Professional course

Housing and Healthy Neighbourhoods (Distance Learning)

15 credit Masters level module

About this course

Course code:
Professional/Short Course
Health and Social Sciences
Distance Learning
Course director:
Phil Gilbert

Page last updated 14 December 2018


On successful completion of this module, you will be able to access, synthesise, critically analyse and apply knowledge and understanding of:

  • Historical and contemporary forms of building construction and the diagnosis and remediation of housing defects of public health significance.
  • A range of quantitative and qualitative data sources and policy documents pertaining to housing and health.
  • Current evidence on the relationship between housing and health, with specific consideration of the physical, psychosocial and behavioural mechanisms which contribute to a range of health outcomes.
  • Social inequalities and their influence on housing risk factors and health.
  • The principles of risk assessment in characterising the health & safety risks associated with housing of various construction types and tenures.
  • The legal mechanisms available to tackle poor housing conditions and mitigate risk.
  • The socio-economic factors which can result in neighbourhood decline and the mechanisms available for area renewal or improvement in remedying housing, social and environmental problems.

Careers / Further study

This course can contribute towards:

  • PGCert/PGDip/MSc Environmental Health
  • MSc Environmental Health Studies

Accreditations and partnerships:



  • The various forms of historical and contemporary building construction techniques; the diagnosis and remediation of common housing defects of public health significance.
  • The relationship between housing and health: accepted and emerging evidence; social inequalities and their influence on housing risk factors and health; housing condition variance geographically and across tenures;
  • Area deprivation and social exclusion: Causes of neighbourhood decline (social, economic, government policies); Indices of deprivation; review of the efficacy of government regeneration policies past and present; legal basis for neighbourhood renewal; partnership working and community involvement in renewal/regeneration activities.
  • Application of risk assessment techniques in characterising the health and safety risks associated with housing of varying construction types, age, tenure and occupancy; utilisation of appropriate statutory guidance documents in quantifying risk; critical awareness of the uncertainties associated with risk assessment methodologies.
  • Application of housing law in improving housing conditions: Knowledge and application of primary and secondary legislation; the utilisation of statutory guidance to inform and support decision making; statutory duties and powers; the efficacy of housing legislation in improving housing conditions and protecting public health.
  • Consideration of the potential for elevated health and safety risks associated with multi-occupied housing in relation to matters such as fire, overcrowding and shared amenities; evaluation of the strategies and interventions available to eliminate/mitigate risk.
  • Consideration of the features of sustainable housing and communities: Carbon emissions and contributions to climate change; energy efficient housing; land use planning; transport planning; healthy environments; flooding; water supply and demand.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching is delivered in the form of up to 12 online lectures (delivered with Adobe Presenter software or software of an equivalent nature). Online seminars, formative assessments and other forms of interactive/collaborative activities will utilise tools such as Blackboard Collaborate, Blogs, Wikis, quizzes and discussion boards. These will be delivered via the Blackboard learning management system.

Essential, indicative and supplementary online learning materials and resources are also provided via Blackboard, with links to online library resources.

Study time

This distance learning module utilises a variety of learning methods such as asynchronous online activities (including lectures, reading, quizzes, videos) and synchronous tutorials (seminars/discussions).

Progress through the module is managed through time-dependent release of online resources to ensure structured progression through the learning materials and the synchronous activities promote development of the student-tutor relationship and encourage a cohort identity in addition to supporting core learning. Approximately 30 hours of directed study (e.g. online lectures, seminars, etc) are delivered via Blackboard.


The Assessment Strategy has been designed to support and enhance the development of both subject-based and generic key skills, whilst ensuring that the module's Learning Outcomes are attained. The assessment for this module comprises of a reflective blog and a written theory based assignment. This two part assessment assesses all the specific module learning outcomes in addition to the CIEH Knowledge and Skills domains.

Full details can be found in the Module Handbook and on the module's Blackboard site.

Component A will comprise of a set of reflective blogs not exceeding 1500 words in total (Excluding tables, figures and references).

You will reflect on their learning and development over time, including what is learnt during online lectures/tutorials in addition to self-directed learning/activities. Reflective writing fosters critical analysis and evaluation skills which are considered fundamental to the practice of environmental health, with the CIEH identifying 'reflective practice' as a threshold concept of the discipline. The use of a blog will develop the students' digital literacy and familiarise them with tools which are becoming more frequently utilised by environmental and public health institutions for risk communication and health promotion purposes.

The logs will enable you to address a broad range of themes covered in the module such as:

  • Accessing and analysing health and housing data;
  • Inequalities in health;
  • Housing conditions;
  • Neighbourhood renewal;
  • Housing policy and regulation

Component B comprises of a written theory based assignment of not more than 1500 words (excluding tables, figures and references) which will address a contemporary policy challenge relating to the themes of housing, health and sustainability. The ability to exert influence on policy makers, industry and members of the public is a key skill for environmental health practitioners and therefore, the assignment will be presented in the form of a briefing paper enabling the students to critically analyse alternative perspectives and synthesise ideas to address a particular policy challenge.

Formative Assessment
Opportunities exist for formative assessment in the module, through Blackboard collaborate sessions and individual feedback

Prices and dates

Supplementary fee information

Please visit full fee information to see the price brackets for our modules.

Funding may be available to support your learning. Please contact your Trust Education Lead. If you work in the Private, Independent and Voluntary Sector, please contact your employer who will advise you.


Please click on the Apply Now button to view dates.

How to apply

How to apply

You are required to apply online for your CPD modules, which you can take as stand-alone courses or as part of an undergraduate (level 3) or postgraduate (Masters level) programme.

For further information

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