The Sociology of Health & Illness
The Sociology of Health & Illness 2022-23
School Of Medical And Health Sciences
Module - Semester 2
This module will introduce students to the main sociological perspectives on health and medicine, and will explore current debates concerning the nature and role of biomedicine. Lay experiences and health beliefs will be studied, and lay/professional interactions explored. The role of the professions, and changing power relationships within the health services will be put under scrutiny. The medicalization of birth, death and society will be considered. Students will evaluate the changing profile of health and illness in contemporary society, and consider the experience of chronic illness and disability. The social patterning of health according to class, gender and ethnicity will be analyzed, and competing explanations considered. Geographic inequalities in health status will be explored as well as social differences relating to age and the life course.
-threshold -D+ to D-Demonstrate basic knowledge of some important theoretical sociological and medical approaches, as well as some awareness of the social nature of health and illness; describe the basic principles of the social patterning of health and illness in contemporary society; describe how ideas about health and illness are constructed differently by laypeople and by professionals; discuss experiences of health and illness in modern society; present an essay which is supported by basic referencing.
-good -B+ to B-Be able to provide a clear account of the key theoretical approaches to the sociology of health and medicine, appreciate the social patterning of health and illness in contemporary society, and compare and contrast differing explanatory frameworks; explain how medical knowledge is socially constructed, and how lay perspectives differ from professional perspectives on health and illness; evaluate the relationship between health and society, and the changing experiences and meanings of health and illness; produce an essay, well argued and with supporting information, which is adequately referenced.
-excellent -A* to A-Be able to evaluate the key theoretical approaches in the sociology of health, and to provide a comprehensive account of the social patterning of health and illness in contemporary society; to assess and evaluate competing explanations for variations in health according to social position, and offer a well argued point of view; to compare and contrast lay and professional perspectives, and to analyse the relationship between health and societal change; to show a full appreciation of the meaning of illness in contemporary society; to produce an essay which is cogently argued, fully supported by research findings, and fully referenced.
-another level-C+ to C- Be able to show a good knowledge of key theoretical approaches to the sociology of health and medicine, and demonstrate an awareness of the social nature of health and illness; describe the social patterning of health and illness in contemporary society and provide explanations of these; describe how ideas about health and illness are constructed differently by laypeople and by professionals in the field of medicine; show an awareness of the development of medical knowledge, and the changing experiences of health and illness in modern society; present an essay which is well supported by good referencing.
- Analyse the dimensions of professional power in the field of health and medicine and an understanding of the limits of medical dominance.
- Demonstrate a knowledge of the social patterning of health and illness, and understanding of the competing explanations for these health variations.
- Discuss the significance of lay understandings of health, and understanding of how lay and medical interpretations diverge.
- Examine how health and illness are socially constructed.
- Identify and discuss the key theoretical perspectives employed in the sociology of health and illness.
Power Point Presentation