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Course overview

Interested in promoting health and wellbeing in the workplace?

At Nottingham, we’ll help you to develop into an effective research-practitioner. You’ll gain the critical insight into the scientific theory and evidence of contemporary workplace health and wellbeing challenges and opportunities; and learn to apply your knowledge in real-world settings. Our curriculum is constantly evolving to reflect the changing world of work, and we’ll help you develop your skills in research and data analysis so you can take informed action to protect and promote workers’ health and wellbeing.

This distance learning course is studied online when and where you want. It's designed to be applicable to a wide range of practitioners with an interest in workforce health and wellbeing. This includes occupational health nurses and physicians, health and safety practitioners, wellbeing specialists, HR professionals, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, nutritionists, and many more.

Our expert course team led by Dr Jonathan Houdmont with additional teaching from Professor Amanda Griffiths and leading industry voices will help give you the skills and knowledge you need to succeed and improve organisational effectiveness by fostering an organisational culture which focuses on employee health and wellbeing.

Why choose this course?

Flexible learning

Our distance learning approach means you can study when and where you want.

No exams

The course is purely assessed by coursework, meaning you won't have worry about exams.

Leading experts

Learn from research-active experts in the field

Course content

You will study a series of compulsory modules designed to help you develop the knowledge and skills required to protect and promote workplace health and wellbeing.

Study takes place throughout the year with taught elements of modules typically delivered between September and June.

Your first year of study involves three taught modules which make up the PGCert for a total of 60 credits.

MSc and PGDip students will then take a further three taught modules in their second year which make up the PGDip. Across the two years you will have completed modules worth a total of 120 credits.

MSc students will then take the research project module to achieve a total of 180 credits. This can be taken in your second year alongside the taught modules or separately in a third year. Many research projects generate important findings that are subsequently published in academic journals and practitioner outlets.   

Modules

Year 1

The Management of Workplace Health (Workshop) 20 credits

This introductory module presents the case for evidence-based workplace health and wellbeing management and considers the role of horizon scanning for new and emerging risks.

In addition to input from the module convener (Professor Amanda Griffiths) and Course Director (Dr Jonathan Houdmont), this workshop-based module includes inspirational presentations from key influencers in the workplace health and wellbeing debate. Recent speakers have included Dr Shaun Davis (Group Director of Safety, Health, Wellbeing, and Sustainability, Royal Mail Group), Dr Richard Heron (Chief Medical Officer and Vice-President Health, BP), Dr Sayeed Khan (Chief Medical Officer, EEF – the manufacturers’ organisation),  Louise Aston (Wellbeing Director, Business in the Community), and Nick Pahl (CEO, Society of Occupational Medicine).

Work-related stress (eLearning) 20 credits

Work-related stress is a leading cause of ill-health and impaired organisational effectiveness. This module establishes the scale of the problem and the imperative for its management, considers leading theoretical models that seek to provide an explanatory framework for the causes and consequences of work-related stress, and examines the application of these models to the management of work-related stress.  

This module is delivered online through video lectures and reading materials that students engage with at their own pace. Online learning is supported by a series of activity- and discussion-based webinars facilitated by the module convenor, Jonathan Houdmont.

Contemporary Issues in Workplace Health (Workshop) 20 credits

This workshop-based module, convened by Amanda Griffiths, considers a range of contemporary issues facing workplace health and wellbeing practitioners. Through presentations from the module convenor and a series of high-level guest speakers the module examines the role of theory and scientific evidence in understanding and managing these problems. The module provides an opportunity for students to focus on a workplace health and wellbeing challenge specifically related to their own interests or professional activities. 

Year 2

Absence, Rehabilitation and Retention (Workshop) 20 credits

This module is delivered by Professor Amanda Griffiths with additional expert input from Dr Sayeed Khan (Chief Medical Officer at EEF – the manufacturers’ organisation) and Dr Barbara Kneale (Independent Occupational Physician). The module considers absence monitoring, analysis, and prevention. The module further explores the management of rehabilitation and barriers and facilitators to a sustained return to work.

Promotion of Workplace Health and Wellbeing (eLearning) 20 credits

A healthy workforce is a productive workforce and the workplace provides an ideal location in which to promote healthy behaviours. This module considers the business case for workplace health promotion, introduces psychological theories of behaviour change, and examines the application of these theories to informing the design of effective workplace health promotion interventions.

This module is delivered online through video lectures and reading materials that students engage with at their own pace. Online learning is supported by a series of activity- and discussion-based webinars facilitated by the module convenor, Jonathan Houdmont.

