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BSc (Hons) Contemporary Mental Health Practice

Discover contemporary approaches to enable, promote and protect mental health, as you develop the skills to conduct compassionate-centred conversations and engage with individuals, families and communities.

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      • Sandwich Year Option Available
      • International Students Can Apply
      • Work Placement Opportunity


      UCAS Code: B765
      Course Length: 3 Years Full-Time, 5 Years Part-Time
      Start Dates: September 2023
      Subjects: Mental Health
      Location: Edge Hill University
      Example Offers: BCC-BBC (A Level) or DMM (BTEC)
      View full entry criteria

      Please note, this course is closed to further applications for September 2022 entry.

      Our mental health affects how we think, feel and act so working in mental health practice can be demanding, but extremely rewarding. With a radical shift in the responses to people who experience mental ill health, this degree will enable you to investigate contemporary approaches to mental health while being informed by a variety of perspectives and with the themes of communication and compassion at its core. You will learn from individuals who will share their own experiences of mental health as you discover how to engage with people in a respectful, effective and ethical manner. A key element of the programme is the protection, promotion and enablement of mental health and wellbeing in individuals, families and communities. Whether starting your career, or already working in the sector, this programme provides a gateway to a variety of emerging roles in contemporary mental health practice, with your employability enhanced through placements in a range of traditional and innovative settings.

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      In Depth

      What will I study?

      In Year 1 you will explore the influences on health and wellbeing, including what supports and impacts on this at different life stages and transitions. A range of perspectives on health and quality of life will be presented as you start to develop an understanding of mental ill-health, its experiences and settings, including a focus on formal diagnosis. Learning from experts with lived experience, you will discuss the concept of compassionate-centred conversations and develop your skills in respectful engagement.

      Year 2 involves investigating mental health law and ethical practice, including how to respect and support equality and diversity in your practice. Contemporary approaches to protecting and promoting mental health and wellbeing will be examined and you will participate in 120 hours of work-based learning to put this theory into practice. You will explore person-centred care, discover how to be an agent for change, and investigate the links between physical and mental health, including the role of physical activity in mental health and wellbeing. Research methodology and approaches will also be introduced.

      In Year 3 you will critically explore and evaluate what constitutes a healthy community, including asset-based approaches to support engagement and development. You will also participate in a further 120 hours of work-based learning. Coaching and mentoring for mental health and wellbeing, leadership and project management skills, and your personal and professional development in contemporary mental health practice will all be critically evaluated and inform your future focus. The programme culminates in a research project in which you will undertake an in-depth exploration of the evidence base in a subject of interest in contemporary mental health practice.

      How will I study?

      The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials and online resources.

      You will typically be expected to attend for two days per week for full-time study and one day per week for part-time study.

      Practice-based experience and learning is embedded in each year of the programme and will equate to a minimum of 40 hours in Year 1 and 120 hours of work-based learning in both Year 2 and Year 3.

      How will I be assessed?

      You will be assessed through a combination of essays, report-writing, practice-related reflections and learning, individual and group presentations.

      Who will be teaching me?

      The programme team have experience of working with individuals, families, groups and communities to support mental health and wellbeing, as well as direct experience of employment in mental health services and the broader mental health and wellbeing arena.

      Research interests within the programme team include community psychology, occupational interventions, coaching for health, peer mentoring, public mental health, positive aging, counselling approaches, the use of sport for health and wellbeing, appreciative and compassionate leadership, and mental health law and ethics.

      Guest lecturers will be invited to contribute to specialist talks on subjects in which they have expertise, including from those working in new and innovative employment roles in mental health and wellbeing.


      The Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine offers some of the best facilities for the education and training of health and social care professionals in the country.

      The outstanding teaching and learning resources include leading edge clinical skills facilities, an 860-seat lecture theatre, and a variety of teaching rooms and social learning spaces.


      Timetables for your first week are normally available at the end of August prior to enrolment in September. You can expect to receive your timetable for the rest of the academic year during your first week. 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. Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities.


      Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of our published course information, however our programmes are subject to ongoing review and development. Changing circumstances may necessitate alteration to, or the cancellation of, courses.

      Changes may be necessary to comply with the requirements of accrediting bodies, revisions to subject benchmarks statements, to keep courses updated and contemporary, or as a result of student feedback. We reserve the right to make variations if we consider such action to be necessary or in the best interests of students.


