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Philosophy and Mental Health MA / PgDip / PgCert

Philosophy and Mental Health MA / PgDip / PgCert

Key information

Qualification type

MA - Master of Arts

Subject areas

People With Mental Health Problems: Social Work Philosophy

Course type


Course Summary

The philosophy of mental health is a rapidly developing field developed by philosophers, clinicians, eg psychiatrists and mental health nurses and mental health service users. Based on the Oxford Textbook of Philosophy and Psychiatry co-authored by the course leader, the MA Philosophy and Mental Health course aims to develop a better understanding of psychiatry, and mental health care more broadly, through an analysis of some of its fundamental concepts. The programme in Philosophy and Mental Health is part of a newly developing interdisciplinary field looking at conceptual and evaluative aspects of mental health care. More so than any other area of healthcare, mental health raises conceptual as well as empirical difficulties.

The role of values in diagnosis, the validity or objectivity of taxonomy, the central relationship of mind and brain are all key issues underpinning healthcare calling for conceptual as well as empirical clarification. The programme critically examines the assumptions that drive the agenda in mental health care. It aims to foster analytic and argumentative skills in its students in order for them to have a better understanding of practice and, in some cases, to carry out further and original research in this newly developing field. Students will be drawn from all areas of mental health care including service users as well as from a philosophy or psychology background. Most modules are assessed by a 5,000 word essay. The Introduction to Postgraduate Philosophically-Based Research module is assessed by three shorter assessments and the Dissertation is 10,000 words. Formative assessment is provided for a first short 2,000 word practice essay which can then be developed into the first longer essay. Students can exit at Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma level.

Different course options

Study mode



3 years

Start date



A philosophical history of psychopathology
The philosophy of science and mental health
Core concepts in philosophy and mental health
Introduction to Postgraduate Philosophically-Based Research
The philosophy of mind and mental health
Ethics, values and mental health

Tuition fees

UK fees
Course fees for UK / EU students

To be confirmed

Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


International fees
Course fees for non-UK / EU students

To be confirmed

Average for all Postgrad courses (per year)


Entry requirements

Students need to a recognised British honours degree to a good standard, or its equivalent. In addition to access via prior academic qualifications, however, applications to this programme are also welcome from potential students with relevant practical experience in the field of mental health through, eg mental health nursing or patient advocacy.

University information

University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) is a leading modern university based in the centre of Preston. Offering innovation, world-leading research and real-world practicality to inspire their students, the University provides a high-quality experience. The University offers over 200 postgraduate courses – both taught and research – in a range of subjects. What's more, UCLan is ranked in the top 3.7% of universities in the world, while 16...more