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MSc Advanced Community Pharmacy Practice

Year of entry: 2020

Course unit details:
Introduction to Pharmacy Public Health Services

Unit code PHAR62221
Credit rating 15
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Offered by Pharmacy
Available as a free choice unit? No


This unit is the first taught and assessed unit in the programme. It delivers the fundamental principles of advanced level learning in relation to community pharmacy public health services. The knowledge and skills in this course unit will underpin those delivered across all core and optional units in this programme.

It introduces the student to strategic public health policy, issues, theories and practices and through the use of interactive learning activities develops the student’s ability to synthesise, evaluate and apply this learning to their own practice situation

It establishes the learner within the e-learning environment of the programme by engaging them in a variety of supported and independent e-activities. It sets the scene for e-tutoring and creates the foundations for student working relationships and student/tutor communication processes.



The unit aims to enable students to:

  • acquire and develop an advanced knowledge and in-depth understanding of the background to public health, the current public health agenda and public health policy and apply this at local level to design and deliver high quality community pharmacy public health services;
  • acquire and develop the advanced skills to source and critically evaluate best practice and evidence of the contribution of community pharmacy to improving public health;
  • demonstrate high level aptitude in the essential communication skills required by an advanced community pharmacy public health practitioner;
  • acquire and develop the essential skills and behaviours to engage effectively within the e-learning environment used to deliver this programme;
  • identify their own learning needs with an emphasis on planning their progress through this programme, develop themselves as critically reflective practitioners and advance their own learning to sustain continuing professional development, and work at the forefront of their profession.

Teaching and learning methods

All learning and teaching processes for this programme will be delivered through e-learning resources based around Blackboard version 9.

Electronic versions of CPPE learning programmes will provide some of the learning for the unit.

This will be supported with links to the following policy documents, guidance and research papers which will deepen understanding and encourage self directed learning.

Other forms of learning used in the course unit will include:

  • webinars
  • discussion forums
  • e-learning modules
  • self directed learning.


Knowledge and understanding

  • Demonstrate an advanced knowledge of the origins of public health and the current public health agenda including:
  • current public health policy;
  • health inequalities;
  • determinants of health;
  • individual versus population approaches to public health and how these are influencing the development of the extended role of the community pharmacist.
  • Explain how the principles of epidemiology and health economics apply to public health.
  • Interpret the key drivers presented in public health policy documents and illustrate the application of these to community pharmacy public health.
  • Describe the key communication skills required for the delivery of community pharmacy public health services:
  • communication skills;
  • consultation skills;
  • essential skills for brief interventions/advice;
  • behaviour change.

Intellectual skills

  • Critically analyse and evaluate strategic guidance and data linked to:
  • public health policy;
  • health inequalities;
  • population approaches to public health and apply these at a local level.
  • Justify why community pharmacy has an essential role to play in contributing to the public health agenda through a systematic understanding of:
  • examples of good practice and innovation;
  • the evidence base;
  • how to establish a successful service.

Practical skills

  • Demonstrate advanced skills to deliver community pharmacy public health services including:
  • communication skills;
  • consultation skills;
  • essential skills for brief interventions/advice;
  • behaviour change.
  • Demonstrate effective management and leadership, skills (including skills mix) required for the delivery of  community pharmacy public health service.
  • Critically reflect on their current practice and apply the learning from this course unit to develop a personal development plan in relation to community pharmacy public health services.
  • Demonstrate the ability to effectively use an e-learning environment through interaction with peers and tutors in learning events, activities and assessments delivered through this unit.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • Recognise the value of a structured approach to patient centred consultation which focuses on individual patient needs.
  • Demonstrate an holistic approach in supporting patients with respect to the strategic public health agenda.
  • Appreciate the learning potential for students working within an e-learning environment.

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Written assignment (inc essay) 50%
Oral assessment/presentation 25%
Practical skills assessment 25%

Feedback methods

Provisional marks and feedback for coursework returned within 15 working days.

Exam marks and final marks returned after ratification at exam board. 

Study hours

Independent study hours
Independent study 150

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Paula Higginson Unit coordinator
Lesley Grimes Unit coordinator

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