Health and Social Care Management and Policy - MSc

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Why study this course?

This course examines the social, political and economic context within the study of social policy and health care management. A particular feature of the curriculum is its focus on policy, management and collaborative working structures.

More about this course

This course is designed to meet the needs of those working in health and welfare services as practitioners, managers or administrators.

The student group is therefore multidisciplinary, and most course members combine study with full-time work. The course is also suitable for graduates with a research interest in the changing nature of health and social care in the new mixed economy of welfare.

The course has recently been re-validated and re-focused. It now offers increased opportunities for you to combine your study of health and social policy with specialist modules in evaluation, management, social care practice, regeneration or public health.

Considering the changing and dynamic nature of health and social care in the new mixed economy of welfare, our course opens up new employment horizons for you. It well equip you with the skills and knowledge needed to contribute to developments in the system.

Located in the heart of London, we are proud to serve an extraordinary student population, with young and mature students joining us from across the UK and around the world.

We have scheduled teaching mostly in the evenings to accommodate your employment and personal life alongside your studies.

Teaching methods

Your learning is structured around weekly contact time with the teaching team and is complemented by your independent work based on guidance supplied in lectures, group work, and interactive workshops. Blended learning, enquiry based learning and problem based learning will be used to help you comprehend theoretical concepts.

Assessment

You are assessed via essays, seminar papers, mini-projects, reports and management exercises.

Fees and key information

Course type Postgraduate
Entry requirements View
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Entry requirements

You will be required to have:

  • a good honours degree in a health-related subject or sociology, psychology, the social sciences or politics, or the ability to demonstrate the knowledge base, academic skills and motivation to benefit from and succeed in an advanced level award (Applicants with lower qualifications but substantial work or voluntary experience in a relevant area may be considered)

We're looking for motivated applicants who have a degree in health, management, policy, social care or related subjects and can demonstrate their knowledge base, strong analytical abilities that are underpinned by academic skills. Health and social care managers or policy makers with substantial relevant work experience may be considered and are also encouraged to apply. Experienced clinical staff or senior practitioners moving into a management role will be considered.

All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.

Modular structure

The modules listed below are for the academic year 2018/19 and represent the course modules at this time. Modules and module details (including, but not limited to, location and time) are subject to change over time.

Year 1 modules include:

  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start)
    • autumn semester
    • summer studies - Friday morning
    • spring semester

    The module aims to provide students with an opportunity to analyse a management issue in policy implementation in the fields of health or social care. It will enable students to reflect on and critically appraise the range of issues which a particular policy is designed to address and provide an opportunity to build on students’ existing knowledge and experience of policy development and implementation. Using a range of theoretical and practice-based perspectives from social science disciplines, students’ will apply their understanding of how the context affects the implementation of policy and the role of managers in assuring the effectiveness.
    Students are expected to be self-motivating and able to work independently. They will have completed SH7xxx Research for Health and Social Care before undertaking the Dissertation, and will already have produced a Research Proposal which should provide the basis for their dissertation.

    The module aims:
    To integrate the skills and knowledge-base underpinning the core modules on the Masters programme and focus these on management of a specific policy in the field of health or social care
    To apply appropriate knowledge of related research as well as theory, policy and practice in relation to the chosen issue
    To promote critical reflection on the process of developing and executing a post-graduate level dissertation.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Monday

    This module has been designed to enable students to critically analyse the importance of good leadership management in contemporary Health and Social Care settings. Students will explore issues related approaches to leadership and management in the context of ongoing change within the sector. Key concepts in leadership and management will be examined in light of contemporary research, policy and theory.

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Thursday
    • spring semester - Thursday

    The module aims to: -

    Equip students with an understanding of quantitative and qualitative research approaches
    Facilitate the development of a research proposal in preparation for the dissertation project
    Provide learning opportunities in literature searching including review and critical analysis
    Provide a grounding in evidence-based decision making

    Read full details.
  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Wednesday
    • spring semester - Tuesday

    This module introduces students to strategic planning and change management in the public service and to how these relate to the policy making process. It requires students to focus on the strategy making process in an organisation of their choice. The module overviews the design, formulation and implementation stages of organisational strategies and assesses the role of political and administrative leaders in the process of innovation and change.

    The module places great emphasis on the strategic management analysis of public organisations. Key tools, such as SWOT and PEST analysis, Scenario Planning, Brainstorming, Cost-Benefit analysis, Stakeholders analysis will be presented and applied on a series of case studies that will inform the teaching and learning process.

    An introduction to concepts of strategy, policy, leadership, innovation and change management is followed by an analysis of contexts, core values, problem identification, options analysis, models of decision-making, and implementation. Strategies of, and management of change are a key focus. The evaluation of the success of strategic decisions and an appraisal of ethical issues arising are also considered.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Tuesday

    This module aims to provide a critical understanding of the policy process and of challenges confronting countries in policy development, analysis, implementation and evaluation. The module uses a range of theoretical and practice-based perspectives from social science disciplines to examine the varying contexts in which health policy is developed and implemented and which shape health policy.

