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Professional Development

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followed by option: 1 for CHSS, 2 for CBAL or 3 for CATE

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Introduction to Environmental and Public Health (online)

Course Details

Course/Module Code



Course Dates

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Distance learning

Careers/further study

This module can contribute towards:

PG Cert/PG Dip/MSc Environmental Health/Environmental Health Studies.


This level 7 (Masters level) module syllabus typically includes:

  • Philosophical and theoretical perspectives on health, illness, public health and environmental health, including epistemological and ontological arguments and social theories of subjectivity/objectivity, induction/deduction, structure, agency, human nature and modernity.
  • Philosophical perspectives on community and society: community organisation; group and organisational theory; political ideology (individualism, collectivism, communitarianism, market capitalism, etc).
  • Political and ethical values in environmental and public health: e.g. beneficence, equity, social justice, altruism, interdependence, social responsibility, harm principle, freedom, risk, etc.
  • Contributions of primary academic disciplines to environmental and public health, specifically sociology, ecology, psychology, education, political science, economics and biomedicine.
  • Historical and geographic trends and developments: evolution of the environmental and public health field; rise and prominence of biomedicine and scientific rationality; national and international political developments (including WHO and UN); global environmental and public health trends.
  • Determinants of health and illness: national and international trends; cultural, social, environmental and political contexts; key health drivers.
  • Inequalities in health, healthcare, opportunity and social status: social justice; rights and freedoms; local, national and international classification and social stratification (occupation, income, ethnicity, race, culture, religion, generation, age, gender, sexuality, opportunity and ability); political and ethical debates on inequality.

Course Director

John-Paul Bove


On successful completion of this 15 credit Introduction to Environmental and Public Health module, you will be able to access, synthesise, critically analyse and apply knowledge and understanding of:

  • Theoretical, philosophical and conceptual foundations of environmental and public health, derived from the natural, social, human and environmental sciences.
  • Determinants of health and illness, particularly in relation to social, environmental and political contexts.
  • Political values and ethical frameworks in environmental and public health.
  • Historical and geographical trends in the development of environmental and public health.
  • Health and social inequalities as determinants and consequences of health status and experience.
  • Health risk and surveillance from epidemiological and social science perspectives.
  • Environmental and public health ethics, rights and accountabilities.
  • Contributions of different sectors, institutions and professions to environmental and public health.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching is delivered in the format of online lectures, as audio podcasts or video capture, using appropriate software (e.g. Adobe Presenter, PowerPoint, etc.), online seminars and other web-based activities. Online seminar activities engage student-centred active learning techniques using online, Blackboard-based discussion platforms (e.g. Collaborate or equivalent) and blogs.

Essential, indicative and supplementary online learning materials and resources are also provided via Blackboard, with links to online library resources.

Study facilities

The College of Health, Science and Society has an excellent reputation for the quality of its teaching and the facilities it provides.

Get a feel for the Health Professions facilities we have on offer here from wherever you are.


+44 (0)117 32 81158


15 credit level 7 module

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