Personality Disorder (Research) MSc/PGDip

Personality Disorder (Research) MSc/PGDip

School of Nursing


Post- graduate





Contact UCLan

Post-registration Recruitment
Faculty of Health and Wellbeing, UCLan
Preston, PR1 2HE, UK.

Tel: +44 (0)1772 893836/3839

  • Duration:

    Part-time: 3-5 years.

  • Level:


  • Mode:


  • Delivery:

    Campus, Part-time

  • Campus:


  • Start Date:


  • Award Type:


Why study this programme?

The Personality Disorder programmes aim to shed light on this complex area of practice for the mental health professional. Increasingly on the agenda since national policy developments such as ‘Personality Disorder: No Longer a Diagnosis of Exclusion’ (DoH, 2003), the impetus to acknowledge personality disorder as a mainstream mental health activity continued with NICE guidelines in 2009. Such guidance outlined the development of services for individuals with personality disorder in all settings, including primary and secondary care, and recognised the importance of increasing specialist knowledge and staff development.  Recent innovations such as the Power, Meaning Threat framework (Johnstone et al, 2018), the Consensus statement: People with complex mental health difficulties who are diagnosed with a Personality Disorder (MIND, RCN, BPS et al, 2018), reinforce this, and the need to take a formulation based approach to care delivery. The Personality Disorder programmes are innovative courses, which provide students with an opportunity to enhance their understanding and practice within the area of personality disorder. Beyond this, they also aim to develop practitioners who can function at an advanced level and provide leadership and direct service development and planning for contemporary practice. 

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Entry Requirements

A recognised British first degree or its equivalent, or a BTEC Higher Diploma / Certificate. It is also expected that students will be working with individuals identified as experiencing personality disorder.

Programme at a Glance

Year 1

  • NU4309 Classification and Theory of Personality Disorder (single module)
  • NU4015 Assessment and Therapeutic Approaches to Personality Disorder (Semester 2)
Year 2
  • NU4555 Managing Complex Mental Health Needs, Relationships, Teams and Environments
  • Option modules:
  • NU4220 Safeguarding
  • NU4805 Leadership in Practice
  • NU4025 Introduction to Postgraduate Research
  • NU4026 Advanced Research Methods
  • HP4006 Research ethics and governance

Year 3

  • NU4053 Dissertation.

Further Information

The MSc Personality Disorder is a part-time programme of study. This means that you can enrol for up to 4 modules per year. For many healthcare practitioners, working full-time, this would be a heavy workload. If you enrol for the MSc award at the start of your programme of study, you will be expected to complete within 3 – 5 years.

The course attempts to discuss the key themes in current thinking around personality disorder, including the following themes:  

  • Classification and nosology
  • Models and theories of personality disorder
  • Ideological, ethical, and philosophical issues
  • Assessment processes
  • Risk assessment and management
  • Team working and communication
  • Therapeutic environments and interventions
  • Research process
  • Critiquing research
  • Contextual methodology and design
  • Service development and design

The content reflects the need to develop evidence based practice and allows students to consider the main issues in the area of personality disorder.

How to Apply

Individuals working for health and social care organisations should initially discuss their application with their employer as arrangements may be in place for financial and study leave support.

Individuals can purchase this course as an independent student and should obtain an application form from:

Post-registration Recruitment
Faculty of Health and Wellbeing
University of Central Lancashire
Preston PR1 2HE
Tel: 01772 893836/ 3839

For further information about this course, please contact:


For detailed information about studying this course at UCLan, please see the course handbook for your year of entry:

For information on possible changes to course information, see our Important Information.


Post-registration Recruitment Team, Faculty of Health and Wellbeing
University of Central Lancashire, Preston, PR1 2HE
See further information about postgraduate study and research. International students should visit our international pages.

Contact Us

Tel: +44 (0)1772 893836/3839


Fees 2020/21

Full-time: N/A
Part-time: £880 per 20 credit module

Further information:

For 2019/20 fees please refer to our fees page.

UK Government Postgraduate Loans Scheme

If you're thinking of studying a master's or doctoral degree you could be eligible for a loan from the Government to help you study.

For additional help with financing your studies, UCLan offers a range of Postgraduate scholarships, studentships, bursaries and the Alumni loyalty discount.

View further information

Learning Environment and Assessment

Students will undertake a variety of assessments including essays, case study, student initiated project, critical dialogue, research proposal, and dissertation or dissertation by papers.