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Start Dates
Degree type

PCert

Course length

6 months part-time

Location

Online

Program code

Q3KF14

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Course details

This exciting and challenging online course applies the knowledge and insight of the humanities and social sciences to gain a deeper understanding of what is meant by health and illness outside of a medical context and, in particular, to analyse how our thoughts and physical experiences become recognised as symptoms.

The course provides Masters-level education across two modules and leads to a postgraduate qualification after six months. It is suitable if you studied subjects such as Anthropology, English, Geography, Law, Modern Languages and Cultures, Philosophy, Sociology, and related disciplines at undergraduate level. You may also benefit if you have a background in health and social care and are looking to bring humanities and social sciences perspectives to bear in your professional practice.

You will study two core modules from the Medical Humanities MA: Concepts and Frameworks in the Critical Medical Humanities, and Reimagining Health Research. As you progress through the course you will learn about key health challenges, focusing on debates about the wider social, political and economic environments in which health, illness and medicine are situated. You will also develop advanced skills in interpreting and using different kinds of data, from textual and material sources to data gathered through qualitative methods.

Upon completion, you may have the option of applying to the MA, where you will study two further modules and write a dissertation.

The course is led by the University’s Institute for Medical Humanities and the Faculty of Arts and Humanities, and you will be taught by specialists from across the University. The interdisciplinary nature of the course provides a fascinating and comprehensive introduction to the wide range of approaches to health taken by different academic disciplines.

When you enrol on this course, you will become a member of the Postgraduate and Early Career Researchers (PGECR) network in Medical Humanities, which organises regular seminars, conferences and social events.

Course structure

Core modules:

Concepts and Frameworks in the Critical Medical Humanities provides advanced training in the interdisciplinary field of critical medical humanities and strengthens your understanding of both its development from the less complex context of initial medical humanities study and its distinct contribution to health research and current challenges. This module will also build your knowledge of concepts, theories and approaches essential to research in the critical medical humanities.

Reimagining Health Research: Methodologies in the Critical Medical Humanities equips you with the advanced knowledge and skills needed to critically appraise key health research methodologies used in the critical medical humanities. This module will enhance your ability to assess ideas and evidence from a variety of sources and then choose, justify, or critique work done across key disciplines. It will also encourage you to be reflective and review your own existing competences as well as nurture your ability to work across disciplines.

Learning

Teaching is delivered entirely online through lectures, workshops and scaffolded learning assignments – the latter format being where large-scale topics are broken down into smaller units which are delivered online with subject experts and discussed collaboratively with peers.

For some modules you will also form online study groups with other students to work on group projects. You will also be supported through a number of in-person meetings with your tutor.

Assessment comes in a variety of formats and is designed to challenge you. You will be expected to produce essays, annotated bibliography entries, a project proposal and a 3,000-word Student Devised Assessment (SDA) when you will deliver your study findings using creative and context-appropriate methods. 

It also includes assessed group work. The module in research methods includes a presentation followed by written peer reviews evaluating your own and other project proposals.

Entry requirements

At least one of the following:

  • A 2:1 undergraduate degree
  • Active enrolment on an intercalated UG/PG medical degree programme
  • At least three years work in a professional environment with relevance to health and/or medicine (e.g. clinical, NGO, policy, care work, etc)

A 500-word personal statement which should include the following:

  • An outline of your interest in an interdisciplinary Postgraduate Certificate in Medical Humanities
  • What skills and knowledge you would bring to the course
  • What skills and knowledge you would hope to acquire

English language requirements

Fees and funding

Full Time Fees

Tuition fees
Home students £4,300 per year
EU students £9,100 per year
Island students £4,300 per year
International students £9,100 per year

Part Time Fees

Tuition fees
Home students £4,300 per year
EU students £9,100 per year
Island students £4,300 per year
International students £9,100 per year

The tuition fees shown are for one complete academic year of study, are set according to the academic year of entry, and remain the same throughout the duration of the programme for that cohort (unless otherwise stated).

Please also check costs for colleges and accommodation.

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to supporting the best students irrespective of financial circumstances and are delighted to offer a range of funding opportunities. 

Find out more about Scholarships and Bursaries

Career opportunities

English Studies

The Department’s reputation for the quality and intellectual rigour of its teaching means students are in possession of skills and experience that are much sought after by potential employers around the world.

