Social epidemiology and social science
This module aims to provide students with a critical understanding of the wider determinants of health and illness, including what these are, how they are measured, how they relate to health and illness, and potential mechanisms responsible for these relationships. The module also introduces a number of social science issues relevant to public health. The module builds on core teaching in term 1, and makes use of research examples using qualitative and mixed methods.
Module Learning Outcomes:
By the end of the module, students should be able to:
- Describe key examples of inequalities in health, illness and access to health care
- Select appropriate measures of wider determinants of health and illness
- Recall and discuss the implications of the wider determinants of health and illness for understanding public health problems and their solutions
- Critically appraise proposed theories linking wider determinants to health outcomes
- Critically discuss social science issues relevant to public health including lay beliefs about health and illness, social reactions to illness including stigma, and the importance of social and political power structures for health
Principles of Public Health, Research Skills, Principles of Epidemiology.
Qualitative and Mixed Methods, and/or some understanding of qualitative research traditions, key theories and methods (e.g. interviews, focus groups) would be helpful.
The module will be delivered using a combination of lectures, workshops, small-group exercises, and class discussions. Some reading may be required prior to some sessions.
A structured critical appraisal of a given quantitative or qualitative study. Summarise the findings of the paper for a policy audience; identify the implicit theory and reflect on how appropriate it is; critique measures of social determinants used; propose implications for your local authority etc – details will depend on the paper.
Module Length: 4 days