PBHL13001 - Public Health and Environmental Sustainability

General Information

Unit Synopsis

The World Health Organisation has identified the link between anthropogenic environmental change and public health as an issue of significant concern and has engaged in a workplan with priorities to advocate and raise awareness, strengthen partnerships, enhance scientific evidence and strengthen health systems. This unit aims to develop your understanding of factors within the anthropogenic and natural environments that impact upon health outcomes, including environmentally transmitted diseases, climate change and sustainable development. Content will include an exploration of zoonotic diseases, vector borne conditions, emerging epidemiologic trends, community resilience and capacity building. You will discover the value of participation through an exploration of community resilience and capacity building. Prevention will be emphasised as you learn about the aetiologies, risk factors, epidemiological trends and underlying environmental factors relating to a range of diseases of public health importance. The theme of partnership will be developed as you examine the issue of environmental sustainability and emerging environmental health issues while learning the importance of working with traditional and contemporary custodians of natural environments, collaborating with government and non-government agencies in creating healthy environmental policy.


Level Undergraduate
Unit Level 3
Credit Points 6
Student Contribution Band SCA Band 2
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load 0.125
Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

96 credit points

Important note: Students enrolled in a subsequent unit who failed their pre-requisite unit, should drop the subsequent unit before the census date or within 10 working days of Fail grade notification. Students who do not drop the unit in this timeframe cannot later drop the unit without academic and financial liability. See details in the Assessment Policy and Procedure (Higher Education Coursework).

Class Timetable View Unit Timetable
Residential School No Residential School

Unit Availabilities from Term 1 - 2022

Term 1 - 2022 Profile

Attendance Requirements

All on-campus students are expected to attend scheduled classes – in some units, these classes are identified as a mandatory (pass/fail) component and attendance is compulsory. International students, on a student visa, must maintain a full time study load and meet both attendance and academic progress requirements in each study period (satisfactory attendance for International students is defined as maintaining at least an 80% attendance record).

Assessment Overview

Recommended Student Time Commitment

Each 6-credit Undergraduate unit at CQUniversity requires an overall time commitment of an average of 12.5 hours of study per week, making a total of 150 hours for the unit.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task Weighting
1. Online Test 15%
2. Online Test 15%
3. Group Discussion 30%
4. Written Assessment 40%

This is a graded unit: your overall grade will be calculated from the marks or grades for each assessment task, based on the relative weightings shown in the table above. You must obtain an overall mark for the unit of at least 50%, or an overall grade of ‘pass’ in order to pass the unit. If any ‘pass/fail’ tasks are shown in the table above they must also be completed successfully (‘pass’ grade). You must also meet any minimum mark requirements specified for a particular assessment task, as detailed in the ‘assessment task’ section (note that in some instances, the minimum mark for a task may be greater than 50%).

Consult the University’s Grades and Results Policy for more details of interim results and final grades

Past Exams

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Previous Feedback

Term 1 - 2021 : The overall satisfaction for students in the last offering of this course was 4 (on a 5 point Likert scale), based on a 14.29% response rate.

Feedback, Recommendations and Responses

Every unit is reviewed for enhancement each year. At the most recent review, the following staff and student feedback items were identified and recommendations were made.

Source: Unit evaluation
One student felt there that learning material, tutorials and quizzes were not clearly connected.
Use tutorials to draw more overt links between learning materials and assessment tasks.
Action Taken
A number of structured tutorials were delivered to draw links between the different elements of the unit.
Source: Reflection
Some students were not able to apply the content at a deeper level when preparing their discussion papers.
Develop additional structured tutorials to guide the students in deeper analysis.
Action Taken
Source: Unit Evaluation
Low response rate to unit evaluation.
Promote evaluation survey more often in future years.
Action Taken
Unit learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  1. Explain primary drivers of environmental change and how they interact to result in public health consequences
  2. Examine the aetiology and risk factors of environmentally transmitted diseases and conditions
  3. Evaluate the social-ecological framework as a means to build and maintain partnerships to address environmental health issues
  4. Predict and debate potential scenarios to respond to environmental health challenges based on current and emerging evidence
  5. Communicate information relating to emerging environmental health issues to a wide variety of audiences
  6. Describe the use of Health Impact Assessment, Environmental Impact Assessment and social innovation in the development of sustainable public policy to support health.

Content in this unit aligns with the enHealth Skills and Knowledge Matrix as follows:

Part 1- all generic skills

Part 2- underpinning skills and knowledge in the areas of:

  • microbiology
  • foundation and applied principles of natural and built environmental science
  • science
  • public and environmental health concepts
  • research methods
  • political, legislative and policy context
  • risk assessment and management
  • communication, cultural awareness and interpersonal skills

Part 3- applied skills and knowledge under the headings of

  • Prevention and control of notifiable and communicable diseases
  • Indigenous environmental health
  • Sustainability and climate change

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes
Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4 5 6
1 - Online Test
2 - Online Test
3 - Group Discussion
4 - Written Assessment
Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4 5 6
1 - Communication
2 - Problem Solving
3 - Critical Thinking
4 - Information Literacy
6 - Information Technology Competence
7 - Cross Cultural Competence
8 - Ethical practice
9 - Social Innovation
Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Graduate Attributes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Assessment Tasks Graduate Attributes
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
1 - Online Test
2 - Online Test
3 - Group Discussion
4 - Written Assessment