School of Nursing and Midwifery

MSc Advanced Clinical Practitioner in Mental Health

Are you a registered health or social care professional interested in developing your career in advanced mental health practice? Do you have the support of your employer for workplace-based learning? This clinically and academically focused MSc programme is designed to prepare and support registered practitioners to develop their knowledge and skills to provide and lead high-quality advanced level mental health practice.

The programme is aligned to the Multi-professional Framework for Advanced Clinical Practice in England (Health Education England, 2017) and the Advanced Practice Mental Health Curriculum and Capabilities Framework (HEE, 2022).

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Careers with this subject

This programme is aimed at experienced registered health and social care professionals who are currently working in a mental health setting. It will be of interest to those working in any mental health setting who wish to develop their clinical expertise, research, education and leadership skills to an advanced level of practice and autonomy.

Graduate equipped with the skills to take on lead roles in management, clinical practice and/or education. Career prospects include advanced practice roles such as consultant roles, advanced specialist practice roles, education, research and audit.

Key features

  • Blended learning programme with a mix of online distance learning and on campus days.
  • Develop skills to act autonomously in providing care to people requiring complex mental health assessment and treatment.
  • Develop leadership and management skills to support the wider mental health team.
  • Participate in workplace-based experiential learning opportunities with workplace supervisors and other experienced clinicians.
  • Embed independent and supplementary prescribing into your masters degree (subject to profession).
  • Disseminate evidence-based knowledge to enhance services and person-centred care.

This programme is also available as an Apprenticeship MSc Advanced Clinical Practice in Mental Health. For further information on the apprenticeship route and details of how your employer can apply for you please visit our apprenticeship webpage.

Course details
  • Year 1

  • Core modules

    APP758: Advanced concepts in research: methodology and methods (20 credits)

    AMH701: Advanced mental health assessment and formulation (20 credits)

    APP717: Fundamental of health assessment (20 credits) 

  • Year 2

  • Core modules

    AMH702: Advanced mental health planning and interventions (20 credits)

    Optional modules

    Optional modules can be two 20 credit modules or one 40 credit (40 credits).

    Optional modules can be chosen from the list given below. Please contact the Professional Development Unit Admissions Team to discuss your options.

    • APP701: Advancing practice in context (20 credits)
    • APP707: CBT interventions for mental health professionals (psychosis) (20 credits)
    • APP709: Working with people with a diagnosis of personality disorder (20 credits)
    • APP721: Perinatal mental health (20 credits)
    • APP727: The child and young person with mental health needs (20 credits)
    • APP744: Substance misuse and dual diagnosis (20 credits)
    • APP759: Advancing knowledge of learning and teaching for practice (20 credits)
    • NMP703: Non-medical prescribing (40 credits)

  • Final year

  • Core modules

    SPP702: Substantive Professional Project (40 Credits)

    Optional modules

    Optional module 20 Credits. Optional modules can be chosen from the list given below. Please contact the Professional Development Unit Admissions Team to discuss your options.

    • APP701: Advancing practice in context (20 credits)
    • APP707: CBT interventions for mental health professionals (psychosis) (20 credits)
    • APP709: Working with people with a diagnosis of personality disorder (20 credits)
    • APP721: Perinatal mental health (20 credits)
    • APP727: The child and young person with mental health needs (20 credits)
    • APP744: Substance misuse and dual diagnosis (20 credits)
    • APP759: Advancing knowledge of learning and teaching for practice (20 credits)
    • NMP703: Non-medical prescribing (40 credits)

Every postgraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the programme aims, the programme structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest programme structure and may be subject to change:

MSc Advanced Clinical Practitioner in Mental Health Programme Specification standard route 22 23 7525

The modules shown for this course or programme are those being studied by current students, or expected new modules. Modules are subject to change depending on year of entry.
Entry requirements

A good honours degree (first or second class) or equivalent plus a professional qualification in health or social care. 

You must be working in a role that requires advanced practice skills and knowledge.

You will need the support of your employer and have a consultant or advanced practice clinical supervisor in your employment setting for the duration of the programme.

Claims for credit for prior learning will be assessed following Universtiy regulations.

International students: IELTS score of 6.5 overall or equivalent.

Fees, costs and funding

The UK is no longer part of the European Union. EU applicants should refer to our Brexit information to understand the implications.

New Student  2022
Home £1,000 per 20 credit module
International £1,000 per 20 credit module
Part time (Home)  £1,000 per 20 credit module

Part time fees shown are per a number of credits. Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances. More information about fees and funding.

Additional costs
Please be aware that there may be additional costs to undertaking your studies relating to printing of course materials, and requirement for an initial outlay for travel and accommodation in respect of practice placement. If you have any questions regarding these costs please contact admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

How to apply

Applying for this programme

Please visit our PDU admissions homepage for full details on the application process and to download the relevant forms.

Please return your completed forms to:

Email: pduadmissions@plymouth.ac.uk

Professional Development Unit
4th floor, Rolle Building
University of Plymouth
Drake Circus
Plymouth, PL4 8AA

Tel: +44 (0)1752 586951

What happens after I apply?

After your application is received by the PDU Admissions team, it will be processed and sent to the Programme Lead for a decision to be made on your suitability to study. You may be asked to provide additional information or to take part in an interview (for overseas students this may be by telephone or video conference). Once this decision has been made, you will be sent an email either confirming your place on the programme, or rejecting your application and giving the reasons for this decision (you may request further feedback in order to improve your chances of selection at a later date).

Please note that you will be enrolled on the full MSc programme. You may choose to exit with the qualification of PgCert upon completion of an appropriate 60 credits, or a PgDip upon completion of an appropriate 120 credits. More information is contained within the programme specification.

For applicants with disabilities

If you have a disability and would like further information about the support provided by the University of Plymouth, please visit our Disability Services webpage.

Applying for this programme

Please visit our PDU admissions homepage for full details on the application process and to download the relevant forms.

Please return your completed forms to:

Email: pduadmissions@plymouth.ac.uk

Professional Development Unit
4th floor, Rolle Building
University of Plymouth
Drake Circus
Plymouth, PL4 8AA

Tel: +44 (0)1752 586951

Matthew's story...



Matthew Hibbert

Advanced Practitioner

An advanced practitioner's role in a Forensic Mental Health Service.

Career opportunities

You’ll be able to apply for more senior roles within a variety of settings; and work across inter-professional boundaries and alongside a range of healthcare professionals to manage and deliver mental health care.

Find out how this programme can help you achieve your goals
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Lecturers