Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing (Mental Health)

The PG Dip Nursing (Mental Health) blends the knowledge and theory of nursing and applies these into practice. The course is modelled around the NMC (2018) Future Nurse Proficiencies seven platforms allowing the student to explore the art of nursing using learning pedagogies and assessment techniques that are authentic and reflect skills and knowledge required in the practice setting.

The aim of this course is to produce autonomous, resilient analytical, critical thinking nurses with the ability to lead and work in a variety of settings yet maintaining the unique nature of their field of practice.

Alongside the theoretical underpinnings of nursing, this course utilises simulation to facilitate an understanding of the art of nursing and to learn and practice of nursing skills and procedures. In addition, simulation offers the opportunity to rehearse interpersonal skills, to understand and demonstrate professionalism and the ability to maintain service, user dignity and respect. Working alongside practice partners, students will become proficient in a wide range of nursing skills and procedures measured and assessed against the standards of proficiencies for registered nurses. On completion of the course, students will be able to apply for registration with the NMC. Additionally, there is an optional 3rd year available to obtain an MSc in Professional Practice.

Registrants will be knowledgeable in the core nursing skills with an ability to adopt a critical approach in applying these to their field of practice. This course is available for current NMC registrants wanting to obtain dual qualification in another field of practice.

Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 2 Years September Glyntaff A
Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 2 Years September Glyntaff A

The Post Graduate Diploma Nursing (Adult) consists of six 20 credit modules.

Three 20 credit modules, with an exit point of Post Graduate Certificate (Health Sciences), promote self-discovery and a critical awareness of the demands of becoming a healthcare professional. The key concepts of nursing, health promotion, illness prevention, biopsychosocial sciences, medicine management, research/evidence base and assessing and meeting needs are core principles explored. The student will adopt a critical approach to explore the therapeutic opportunities available across the fields of nursing. Critical analyses of professionalism, ethics and the law applicable across fields of nursing facilitate the student to develop in-depth understanding of the complex nature of healthcare in an ever-changing political environment. Practice learning experiences will support the students to develop their knowledge and skills in delivering care with active participation in care under minimal supervision as they work towards becoming more proficient in all aspects of person-centred care.

The three 20 credit modules for the final award of Post Graduate Diploma Nursing develop more advanced thinking and a critically analytical approach to learning whilst exploring the quality of care expected by service users, their families and carers. Main themes include key areas that underpin pathophysiology and pharmacology applied to fields of practice becoming prescriber ready and effective, appropriate, compassionate person centred care. Theories of education, leadership and management are explored and how they impact upon providing quality services to service users across the age continuum. During practice learning experiences students are required to demonstrate the knowledge, skills and professional attributes to be able to lead and co-ordinate person centred compassionate care and to support and supervise others. Completion of the Post Graduate Diploma enables application to the NMC nursing register.



A blended learning approach will be used throughout which will facilitate differing learning styles and acknowledge the philosophy of widening access. The learning and teaching strategy will reflect the range and diversity of the content of courses.  Lectures and tutorials will be used in conjunction with group discussions, debates and seminars to facilitate the development of knowledge and understanding of a wide range of themes and topics and their application across practice contexts. Role play will be used to facilitate the development of communication and interpersonal skills. Online activities, discussion forums, and enquiry-based learning will be used to explore several of the topic areas. Students will study and be summatively assessed on an online medication dosage calculation programme during each progression point to facilitate the development of the core nursing skill of the safe administration of medication, to include medication dosage calculations. This will be directly related to the intended field of practice of the student.

Students will participate in simulated learning in the Clinical Simulation Centre. This provides a well-equipped, state-of-the-art facility that replicates a range of practice settings. It has a dedicated team of staff consisting of registered nurses, midwives, and technical support staff who are supported by input from academic staff and registered practitioners from practice learning environments across all fields. Service users are also involved in the development and delivery of simulated scenarios. Clinical simulation offers the student the ability to gain and improve knowledge, understanding and skills in a controlled environment that is suitably challenging but safe and non-threatening. It provides opportunities for the application of knowledge to practice, decision making, critical thinking and team building. Importantly simulation is a means of complimenting the learning to which students are exposed in practice. Simulated clinical scenarios mimic the real world of practice learning experience and reflects all client groups in their authenticity. Practicing in a safe, supported simulated environment builds the confidence and proficiency of the student. 

Students will participate in simulated learning throughout the programme, across fields and in field specific sessions. As students’ progress through each phase of the courses, simulated clinical scenarios will increase in complexity thus providing the student with an appropriate level of challenge in the preparation for registration. The time spent in simulated learning will be in addition to the time spent in practice learning environments. 

Fifty percent of the course is undertaken in the practice learning environment.  Student will have a minimum of 21 weeks of experience in healthcare per part of the programme. Students will be supported by registrants during this time and will be assessed utilising the All Wales Practice Assessment Documents. Students will attend a range of practice learning experiences organised by the university to give a balanced programme leading to registration.


Students will be assessed in a number of ways during the programme. Assessments are structured in a way to ensure they are authentic and meets the needs of a developing registrant. Assessments include:

  • Assignments
  • Presentations
  • Practical Assessments
  • Class tests
  • MCQs
  • Online drug dosage calculations


The course is validated and regulated by the Nursing Midwifery Council. On completion of the programme students are able to apply for registration with the NMC.


