The University of Southampton

MEDI6070 Developing Public Health Practice

Module Overview

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

To enable you to develop and demonstrate a professional competence that requires further development as well as applied knowledge and understanding of public health practice (supplementary to learning in core modules). The topics may vary with student cohort preferences and staff expertise. You will advance your insight into yourself as an effective critically reflective professional. You will develop a clear understanding of the nature of competence, how to write about and identify appropriate evidence to show you have a particular competence to meet a professional standard consistent with eligibility for professional practice at initial or advanced level. You will consult the module leader to choose an optional learning outcome that matches a competence expected of Advanced Practitioners of Public Health or the Register of Nutritionists’ requirements for full registration, or another comparable standard relevant to your aspirations for your own professional development.

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • Explain the principles of the reflective process, how to use reflection in practice and the benefits to self and others AND
  • Describe the theories of nutrition /health education and behaviour change among groups of individuals or communities OR
  • Explain the interrelationships among the psychological, social, cultural and economic factors influencing food choice OR health behaviour OR
  • Show insight into the sociology and politics of institutions and other stakeholders in local, regional, and national health or food systems OR
  • Demonstrate extent of sustainability and equity considerations in public health and/or nutrition services (programmes) OR
  • The theory and practice of developing workforce capacity and mobilising volunteers to deliver public health programmes
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Show that you reflect on own behaviour and practice and identify where improvements can be made AND
  • Show your ability to act with integrity, consistency and purpose in keeping with your code or professional ethics, values and performance OR
  • Communicate effectively.
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Demonstrate how you objectively and constructively review and plan to improve your personal effectiveness AND
  • Demonstrate insight into the usefulness of different approaches to educating, training and learning OR
  • Dissect how understanding principles and methods of collaborative working can effect change OR
  • Identify factors that enable effective implementation of a public health / nutrition programme to promote equity or equality or justice OR
  • Apply insights into the effectiveness of public health (nutrition) education, information and communication programmes in improving health or wellbeing.


• Sociology of nutrition/ public health choices, behaviours, cultures and values relevant to literacy, communication, information, education, social marketing and ‘nudging’ • Health workforce development; community and lay capacity-building • Politics of public health (nutrition): equality, equity and social justice • Understanding competence, how to make a claim about a one’s competence and identify suitable evidence to support a claim. • Scope of practice, professional ethics and statements of professional conduct

Special Features

Students will have the opportunity to acquire and demonstrate they have met at least one technical professional standard and three standards from the professional code of conduct that apply to Advanced Public Health Practitioners or the Register of Nutritionists (Public Health) or relevant standards from another professional regulator or professional body.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Formal lectures and directed private study will cover the knowledge base of the syllabus, supported by guided and self-directed private study. During individual tutorials you will be guided and supported to synthesise, integrate and apply your understanding of the public health and / or public health nutrition sciences and professional competences you have learned in the module with your learning in the rest of the programme and your experiential learning or career progression plans. For your assignment you may choose to meet a learning outcome, which is also a competence that advances your practice in your current area of work or helps you to start or to change or develop your career. Your assignment may enable you to prepare for a research project or develop a facet of an assignment written for another module, provided that it does not breach the rules about recycling. Highly motivated well–organised students who plan in advance may find their own attachment, with support from staff if desired. You may analyse and reflect on prior or current experience as a volunteer or in paid employment. Students share their learning informally – verbally – with staff and give each other and gain from staff formative feedback.

Independent Study100
Total study time125

Resources & Reading list

Sawesi S1, Rashrash M, Phalakornkule K, Carpenter JS, Jones JF (2016). The impact of information technology on patient engagement and health behavior change: A systematic review of the literature. JMIR Med Inform. ,21 , pp. 0.

Faculty of Public Health.

Edelstein S. (2006). Nutrition in Public Health. A handbook for developing programs and services. 

World Federation of Public Health Associations.

Valentine NB, Bonsel GJ. (2016). Exploring models for the roles of health systems’ responsiveness and social determinants in explaining universal health coverage and health outcomes. 

International Union for Health Promotion and Health Education.

Public Health Foundation (USA).

Hunter D, Perkins N. (2014). Partnership working in public health. 

Guest C, Ricciardi W, Kawachi I, Lang I. Eds. (2013). Oxford handbook of public health. 

Royal Society for Public Health.

Sabate J, Harwath H, Soret S. (2016). Environmental Nutrition a new frontier for public health. Am J Publ Hlth. ,106 , pp. 815-21.

Dowler E, Lambie-Mumford H. (2015). Introduction: Hunger, Food and Social Policy in Austerity. Social Policy and Society. ,14 , pp. 411-415.

Sim F, Wright J (Eds) (2014). Working in Public Health: An introduction to careers in public health. 

Nettleton S. (2013). The Sociology of Health & Illness. 

UK Voluntary Register of Nutrition: Association for Nutrition.

Wessex Public Health Network.

Health Education England Health Careers.


Assessment Strategy

There will be two components to the assessment i) individual written outline report or commentary and ii) individual critical reflection. The pass mark for the module and all components is 50%. Both elements must be passed to pass the module.


Oral briefing


MethodPercentage contribution
Individual critical reflection  (500 words) 20%
Report  (1000 words) 80%


MethodPercentage contribution
Individual critical reflection 20%
Report 80%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External


Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Travel Costs for placements

Students doing attachments that are not local are expected to cover their travel and accommodation costs.

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

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