Workplace Health and Wellbeing Research and Evaluation Methods (Workshop and eLearning) 20 credits

The development of knowledge and skills relating to research methods and data analysis is central to the Workplace Health and Wellbeing course. We seek to foster a community of research-practitioners able to collect, analyse, interpret, and draw informed conclusions on qualitative and quantitative workplace data in order to make recommendations on actions to protect and promote workers’ health and wellbeing.

This knowledge is also important because the research-practitioner will aspire to keep up to date with scientific developments in the field throughout their career, which requires an ability to read, interpret, and draw independent conclusions on studies reported in scientific journal papers. Teaching on this module recognises that these concepts are, for many, new and no prior knowledge is assumed. We seek to build students’ knowledge and skills gradually, layer by layer, starting at a foundational level.

This module is delivered through a mix of workshop and eLearning activities and is convened by Jonathan Houdmont.

Applied Research Project: Theory and Practice (eLearning) 60 credits

Students wishing to graduate with the MSc in Workplace Health and Wellbeing conduct this applied research project that spans the entirety of the second year of study. Quantitative and mixed methods projects are supervised by Jonathan Houdmont, while Amanda Griffiths supervises qualitative (interview and focus group) project.

This module provides the opportunity to apply skills and knowledge acquired during the course to the task of designing, conducting, and writing-up a piece of research that has the potential to make a positive impact on workplace health and wellbeing. Most students undertake a study in their own place of work or that of a customer or colleague. 

Students without access to an organisation typically use their social media contacts to obtain a participant sample. It is not uncommon for students to issue an invitation to participate in an online survey to members of specific groups via Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook. For instance, a student recently posted an invitation to participate in a survey concerning strategies to promote job satisfaction in UK midwives and received almost 500 completed surveys within a week!

Projects cover an enormous range of topics, reflecting students’ interests and professional focus. Projects typically involve either an online or paper-based quantitative and/or qualitative survey. Some projects involve in-person or video-conference qualitative interviews or focus groups.

Publications

The best projects are jointly prepared by the student and their supervisor for publication in academic journals. Examples include

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Thursday 01 July 2021.

Year 1

The Management of Workplace Health (Workshop) 20 credits

This introductory module presents the case for evidence-based workplace health and wellbeing management and considers the role of horizon scanning for new and emerging risks.

In addition to input from the module convener (Professor Amanda Griffiths) and Course Director (Dr Jonathan Houdmont), this workshop-based module includes inspirational presentations from key influencers in the workplace health and wellbeing debate. Recent speakers have included Dr Shaun Davis (Group Director of Safety, Health, Wellbeing, and Sustainability, Royal Mail Group), Dr Richard Heron (Chief Medical Officer and Vice-President Health, BP), Dr Sayeed Khan (Chief Medical Officer, EEF – the manufacturers’ organisation),  Louise Aston (Wellbeing Director, Business in the Community), and Nick Pahl (CEO, Society of Occupational Medicine).

Work-related stress (eLearning) 20 credits

Work-related stress is a leading cause of ill-health and impaired organisational effectiveness. This module establishes the scale of the problem and the imperative for its management, considers leading theoretical models that seek to provide an explanatory framework for the causes and consequences of work-related stress, and examines the application of these models to the management of work-related stress.  

This module is delivered online through video lectures and reading materials that students engage with at their own pace. Online learning is supported by a series of activity- and discussion-based webinars facilitated by the module convenor, Jonathan Houdmont.

Contemporary Issues in Workplace Health (Workshop) 20 credits

This workshop-based module, convened by Amanda Griffiths, considers a range of contemporary issues facing workplace health and wellbeing practitioners. Through presentations from the module convenor and a series of high-level guest speakers the module examines the role of theory and scientific evidence in understanding and managing these problems. The module provides an opportunity for students to focus on a workplace health and wellbeing challenge specifically related to their own interests or professional activities. 

Year 2

Absence, Rehabilitation and Retention (Workshop) 20 credits

This module is delivered by Professor Amanda Griffiths with additional expert input from Dr Sayeed Khan (Chief Medical Officer at EEF – the manufacturers’ organisation) and Dr Barbara Kneale (Independent Occupational Physician). The module considers absence monitoring, analysis, and prevention. The module further explores the management of rehabilitation and barriers and facilitators to a sustained return to work.