      Expand All

      Year 1

      Compulsory modules:

      HUG1200Compassionate-Centred Conversations (20 credits)

      Compassionate-Centred Conversations provides you with an opportunity to reflect on the importance of compassion and empathy within a care setting. The ability to use active listening skills to communicate empathy for others is at the heart of compassionate communication and a vital ingredient of a skilled helping approach within mental health practice. You will develop active listening skills to enhance your compassionate communication with others, particularly those experiencing emotional distress or mental health difficulties, and be encouraged to reflect on your development.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HUG1146Health and Social Wellbeing Across the Life Course (30 credits)

      Health and Social Wellbeing Across the Life Course introduces you to contemporary and critical approaches in considering health and wellbeing across various phases of the life course and transitions for individuals, communities and populations. These include environmental and place factors, social factors, personal factors, health disorders, as well as activities and participation in everyday life. By the end of the module you will have considered key morbidity, mortality and disability issues as they relate to life course phases and transitions, equality and diversity. The aim is to enable you to identify the key challenges and issues in health and wellbeing as they emerge across the life course and transitions, for example maternal and new born, child and adolescent health, sexual and reproductive health, adults and older adults, and end of life.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Written Exam(s): 50%.

      HUG1137Introduction to Professional and Academic Skills (20 credits)

      Introduction to Professional and Academic Skills enables you to acquire key academic and professional skills on your journey to becoming an independent learner. Your academic skills will be enhanced to include note-taking, presentation skills, IT skills, the reading of academic articles and the development of a personal portfolio. You will also explore effective and ineffective communication strategies, self-awareness, resilience and transferable life skills such as time management, assertiveness, negotiation, active listening and problem solving.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HUG1138Introduction to Research Skills (20 credits)

      Introduction to Research Skills provides an overview of research methods. The module equips you with a broad knowledge and understanding of the function and application of research relevant to those working in applied health and social care, including the effectiveness of different models, client issues and groupwork. You will be introduced to both the theoretical and practical aspects of research skills including research terminology, numeric and non-numeric data handling, statistical analysis and interpretation of qualitative and quantitative data.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HUG1199Understanding Mental Ill-Health: Experiences and Settings (30 credits)

      Understanding Mental Ill-Health: Experiences and Settings develops your awareness and understanding of the aetiology and prevalence of mental health conditions. A key feature of the module will be to enhance your understanding of the importance of lived experience in appreciating the impact of mental health on participation in everyday life. You will explore the potential influences on mental health and learn to apply the biopsychosocial model, while also examining the benefits of compassionate centred conversations. The aim is to facilitate an understanding of the evidence-base surrounding the influence of mental health on disability, functioning and health.

      Assessment: Coursework: 75%, Practical(s): 25%.

      Year 2

      Compulsory modules:

      HUG2345Mental Health Law, Equality, Diversity and Ethical Practice (20 credits)

      Mental Health Law, Equality, Diversity and Ethical Practice enables you to gain an awareness and understanding of contemporary legislation relevant to mental health and wellbeing practice. Underpinning the module is a recognition of the need for practitioners who work to support mental health and wellbeing to be able to respond ethically and effectively to moral questions. The module will support you in understanding your own accountability within relevant professional, legal and ethical frameworks. You will be introduced to key ethical concepts and theories including approaches to decision-making, law and its application within health and social care.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HUG2347Person-Centred Care: Being an Agent for Change (20 credits)

      Person-Centred Care: Being an Agent for Change builds on your knowledge of compassionate conversations and prepares you to develop skills in coaching and mentoring by investigating how these concepts are connected through the theme of effective communication. Exploring the development, implementation and evaluation of person-centred care, you will discover how to implement effective change and, more importantly, support clients and patients to be actively involved in decisions around their care. Working with individuals with mental health and wellbeing needs, you will realise that what is essential about recovery is that a person’s unique experience is the starting point for all actions. The collaborative process begins with trying to understand the person’s experiences and how these are affecting day-to-day life from their point of view. This module will introduce you to the theoretical processes and models of working in partnership with individuals to appreciate and examine their needs, strengths and aspirations. You will discover a combination of techniques for planning care, underpinned with the key principles of advocacy, empowerment, ethical practice and compassion.

      Assessment: Practical(s): 100%.

