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Module Title
Mind, Body And Society

sociology, health, health beliefs, professions, disability, stigma, community and institutions, embodiment, identity.

SCQF Points15
ECTS Points7.5
CreatedFebruary 2003
ApprovedAugust 2003
AmendedDecember 2011
Version No.5

Prerequisites for Module


Corequisite Modules


Precluded Modules


Aims of Module

To discuss psychosocial aspects of the individual in relation to health and healthcare.

Learning Outcomes for Module

On completion of this module, students are expected to be able to:

1. Discuss psychological and sociological theories and concepts that assist in understanding the process of client and patient care.
2. Discuss how identity is formed and threatened in contemporary society by mental and chronic illness.
3. Discuss how social science challenges and supports the practice of the health professional.

Indicative Module Content

Sociology: sociology of embodied identity.
The life course and the project of ageing - exploring how in late modernity ageing is becoming both more fluid and dynamic, but yet still problematic, plus demographic changes and ageism.
Stigma - how identity is threatened by the onset of mental and chronic illness.
Sociology of chronic illness.
Locations of care - the shifts away from institutions to communities, examining advantages and disadvantages and the role of informal care and carers.
Pain and emotions - chronic pain and the place of emotions in health and healthcare; the management of pain and concerns of people with chronic pain.
Death and dying - classic and contemporary models of death and dying, bereavement and loss.
Mental health - sociological perspectives on mental health, including gender and social representation.
Psychology - acquisition and change of health behaviour - operant learning, reinforcement, shaping of complex behaviour, the health professional as a model of behaviour.
Normal and atypical personality.
Common mental health conditions.
Cognitive functioning across the lifespan, and the implications for effective patient care.
Communication and professional effectiveness. Individual and group factors. Adherence to health professional recommendations.
Chronic illness.
Life events and coping.
The role of pain management programmes in chronic pain control. The contribution of the health team to palliative care.
Situated learning experience involving interaction with service users who have chronic debilitating conditions.

Indicative Student Workload

Contact Hours

Full Time
Online learning activities

Directed Study

Private study
Self directed study

Mode of Delivery

Blended, online learning; directed study; tutorials; situated learning.

Assessment Plan

Learning Outcomes Assessed
Component 1 1,2,3


Indicative Bibliography

1.ALDER, B. et al, 2009. Psychology and sociology applied to medicine, 3rd ed. London: Elsevier.
2.BARRY, A.M. & YUILL, C., 2002. Understanding health: a sociological approach. London: Sage.
3.OGDEN, J., 2000. Health psychology. Buckingham: OUP.
4.SARAFINO, E., 2002. Health Psychology. London: Wiley.
5.WILLIAMS, S.J & BENDELOW, G., 1998. The lived body: sociological themes, embodied issues. London: Routledge.

Robert Gordon University, Garthdee House, Aberdeen, AB10 7QB, Scotland, UK: a Scottish charity, registration No. SC013781