    To introduce students to a range of theoretical perspectives related to policy process.
    To develop an awareness of the varying social, political, economic and institutional contexts that influence the development of policies in different countries.
    To foster students’ engagement with major contemporary issues and debates in the policy process through group participation in them.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • summer studies

    To explain and evaluate contemporary research about children and families
    To develop an understanding and awareness of the policy and professional debates on the family and childhood
    To explore the concept of childism and promote the rights of the child to protection from harm

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  • This module provides an opportunity for in-depth enquiry at advanced level into the ethical dimensions of contemporary healthcare, and examines the application of ethical theories and approaches to practical dilemmas in healthcare.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Monday
    • spring semester - Monday
    • summer studies - Monday

    Health Improvement is one of the three pillars of Public health, alongside Healthcare Public Health, and Health Protection. The module explores theory, policy and practical aspects of Health Improvement within an International, and England context. This module covers the impact of the wider determinants of health, and the psychosocial aspects of health.

    This module aims to:
    Develop an advanced understanding of the foundations of Health Improvement
    Provide an understanding and analysis of the social determinants of health, health inequalities, and health across the life course
    Appraise the complex nature of behaviour and its influences, identifying how to intervene to effect change
    Give an advanced understanding and application of the principles, models, and concepts of Health Improvement
    Equip students with the knowledge and skills to assess a public health issue, design an intervention strategy to overcome this issue, including an evaluation plan to assess the implementation process, and impact
    Understand the commissioning of Health Improvement services in England

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  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Wednesday

    This module studies health in cities. The word ‘cities’ here is broadly taken as any human settlement classified as ‘urban’. The future of human settlement is predominantly ‘urban’. The United Nations Urban Observatory data shows that more than 50% of the world’s population already resides in urban / city settings. It is projected that by 2025 at least 60% of the world’s population will be residing in cities. In most developed countries today, at least 80% of the population resides in cities. Thus, most of the work in public health will be done in cities. It is therefore imperative to have an in-depth understanding of how cities influence human health to be more effective in promoting and improving population health around the world. The module uses a multidisciplinary approach to study the influence of ‘place’, wider determinants of health, and the changing urban environment on the health of residents in cities and city neighbourhoods.

    The module aims to: -

    • Examine the notions of ‘health crisis’, ‘health disadvantage’ and ‘health advantage’ in cities by using reference material from selected global / world cities that include London
    • Understand the significance for health and healthcare of London's and other global cities' "world city" status
    • Grasp the impact of ‘place’, wider determinants of health and the urban environment on the health of city dwellers around the world
    • Engage critically with public health materials regarding the health of city dwellers, including policy formulation process in relation to shifting agendas towards health improvement in city settings
    • Create an understanding of the differences in health, health policy and healthcare systems between cities in the developed and developing world against a backdrop of contemporary urbanisation, globalisation and sustainable development goals
    • Provide students with an opportunity to develop skills to get to grips with specific public health issues in relation to specific population groups in given cities
    • Critically analyse the influence of international and national policies, including the New Urban Agenda and sustainable development goals on health promotion and improvement within urban settings.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • summer studies - Thursday
    • spring semester - Thursday

    The short headline definition of Healthcare Public Health provided by the Faculty of Public Health is:

    Healthcare public health is one of the three core domains of specialist public health practice, alongside health improvement and health protection. Healthcare Public Health is concerned with maximising the population benefits of healthcare while meeting the needs of individuals and groups, by prioritizing available resources, by preventing diseases and by improving health-related outcomes through design, access, utilisation and evaluation of effective and efficient healthcare interventions and pathways of care.


    This module will discuss the application of public health sciences to healthcare services, planning, commissioning, and provision. It will describe some of the core skills and tasks required to produce evidence upon which to make evidence-based decisions in regards to these aforementioned areas. The approaches covered in this module, are also applicable to Health Improvement, and Health Protection, but in this module, they are covered in regards to Healthcare Public Health, grounding students in this discipline, while providing transferable skills to the other domains of Public Health.

    The module aims to: -

    Develop knowledge and application of a Health Needs Assessment
    Enhance evidence-base practice skills, in the area of evidence-based healthcare
    Provide a grounding in planning, development, and design of services based on health needs, prevention, early diagnosis, and treatment of illness, quality, efficiency, value, variation, and equality, on a population scale
    Develop knowledge and application of service evaluation and Health Impact Assessment
    Provide learning opportunities in literature searching including review and critical analysis

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Tuesday afternoon

    The Module introduces the student to the principles of inter-professional practice and offers the opportunity to apply these concepts to their own practice context. The Module uses blended learning in order to develop a range of skills and competencies for effective professional practice.