      HUG2348Physical and Mental Health and Wellbeing (20 credits)

      Physical and Mental Health and Wellbeing introduces you to the contemporary drive for equity between support and services for mental and physical health problems. You will explore the social determinants of physical and mental health and the mechanisms through which they interact across the life course. Local, national and global policies on integrated mental health and physical health provision will be analysed. You will study and discuss the global recommendations on physical activity for health across the life course, while also considering the co-morbidity of mental and physical health conditions and the associated risks to health and wellbeing, including mortality rates. Identifying the key challenges and issues in achieving pro-active, coordinated and integrated care, you will gain a detailed understanding of the prevention of ill-health and the protection and promotion of health and wellbeing for individuals, communities and populations. Contemporary interventions that will be analysed include the use of behaviour change strategies, goal setting, coaching, recovery-focused conversations, peer support and self-management, alongside the promotion of positive mental health in community sports organisations and workplace settings. The role of healthy lifestyles will also be examined, as will the experiences of engaging in physical activity and community sports, from the perspectives of those with lived experiences of mental and physical health problems.

      Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Practical(s): 50%.

      HUG2346Protecting and Promoting Mental Health and Wellbeing (30 credits)

      Protecting and Promoting Mental Health and Wellbeing develops your knowledge in innovative mental health interventions which are aimed at preventing mental ill-health and promoting health and wellbeing. The module explores the relationship between health inequalities and mental health, both as the cause and consequence of deprivation and social exclusion. You will consider and debate what can prevent mental ill-health and promote mental health and wellbeing, using relevant public health and health promotion models. Investigating the evidence-base for innovative interventions, you will critically analyse the interaction between activities, health conditions, environmental and personal factors. The concepts and tools for measuring health and wellbeing will be explored and the corresponding outcomes and experiences evaluated. You will also be introduced to the essential shared capabilities for the mental health workforce, namely how to support recovery, challenge inequality and make a meaningful difference to health and wellbeing outcomes, with the opportunity to put your learning into practice. You will spend 120 hours on a work placement in a setting that involves protecting and promoting mental health and wellbeing.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HUG2213Understanding Research (30 credits)

      Understanding Research familiarises you with the nature and variety of research methods and data collection techniques, together with the need for an evidence-base to guide the decision-making process. You will evaluate qualitative and quantitative methods, examining the positive and negative aspects of both approaches in a comparative analysis. A key aspect of this module is the literature review. You will be shown how to develop a literature search strategy, learn how to find relevant literature using electronic databases and understand how to appraise the literature you find to identify key themes. Ethical considerations in relation to the development and undertaking of research will also be considered.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      Year 3

      Compulsory modules:

      HUG3267Coaching and Mentoring for Mental Health and Wellbeing (20 credits)

      Coaching and Mentoring for Mental Health and Wellbeing equips you with knowledge and understanding of the processes underlying motivational one-to-one and team coaching. The module is underpinned by coaching and mentoring paradigms (pedagogical and psychological) that will enable you to explore the differences and similarities between coaching and mentoring. You will examine coach and mentor roles and functions, different types of coaching and mentoring, coaching phases and the techniques and tools to support clients in achieving personal goals and developing competences and abilities. Working in groups, you will develop team coaching skills and learn how to promote group identity and empowerment. The aim is for you to reflect upon, and critically analyse, the strategies required to conduct an effective assessment with a client and promote cognitive, emotional and social relational life skills. You will apply the enhanced communication, empathetic listening and life coaching skills you develop to your work with people experiencing mental ill-health, including working with vulnerable groups.

      Assessment: Practical(s): 100%.

      HUG3266Healthy Communities, Engagement and Development (30 credits)

      Healthy Communities, Engagement and Development enables you to critically analyse a local community to assess its status as a ‘healthy community’ and to identify how that community can develop to become ‘healthier’. A ‘healthy community’ is a place which supports healthy behaviours and supports reductions in health inequalities. It should enhance the physical and mental health of the community and, where appropriate, encourage active healthy lifestyles through good urban design, local services, green spaces, food growing, walking, cycling and creating an environment for people of all ages which supports engagement and social interaction. This module introduces you to the concept of community profiling, examining the theory behind the initiative, while also increasing your understanding of the different methods deployed when profiling varied community settings and evaluating interventions. You will complete a work placement in a setting that involves working with groups and communities. Participating in a work placement to apply theory to practice, you will spend 120 hours in a setting that involves working with groups and communities.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HUG3268Leadership and Project Management in the Workplace (20 credits)