Promotion of Workplace Health and Wellbeing (eLearning) 20 credits

A healthy workforce is a productive workforce and the workplace provides an ideal location in which to promote healthy behaviours. This module considers the business case for workplace health promotion, introduces psychological theories of behaviour change, and examines the application of these theories to informing the design of effective workplace health promotion interventions.

This module is delivered online through video lectures and reading materials that students engage with at their own pace. Online learning is supported by a series of activity- and discussion-based webinars facilitated by the module convenor, Jonathan Houdmont.

Workplace Health and Wellbeing Research and Evaluation Methods (Workshop and eLearning) 20 credits

The development of knowledge and skills relating to research methods and data analysis is central to the Workplace Health and Wellbeing course. We seek to foster a community of research-practitioners able to collect, analyse, interpret, and draw informed conclusions on qualitative and quantitative workplace data in order to make recommendations on actions to protect and promote workers’ health and wellbeing.

This knowledge is also important because the research-practitioner will aspire to keep up to date with scientific developments in the field throughout their career, which requires an ability to read, interpret, and draw independent conclusions on studies reported in scientific journal papers. Teaching on this module recognises that these concepts are, for many, new and no prior knowledge is assumed. We seek to build students’ knowledge and skills gradually, layer by layer, starting at a foundational level.

This module is delivered through a mix of workshop and eLearning activities and is convened by Jonathan Houdmont.

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Thursday 01 July 2021.
The Management of Workplace Health (Workshop) 20 credits

This introductory module presents the case for evidence-based workplace health and wellbeing management and considers the role of horizon scanning for new and emerging risks.

In addition to input from the module convener (Professor Amanda Griffiths) and Course Director (Dr Jonathan Houdmont), this workshop-based module includes inspirational presentations from key influencers in the workplace health and wellbeing debate. Recent speakers have included Dr Shaun Davis (Group Director of Safety, Health, Wellbeing, and Sustainability, Royal Mail Group), Dr Richard Heron (Chief Medical Officer and Vice-President Health, BP), Dr Sayeed Khan (Chief Medical Officer, EEF – the manufacturers’ organisation),  Louise Aston (Wellbeing Director, Business in the Community), and Nick Pahl (CEO, Society of Occupational Medicine).

Work-related stress (eLearning) 20 credits

Work-related stress is a leading cause of ill-health and impaired organisational effectiveness. This module establishes the scale of the problem and the imperative for its management, considers leading theoretical models that seek to provide an explanatory framework for the causes and consequences of work-related stress, and examines the application of these models to the management of work-related stress.  

This module is delivered online through video lectures and reading materials that students engage with at their own pace. Online learning is supported by a series of activity- and discussion-based webinars facilitated by the module convenor, Jonathan Houdmont.

Absence, Rehabilitation and Retention (Workshop) 20 credits

This module is delivered by Professor Amanda Griffiths with additional expert input from Dr Sayeed Khan (Chief Medical Officer at EEF – the manufacturers’ organisation) and Dr Barbara Kneale (Independent Occupational Physician). The module considers absence monitoring, analysis, and prevention. The module further explores the management of rehabilitation and barriers and facilitators to a sustained return to work.

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Thursday 01 July 2021.

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

  • eLearning
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops
  • Webinars

As a distance learning course, you will primarily learn using online tools. However, we do deliver some of our modules as two-day intensive workshops in Nottingham, usually in September and March of each year. These workshops are recorded to ensure that if you are not able to attend you will not be academically disadvantaged. As a result, international students are not required to attend but may do so if they wish.

E-learning modules are delivered online and are made up of video lectures and online activities. We also provide weekly non-mandatory webinars throughout your first year which are recorded to help those who are unable to attend. You will also be supported by frequent opportunities for group discussion online.

For those taking the MSc, your research project will typically be supervised through video conferencing with your supervisor.  

You will also have a personal tutor – Dr Jonathan Houdmont or Professor Amanda Griffiths - that will provide support and guidance throughout your studies.    

How you will be assessed

  • Essay
  • Online workbook
  • Journal paper report
  • Research process review

Your work will be assessed at the end of each module through a variety of means.

To complete a module and gain its credits you will need to make sure you get over the 50% pass mark.

In order to achieve the MSc, you will need a total of 180 credits.

In order to achieve the PGDip, you will need a total of 120 credits.

In order to achieve the PGCert, you will need a total of 60 credits.

Contact time and study hours

Students can learn the course content over a period of 24 or 36 months.

You are expected to work roughly 10 hours for each credit on the course including teaching and independent study, so a 20 credit module should take around 200 hours to complete or around a total of 25 eight-hour days. However, this is dependent on how the module is delivered. 

