HSS1010 : The Science and Culture of Wellbeing


Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0
European Credit Transfer System


This module is designed for undergraduate students across all programs and aims to improve students' understanding of the determinants of mental health and well-being. Students will gain knowledge about what influences mental health, how to promote wellbeing and how to seek help. At the end of the course students will be equipped with a knowledge and understanding of mental health and well-being in the context of being a student and will be able to reflect on their own personal mental health and well-being needs. It is aimed that upon completion of the course students will be able to implement healthy choices that support well-being and resilience in their own lives which will be advantageous as they continue through university.

Outline Of Syllabus

In this module, students will learn about the emergent adult brain, genetic and psychosocial contributors to mental health, exposures common to university life which can detract from well-being, as well as actionable habits and healthy choices that can help individuals succeed both academically and personally. Topics to be covered include:
•       Introduction to the science of well-being, mental health and resiliency
•       The three S’s: Stress, sleep and self-regulation
•       Alcohol, recreational drugs, and mental health
•       Study-life balance, recreation, and well-being
•       Mental health awareness: Prevention, early recognition, and support
•       Translation of knowledge around student well-being, mental health and resiliency

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials65:0030:006 online self-paced modules – released online every two weeks
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion410:0040:00Patchwork portfolio – reflective piece based on 4 of the 6 online modules
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops61:006:00In-person workshops based on the module content and to aid reflective thinking and writing skills
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity64:0024:00Set activities & further reading to improve reflective writing and thinking skills
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures are provided as online self-paced material split into 6 individual modules that are released every two weeks. The online modules will be complemented by workshops delivered in person.

Online modules will impart information and discuss relevant concepts and will include in-depth slides as well as videos and audio descriptions to provide full explanations of certain topics and concepts. Links to relevant studies and further reading within the subject area are also included in each module for students to engage with as part of their independent guided study. The information provided in the online modules will ensure students reach the knowledge outcomes and will help students obtain an understanding of what influences mental health, how to promote wellbeing and how to seek help.

To supplement the lecture materials, in-person workshops will allow active discussion and reflection on the topics covered in the online modules. The demonstrator led sessions will provide a safe space for personal reflection of the students own mental health and well-being and help to create plans moving forward based on these reflections. Activities within the workshop will also entail group work for students to develop their collaborative working skills and encourage them to negotiate and build relationships with others. Activities set within the workshops, along with the activities included in the online lecture materials, will equip the students with the skills to be able to reflect on the information covered in the online modules and to implement healthy choices that support well-being and resilience in the students’ own lives.

The guided independent study time and reflective learning activities will allow students to carry out in depth review of the information imparted through lecture materials, to consolidate their learning and generate their own views that can be shared with others during in-person workshops and within their reflective log.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Reflective log1A1002000-word (or equivalent) reflective account: Cumulative reflective writing based on four of the six online lectures
Formative Assessments

Formative Assessment is an assessment which develops your skills in being assessed, allows for you to receive feedback, and prepares you for being assessed. However, it does not count to your final mark.

Description Semester When Set Comment
Reflective log1M3 x 500 word logs, one after module 1 and a further 2 on topics of choice
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The assessment for this module is a 2000-word reflective account submitted upon completion of the online lecture materials which is worth 100% of the total mark. Throughout the module students will be expected to complete a formative 500-word reflection, the first after module 1 and they can pick two other topics of their choice. They will reflect upon their learning based on the lecture content. Students will be asked to collate the three individual reflective logs upon completion of the whole course and add any extra thoughts and ideas to create a single 2000-word patchwork portfolio.

The purpose of the reflective portfolio is for students to reflect on their learning in relation to their own personal wellbeing, especially the ability to notice signs of stress or emerging difficulties, and also in relation to the wellbeing of others. The portfolio should represent a synthesis of their learning and ideas and should include a plan for implementing their new knowledge and understanding of wellbeing within their own lives.

Students will be supported with their portfolio in the workshops. Students will also be offered the opportunity to create and submit a patchwork portfolio using video or audio means if this would be preferred to an essay format.

Reading Lists