M.Sc in Community Psychiatric Nursing

Mental health has become an increasingly important component of quality health care with the recognition that at least one person in four will experience a significant mental health challenge during their life. Policy and strategic changes over the last two decades have seen a major shift in both the nature of mental health care itself and the point at which it should be delivered. World Health Organisation and European Union reports plus a wide range of research all recommend the shift from institutional care to a community model. Many countries have invested heavily in the infrastructure to enable this shift to take place but the key to effective community care rests with the staff responsible for its delivery.  A highly skilled, well-trained, nursing workforce is central to community teams. However, knowledge and skills are not enough if the specifics of community care and the uniqueness of the work environment are not part of the nurses’ background. 

This dual master’s programme combines the faculties of two renowned educational institutions: The University of Malta, Faculty of Health Sciences and the University of Southern Indiana, College of Nursing and Health Professions.  Both offer specific undergraduate and master level degree programme in both nursing and psychiatric and mental health nursing, but this is the first time that the two institutions have delivered a specific second level degree in community psychiatric/mental health nursing. With different expertise and traditionally different ways of addressing the subject of community mental health care it is this diversity that provides the backdrop to an exciting and challenging academic programme, unique within the field of international nursing programmes. What sets this programme apart from other master’s level psychiatric/mental health courses is that it has both theory and practice components, enabling students to  to operationalise, under supervision the materials addressed within the theoretical element of the curricula. The main objective of the course is to expose students to the specific skills and personal requirements needed to work successfully within a community mental health environment. Teaching is shared equally between the faculty staff of the University of Malta and the University of Southern Indiana with additional input from high profile psychiatric/mental health nursing academics from both Europe and the USA.   


 Image of the main Maltese public hospital


The course is taught exclusively at the University of Malta Valletta campus, one of the oldest university sites in the world, in the heart of the historic capital city of Valletta. The campus is a beautifully restored high tech venue where students can really feel the influence of history ‘looking over their shoulder’. Clinical placements will be undertaken in different ways for European and American students, but all will spend time in the Maltese mental health service and be mentored throughout. The programme lasts for three semesters and students will complete an extended essay/dissertation of reflective practice either in the USA or Malta, depending on their respective institution. On successful completion students will receive two Masters awards one from each Institution.

The programme runs for 13 months, from September to September of the following year.

University of Malta, Valletta Campus
St Paul Street VLT 1216
Tel: +356 2340 7501/2
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