      Leadership and Project Management in the Workplace develops your knowledge and understanding of change management theories and models. Examining the factors which influence change across mental health and social care from a political, economic, sociological, technological, environmental and legislative (PESTEL) perspective, the module will enable you to select appropriate leadership styles and strategies to bring about effective change in health and social care integrative services. You will explore a range of approaches to project management and be able to select and apply the most suitable way of working to successfully complete projects. The module will also increase your self-awareness of your leadership strengths and preferences. This will be achieved through self-reflection and critical appraisal of your own skills and capabilities as a manager and leader in practice. You will gain greater insight into how you lead as you prepare for the transition to employment, learning from your own actions and the actions of others to facilitate personal and professional change and development.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HUG3269Personal and Professional Development in Contemporary Mental Health Practice (20 credits)

      Personal and Professional Development in Contemporary Mental Health Practice increases your self-awareness through the development of self-reflection and critical appraisal of your own skills and capabilities; academically, personally and professionally in practice. This module will develop essential employability skills through the completion of a personal and professional development portfolio. You will be encouraged to reflect on the complexities of professionalism in the arena of mental health and wellbeing, as well as your knowledge, skills and experiences in relation to the ‘Ten Essential Shared Capabilities for the Mental Health Workforce’ (Department of Health, 2004). Learning from your own actions and the actions of others, you will identify the transferable skills you have developed and recognise how these can be applied within future employment and/or further academic study.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      You will select one of the following optional modules:

      HUG3100Dissertation (30 credits)

      Dissertation enables you to focus on an area of vocational interest, or concern, which is identified by yourself and agreed with your supervisor. You will engage in a structured review of the literature related to the specific area of study, apply critical analysis to the literature and make recommendations that could improve service provision.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      HUG3240Primary Research Dissertation (30 credits)

      Primary Research Dissertation focuses on the identification of an area of vocational interest or concern to be identified by yourself and agreed with your supervisor. You will engage in a structured review of existing literature and design and carry out a research project related to your specific area of study. You will apply critical analysis to the established literature as well as the findings from your proposed research and make recommendations that could improve service provision.

      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      Optional modules provide an element of choice within the programme curriculum. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by timetabling requirements.

      Entry Criteria

      Entry Requirements

      Typical offer 104-112 UCAS Tariff points. No specific subjects are required.

      If you accept a formal offer from Edge Hill University you will be required to apply for a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Enhanced Disclosure indicating that you meet the mandatory criteria of ‘Clearance to Work with Children and/or Vulnerable Adults’. Further information will be sent to you after you have firmly accepted an offer.

      Example Offers

      Some examples of how you can achieve 104-112 UCAS Tariff points are detailed below.

      • A Level: BCC-BBC;
      • BTEC Extended Diploma (or combination of BTEC QCF qualifications): Distinction, Merit, Merit (DMM);
      • T Level: Overall grade of Merit;
      • International Baccalaureate (IB): We are happy to accept IB qualifications which achieve the required number of UCAS Tariff points;
      • Access to Higher Education Diploma: 45 credits at Level 3, for example 9 credits at Distinction and 36 credits at Merit or 15 credits at Distinction and 30 credits at Merit. The required total can be attained from various credit combinations.

      Please note, the above examples may differ from actual offers made. A combination of A Level and BTEC awards may also be accepted.

      If you have a minimum of two A Levels (or equivalent), there is no maximum number of qualifications that we will accept UCAS points from. This includes additional qualifications such as Extended Project Qualification (EPQ), AS Levels that haven’t been continued to A Level, and General Studies AS or A Level awards.

      For further information on how you can meet the entry requirements, including details of alternative qualifications, please visit

      EU students can get country-specific information about the University’s entry requirements and equivalent national qualifications at

      International students should visit for information on the entry criteria for overseas applicants.

      English Language Requirements

      International students require IELTS 6.0, with a score no lower than 5.5 in each individual component, or an equivalent English language qualification.

      If your current level of English is half a band or one band lower, either overall or in one or two elements, you may want to consider our Pre-Sessional English course.

      Are there any alternative ways to meet the entry requirements?

      If you have the ability to study for a degree but lack the necessary qualifications or confidence, our Fastrack: Preparation for Higher Education course could be for you. This free, seven-week programme provides a great opportunity to enhance your study skills and subject knowledge and demonstrate that you are ready to study a particular subject with us, in lieu of achieving the UCAS Tariff points in the entry criteria.

      Upon successful completion of a Fastrack course, you will be well placed to progress onto a corresponding Edge Hill University degree, although additional entry requirements may apply and the availability of specific programmes cannot be guaranteed. For more information, visit

      Career Prospects

      What are my career prospects?

