Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Intended for use in future years

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 15 Hours.
Seminars / Tutorials 5 Hours. 5 Hours of Simulated Public Enquiry


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Proof of evidence and presentational materials for public enquiry and individual summary report, approximately 2,500 word equivalent.  Course Work:  25%
Semester Exam 2 Hours   2 hour written examination.   75%
Supplementary Assessment Resit examinations: 2 hour written examination 75%, In-course assessment marks to be carried forward. 

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:-

  • make a rational scientific judgement on the potential health impacts of water pollution though rigorous evaluation of the quality of research information in this area and a competent understanding of the main epidemiological approaches which have been used to investigate these interactions
  • demonstrate an understanding of the principal regulatory systems in the UK for water quality maintenance through contact with regulators, practitioners and academic researchers
  • apply skills of case preparation and presentation through a simulated public enquiry chaired by a Principal inspector of the Drinking Waters Inspectorate.


To introduce students to the Scientific investigation of the interaction between water quality and health of the exposed population. This introductory module seeks to provide students with a grounding in how environmental factors affect public health. It commences with an introduction to the available epidemiological methods and approaches which have been used to define the linkage between environmental contamination and its public health impacts. A series of case studies are then examined to illustrate the strength of this linkage and its scientific foundations.


  • Approaches to environmental epidemiology
  • Retrospective/ Prospective/ Case-control/ Randomised designs.
  • Water Quality Indicators and Health
  • Recreational Water - Historical Assessment.
  • PHLS and USEPA studies
  • Recreational water: The UK Research Programme 1999-1994
  • Disease Burden and 'Health Gain' Assessment
  • Health-related 'standards' design, the 'Jersey' and WHO standards
  • Potential A Priori approaches to management
  • Catchment control and bacterial delivery
  • What are the health implications?
  • Water Quality Indicators and Health
  • Drinking Water Regulation WHO/EU/UK
  • Issues in drinking water quality
  • Bottled Waters
  • Private Water Supplies
  • Copper in Drinking Water
  • Water and Health
  • 'Cryptosporidiosis'
  • Public Supplies
  • Regulation of drinking water quality in the UK
  • Outbreaks of water-borne disease
  • The role of the DWI
  • Public enquiry sessions


This module is at CQFW Level 6