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Understanding Mental Health in Muslim Communities

Explore the distinctive mental health experiences of Muslims and how mental health support can be improved in Muslim communities.

2,469 enrolled on this course

Image of an older person and a younger person holding hands in a comforting gesture

Understanding Mental Health in Muslim Communities

2,469 enrolled on this course

  • 4 weeks

  • 5 hours per week

  • Accreditation available

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Open level

Find out more about how to join this course

Investigate how faith affects access to mental health services

Research shows that Muslims in Britain are under-referred to mainstream services for mental health problems. When they are accessed, their rates of improvement are lower.

On this four-week course you’ll explore Muslim experiences of mental health and how to provide support for Muslim communities.

By contextualising Muslim experiences of mental health, you’ll learn skills and techniques to provide effective mental health support to minority communities.

Discover how understanding mental health can benefit the Muslim community

Whilst faith can help to address mental health problems, it can also contribute to them.

You’ll learn how mental health experiences vary in the Muslim community – from common mental health problems including depression and anxiety to circumstances affecting mental health such as Islamophobia or refugee status.

By understanding the issues affecting Muslim communities and how they influence mental health, you’ll be able to create more accessible routes into support.

Explore a spiritual understanding of Muslim mental health

You’ll appraise the inclusion of ‘spiritual’ as a fourth factor within bio-psycho-social understandings of mental health. With this framework, you’ll be able to create environments where Muslim clients feel comfortable discussing their faith and mental health.

Learn a holistic approach to pastoral care from Cardiff University

You’ll reflect on how holistic frameworks within religious and spiritual support can improve care when working with Muslim communities and increase recovery rates.

Guided by the experts at Cardiff University, you’ll understand the distinct ways in which Muslim communities are affected by mental health issues and will gain a variety of skills to provide more effective access and care to minority groups.

Skip to 0 minutes and 10 seconds Mental health problems are a pressing global  concern and the leading cause of disability and   premature death. According to the mental health  foundation one in four people experience mental   health problems each year, while faith can help  to address mental health problems it can also   contribute to them. Additionally the particular  circumstances facing some Muslims can affect their   mental health for example islamophobia or refugee  status, like the general population Muslims can   suffer from common mental health problems such  as depression. Research shows that Muslims in   Britain are under referred to mainstream services  for mental health problems, and when Muslims do   access services their rates of improvement are  lower.

Skip to 0 minutes and 55 seconds We believe that through gaining a better   understanding of the mental health experiences of  Muslims it is possible to provide them with more   effective support. In this introductory course we  will explore some of the distinctive ways in which   Muslims experience mental health, and consider  how this understanding might improve care the   course will benefit anyone who provides support  for mental health problems in Muslim communities.  

Skip to 1 minute and 32 seconds We will explore Muslim world views and some of the  contextual factors such as ethnicity and gender   that can help us to understand diverse experiences  of mental health among Muslims. We will learn   about how mental health is understood in Islam  and by Muslims and consider how this compares   to western models of mental health, we will then  take a closer look at how mental health conditions   are experienced within Muslim communities  with a specific focus on depression dementia   addiction and OCD.

Skip to 2 minutes and 5 seconds We will discuss what  recovery from mental health problems means   contrasting healthcare and Islamic or  Muslim perspectives, finally we will   think about how we can use these understandings  to provide more effective support for Muslims.   Join the team of experts from the Islam UK centre  Cardiff university who have developed this course   and signed up now to begin this journey  to understanding Muslim mental health.


  • Week 1

    Introduction to the course and Muslim worldview

    • Introduction to the course

      Welcome to the course. Within this section you will receive an introduction to Week 1 from the course educators.

    • What is 'Muslim mental health'.

      We will start by taking a look at what is 'Muslim mental health'.

    • An introduction to Muslim practices and beliefs

      In this activity, we'll look at Muslim practices and beliefs.

    • Muslims in Britain

      In this activity we take an intersectional approach to understanding British Muslims.

    • Mental health in diverse Muslim communities

      In this activity, we’ll look at why it is important for practitioners who provide mental health support to recognise diversity among Muslims.

    • Summary of Week 1

      In this activity, we reflect on all the topics we've covered including understanding Islam, Muslims and Muslim mental health.

  • Week 2

    Muslim Experiences of Mental Health

    • Introduction to Week 2

      This week you will gain a more detailed understanding of two features of British Muslim life that were identified in Week 1 as barriers to seeking support for mental health - stigma and Islamophobia.

    • Mental health stigma

      We begin by discussing mental health stigma, a barrier that Muslims face in seeking mental health support.