      On successful completion of this degree you may choose to develop a career in areas such as health, social care, education, community organisations, charities or the independent sector.

      You will be well placed to pursue a range of career options, including working as a primary care mental health worker, employment specialist, peer mentor, recovery college worker, social care worker, recovery coordinator, community development worker, support time and recovery worker, health and wellbeing coach, or in health promotion and social prescribing.

      The programme will also provide graduates with the underpinning knowledge and experience appropriate for entry into postgraduate study, which could lead into careers in research, nursing, social work or occupational therapy, or as a psychological wellbeing practitioner or educational mental health practitioner.

      How can I enhance my employability?

      It is useful to consider, even before you apply, how you will spend your time while studying and make the most of your university experience.

      Optional, additional activities may be available on this degree which could help to prepare you for a stimulating and rewarding career. These include:

      • Sandwich Years – you may have the opportunity to apply to complete a sandwich year placement, usually as the third year of a four year degree, and gain highly relevant work experience;
      • Learning a Language – you may be able to participate in Language Steps classes, delivered at the Edge Hill Language Centre, as additional study.

      Please note, the availability of these additional activities cannot be guaranteed for all students. Depending on availability and the number of students wanting to participate, there may be a competitive application process for sandwich year placements or you may be required to secure a relevant placement yourself.


      Tuition Fees

      If you are a prospective student who will be joining this undergraduate degree in academic year 2023/24, tuition fees are still to be announced. You are advised to check this page regularly and once the position has been confirmed we will update this information.

      EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, as well as Irish nationals, may be eligible for the UK tuition fee rate.

      The University may administer a small inflationary rise in tuition fees, in line with Government policy, in subsequent academic years as you progress through the course.

      Financial Support

      Subject to eligibility, UK students joining this undergraduate degree can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan from the Government to cover the full cost of tuition fees. UK students enrolling on the programme may also be eligible to apply for additional funding to help with living costs.

      Further details of financial support arrangements for eligible UK students joining undergraduate degrees in academic year 2023/24 are still to be announced by the Government. You are advised to check this page regularly and once the position has been confirmed we will update this information.

      EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme may be eligible to apply for financial support. Irish nationals should ordinarily apply to Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI). Please see for further details.

      Financial support information for international students can be found at


      Ten scholarship winners sitting together in a lecture theatre at the Scholarship Awards Evening.Edge Hill University offers a range of scholarships with a competitive application process for prospective full-time undergraduate students.

      These scholarships aren’t linked to academic success and celebrate determination, talent and achievement beyond your coursework, for instance in creativity, enterprise, ICT, performance, sport or volunteering.

      To find out more about scholarships, to assess your eligibility, and to meet some of our dedicated scholarship winners, visit


      How to Apply

      If you wish to study full-time, apply online through UCAS at Visit to find out more about the application process.

      If you wish to study part-time, apply directly to Edge Hill University at

      Further information for international students about how to apply is available at

      Should you accept an offer of a place to study with us and formally enrol as a student, you will be subject to the provisions of the regulations, rules, codes, conditions and policies which apply to our students. These are available at

      Visit Us

      If you are considering applying to study at Edge Hill University, the best way to gain an insight into student life is to discover our stunning campus for yourself by attending an open day. You can view dates and book your place at

      Alternatively, if you are unable to attend an open day, you can find out more about our full range of events for prospective students, including campus tours and virtual activities, at

      Request a Prospectus

      If you would like to explore our full range of degrees before you apply, you can order an undergraduate prospectus at

      Get in Touch

      If you have any questions about this programme or what it’s like to study at Edge Hill University, please contact:

      International students should visit or email [email protected] with any queries about overseas study.

      Course Changes

      Expand All This tab outlines any material changes to course content, programme structure, assessment methods, entry criteria, and modes of study or delivery, implemented in the past two years. Future material changes will be added here as amends are made to course information.

      7th December 2021 - Change to Entry Requirements

      An interview no longer forms part of the selection process for this degree (unless required to discuss individual circumstances, for example Recognition of Prior Learning).

      2nd March 2021 - Update to Example Offers

      Example offers updated to include the Education and Childcare T Level with an overall grade of Merit.

      Covid-19 - Contemporary Mental Health Practice Essential Information

      Teaching and Learning at Edge Hill University in 2020

      In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, answers your questions and explains how teaching will work when you join us at Edge Hill University in September.

      Campus Facilities at Edge Hill University in 2020

      In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, explains how we’re preparing the campus for your arrival in September and the facilities that will be available.

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