Environmental and Public Health

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Environmental and Public Health

Aims of Module:

The module aims to:

* explore the evolution of environmental and public health

* identify core environmental health intervention areas

* demonstrate how public health is underpinned by epidemiological study

* equip the student with the means to apply the principles of epidemiology to contemporary public health problems

* enable the student to recognise opportunities for intervention to protect and promote health.

Intended learning outcomes:

Knowledge and Understanding

On completion of the module the student will be able to

* describe the evolution of environmental and public health

* describe core environmental health intervention areas

* recognise opportunities for environmental health interventions

* explain the principles of epidemiology

* synthesise the elements of public health and epidemiology.

Transferable/Key Skills and other attributes

* access and interpret information from a variety of appropriate sources

* apply the theory of environmental health, public health and epidemiology to the solution of contemporary environmental and public health problems.

Assessment (please indicate the type(s) of assessment (e.g. examination, oral, coursework, project, dissertation) and the weighting of each (%).

Type of assessment:



Duration (if exam)

Word count (if essay/dissertation):

Continuous assessment



1500 x 2




2 hours

Learning and teaching strategies

Lectures supported by classroom based study work, group discussion and an interpretative site visit.

Coursework assignment require identification of environmental health interventions and collation and interpretation of appropriate data relating to a contemporary public health issue.

Syllabus outline

1. definitions of health, public health, environmental health and health promotion

2. origins and development of environmental health practice in relation to water supplies, food safety, housing, workplace safety and health and environmental protection

3. evolution of the public health movement from 19th century beginnings with industrialisation and urbanisation to present day society

4. epidemiology and public health including historical case studies

5. definition of epidemiology including a study of the incidence, distribution and determinants of a contemporary disease using appropriate sources of epidemiological data

6. concepts in epidemiology: measurement of disease, transmission of disease, progression of disease and the multi factorial aetiology of disease

7. host, agent and environmental factors and the relationship between these with emphasis on intervention at environmental levels

8. the significance of health promotion and the techniques available

9. the role of environmental health professionals within the existing infrastructure for both environmental intervention and health promotion

Indicative texts and/or other learning materials/resources

Bassett, W.H. Ed Clays Handbook of Environmental Health Chapman & Hall, 2000.

Davey, B, Gray, A, Seale, C. (Eds) Health and Disease: A Reader, Second Edition, Open University Press, 1995.

Naidoo, J. & Willis, J. (2000) Health Promotion Foundations for Practice, 2nd edition. Bailliere Tindall, London.

Saving Lives: Our Healthier Nation (1999). Cm4386 the Stationary Office. London.

Inequalities in Health (1992) (Re-issue) combined volume encompassing Townsend, P. & Davidson, N. The Black Report and Whitehead, M. The Health Divide. Penguin, London.

Kemm, J. and Close, A. (1995) Health Promotion: Theory and Practice, MacMillan, London.

Graham Scambler Ed. Sociology as Applied to Medicine, W.B. Saunders, 1997.

Lectures Notes on Epidemiology and Public Health Medicine, Richard Farmer, 4th Edition, 1996.




Date of completion of this version of Module Specification …12 02 04

Date of approval by the Faculty Board: …………………………………..