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HSC8048 : Health Care Quality

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Michele Castelli
  • Lecturer: Dr Sarah Wigham, Mr Arne Wolters
  • Owning School: Population Health Sciences
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

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

Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0
European Credit Transfer System


This module introduces key concepts underpinning health care quality. It covers the theory and practice of different approaches to quality improvement as well as the evidence base for and methods of evaluating approaches to improve the quality of health care. The module will place these topics within the context of several strategies employed to address quality within the British NHS, including: recent reforms; safety improvement; clinical governance; and clinical guidelines.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module will cover a number of topics in health care quality, taught by academics and experts in the respective fields.
These will include:
-Concepts of quality
-Clinical audit
-Patient safety
-Shared decision making and the patient and public role
-Roles of different parts of the system
-Outcomes and indicators
-Organization wide approaches
-Health systems quality improvement

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion121:0012:00Preparation of summative assignment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching151:0015:00Present in person: Interactive seminars, incorporating group work
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study731:0073:00Preparation, reading, independent research
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

A range of teaching approaches will be used. The module draws widely upon the experiences and knowledge of the students, guided by academics and practitioners – and so small-group teaching will be the predominant mode of delivery. A number of external experts will provide unique insights into real life application and challenges across the field.

The teaching and learning methods used are designed to maximise opportunities for students to reflect on and incorporate their own professional and practical research experience into their learning. Students are expected to undertake private study each week in preparation for the next session. As this is a Masters level course, students will be expected to engage in significant self-guided learning, including allocated essential and further reading and accessing web-based learning resources.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise2M1002000 words - proposed quality improvement project
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Students will be given an open assignment which will allow them to demonstrate their understanding of key issues covered by the module and practice applying a range of critical skills. The assignment will require students to identify a current and specific problem with the quality of health care delivery – preferably based upon their own experience but possibly from available literature. Students will be expected to identify and critically appraise relevant evidence to support a change in practice or policy around their selected problem and then describe how they would develop an appropriate implementation strategy. Students should also consider whether or how their selected topics and strategies fit into national policy initiatives and how they would evaluate any change in practice. This assignment should be written up as a structured, concise account.

Transferable skills, such as communication and team-working, will be formatively assessed during group sessions as participants jointly consider the course materials and their implications.

Reading Lists