    Module Aims

    To provide an opportunity for students of health & social care, public health & associated disciplines to explore key theory, policy and practice elements of inter-professional practice from a user centred perspective.

    To enable students to experience in a highly interactive way, inter-professional practice and organisational management in order to inform present and future practice.

    To develop students’ capability to reflect upon their own experiences of inter-professional practice and explore both factors that influence this, including resource constraints and the ethical bases across the different professional groups and to see how common values may underpin effective practice.

    To locate the changing nature of organisations and evaluate the implications for effective inter-professional working within a theoretical framework.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Thursday afternoon

    Students are introduced to theories, concepts and models of workplace health in order to facilitate their professional knowledge of developing provision in the social professions arena. Contemporary approaches explore the link between health and wellbeing policy and the outcomes of organisational delivery. Workplace health and wellbeing is considered as a balance between personal, professional and organisational perspectives. The Module explores how such a balance can be achieved in organisational settings and considers the impact of a shortfall in health and wellbeing provision on the workplace. The Module includes dedicated time for observations of workplace initiatives to support health and wellbeing which contribute to the final component of assessment: the Health & Wellbeing portfolio.

    The aim of this Module is as follows:

    • to develop a knowledge of organisational approaches to health and wellbeing and the promotion of health and well-being in the workplace;
    • to develop an awareness of early intervention processes for those who develop a health condition in the workplace; and
    • consideration of the socio-economic factors which contribute to employment (and unemployment), in order to develop proactive approaches of inclusion, selection and recruitment in the workplace.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester - Tuesday afternoon

    The module focuses mainly on the micro level of management with the focus on developing team management and leadership skills. Management issues are addressed in the context of values-based organisations whether in the public, voluntary, or community sectors or social enterprises. Participants are introduced to management and leadership theories and relevant policy frameworks in order to facilitate critical reflection on aspects of their management and leadership role. In addition, participants will explore key practice areas, drawing from relevant theories and reflecting on their relevance to their own experience. Particular attention will be paid to health and wellbeing in the workplace, time management, leadership, and communication and negotiation skills. Students will also review their developmental role as a leader and manager, and the module will critically explore current ideas and practices regarding when working with teams, networks, and inter-professional working groups.

    The aims of this module are:
     To provide an overview and introduction to management within organisational contexts encompassing both community and voluntary organisations and the wider public sector.
     To enable participants to apply an analytical and reflective approach to their personal management skills and leadership styles.
     To explore the relevance and application of current theories and concepts in the management and organisational studies field to participants’ own experience, work context and roles.
     To explore a range of strategies and approaches to improve performance across diverse organisational contexts.

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  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester - Wednesday

    This module explores the unfolding of the ageing process, and the lived experiences of older people in contemporary societies, across diverse biological/physical and psychosocial domains. The module introduces students to key topics, including global ageing patterns and trends, beliefs and perceptions about ageing and older people in different cultures, major theoretical frameworks on ageing, health and social care provision for older people, social inequalities and economic security in later life.

    This module aims to: -
    Introduce students to key concepts, models and theories related to both individual and population ageing in contemporary societies
    Foster critical reasoning and ability to apply these concepts, and relevant research skills, appropriately when working with older people or in relation to public health/social policy and practice
    Help students acquire knowledge of the lived experiences of older persons
    Develop relevant practical research skills which will be valuable for further study, career and employment
    Allow students to appreciate ageing as a process characterised by much diversity, to critically reflect on relevant evidence, policies and services for older people
    Develop a positive attitude towards health promotion for older persons
    Foster a holistic view of health and well-being in later life, including its determinants

    Read full details.

Modules for this course are to be confirmed. Please check back at a later date or call our course enquiries team on +44 (0)20 7133 4200 for details.

After the course

This qualification will enhance the career prospects of those working in many settings where knowledge and skills in health and social care management or policy making is relevant. Graduates from our existing programmes report improved career choices and advancement as a result of learning acquired on this programme.

Many have gone on to careers as drug and alcohol rehabilitation managers, managers of learning disability services, primary care development managers, day centre managers, sure start programme managers, health visitor managers, prison service managers, residential and nursing care home managers, advisors in local authorities, community care managers, managed policy research, service commissioners, public health consultants and policy makers.

Additional costs

Please note, in addition to the tuition fee there may be additional costs for things like equipment, materials, printing, textbooks, trips or professional body fees.

Additionally, there may be other activities that are not formally part of your course and not required to complete your course, but which you may find helpful (for example, optional field trips). The costs of these are additional to your tuition fee and the fees set out above and will be notified when the activity is being arranged.

How to apply

Use the apply button to begin your application.

Please note, fees and course details may be subject to change.

When to apply

You are advised to apply as early as possible as applications will only be considered if there are places available on the course.

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