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MSc Child, Adolescent and Family Mental Health

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Year of Entry 2022/23

Child, Adolescent and Family Mental Health

Distance learning Nursing and midwifery

Study child, adolescent and family mental health practice in depth, and gain a postgraduate qualification via distance learning. Currently applications for the September start of this course are only open to home students.

Everything you need to know...

What is the fee? Home: £8,745 for the course
International/EU: £8,745 for the course
How long will I study? 3 Years
When do I start? September 2022

Course summary

  • Understand the determinants of emotional wellbeing for children and young people.
  • Apply your skills and knowledge in early interventions with families.
  • Gain postgraduate qualifications from PgCert to MSc via distance learning.
  • Work effectively with children, young people and families with mental health issues.

On this course, you’ll develop your knowledge of mental health for children, adolescents and families around an existing role. You’ll consider the factors which affect emotional health from an early age, and focus on a specific area in a dissertation. When you graduate, you’ll be ready for a rewarding, specialist role within mental health.

How you learn

All our courses are designed around a set of key principles based on engaging you with the world, collaborating with others, challenging you to think in new ways, and providing you with a supportive environment in which you can thrive.

Throughout the course, you’ll access and explore learning materials online, at your own pace. Theoretical models and principles will be explored alongside practical interventions and approaches.

Core modules consider the factors that influence emotional health, as well as conditions, interventions, health promotion and research. Other modules can be selected based upon your role and interests, and a dissertation module allows you to consolidate and focus your learning.

You learn through:

  • flexible distance learning
  • stimulating and up-to-date online materials
  • guidance from experienced staff
  • online interactions with fellow students
  • formative and summative assessments
  • production of a health promotion resource.

Course leaders and tutors

Greg Thomas
Greg Thomas
Senior Lecturer Mental Health Nursing

Having qualified as a Mental Health Nurse I specialised straightaway in the area of CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health), and my clinical career involved worki … Read more

Applied learning

Live projects

This course is relevant to anyone who is working with children, young people and families where mental health is an issue — you don't have to come from the specific field of mental health.

You will be able to draw from and expand upon the materials presented within the course, and apply them to your own specific role.

Throughout the course, you'll keep a log of your experiences and applied learning. In addition to this, ongoing assessments will require you to reflect on your practice.

You will also produce resources that can be used within your area of practice. This will help you to expand your “toolkit” in approaching and supporting children, adolescents and families with mental health issues.

Networking opportunities

Throughout the course, you’ll learn from health, social care, education and voluntary sector practitioners across the mental health sectors. You’ll also interact with peers and other students — hearing about experiences from a diverse variety of professions.

Future careers

This course prepares you for a career in

  • mental health practice with children, adolescents and families
  • mental health linking
  • mental health liaison
  • consultation
  • teaching/training
  • mental health project work/research

Where will I study?

You study this course online from any location

Equipment and facilities

On this course you work with

  • Dedicated Blackboard module sites containing video and text-based resources, discussion forums, interactive notice boards, webinar platforms and access to module reading lists and the wider Library Gateway.

Entry requirements

All students

Normally, applicants will hold a first degree or professional qualification which is recognised in the UK in a related subject. A first degree in a relevant subject for example BSc (Hons) Nursing/Education/Social Work. Those who have already completed the PGCert in Child, Adolescent & Family Mental Health would be able to APEL onto further parts of the course.

Other formally certified qualifications
Equivalent, international academic and/or professional qualifications will be accepted. Applicants will be considered on other relevant evidence which may include for example documented evidence of recent CPD activity, innovative practice, practice leadership, service development, research projects and/or publications. Such evidence must be clearly described in any application

Level of English language capability
Where English is not your first language an IELTS score of 6.5 is required, with a minimum of 6.0 in writing and no individual element below 5.5.

Relevant work or work-related experience
It would be expected that applicants have worked or would be working with children, adolescents or families in some capacity.

Motivation and engagement
Applicants will be motivated and prepared to study independently and autonomously. They must be prepared to embrace the challenges of Masters level study in an online distance learning environment, have access to a reliable internet connection to support engagement and have sound IT skills.

The programme is intellectually challenging and applicants should be prepared to actively contribute to discussion and debate; critically reflect upon own and others practice; explore and evaluate the evidence base underpinning their chosen course of study.

Recognition of prior learning (RPL) (previously known as accreditation for prior learning or APL)
Through the University's recognition of prior learning (RPL) process it may be possible for applicants to be exempt from some modules of the programme.

Recognition of prior learning is a term used to make explicit the link between assessment used as the basis for recognising learning gained outside of a formal programme and that used for learning within a programme; the key features of sound practice are common to both forms.

