Short courses


Architecture for Mental Health

  • 7 hours
  • 1 day (9am to 5pm)


On this one-day interactive course you'll learn about and reflect on the design and architecture of buildings for mental health services.

Buildings for mental health are one of the most important chapters of medical architecture and planning. Psychiatric environments often promote stigma and institutionalisation. Community care has set to change this, but psychiatric building stock resists change. Yet, as mental illnesses present low accuracy in diagnosis and treatment, environment becomes of great significance.

On this course you'll learn about the state of the art in psychiatric provision.

You'll consider how we can transform buildings for mental health from spaces of control and exclusion to integrated, psychosocially supportive facilities.

The course combines academia with practice and real world problems, such as the transformation of a metropolitan psychiatric campus.

You'll hear from world leading figures on design for mental health, clinicians and people who commission mental health buildings from the UK and the US on what we could do differently.

You'll also be able to network with leading professionals, people commissioning projects and academics from multiple-disciplines and gain a multiple perspective on the subject.

The course is run by The Bartlett Real Estate Institute at UCL.

Course content

The course will feature four main presentations:

From marginalisation to social vaporisation: removing the stigma surrounding mental illness via design

Given by Dr Evangelia Chrysikou, this presentation will set the tone of the day and highlight the major questions that will shape mental health provision in the next decade.

How to design mental health facilities

This presentation will focus on evidence-based architectural typologies and design solutions that could facilitate helpful social interactions between users of psychiatric facilities (staff, patients and visitors). This presentation will be given by Dr Nikolina Jovanovic.

The St Pancras redevelopment programme

In this presentation by Malcolm McFrederick you'll learn how Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust is transforming its mental health and substance misuse services. Their aim is to puts service users at the centre by building more visible, accessible and integrated services for people, alongside world class research driving the very best practice.

Caring for the mentally ill in North America: Implications for design and planning

In this presentation, Francis Murdock Pitts will outline changing conditions in care models, social commitment, and care settings for the care of the mentally ill in North America. He'll focus on the trends that have led to recent changes and what might be the next movements in care models and design.

Who this course is for

This course is for professionals and students with an interest in environments for mental health.

It's suitable for:

  • architects
  • designers
  • engineers
  • facility managers
  • healthcare planners
  • healthcare professionals
  • healthcare managers 

It may also be of interest to people working in the care home sector and for capital planning, facilities and estates of the NHS.

Learning outcomes

This course will help you understand:

  • therapeutic design
  • how buildings for mental health are expected to influence healthcare delivery
  • the potential of design and architecture and the challenges /opportunities for healthcare facility designers
  • the potential of design for mental health and end-user experience
  • healthcare buildings tender and NHS commissioning processes
  • working across sectors and collaborating with different disciplines
  • how to interact across sectors and increase your networking skills


You'll receive a certificate of attendance after completing the course.

Costs and concessions 

The standard course fee is £300. 

A discounted rate of £150 is available for:

  • all students
  • UCL partners (including NHS) and staff

Course team

Dr Evangelia Chrysikou - Course leader

Dr Evangelia Chrysikou - Course leader

Evangelia is a Lecturer at the Bartlett Real Estate Institute UCL, Program Director of MSc Healthcare Facilities and a medical architect. She's a former Marie Curie H2020 Fellow and is actively involved in policy making (being Coordinator on D4 Action Group of the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing (EIP on AHA) of the European Commission (EC)). Her work on therapeutic environments has received prestigious international awards. Currently, she is the PI at a Butterfield award of the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation and a CoI at a Marsden Fund from the Royal Society of New Zealand.

Malcolm McFrederick

Malcolm McFrederick

Malcolm is St Pancras Transformation Programme Director, Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust. He has a long history of working in the NHS, charitable and private health sectors. He has an operational background which allows him to function on the design and operation of services for patients, and how best the environment can support the needs of patients and clinicians. He's been Chief Operating Officer in both physical acute and mental health trusts in South East England. Prior to working in the NHS he worked in the private sector, and was involved in the Princes Royal and Darent Valley Hospital PFI schemes.

Francis Murdoch Pitts

Francis Murdoch Pitts

Francis is a founding partner and President of architecture+. He's widely recognised as one of the world’s leading planners and designers of psychiatric facilities and a leader in the development of an evidence-based design practice culture in North America. He's consulted on more than 300 projects in clinical settings in the United States and Canada. He's served as President of both the AIA’s Academy of Architecture for Health and the American College of Healthcare Architects. In his leadership positions in both institutions he has advocated the development of practice cultures that evince evidence-based design.

Dr Nikolina Jovanovic

Dr Nikolina Jovanovic

Nikolina is a psychiatrist and an architect working at Queen Mary University of London. In her work she explores the link between hospital built environments and patient and staff outcomes.

Course information last modified: 30 Nov 2022, 16:01