Purpose: This study was conducted to identify the effects of empathy, communication ability and attitude toward mental illness on psychiatric nurses` image for nursing students. Methods: Participants were 349 nursing students from two universities in G metropolitan city. A survey was conducted from June 10 to 30, 2016, using a self-report questionnaire. Data were analyzed using t-test, one way ANOVA, Pearson correlation coefficients and multiple regression with SPSS/WIN 20.0. Results: The level of psychiatric nurses` image for nursing students was 4.03±0.46. Models including the variables, empathy, communication ability and attitude toward mental illness explained 30.0% of the variance in the image of psychiatric nurses. Attitude toward mental illness was the most influential factor (β=.28, p<.001). Conclusion: Based on the outcomes of this study, steps should be taken to design intervention programs that emphasize a positive image of psychiatric nurses for nursing students.