the 2020/21 academic year. These changes include the implementation of a hybrid teaching approach. View detailed information on the changes

The University operates a credit framework for all taught programmes based on a 15-credit tariff. Modules can be either 15, 30, 45 or 60, 75 and 120 credits, and additionally for some masters dissertations, 90 credits.

The structure of our programmes follows clear educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the programme specifications which include further details such as the learning outcomes:

    Please note: this course is subject to validation, therefore no modules have been confirmed at this moment in time. These modules will appear once the course has been validated.


    Course timetables are normally available one month before the start of the semester. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week (Monday–Friday). Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities. Part-time classes are normally scheduled on one or two days per week, details of which can be obtained from the Academic Hive. View our Timetabling Policy (PDF).

    Entry requirements

    Applicants should have a BSc in Nursing Studies First Registration.

    All of our offers will be made subject to a health screening and DBS checks. Occupational health services are provided by Cordelle Health on behalf of the University of Surrey.

    View entry requirements by country

    Credit transfer

    The University of Surrey recognises that many students enter their higher education course with valuable knowledge and skills developed through a range of professional, vocational and community contexts. If this applies to you, a process called recognition of prior learning (RPL) may allow you to enter your course at a point appropriate to your previous learning and experience, or to join the start of a course without the formal entry requirements. This means that you may be exempt from certain elements of study in the course for which you have applied and be awarded credit based on your previous qualifications/experience. There are restrictions on RPL for some courses and fees may be payable for certain claims. 

    Please see the code of practice for recognition of prior learning and prior credit: taught programmes (PDF) for further information. Please email Admissions with any queries.


    Start date: October 2021

    Full-time - 1 year

    UK £9,250

    Overseas To be confirmed

    View the list of fees for all postgraduate taught courses.

    Please note:

    • These fees apply to students commencing study in the academic year 2021-22 only. Fees for new starters are reviewed annually.
    • If you are on a two-year full-time Euromasters or MFA programme, or a two-year or three-year part-time masters programme (excluding modular/self-paced/distance learning), the annual fee is payable in Year 1 and Year 2 of the programme.
    • Annual fees will increase by 4% for each subsequent year of study, rounded up to the nearest £100, subject to any overriding applicable legislative requirements. 

    Additional costs

    There are associated costs with this course:

    • Commuting (local travel expenses)
      Students are required to pay upfront cost of travel and accommodation expenses incurred when on placements, these may vary depending on the location. 
    • Safety equipment and/or uniform
      Although a uniform (tunics and trousers) is provided, you are required to supply your own suitable footwear and any additional uniform. Students are also responsible for the costs associated with maintaining/washing their uniform.
    • Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check
      The University will meet the cost of one DBS check, completed at the start of each new student’s programme or earlier where applicants indicate they have a conviction in their application. The DBS check is a programme requirement: it is mandatory that the DBS process in completed and the student is approved to attend before they can start placement. Applicants offered a place on the programme will be contacted to complete the online process by the deadline specified. The process is not completed until all original documentation has been approved by an appointed DBS approver. This should be completed in advance of Applicants starting their programme using main branches of the Post Office, where there will be a £6 administration fee.

    How to apply

    You can apply for this programme through UCAS, with the programme code B773. Apply via UCAS.

    Admission information

    Our postgraduate admissions policy* provides the basis for admissions practice across the University and gives a framework for how we encourage, consider applications and admit students. You can also read our postgraduate applicant guidance.

    Terms and conditions

    When you accept an offer of a place at the University of Surrey, you are agreeing to comply with our policies and regulations, and our terms and conditions. These terms and conditions are provided in two stages: first when we make an offer and second when students who have accepted their offers register to study at the University. View an example of our offer terms and conditions and our generic registration terms and conditions (PDF) as a guide as to what to expect.
    Please note: our offer terms and conditions will generally be available in the September of the calendar year prior to the year in which you begin your studies. Our registration terms and conditions will vary to take into account specifics of your course and changes for the specific academic year.


    This online prospectus has been prepared and published in advance of the academic year to which it applies. The University of Surrey has used its reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content or additional costs) may 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 a course with us. Read more.

    Further, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the University has had to change the delivery (and in some cases the content) of its programmes, together with certain University services and facilities for the academic year 2020/21. These changes include the implementation of a hybrid teaching approach during 2020/21.  Detailed information on all changes is available at our dedicated course changes webpage. This webpage sets out information relating to general University changes, and will also direct you to consider additional information relating to specific programmes.

    Course location and contact details

    Campus location

    Kate Granger Building

    Our health sciences, nursing and midwifery courses are taught at the Kate Granger Building (30 Priestley Road), on the Surrey Research Park.

    Placement location

    You’ll be expected to attend clinical placements off campus. Please see the placements section for more details. 


    Additional information

    Some elements of this course will be taught on our Stag Hill campus. 

    University of Surrey

    University of Surrey
    Surrey GU2 7XH