    • Islamophobia and mental health

      We continue by discussing Islamophobia and mental health, a further barrier that Muslims face in seeking mental health support.

    • Mental Health in Islam, contrasts with Western models

      We move on to discuss how mental health in Islam, contrasts with Western models, including how mental health is understood and valued from an Islamic perspective, based on interpretations of Islamic sources.

    • Islamic beliefs and practices and the mental health of Muslims

      We now look at how Islamic beliefs and practices can impact on mental health, in positive and negative ways.

    • Operationalising BPSS in mental health support

      We return to the bio-psycho-social-spiritual model and how this model is well-placed to encompass the religious beliefs of Muslims.

    • Summary of Week 2

      In this activity, we reflect on all the topics we've covered including muslim experiences and Islamic interpretations of mental health.

  • Week 3

    Common Mental Health Problems Among Muslims

    • Introduction to Week 3

      This week we will take a closer look at five common mental health problems, and consider how Muslims might experience them in distinctive ways.

    • Depression

      The first case study this week is depression, presented by practitioners, and Muslim people with lived experience.

    • OCD

      The second case study this week is OCD.

    • Dementia

      The third case study this week is dementia.

    • Addiction

      The fourth case study this week is addiction.

    • Psychosis

      The final case study this week is Psychosis.

    • Summary of Week 3

      In this activity, we reflect on all the topics we've covered this week, including muslim experiences of depression, OCD, dementia, addiction and Psychosis.

  • Week 4

    What is ‘recovery’, and who can help

    • Introduction to Week 4

      This week we map the landscape of Muslim mental health support in Britain, focusing on the organisations and practitioners who provide Islamically-inclusive mental health support.

    • Mapping the landscape of Islamically inclusive mental health support in Britain

      We hear first-hand from practitioners and managers of services providing mental health support and their experiences of incorporating knowledge of Muslims and Islam in the mental health support they provide.

    • The role of Muslim communities in mental health support

      In this activity, you will see that there is a growing awareness of the importance of mental health in British Muslim communities.

    • Muslim practitioners in mainstream services

      In this activity, we ask you to consider how you might adapt you own practice to better support Muslim mental health.

    • Imams and faith-based mental health support

      In this activity, you will learn about faith-based support from imams and in mosques, and why Muslims may seek faith-based support.

    • Good practice recommendations

      Finally, we focus on cultural humility as a practice approach that all practitioners might consider undertaking – whether Muslim or non-Muslim.

    • Summary of Week 4

      In this activity, we reflect on on all the topics we've covered this week, and during the course. Dr Yusuf also gives an Islamic perspective on recovery.

Who is this accredited by?

Royal College of Psychiatrists
Royal College of Psychiatrists:

The Royal College of Psychiatrists accredits training courses across a range of providers that deliver mental health training to the public. This accreditation quality mark is a seal of approval for mental healthcare training.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Identify some of the distinctive ways in which Muslims may experience mental health problems
  • Develop an understanding of why experiences of mental health problems can vary between different groups of Muslims
  • Explore the impacts of Islamic beliefs and practices on mental health
  • Evaluate the inclusion of spiritual or religious factors in existing holistic frameworks for understanding mental health problems when working with Muslim individuals and communities
  • Reflect upon how mainstream health and social care practitioners might create conditions or environments where Muslims can feel comfortable talking about faith in a mental health context
  • Reflect upon how Muslim practitioners might create conditions or environments where Muslims can feel comfortable talking about mental health problems in a faith context

Who is the course for?

This course is for anyone who provides mental health support in Muslim communities such as medical or social care professionals or religious pastoral carers.

It’s also suitable for anyone who wants to know more about Islam or mental health care practice.

Who will you learn with?

I am a Consultant Psychiatrist and Islamic Scholar with a special interest in spirituality and mental health.

I am Research Fellow in British Muslim Studies at the Islam-UK Centre, Cardiff University. I am interested in socio-economic inequalities, migration, and the everyday lives of British Muslims.

I am a Lecturer in Islamic Studies at Cardiff University. I am interested in Islam and ethics, and the intersection of theology with sociology.

Who developed the course?

Cardiff University

Cardiff University is a member of the Russell Group of the UK’s leading research-intensive universities and is ranked within the top 150 universities in the world in the QS World University Rankings.

Endorsers and supporters

supported by

Muslim Council of Wales logo

supported by

MCB logo

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Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Buy this course

$54/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Limited access


Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 28 Feb 2023

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

Sale price available until 28 February 2023 at 23:59 (UTC). T&Cs apply.

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

Sale price available until 28 February 2023 at 23:59 (UTC). T&Cs apply.

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