Bachelor of Science (Honours) Mental Health Nursing

Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Nursing in Mental Health Nursing

Course Overview

  • 4


  • 8


  • 379


  • US878

    CAO Course Code

Why take this course?

This four-year, ab initio honours degree offered by TUS in conjunction with its Associated Healthcare Providers and the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland. This programme has been developed in response to the changing mental health needs of the Irish public. It incorporates the study of theoretical and practice-based modules. Students will be exposed to classroom teaching and taught placements in a variety of clinical and non-clinical settings, primarily within the Longford/Westmeath Mental Health Services and the Laois/Offaly Mental Health Services.

Kate, a TUS Athlone Mental Health Nursing (US878) student, talks about how mental health has become a talking point in recent years and how shes always wanted to pursue a career in nursing.

What will I experience?

You will undertake 1,740 hours of theoretical study and 2,925 hours of clinical placement over the four years. This programme in psychiatric nurse education will provide you with a substantive knowledge base and facilitate the development of professional skills that will enable you to respond constructively to mental healthcare needs. Successful completion of the programme leads to the award of a Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Nursing in Mental Health Nursing from TUS and registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland. Registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland as a Registered Psychiatric Nurse (RPN) allows you to work as a mental health nurse nationally and internationally.

What opportunities might it lead to?

On successful completion of the course, and registration as a psychiatric nurse with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland, you are qualified to apply for a range of psychiatric nursing posts and may apply for a position at staff nurse grade in the Irish health care sector, as well as seeking promotional posts in clinical nursing, nursing administration and nurse education.

As a graduate of this course you can avail of further academic/professional courses in clinical specialties e.g., gerontology, behavioural nurse psychotherapy, addiction counselling, family and cognitive therapies, at TUS or other third level institutions. If you wish to pursue a career in specialist nursing practice, you can apply for higher diploma courses in areas such as behavioural psychotherapy and counselling. Alternatively, you may choose to pursue advanced studies in nursing education or nursing management.

Additional Information

TUS uses the Garda Central Vetting Unit (GCVU) to assess the suitability of applicants for placement within this programme. This is due to the considerable amount of placements undertaken with children and vulnerable groups in society. Therefore, offers to this programme are conditional and could subsequently be withdrawn if applicants do not meet the Garda vetting requirements.

Vaccinations Alert for all Nursing and Healthcare students, please note that

(1) As health care students, vaccinations may be advocated not only in the interest of the individual student, but also as a protection to health service users and workers, some of whom may have medical vulnerabilities. Getting vaccinated helps to protect people around students, particularly people at increased risk for severe illness from certain viruses.

(2) Access to educational opportunities in some healthcare settings may not be granted to healthcare students if they are not and will not agree to vaccination that is not otherwise contraindicated. In many instances it may not be possible for the Higher Educational Institutions to provide alternative training/educational opportunities to replace this access. As placements are a critical component of nursing programmes and are regulated Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland requirements, this in turn may delay progression through and potential completion of a nursing educational programme at AIT.

Full details of the HSEs COVID19 vaccination programme can be found at: COVID-19 vaccines -

Course Details

Course Duration:
4 Years
CAO Course Code:
Cut Off CAO Points:
Median CAO Points:
Course Award:
Bachelor of Science (Honours)
Course NFQ Level:
Level 8
Dept of Nursing & Healthcare
Minimum Entry Requirements:

Grade H5 at higher level in two subjects, plus Grade O6/H7 in four other subjects in the Leaving Cartificate. These subjects must include Mathematics, a laboratory science subject and a language (English or Irish).

Separate LC requirements from mature applicants. Mature applicants are not required to meet these minimum entry requirements. However, they will be required to undertake a written assessment. Further information may be obtained online at


6 places reserved for QQI students. QQI applicants to this programme must hold one of the following awards: Nursing Studies (5M4349), Community Health Services (5M4468), Health Care Support (5M4339) included in their award. They must possess distinctions in 5 modules which must include: 5N0749, 5N4325, 5N1279 or 5N2746.

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Student Testimonial

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Patricia Grennan, 3rd Year Psychiatric Nursing student

Mental Health was always something that I was very interested in. I chose AIT because of the state-of-the-art nursing facilities on-campus. The placements were also located within the midlands which meant I didn't have to travel too far.

Course Structure

Year 1

Preparation for Practice (Psychiatric Nursing), Anatomy, Physiology & Microbiology, Learning and Development in Higher Education, Clinical Placement (Psychiatric Nursing), Principles and Practice of Nursing Care, Anatomy, Physiology & Pharmacology, Mood and Emotional Disorders, Professional, Legal and Ethical Issues in Mental Health Nursing, Community Mental Health Nursing, Psychology and Communication.

Year 2

Schizophrenia Spectrum Psychoses, Child and Adolescent Mental Health, Health Studies, Clinical Placement, Care of the Adult in the General Hospital, Specialist Adult Care Groups, Groups and Groups Therapies, Enduring Mental Illness, Psychiatric Emergencies.

Year 3

Bereavement and Loss, Clinical Placement (Psychiatric Nursing), Research Appreciation, Physical Health and Mental Illness, Therapeutic Approaches and Counselling Skills, Applied Sociology and Applied Psychology – Psychiatric, Normal and Abnormal Personality, Neuroanatomy and Electro-Convulsive Therapy, Care of the Older Person (General Nursing), Law and Ethics (Psychiatric Nursing).

Year 4

Integrated Psychiatric Nursing Practice, Challenging and Ethical Issues in Psychiatric Nursing, Preparation for Internship, Clinical Placement VII (Psychiatric Nursing Pre-internship), Health Studies, Clinical Placement VIII (Psychiatric Nursing Internship).

Careers & Opportunities

Further Study

As a graduate of this course you can avail of further academic/professional courses in clinical specialties e.g., gerontology, behavioral nurse psychotherapy, addiction counselling, family and cognitive therapies, at AIT or other third-level institutions.

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