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Workplace Health and Wellbeing

Overview

  • Credit value: 15 credits at Level 4
  • Convenor: to be confirmed
  • Tutor: Mark Stringer
  • Assessment: a 1500-word coursework essay (100%)

Module description

This module is primarily concerned with the role and respective interplay between psychological, social and organisational aspects of working, and seeks to understand how these various domains impact upon both individual and organisational health. This field brings together and draws on a number of key fields in the area of psychology including: cognitive and biological psychology, social psychology, work and organisational psychology, health psychology, environmental psychology, to name a few. Therefore, in order to comprehensively understand the processes and mechanisms underpinning and, in turn, impacting workplace health and safety, it is of vital importance to draw on numerous key theories from various fields of psychology.

The focus of this module is on how work can contribute to the impairment of workers' health, safety and wellbeing; and, in turn, how this knowledge can be used to prevent employee ill health and promote optimal employee health, engagement, resiliency and productivity. The module will have a concentrated applied focus, which will demonstrate and discuss the translation and application of psychological theories and principles into development of healthy workplace policies, organisational systems and management practices.

Indicative module syllabus

  • Introduction to workplace health and wellbeing
  • Work-related stress
  • Workplace health promotion and interventions
  • Work-life balance
  • Case studies in workplace wealth
  • Positive occupational health psychology
  • Critical perspectives on work and wellbeing
  • Human error and system design
  • Environmental psychology

Learning objectives

By the end of this module, you will:

  • understand the scientific underpinnings of psychology as a discipline, its historical origins, development and limitations
  • be aware of the history of occupational health psychology
  • understand the holistic nature of health, including physical, social, biological, and cognitive determinants of health
  • be able to describe the key historical and contemporary theoretical approaches to work-related stress
  • be able to describe and explain the key relationships among work/organisational factors and workers' health and wellbeing outcomes
  • understand the contribution of contemporary theories of environmental psychology to issues of workplace health and wellbeing
  • understand the key definitions underpinning workplace health promotion, and critically evaluate two key approaches: individually orientated lifestyle approaches and holistic settings-based approaches
  • understand how positive psychological principles and theories can be used to inform the development of workplace health
  • be able to describe and explain the various levels of workplace interventions and understand their contribution to the management of workplace health and safety.