Stakeholder perspectives on co-designing a post-registration mental health nursing curriculum: A case study

Renee Molloy*, Alison Hansen, Eddie Robinson, Pauline D'Astoli, Tom Wood, Niels Buus

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review


INTRODUCTION: Globally, healthcare regulatory bodies require providers of academic programs to involve service users in the design and delivery of education, yet concrete and tested directions for operationalising this are lacking. Service users' involvement in education is often passive, ad-hoc and tokenistic, with limited input at the program development level.

AIM: To explore the co-design processes and outcomes of a collaborative revision of an Australian post-registration mental health nursing curriculum.

METHOD: Using qualitative case study design, the experiences and collaborative practices of five stakeholders (one mental health service user, two carers and two academics) co-designing a post-registration mental health nursing curriculum were explored.

RESULTS: Commonly identified barriers to meaningful involvement were overcome through planning and collaborative execution of the group's work. Participants reported a strong sense of successful collaboration in reviewing the curriculum, trusting relationships and mutual respect.

DISCUSSION: While it was possible to support and augment stakeholder knowledge in the context of post-registration education, co-design processes were ultimately bound by the university's relatively inflexible bureaucratic context.

IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: To ensure effective stakeholder collaboration beyond classroom teaching, mental health nurse academics must prepare service users for the role, explaining the language and practices of the tertiary health education and nursing context. As part of co-design processes, organisational mandates must be explored and negotiated, and mutual clarity regarding expectations and roles must be established. A Design Thinking approach can support meaningful engagement of stakeholders in curriculum development.

Original languageEnglish
Article number12988
JournalJournal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing
Pages (from-to)303-312
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2024


  • community participation
  • competency-based education
  • continuing
  • education
  • focus groups
  • nursing
  • psychiatric nursing
  • Psychiatric Nursing/education
  • Humans
  • Stakeholder Participation
  • Adult
  • Curriculum
  • Qualitative Research
  • Australia
  • Education, Nursing


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