From air pollution to the spread of vector-borne diseases, changes in our environment can have profound repercussions for human health.
The Health and the Global Environment Option of the MSc Environmental Technology is offered in collaboration with a highly qualified network of practitioners encompassing Imperial’s Centre for Environmental Policy, School of Public Health, the MRC-PHE Centre for Environment and Health, and the Grantham Institute - Climate Change and the Environment. The option focusses on building students’ knowledge and understanding of the key issues that link human and environmental health.
This is a highly dynamic and stimulating environment in which to study, where you will interact with a range of academics, staff scientists and policy analysts working on the most pressing environmental and health issues both locally and globally.
Human health is fundamentally linked to our environment. Environmental factors contribute significantly to the global disease burden, with an estimated 25% of death and disease globally linked to environmental hazards. In developing contexts, this figure can be much higher, reaching 35% in regions such as sub-Saharan Africa.
Crucially, many of these hazards are created or exacerbated by human activities, so managing health for the environment and the environment for health is a growing priority on the environment, public and global health agendas.
The Health and the Global Environment Option is designed to develop students’ knowledge and understanding of the key issues in environment and health. The emphasis throughout the course is on the understanding of the principles of exposure assessment, epidemiology, toxicology, health risk assessment and health protection, and their application in the field of environment and health, including:
The Option content covers four main themes:
Theme 1: Managing the Environment for Health
Considers the causes of environmental perturbation, its impacts on health, and approaches to resource management that may benefit health in a global context.
Theme 2: Environmental Decision-Making and Tools
Introduces important policy tools and techniques to assist in robust and transparent decision-making.
Theme 3: Quantifying Exposure and Health Impacts
Develops understanding of the principles and tools for qualitatively and/or quantitatively characterising health risks and impacts related to environmental sources.
Theme 4: Health and the Global Environment
Introduces key concepts in global health and global environmental change, their interactions and impacts, and identifies opportunities for co-management.
Students complete two assessed pieces of coursework. The first is undertaken in collaboration with the Environmental Analysis & Assessment and Water Management options of the MSc, and provides a "real-world" case study looking at contaminated land and water on Hounslow Heath, near Heathrow Airport, in close collaboration with the London Borough of Hounslow Council.
The other is a client-based case study specific to the Health and Global Environment option, and provides the opportunity for students to apply their developing knowledge to an emerging problem within the field of health and the global environment. These projects vary from year to year, with past topics and clients including:
The ultimate aim of the Health and Global Environment option is to prepare students for employment in consultancies, regulatory agencies, industry, research or non-governmental organisations where a systems-based understanding of environment and health issues is vital. Our alumni have found employment in government departments, consultancies, universities and NGOs.
“The experience I gained while studying the Health and Global Environment option really advantaged me in my career as a Health Impact Assessment consultant. Understanding the key concepts relating to topics covered such as epidemiology and exposure assessment is vital when linking health with planning. Although my focus is in the UK, one of the major benefits of the option is that it covers public health issues and management techniques in both the developed and developing world, giving students the opportunity to work anywhere.” Tara Barratt, Assistant Consultant, RPS Planning & Development
"The main strength of the health option is the opportunity to meet people from a wide variety of professions who lecture on different topics within the course. This brings the real world into the class room, giving the theory a more practical element. I am now a research associate in Occupational Health at the University of Birmingham and my knowledge of the industry from talking to visiting lecturers gives me extra confidence when talking to others at company meetings." Joanna Pope, University of Birmingham
"The whole health option course provided me with a sound knowledge of the broad area of health and the environment. Specifically, the training I received in the principles of exposure assessment, toxicology and epidemiology served me excellently in my summer project, which I undertook in Romania. The generic project skills which I learnt throughout the duration of the course have given me the resources to draw upon as a freelance environmental consultant." James Grellier, Environmental Resources Management (ERM) Ltd
Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Public Health and Health Promotion at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017).
The Public Health and Health Promotion course aims to:
• enable students to gain theoretical knowledge in relation to public health and health promotion, research and practice insight
• completion to MSc level further enables the student to complete a primary research study of relevance to public health and health promotion
The Public Health and Health Promotion course is mapped to the National Occupational Standards, Public Health Career Framework and contributes to attainment of practitioner and/ or specialist public health status (UKPHR).
Teaching and Employability:
- students will be able to critically evaluate theoretical and philosophical perspectives underpinning public health and health promotion
- develop students’ research knowledge and skills in research methods, utilising evidence and disseminating research findings to inform public health and health promotion practice
- a unique advantage of the programme is its application to practice and the inclusion of practice observation
The Public Health and Health Promotion course focuses on public health and health promotion and is both research-led and practice driven.
The Public Health and Health Promotion course develops students’ skills to provide students with relevant health information and the skills necessary to achieve change and to influence health policy at all levels.
The Public Health and Health Promotion programme covers historical background, current developments and future direction potentials of relevance in health and innovation in public health and health promotion practice.
A particular strength of the Public Health and Health Promotion course is the short observation placement module, enabling students to experience an area of practice interest as part of their development.
Students on the Public Health and Health Promotion course also undertake a primary research study as a requirement for completion to MSc qualification.
Modules on the Public Health and Health Promotion course typically include:
Developing Programmes and Evaluation
Foundations in Health Promotion
Foundations in Research
Public Health Practice
Public Health Evidence and Epidemiology
Management and Leadership for Public Health Practice
Public Health Ethics
Full-time Public Health and Health Promotion students will study two days a week (Wednesdays and Fridays) from October to April and dissertations submitted in September of the same year. Part-time Public Health and Health Promotion students will study one day a week (Wednesdays in the first year, Fridays in the second year) over two years, and dissertations are submitted in September of the third year. All modules are core and therefore required to be successfully passed, there are no optional modules available in the Public Health and Health Promotion programme.
Public Health and Health Promotion staff members delivering these different modules and significant contributors and are considered expert in their fields. They include:
Senior Lecturer Rachel Hopkins
Professor Jane Thomas
Dr Gill Spedding
Professor Deb Fitzsimmons
Senior Lecturer Tony Duffy
Dr Pete King
Lecturer Ruth Hopkins
Dr Stephanie Best
Dr Alison Hann
Professor Joy Merrell
The College of Human and Health Sciences has a vibrant postgraduate community with students drawn from a variety of backgrounds and nationalities. The College is known for its friendly, welcoming and supportive environment, which combined with its extensive facilities, state-of-the-art technology and superb beachside location, helps to ensure that students benefit from an exceptional student experience.
In addition, students have access to a wide range of excellent facilities and equipment for realistic workplace experiences.