UCL Institute of Mental Health


University Mental Health Charter Award

UCL is delighted to be among the first five universities to receive the University Mental Health Charter Award, recognising our commitment to continuous improvement in mental health and wellbeing.

  • Encourages universities to develop a whole-university approach to mental health.
  • Helps to understand areas of strength and development to inform ongoing improvement.
  • Recognises universities that demonstrate excellent approaches to student and staff mental health.

Published in 2019, the Charter framework provides a set of evidence-informed principles to support universities across the UK in prioritising staff and student mental health. UCL was among the first five universities to receive the Charter Award, an accreditation scheme for universities that demonstrate excellent practice in mental health, in December 2022. 

University Mental Health Charter Framework

Among other principles, the Charter lays out details of how to create effective support services alongside an environment and culture that promote good mental health for the whole university community. The Charter was developed by the UK’s student mental health charity, Student Minds, and is supported by a number of enabling themes from Universities UK’s Mentally Healthy Universities model.

The Charter is composed of 5 domains: Learn, Support, Work, Live, and Enabling Themes and 18 themes (4-6 principles each).

Click here to look at the themes and their principles in more detail.

Learn domain

Work domain

Enabling Themes

Achieving the University Mental Health Charter Award

Assessments included on-site visits, submission of self-assessment of university's approach to the principles of good practice of each theme, and peer assessment.

UCL convened a University Mental Health Charter Working Group (with members from all 11 faculties) chaired by Prof Anthony David (Director and Sackler Chair, UCL Institute of Mental Health), which led our submission for Charter Award status. 

Professor David said: “Every faculty contributed and the University, from the leadership through to every kind of staff and student, was involved – making sure that all voices were heard, all views represented.

“It was vital that we not only showcased our innovation in the area but honestly confronted challenges. We are a huge organisation, and it requires enormous effort to make everyone feel supported and valued all the time in the face of academic, environmental and geo-political challenges.

“The assessors recognised the high priority given to mental health and wellbeing at UCL; it is one of our ‘Grand Challenges’. After all, a mentally healthy university is a productive and successful one.”

More information about the University Mental Health Charter can be found on their website.

To read about or access mental health and wellbeing support at UCL, please see the Student Support and Wellbeing website.