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Unit information: Health and Health Care in a Global Context 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 Health and Health Care in a Global Context
Unit code SPOLM1066
Credit points 20
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Dr. Armstrong
Open unit status Not open
Units you must take before you take this one (pre-requisite units)


Units you must take alongside this one (co-requisite units)


Units you may not take alongside this one
School/department School for Policy Studies
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law

Unit Information

This unit will examine current patterns of health and illness in different parts of the world. It will highlight continuing inequalities in morbidity and mortality and explore their links with wider economic and social processes. We will then look at global health governance. This will be followed by an overview of Infectious diseases and non-communicable diseases globally. Next, global policies important in tobacco, mental health, climate change, nutrition and physical activity will be explored in depth. We will then consider various inequalities in health and health care around the world.


  • To provide an overview of the global burden of disease
  • To review current debates about the factors shaping these patterns of morbidity and mortality
  • To examine the models of health care emerging in different economic and social settings and to review global inequalities in access and quality of services
  • To explore possible strategies for promoting healthier public policies.

Your learning on this unit

  • Understanding of key data on global health
  • Ability to link changing patterns of health and illness to wider processes of global restructuring
  • Understanding of major determinants shaping health care in different parts of the world
  • Capacity for critical reflection on policy options for improving global health

How you will learn

The unit will be delivered through blended learning involving a combination of lectures, group discussion and self-directed exercises. Interactive lectures and seminars.

How you will be assessed

1 x written assessment of 4000 words (100% and linked to ILO 1-4)


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. SPOLM1066).

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.