Skip to main content


DTC4002 : Quality Improvement and Service Redesign

  • Offered for Year: 2023/24
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Victoria Hewitt
  • Owning School: Biomedical, Nutritional and Sports Scien
  • Teaching Location: Mixed Location

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

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 10.0
European Credit Transfer System


This module has the following aims:

1. To introduce learners to the principles of quality improvement and service redesign in the healthcare setting.
2. To apply the theory of change management to the healthcare context
3. To develop and apply skills in quality improvement techniques.

Outline Of Syllabus

1. Identifying the need for change
a. Political drivers: How policy within the healthcare setting shapes services.
b. Service user involvement: Understanding the influence of patient-focused approaches on health and social care services.

2. Clinical Governance
a. Introduction to the system through which organisations are held accountable for safeguarding and improving the quality of the clinical services they provide.
b. Reflective Learning: Translating reflection and clinical supervision into service improvements.
c. Clinical audit: The role of clinical audit, defining standards and common pitfalls.

3. Managing change
a. Models and methods: An introduction to systems thinking, lean methodology and the Plan-Do-Study-Act cycle.
b. Barriers to change: Understand the causes of resistance to change and explore ways of managing this.
c. Leadership for change: An introduction to building alliances for change and creating shared purpose.

4. Spread and sustainability
a. Evaluating change: Exploring the types of evaluation used to assess clinical services.
b. Predicting success: Assessing impact and predicting the success of a change initiative.
c. Sharing best practice: Formulating dissemination strategies to share improvement work and improve clinical practice.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion140:0040:00Independent assessment preparation
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading124:0048:00Online content
Guided Independent StudyProject work124:0048:00Field work for development of project charter.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study122:0024:00Supplemental reading
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesScheduled on-line contact time41:004:00Online, synchronous tutorial (via Zoom)
Guided Independent StudyOnline Discussion103:0030:00Via discussion board
Guided Independent StudyDistance Learning Advance Preparation41:306:00Preparation for tutorial and post-tutorial study.
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The majority of the course will be offered by e-learning. Some elements will be offered as both face-to-face and online, with students given the choice whether to attend virtually or in person. The aim of this is to maximise choice and therefore appeal to a wide range of learners.

Through online module material, learning activities and private study (including directed reading) students will gain a detailed knowledge of the theory and practice of healthcare quality improvement and evidence-based service redesign.

Students will have the opportunity to develop an idea to improve an aspect of service provision relevant to their own clinical context. Interaction with tutors, quality improvement specialists and other students from a range of disciplines (online and face-to-face) broadens the learner’s knowledge of the various stages involved in such initiatives and encourages reflective practice.

Students will have the opportunity to come together for synchronous learning via a variety of formats. Online tutorials will be offered at a range of times to suit the needs of learners in clinical practice and at distant locations. Face-to-face events will be offered alongside equivalent, virtual alternatives in a blended approach that supports student choice to maximise participation.

Asynchronous learning activities will be hosted on the module website and the module’s online community (currently the e-portfolio platform). Students are required to maintain and share an online blog via their e-portfolio, in which they will discuss and refine an idea to improve an aspect of a service from their own clinical context. This is designed to consolidate and contextualise their understanding of the subject and curriculum, apply theory to authentic practice and make new knowledge discoveries within the wider healthcare context.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise2M100Practice Development proposal (3000 words)
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
Oral Presentation1MOral presentation
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Oral presentation – A presentation outlining the improvement idea to an audience of their peers, placement providers, healthcare quality improvement specialists and patient representatives. This short presentation will include the rationale and motivation for the improvement proposal and a stakeholder analysis. Each presentation is then followed by questions and answers from the audience. This will provide feedback to be taken into the written summative assessment.

Sessions to present will be offered in person and online. Online sessions will be scheduled at a time which maximise learner and audience participation and will be delivered using online meeting software (Zoom or any equivalent at the time of module release). In exceptional circumstances (such as extreme time zone differences) and at the discretion of the module leaders, a recording of the presentation may be submitted with feedback given asynchronously at the earliest opportunity.

Written exercise – Students will submit the finalised project proposal and charter, in a standard format. This format is commonly required for quality improvement projects in practice and requires students to demonstrate the application of the theory and practice of change management in the healthcare context.

MDiet candidates must obtain an overall mark of 50 or above to pass the module, however, if the module has more than one assessment students must also achieve a mark of at least 35 in each component of the assessment to pass the module.

Resit – Students will be required to resubmit their project proposal and charter.

Reading Lists