Alongside excellent learning and teaching facilities students have access to a state of the art clinical simulation centre.

The courses enable students to develop their skills in communication and relationship management, procedural skills and nursing care and management interventions in a variety of state-of-the-art facilities, including the Clinical Simulation Centre and Hydra Minerva suite. 

The facilities at the USW provide an excellent opportunity for students to learn and develop the knowledge, skills and core values of nursing in safe learning environments that mirror, or recreate the challenges experienced across practice learning environments. This allows safe experimentation and practice of techniques and builds the confidence of students in preparation for their practice learning experiences.


Students are supported and taught by expert practitioners and service users in the fields of nursing and beyond, who offer discipline specific, contemporary examples of best health and social care practice. The course team include academic staff who are experienced healthcare professionals and educated at level seven and beyond. The team have a wealth of experience in supporting learning, teaching and assessment both in education and practice settings at all academic levels. Key members of the team include a number of experienced registrants working within USW Clinical Simulation Centre who are current and competent to help support the students in the development of key nursing procedures and skills.

We regularly revalidate courses for quality assurance and enhancement

At USW, we regularly review our courses in response to changing patterns of employment and skills demand to ensure we offer learning designed to reflect today’s student needs and tomorrow’s employer demands.

If during a review process course content is significantly changed, we’ll write to inform you and talk you through the changes for the coming year. But whatever the outcome, we aim to equip our students with the skillset and the mindset to succeed whatever tomorrow may bring. Your future, future-proofed.

• An undergraduate degree with a classification of 2:1 or higher.

• Employed in a relevant health or social care environment for more than 6 months, which requires verification from a registered healthcare professional.

• Ability to demonstrate the capability in numeracy, literacy, and digital and technological literacy to meet the course learning outcomes.

• Ability to demonstrate proficiency in English Language.

• A Portfolio of evidence which can include evidence of certified training / learning and transferable skills. This will be assessed by the course leader and the external examiner to determine the evidence meets the required learning outcomes. Please download our Guide to Recognition for Prior Learning to help you present your evidence for this.

• An Enhanced Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) check for the Child and Adult Workforce and Child and Adult Barring Lists. (no offences are considered spent)

• Demonstration of good health with occupational clearance.

• An Interview is required which will explore whether applicants have fully considered the demands of the course and profession and are able to articulate some of the values needed for the delivery of compassionate person centered care.


Applicants are expected to be fully cognisant the demands of their chosen field of nursing practice and have the character and good standing required to uphold the values of the Code.


Additional Requirements

GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics/Numeracy and English at Grade C or Grade 4 or above, or their equivalent, but consideration is given to individual circumstances.

Equivalent qualifications considered are Essential Skills Level Two in Communication and Application of Number, or Functional Skills Level Two in English and Maths. (Must have be achieved since 2016)

International Entry Requirements

We currently are not offering places to international students as the course is commissioned.

If this changes the NMC requirements is IELTS of 7 is also required.

Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2024 - July 2025 Fees

  • Full-time UK:  £6840

  • Full-time International:  £10667 

August 2025 - July 2026 Fees

  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

Student Perks

At the University of South Wales, you’re investing in so much more than a degree. We strive to provide our students with the best possible experience, no matter what you chose to study. Whether it’s access to top of the range mac books and PCs, state-of-the-art facilities packed with industry-leading equipment and software, masterclasses and events led by industry experts, or a wide range of clubs and societies to meet likeminded people, better tomorrows start with extra perks.

Each course also has their own unique student benefits to prepare you for the real word, and details of these can be found on our course pages. From global field trips, integrated work experience and free course-related resources, to funded initiatives, projects working with real employers, and opportunities for extra qualifications and accreditations - at USW your future, is future-proofed.

Click here to learn more about student perks at USW.

Additional Costs

As a student of USW, you’ll have access to lots of free resources to support your study and learning, such as textbooks, publications, online journals, laptops, and plenty of remote-access resources. Whilst in most cases these resources are more than sufficient in supporting you with completing your course, additional costs, both obligatory and optional, may be required or requested for the likes of travel, memberships, experience days, stationery, printing, or equipment.


Funding to help pay for (or cover) course tuition fees and living costs

Whilst you’re studying, you’ll have two main financial obligations – tuition fees and living costs. There’s lots of financial help available from the University of South Wales and external funding sources, that may provide loans (which have to be paid back) and grants, scholarships and bursaries (that don't).

To learn about course fees, funding options, and to see if you are eligible for financial support, visit our Fees and Funding pages.

Students on registration with NMC are able to apply for roles in a wide range of NHS, non-NHS and social care settings linked to their field of practice.

How does this course prepare me for employment?

Practice learning experience comprises 50% of the courses and students are offered a wide range of NHS, non-NHS and social care experiences within, near to, and away from the service users’ home.

Students are supported by registrants or healthcare experts throughout the practice learning experience. Practice Supervisors provides the practice based learning. Practice Assessors assess proficiency using the All Wales Practice Assessment Document and an Academic Assessor oversees the theoretical and practical components of the programme to ensure high quality support during the Practice Learning Experience.

Students are expected to travel but generally travel time will be less than 60 minutes. In some fields of practice placements may take more than the average outlined above. When possible accommodation will be provided to minimise excessive travel.

There is opportunity for European placements and these placements will be advertised to the student groups as they become available.

Employable stats are high from this commissioned programme averaging around 98%+