Our postgraduates are equipped with highly transferable skills and the ability to analyse, assess and communicate knowledge effectively. Many choose to take these newly acquired abilities into professional roles in sectors including arts and theatre management, broadcasting, publishing and journalism, business, accounting, marketing and advertising, teaching, higher education, law, third sector and government positions. Others choose to continue their academic study at a higher level.

For further information on career options please visit our web pages.

Faculty of Arts and Humanities

There is an array of career options possible that include professions in national, international and local government agencies, sustainability management, policy research, corporate responsibility and sustainability, environmental journalism and writing, environmental tourism, environmentally-oriented NGOs and charities and conservation work. The MA in Environmental Humanities also offers enhanced suitability for business graduate programmes in sustainability.

Employers often value Masters graduates in arts and humanities for their understanding and ability to communicate, flexibility, as well as their analytical and synthetic competence.

No information is available at present - please consider using our Ask Us facility for assistance.

Department information

English Studies

The Department of English Studies is one of Europe’s leading centres for research in literary studies. We carry out important and influential research into a wide range of literary topics with compelling historical and cultural themes.

We are one of the few departments in the world who teach and research in literature produced in Britain from the early medieval period to the present day as well as in anglophone literature from across the globe.

Courses are taught by leading subject experts and include MAs in Creative Writing, English Literary Studies, Medieval and Renaissance Literary Studies, Romantic and Victorian Literary Studies, Studies in Poetry and Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Literary Studies.

The Department offers valuable partnerships with interdisciplinary research institutes and centres within the University. These include the Institute for Medieval and Early Modern Studies, the Centre for Poetry and Poetics, the Centre for Modern Conflicts and Cultures, and the Institute for Medical Humanities.

Our overriding aim is to enable you to develop the skills and abilities to produce research built on evidence-based argument, rigorous analysis, verbal accuracy and independent and creative thinking. We provide a vibrant learning community that is supportive and inclusive.

For more information see our department webpages.

Rankings

  • World Top 50 in the QS World University Subject Rankings 2023
  • 4th in The Complete University Guide 2024 and 3rd in The Guardian University Guide 2024
  • Top 10 in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024

Staff

For a current list of staff, please see the English Studies web pages.

Research Excellence Framework

  • 90% of our research activity was judged to be 'world leading' or 'internationally excellent' in (REF 2021)

Facilities

The Department of English Studies is mainly situated in two buildings that are close to the historic city and centre with its glorious cathedral and UNESCO World Heritage status. Hallgarth House is a Georgian-listed building and Elvet Riverside stands beside the picturesque River Wear.

Our community of around 60 taught postgraduates and 60 PhD researchers have wide-ranging access to the extensive general collections in literary studies which are housed in the University library as well as to a number of specialist collections and archives in nearby Palace Green.

Faculty of Arts and Humanities

This programme is led from the Faculty of Arts & Humanities, bringing in modules from that Faculty but also building on modules from other Faculties that will serve the wider suite of programmes. We are proud that our Faculty of Arts & Humanities is recognised as a world leading Faculty, and our work is intended to enrich, shape and transform lives. We nurture thoughtful, critical and engaged citizens for a rapidly changing and complex world.

For more information on our Faculty and the Departments within it, see our webpages: Faculty of Arts and Humanities - Durham University

Rankings

Arts & Humanities subjects ranked 33rd in the World top 50 in the Times Higher Education Rankings by Subject 2023

  • English Department – 4th in The Complete University Guide 2024 and 3rd in The Guardian University Guide 2024
  • History Department – 4th in The Complete University Guide 2024
  • Philosophy Department – 8th in The Complete University Guide 2024
  • Geography Department – 5th in The Complete University Guide 2024
  • Anthropology Department – 8th in The Complete University Guide 2024

No information is available at present - please consider using our Ask Us facility for assistance.

Apply

Find out more:

Apply for a postgraduate course (including PGCE International) via our online portal.  

Visit Us

The best way to find out what Durham is really like is to come and see for yourself!

Join a Postgraduate Open Day
  • Date: 01/09/2023 - 31/08/2024
  • Time: 09:00 - 17:00
Find out more
Self-Guided Tours
  • Date: 01/09/2023 - 31/08/2024
  • Time: 09:00 - 16:00
Find out more

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