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2018/19 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

PHLT5125M Population Health: Principles and Practice

15 creditsClass Size: 40

Module manager: Prof. Darren Shickle

Taught: Semester 2 View Timetable

Year running 2018/19

Pre-requisite qualifications

Ability to study at level M (normally has obtained 120 credits at level 3)

This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

The aim of this module is to provide students with a grounding in the key principles of population health and the implications for health care practice. This module will provide students with the knowledge and skills to assess and evaluate population health needs, and design and evaluate public health interventions to address those needs.


The objectives of this module are to provide students with a grounding in the key principles of population health and the implications for health care practice. The module will equip students with the skills to critically evaluate population health indicators, assess the health needs of a population, and design and evaluate public health interventions.

Learning outcomes
By the end of this module the student should be able to:
Critically discuss definitions of health and their implications for health care services
Demonstrate a critical awareness of the philosophical foundations underpinning population health approaches
Constructively evaluate key demographic and population health indicators
Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of systematic approaches to assessing health needs and health inequalities within a population
Discuss critically the psychological and sociological underpinnings of public health interventions
Critically evaluate the role of preventative medicine in the UK/developed health care system context

Skills outcomes
Ability to interpret key population health indicators
Ability to design and implement health needs/impact assessments


The module will cover the following:

Principles of population health:
What do we mean by health and what do we mean by populations?
Determinants of health and implications at a population level
Sick individuals vs sick society; the nature of causation and risk and the prevention paradox
Individual autonomy vs public good, incorporating public health ethics
Critical reflections on a public health programme case study

Population health indicators:
Population dynamics; introduction to demography – age/sex structure, fertility and mortality rates
Measures of deprivation
Surveillance and key population level data sources

Assessing health needs and inequalities:
Approaches and frameworks for health needs assessment
Undertaking health equity audits and health impact assessments

Designing and evaluating public health interventions:
Levels of prevention and health promotion
Psychological theories and behaviour change
Social theories and community health
Key features of population health interventions and how they may be evaluated

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Group learning21.503.00
Private study hours126.00
Total Contact hours24.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)150.00

Private study

Resources on the VLE will be available to guide independent and private study. This will include some pre-reading for specific taught sessions, powerpoint presentations online for students to work through prior to specified sessions, and guidance and suggestions for further reading to supplement the taught component and guide the student in preparing for their assessment.

The independent online learning will include set reading and discussion questions on the VLE using the discussion board tool for students to engage with the material and each other on directed tasks.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Student progress will be monitored by:
Attendance at lectures and seminars
Participation in seminar discussions and group work sessions
A recap/review session midway through the module
Formative feedback on an outline for the assessed report
Participation on VLE discussion board during the module

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Report3,000 words100.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 12/12/2018 10:48:54


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