BSc Public Health (Distance/Blended Learning)

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:
Health Protection Y1

Course unit fact file
Unit code POPH10042
Credit rating 20
Unit level Level 1
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Available as a free choice unit? No


This unit will explore the basic principles of health protection including infection including causative agents, vectors and reservoirs. We will also go through basic mechanisms of immunity and vaccinations.


The unit aims to: develop the students’ basic understanding of health protection, including the principles of infection and immunity.

Learning outcomes

Category of outcome Students will be able to:
Knowledge and understanding

A1 Understand the basic principles of infection including the determinants of infectious disease.

A2 Understand the causative agents, reservoirs and vectors

A3 Understand the different mechanisms of immunity

A4 Understand how vaccines work

Intellectual skills B1 Identify and evaluate the evidence required for health protection policy and practice
Practical skills

C1 Find existing sources of evidence relevant to clinical and non-clinical health questions

C2 Be able to critically appraise common research designs and assess the published literature

Transferable skills and personal qualities

D1 Reflect on health protection principles and applications

D2 Develop communication skills to implement health protection interventions



Understanding bugs

  • Viruses
  • Bacteria 
  • Protozoa 
  • Other

Immunology of Communicative Diseases

  • Innate 
  • Acquired
  • Individual v Population


  • Development of vaccines 
  • Surveillance of impact of vaccines on populations 
  • New innovations in vaccinations

Teaching and learning methods

The majority of the course will be through elearning which will include required and additional learning, self-tests and discussion boards. There will be 5 webinars that will be recorded to allow synchronous and asynchronous learning.

Employability skills

Analytical skills
Oral communication
Written communication

Assessment methods

Formative assessment task Length Feedback method Weighting within unit
Discussion boards N/A Written feedback 0%
Summative assessment task Length Feedback method Weighting within unit
Recorded presentation of a health protection topic 10 minutes Written feedback 100%


Feedback methods

  • Students will be provided with personalised feedback on their recorded presentation of a health protection topic. 
  • Further opportunities for formative feedback (on non-assessed work) will also be provided during the course unit. 

Recommended reading

Hawker, Jeremy. Communicable Disease Control Handbook . 2nd ed. Malden, Mass. ;: Blackwell Pub., 2005. Web.

Male, David, Stokes Peebles, and Victoria Male. Immunology . 9th edition. Edinburgh?: Elsevier, 2021. Print.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Seminars 10
Independent study hours
Independent study 190

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Steph Mitchell Unit coordinator

Additional notes

For every 20 course unit credits we expect students to work for around 200 hours. This time generally includes any contact times (online, recorded and live), but also independent study, work for coursework, and group work. This amount is only a guidance and individual study time will vary.

Return to course details