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Unit information: Evaluation of Public Health Interventions in 2022/23

Please note: It is possible that the information shown for future academic years may change due to developments in the relevant academic field. Optional unit availability varies depending on both staffing, student choice and timetabling constraints.

Unit name Evaluation of Public Health Interventions
Unit code BRMSM0006
Credit points 10
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Dr. Beki Langford
Open unit status Not open
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School/department Bristol Medical School
Faculty Faculty of Health Sciences

Unit Information

This unit introduces the key concepts and principles of evaluation for public health interventions. It emphasises the importance of understanding complexity when designing study evaluations and that complexity may be a feature of the intervention as well as the context in which it is implemented. Students will be introduced to a range of study designs for evaluating public health interventions, including natural experiments, randomised designs, process evaluations and realist approaches. Teaching and learning are research-led and will draw on the public health intervention expertise within Population Health Sciences in Bristol Medical School. The course is underpinned by the NIHR/MRC Framework for the Development and Evaluation of Complex Interventions, and draws on recent developments in systems thinking for public health improvement.

Your learning on this unit

On successful completion of the unit students will be able to:

1. Recognise the importance of theory and key principles of public health intervention design.

2. Understand and apply frameworks for developing, implementing, and evaluating complex public health interventions.

3. Develop appropriate research questions for the evaluation of public health interventions.

4. Evaluate strengths and weaknesses of study designs for the evaluation of public health interventions.

5. Appraise the methods available to evaluate the effectiveness, implementation, acceptability and equity of public health interventions.

How you will learn

There will be 10 teaching weeks. Teaching will include learning activities set by the tutor including lectures (synchronous and asynchronous), small group work, discussions, individual tasks, and practical activities (face to face or online).

Directed and self-directed learning will include activities such as reading, accessing web-based supplementary materials, critical analysis and completion of assessments.

How you will be assessed

Formative assessment to enable the ongoing learning of students will be built into all sessions and will include approaches such as the use of exercises, quizzes, feedback from discussion and strategic questioning.

The unit is assessed by a 2500-word project. Students will write a protocol for the evaluation of a public health intervention (100% of unit mark, ILOS 1-5). As part of their formative assessment, students will have the opportunity to produce and outline for this and receive feedback.


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. BRMSM0006).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.