Personality Disorder PGCert

Personality Disorder PGCert

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: Usually one year - September to July.

  • 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. 

Entry Requirements

Informal enquiries are welcomed. Students should have an honours degree (2:2 class or above) or equivalent, in a relevant subject (i.e. health related, pure science or social science) from an approved institution of higher education. If you do not meet these criteria you are advised to contact the course leader for advice. Transfer of credits in accordance with University regulations may be possible.

  • Students normally have at least two years post qualifying clinical experience in practice OR proof of equivalent experience in practice.
  • Be working in, or able to access a practice environment that will enable them to meet and achieve the course learning outcomes.
  • Have identified a work based mentor, who will support and guide your development throughout the course.
  • Be able to provide two references (one practice/work and one academic).
  •  Be able to satisfy the course leader that you are competent to pursue the programme.

All students will be interviewed. The purpose of this discussion is first to ensure that you understand the nature of the programme and its demands and to pathway plan your modular route leading to the identified award and exit point. Identification of financial support will be noted.

Your application will be considered on its merits and in the light of the nature and scope of the programme. If you do not meet the above criteria you may still be considered for admission to the programme; you will be required to provide evidence of suitable experience and supportive qualifications.

Programme at a Glance

Year 1

  • NU4309: Classification and Theory of Personality Disorder (single module)
  • NU4015: Assessment & Therapeutic Approaches to Personality Disorder (Double module)

There are three modules which span across the full academic year and aim to assist you to develop new skills and knowledge, thus potentially making a difference for both the client and the service. NU4309 is a theoretical module, and will introduce you to concepts around the diagnosis, classification and context of personality disorder The second double module, NU4015 moves onto positive ways to assess and deliver therapeutic interventions for the person with personality disorder.


Further Information

The PG Cert in Personality Disorder is aimed at practitioners who recognise the complexities of the client group and who aim to increase capacity of the service to meet the client needs. You will be taught by academics with clinical experience in the field as well as a number of guest lecturers who are specialists in providing therapy for people with personality disorder. Service users also contribute to the delivery of the programme. The course is managed by academics, clinicians, past and previous students and service users. You will learn about the theoretical context of personality disorder as well as therapeutic approaches to assisting the person with a personality disorder to recovery. Case presentations and assignments that engage with your own practice are utilised to assist you to develop positive ways of working with this complex client group.

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: £765 per 20 credits

Further information:

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

Learning Environment and Assessment

The PG Cert in Personality Disorder is delivered at 'Indigo', at Ashworth Hospital, Maghull. This means that you have access to their learning facilities as well as those at UCLan. (Subsequent years of the MSc programmes are delivered at UCLan's Preston Campus).

There are three marked assignments, an essay, a case study and a critical appraisal of a practice document.