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Unit information: Digital Health Case Studies in 2020/21

Unit name Digital Health Case Studies
Unit code SOCSM0021
Credit points 20
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Dr. Hanna Kristiina Isotalus
Open unit status Not open




School/department Bristol Medical School
Faculty Faculty of Health Sciences


The aim of this unit is to provide students with the opportunity to deeply engage with hypothetical but realistic medical cases and how digital technologies might be used to provide solutions related to clinical need.

Unit content:

  • Students will engage with digital health cases during the course of the first year, progressing in complexity and based on a real-world health/care scenario
  • A trained facilitator will provide guided support throughout each case.
  • Through discussion, students will explore how digital technologies could impact upon the situation and will encompass practical issues such as patient adherence to treatment, cost etc.

Intended learning outcomes

Having completed this unit, the student will be able to:

  1. Explain and critically discuss basic clinical issues relevant to a health population
  2. Critically reflect on different approaches to improving patients’ health, grounded in the available clinical evidence base
  3. Apply and integrate knowledge of a range of potential technical solutions to improve patients’ health or care in an accessible way

Teaching details

This unit will use a case-based learning approach with small groups of students supported by a facilitator. It is intended to engage the students with realistic and compelling situations and creates opportunities for peer learning by leveraging the differing strengths of a cross discipline intake to the Unit. This approach will naturally encourage practice of interdisciplinary communication skills - closely mimicking the real world situations that individuals working in the digital health field are likely to encounter.

Assessment Details

Active engagement will be a critical element of assessment for this unit with the facilitator having a key role in monitoring this through the timetabled discussion sessions. No mark will be given for this engagement, purely a pass/fail assessment linked to a student's satisfactory engagement and participation

There will be an element of student choice for the summative assessment for this Unit. In their case groups students will need to show that they have met the intended learning outcomes of the Unit. This can be via either i) a verbal presentation (approx 20mins), ii) a video (approx 20mins) or iii) an executive report (approx 3000 words). All options should include a range of suitable elements such as pieces to camera, video, animations, images, diagrams, slides etc. As part of this task students will have to mark their fellow group members contribution and this will be included in determining each student’s final Unit mark.

Reading and References

Selected literature, references and online material will be provided at the start of the unit