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OCCH401 Occupational Health

Introduction to occupational health with an emphasis on the prevention of ill health caused by workplace hazards.

Strategic management of health and safety risks in the workplace requires the development of a systematic and analytical approach to assessment. In this paper students develop investigative skills in the detection of chemical, physical, biological, ergonomic and psychosocial hazards. Using the bio-psychosocial model, they develop evidence-based strategies to manage and control health and safety risks.

The graduate will have developed 'hands-on' expertise in the systematic evaluation of occupational health hazards and will be able to formulate a workplace specific health and safety management plan.

Paper title Occupational Health
Paper code OCCH401
Subject Occupational Health
EFTS 0.25
Points 30 points
Teaching period Semester 1 (Distance learning)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $3,018.75
International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.

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OCCX 401
Limited to
MHealSc, MPhty, PGCertHealSc, PGDipHealSc, PGDipPhty
Candidates for the Postgraduate Diploma in Health Sciences (PGDipHealSc) endorsed in Hazard Assessment and Management must either be graduates or hold an appropriate health professional qualification requiring at least three years of full-time tertiary study. Admission is always subject to the approval of the Board of the Division of Health Sciences, which will require evidence of the candidate's ability to undertake advanced academic study.

Occupational Health Administrator: Amara Boyd

Teaching staff

Academic Leader: Dr Moazzam Zaidi

Academic Leader: Associate Professor David McBride

Course Lecturer: Donna Burt

Paper Structure
The key themes are the systematic evaluation of risks to health and safety in the workplace and the development of an evidence-based management plan.
Teaching Arrangements

This Distance Learning paper is a combination of remote and in-person teaching.

A three-day compulsory block weekend workshop in Dunedin and interactive expert-led seminars by video conferencing through Zoom.


These texts are available to students as an online resource through the University of Otago Library:

Barry S. Levy, David H. Wegman, Sherry L. Baron, Rosemary K. Sokas. Occupational and environmental health - recognizing and preventing disease and injury. (7th Edition). Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins

Vickerstaff S, Phillipson C,  Wilkie R  (2011) Work, Health and Wellbeing: The challenges of managing health at work. Bristol, Policy Press

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Interdisciplinary perspective, Critical thinking, Information literacy, Research, Teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
Students who successfully complete the paper will learn how to carry out a systematic investigation of the workplace in order to identify risks to health and safety in the workplace. Using a team-based collegial approach, the graduate will be able at to apply critical analysis skills and use 'best practice' in the development of a health and safety management plan.

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Semester 1

Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system