MSc Forensic Mental Health
The MSc in Forensic Mental Health will provide a new generation of clinicians and researchers with the skills needed to work safely, ethically and effectively with offenders who pose a risk to others due to their mental disorder. Through a combination of taught classes with a psychosocial focus and practical, placement-based learning, it will provide students with an opportunity to learn both as students, but also as active staff participants in the forensic mental health system.
This Master’s degree will be delivered in partnership with East London NHS Foundation Trust (ELFT). ELFT provide extensive clinical forensic services to over 300 individuals in North and East London. They have provided accredited training in forensic mental health and working with offenders to London Probation Services and the Department of Health.
The structure of the Master's degree will therefore draw on the strengths of QMUL as a world-renowned provider of teaching and research expertise to offer students a state-of-the art summary of forensic mental healthcare; together with clinical placements and supervision provided by ELFT, a recognised centre of excellence in the delivery of forensic care to one of the world's most complex and diverse populations, with an annual income of over £300million.
Different from other taught postgraduate programmes in the field, the course will offer students a distinctive psychosocial focus that will inform not just the theoretical material but also the practice-based learning. This approach recognises that all individuals come from a particular environment, which will inform their early development as well as their relationships in later life. As well as providing a framework for safe and therapeutic work with offenders, the psychosocial approach can help those on the course to reflect on their own experiences and practice in a way that is directly linked to further developing their skills as clinicians, researchers and leaders in the field
Students will learn about the legal, ethical and theoretical frameworks underpinning forensic mental health services; to apply these principles with a supervised clinical placement; and to reflect on this placement. They will learn the skills necessary work as part of a multi-disciplinary team (MDT) within a forensic psychiatric setting, and how to work in partnership with other organisations and pathways relevant to forensic mental health, such as the criminal justice system, probation services and local authorities. Students will also produce an original thesis, which can be oriented towards clinical or research knowledge, and will be encouraged to publish and disseminate this work.
The course is aimed primarily at psychiatrists and psychologists seeking to broaden their experience of forensic settings and gain a formal qualification in forensic mental health, as well as students from other science or social science backgrounds who may wish to go on to conduct high-quality research in the field.
1) Develop core clinical skills and academic knowledge required for working in forensic mental health services in the UK and overseas.
2) Provide a route for psychiatrists and psychologists seeking to work in forensic services to obtain an academic qualification through taught and self-directed learning; and also the experience of reflecting on their own practice in forensic settings.
3) Provide a route for those interested in becoming future research leaders in forensics with both the methodological skills and the clinical experience to pursue this goal.
4) To enhance the level of understanding of research evidence and research methodologies in individuals seeking to work in a forensic mental health context.
5) To promote and develop the psychosocial approach to working with offenders - a key component of current Ministry of Justice and Department of Health Policy - through both teaching and opportunities for reflective practice.
Programme information – Important points to note here