The term 'recognition' is used to describe accurately the process in relation to two widely recognised forms of prior learning: prior certificated learning and prior informal (or experiential) learning. The recognition of prior certificated learning involves the transfer of credit, or exemption from part of a programme, for learning that has previously been formally assessed. The essential characteristic of such learning is that the student has a certificate to evidence that the learning has been assessed. Sheffield Hallam University (SHU) determines the status of that certification (including consideration of its volume and level) as it relates to this specific course. All applicants who wish to apply for Recognition of Prior Learning must have been offered a place on the course and then are supported to complete the University online RPL process.

Through RPL procedures, applicants to SHU, or students already enrolled on SHU courses, may be able to use credit gained from formal study and assessment elsewhere, or from within the University, to count towards this award or to transfer to a different University award. The recognition of prior informal learning involves an assessment process on the part of SHU academic staff that leads to recognition, normally through the award of credit. The essential feature of this process is that it is the learning (gained through experience) which is being assessed not the experience itself.

In both cases recognition takes place within SHU's assessment and regulatory framework, which is designed to ensure that assessment decisions are conducted transparently, fairly and consistently for all programmes or subjects. The QAA indicators of sound practice are fully adhered to, and SHU publishes comprehensive guidance on RPL which is available to read publicly on SHU space under 'Rules and Regulations'. Students can apply for exemption from specific modules if they can provide evidence of previous certificated learning.

The process will commence with confirmation of a student being offered a place on the course. Claims under the RPL regulations will be considered by the course leader and other relevant colleagues. Students must provide evidence in the form of certification, the successful completion of the assessment activity, its academic level and credit rating. Outcomes of successful RPL claims will be ratified by the Board of Examiners and details recorded on individual student records.

Additional information for EU/International students

If you are an International or non-UK European student, you can find out more about the country specific qualifications we accept on our international qualifications page. You can also watch a video guide on how to apply.

For details of English language entry requirements (IELTS), please see the information for 'All students'.


Module and assessment information for future years is displayed as currently validated and may be liable to change. When selecting electives, your choices will be subject to the core requirements of the course. As a result, selections may be limited to a choice between one of two or more specified electives in some instances.

Year 1

Compulsory modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: Early Intervention In Child, Adolescent And Family Mental Health Credits: 30 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Enhancing Practice In Child, Adolescent And Family Mental Health Credits: 30 Assessment: Coursework

Year 2

Compulsory modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: Researching For Practice (Distance Learning) Credits: 15 Assessment: Coursework
Elective modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: Advanced Communication In Supportive Care Credits: 30 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Contemporary Issues In Advancing Practice (Distance Learning) Credits: 15 Assessment: Practical
Module: Evaluating Service Improvement (Distance Learning) Credits: 15 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Exercise For Mental Health And Psychological Wellbeing (Distance Learning) Credits: 15 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Health Promotion And Lifestyle Management Credits: 15 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Interprofessional Education (Distance Learning) Credits: 15 Assessment: Practical
Module: Leadership In Practice (Distance Learning) Credits: 15 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Learners In Difficulty (Distance Learning) Credits: 15 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Learning And Teaching For Practice (Distance Learning) Credits: 15 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Loss, Grief And Bereavement Credits: 15 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Mental Health Recovery And Maternal Care Credits: 30 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Perinatal Mental Health And The Family Credits: 30 Assessment: Coursework
Module: Planning Service Improvement (Distance Learning) Credits: 15 Assessment: Coursework

Final year

Compulsory modules
Module Credits Assessment
Module: Dissertation 60 Credits Credits: 60 Assessment: Coursework

Fees and funding

Home students

Our tuition fee for UK students starting full-time study in 2022/23 is £8,745 for the course. For part-time study the fee will be calculated pro-rata each year based on the number of credits studied (£730 for 15 credits or £1,460 for 30 credits).

† If you are studying an undergraduate course, postgraduate pre-registration course or postgraduate research course over more than one academic year then your tuition fees may increase in subsequent years in line with Government regulations or UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) published fees. More information can be found in our terms and conditions under student fees regulations.

International students

Our tuition fee for International/EU students starting full-time study in 2022/23 is £8,745 for the course. For distance learning study the fee will be calculated pro-rata each year based on the number of credits studied (£730 for 15 credits or £1,460 for 30 credits).

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Additional course costs

This link allows you to view estimated costs associated with the main activities on specific courses. These are estimates and, as such, are only an indication of additional course costs. Actual costs can vary greatly depending on the choices you make during your course.

Additional costs for Nursing and midwifery courses (PDF, 254.6KB)

Legal information

Any offer of a place to study is subject to your acceptance of the University’s Terms and Conditions and Student Regulations.


How do I apply?

You apply for this course via our online application form.

Apply for September 2022

You can also use the application form above to apply for future years of entry.

Not ready to apply just yet?

Why not come to our next open day? Open days are the perfect place to talk to staff and students, visit our campuses and get all the information you need. Alternatively, feel free to ask us a question.

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