MSc Occupational Hygiene / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Occupational Health Management

Course unit fact file
Unit code POPH68892
Credit rating 15
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Available as a free choice unit? No


This unit examines the importance of organisations on occupational health, in particular the leadership, management, risk assessment and decision making in occupational health and safety practice. Topics explore the multidisciplinary approaches in the control of occupational and environmental hazards, in particular the role of the occupational health practitioner in emergency planning and disaster management, accident prevention and the influence of practitioners on global worker health protection.


This unit explores local, national and international strategy and policy around occupational health and hygiene, and how this impacts on community beyond the workplace. The unit critically evaluates the role of occupational leadership and management in effective worker health protection and managing safety at work. The challenges for global occupational health are evaluated through case studies on managing safety, occupational health service provision globally, emergency planning and disaster management and reflections on practice for future leaders in occupational health. The unit also reflects on the impact of the workplace on the environment linking this to changing occupational health practitioner roles as advisors to employers in relation to wider impacts of business and organisational activities.

Learning outcomes

The learning outcomes intend to:

  • critically assess strategies used for the management of worker health protection including safety factors and accident prevention;
  • demonstrate understanding of the role of the food industry in workplace health and safety and examine the fundamental principles of food safety and hygiene;
  • demonstrate understanding of the main environmental hazards and their risks to human health because of industrial activity;
  • examine the role of the occupational health practitioner in emergency planning, disaster response and management; and <
  • evaluate own role in leading and developing practice.


  • Global Occupational Health
  • Leadership and management of occupational health programmes
  • Industry and Environment<
  • Emergency Planning and Response
  • Managing for Occupational Health and Safety
  • Occupational Safety and Accident Prevention
  • Food Industry: Safety and Hygiene
  • Governance, audit and quality

Teaching and learning methods

Learning and teaching will take the form of online materials supported by online synchronous lectures, webinars, group discussion, tutorials, synchronous workshops and practical experience days where relevant or possible.

Blackboard and Zoom/Teams will be used for course materials including group discussions, announcements and updating of content, relevant lecture slides and additional reading, written example sheets and for online formative assessments.

Knowledge and understanding

On completion, students should be able to:

  • critically evaluate strategies and practice to identify and overcome barriers to the implementation of evidence-based occupational health practice at an organisational level;
  • examine current knowledge on occupational accidents, common causes, and the systems for accident prevention and managing accidents when they occur;
  • understand the significance of food industry as global employers, explaining food safety and hygiene risks and why knowledge of control is important to occupational health; and
  • critically evaluate the underpinning professional, ethical and legal concepts relating to emergency planning and disaster response.

Intellectual skills

On completion, students should be able to:

  • think critically about the effects of working practices beyond the workplace, i.e. on the environment;
  • critically evaluate the limitations of extant knowledge and evidence within the relevant practice setting;
  • understand the importance of seeking relevant information (e.g. toxicological) beyond the usual resources within occupational health and hygiene practice; and
  • reflect on the impact of a wide range of global influences (such as cultural background and intellectual capacity) on the working environment.

Practical skills

On completion, students should be able to:

  • refer to theory and literature to demonstrate the ability to creatively and independently assess plan implement and evaluate the occupational health service provision taking into account physical, psychological, socio-cultural and environmental factors that are complex and unpredictable;
  • manage and advance their own practice in accordance with professional, ethical, legal and policy frameworks;
  • make independent decisions that are based on evidence and research for worker health protection.

Transferable skills and personal qualities

On completion, students should be able to:

  • practise in a non-discriminatory manner, respecting and being responsive to the variety of beliefs, cultural practices and lived experiences of individuals and groups and challenging identified inequalities and discrimination;
  • demonstrate leadership and autonomous practice in relation to occupational health management;
  • demonstrate self-direction and originality in identifying, tackling and solving problems;
  • evaluate own role in leading and developing practice and service delivery in relation to worker health protection; and
  • communicate complex ideas in concise written formats

Employability skills

Group/team working
Students will develop the insight as to when to seek advice from other members of a multidisciplinary team, and also from experts outside the team when necessary.
Problem solving
Students will know how to obtain relevant further information (e.g. toxicological) from sources beyond the usual resources within occupational health practice in order to solve a problem.
Students will be able to transfer knowledge/skills from the discipline of occupational health practice to other areas of day-to-day practice.

Assessment methods




Written Assessment: Occupational Health Service Business Proposal or Evaluation 


3,500 words

Feedback methods

Formative assessments with automatic feedback are available throughout the unit as an aid to understanding the course materials. Feedback for the summative assessments is provided by tutors via Blackboard. Students may also receive direct feedback from interaction with session leaders throughout the course of study.

Recommended reading

  • Agius R, Seaton A. Practical occupational medicine 2nd ed. London: Hodder Arnold 2005. ISBN 034075947X OR Tar-Ching A, Gardiner K, Harrington, JM. Occupational health (Pocket Consultants) 5th ed. Wiley-Blackwell 2006.  ISBN- 10 1405122218; ISBN-13 978-1405122214.
  • Cherrie JW, Howie RM, Semple S. Monitoring for Health Hazards at Work 4th ed. Blackwell 2010. ISBN 9781405159623
  • Croner’s environmental management policy and procedures. Kingston-upon-Thames: Croner Publications 1995. ISBN 1855243237
  • Sprenger RA.  Hygiene for Management, 17th ed. Highfield Publications 2014. ISBN 9781909749269.

Study hours

Independent study hours
Independent study 150

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Anne Clayson Unit coordinator
Mark Johnson Unit coordinator

Additional notes

If you have any questions regarding the content of this unit, please contact the Course Unit Leaders, Melanie Carder or Anne Clayson via or 

If you have any other queries, please contact the Programmes team via

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