Typically you'll spend around 15 hours per week learning and studying. Between September and June students typically dedicate one full day each weekend and two evenings each week to their studies.

Throughout the first year of study we hold weekly non-mandatory webinars to support your learning weekly (usually Tuesday evening at 7pm UK time). Recordings are made available afterwards.

Workshop modules are provided by two 8 hour days of face-to face workshop teaching in Nottingham. Recordings are made available afterwards for international students and others who may not be able to attend in person.

Supervision times for the research project are organised between you and your supervisor, and will typically take place through video conferencing.

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2022 entry.

Undergraduate degree2:2 in any subject.
Additional information

You must also have access to a personal computer with broadband internet access and a webcam in order to complete the course.

You do not need to provide a reference when applying.

Applying

If you have any questions about applying to the course or studying at the University of Nottingham, please use our enquiry form

You can also contact the course director, Dr Jonathan Houdmont, if you have any questions about the course content.

Our step-by-step guide covers everything you need to know about applying.

How to apply

Fees

UK fees are set in line with the national UKRI maximum fee limit. We expect fees for 2022 entry to be confirmed in August 2021.

Additional information for international students

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, you will pay international tuition fees in most cases. If you are resident in the UK and have 'settled' or 'pre-settled' status under the EU Settlement Scheme, you will be entitled to 'home' fee status.

Irish students will be charged tuition fees at the same rate as UK students. UK nationals living in the EU, EEA and Switzerland will also continue to be eligible for ‘home’ fee status at UK universities until 31 December 2027.

For further guidance, check our information for applicants from the EU.

These fees are for full-time study. If you are studying part-time, you will be charged a proportion of this fee each year (subject to inflation).

Additional costs

As a student on this course, you should factor some additional costs into your budget, alongside your tuition fees and living expenses such as travel and accommodation.

UK students are expected to attend up to four two-day campus-based workshops. International students may also wish to attend these but are not expected to. 

You will be able to access most of your learning materials online. In addition, you may wish to purchase your own copies of specific books.

Funding

At Nottingham there are two course-specific scholarships for students:

  • The BP Workplace Health and Wellbeing Scholarship
  • The Royal Mail Group Workplace Health and Wellbeing Scholarship

These competitive scholarships will cover the full cost of the MSc. To be eligible, a student must achieve an overall distinction grade in the first year.

There are many ways to fund your postgraduate course, from scholarships to government loans.

We also offer a range of international masters scholarships for high-achieving international scholars who can put their Nottingham degree to great use in their careers.

Check our guide to find out more about funding your postgraduate degree.

Postgraduate funding

Careers

We offer individual careers support for all postgraduate students.

Expert staff can help you research career options and job vacancies, build your CV or résumé, develop your interview skills and meet employers.

Each year 1,100 employers advertise graduate jobs and internships through our online vacancy service. We host regular careers fairs, including specialist fairs for different sectors.

International students who complete an eligible degree programme in the UK on a student visa can apply to stay and work in the UK after their course under the Graduate immigration route. Eligible courses at the University of Nottingham include bachelors, masters and research degrees, and PGCE courses.

Graduate destinations

Our graduates go on to a wide range of careers. Some are self-employed workplace health and wellbeing consultants and many work for organisations in health and wellbeing management roles. Others have gone on to have responsibility for their organisation’s health and wellbeing remit as part of a wider role.         

Career progression

90.3% of postgraduates from the School of Medicine secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. The average annual salary for these graduates was £38,889.*

*HESA Graduate Outcomes 2020. The Graduate Outcomes % is derived using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time within the UK.

Two masters graduates proudly holding their certificates
" We introduced the Masters in Workplace Health and Wellbeing in 2007 to help practitioners develop the theoretical and evidence-based knowledge required to foster an organisational culture which recognises that employee health and wellbeing underpins organisational effectiveness. I am immensely proud of our graduates for the ways in which they use that knowledge to contribute daily to creating happy, healthy, and productive workplaces. "
Dr Jonathan Houdmont, Course Director

Related courses

The University has been awarded Gold for outstanding teaching and learning (2017/18). Our teaching is of the highest quality found in the UK.

The Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) is a national grading system, introduced by the government in England. It assesses the quality of undergraduate teaching at universities and how well they ensure excellent outcomes for their students in terms of graduate-level employment or further study.

This content was last updated on Thursday 01 July 2021. Every effort has been made to ensure that this information is accurate, but changes are likely to occur given the interval between the date of publishing and course start date. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply.