Members of SSiM contribute to a number of undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes, particularly the MBChB degree. Medical students have also taken Special Study Modules and Special Study Activities, which explore medicine from social, ethical and historical perspectives. 

Our teaching includes the following:

Qualitative Research Methods/Sociology

Group members draw on their research experience to inform their qualitative methods teaching at undergraduate and postgraduate levels; they are also examining PhD research both within the university and externally. Qualitative and mixed-methods PhD student projects supervised in our group also contribute to the richness of the research environment.
Our expertise in qualitative methods and sociological concepts inform two Masters level modules which can be taken as part of a Masters in Public Health or as a standalone module:
We also offer the Qualitative Research Methods module in an un-assessed version each June to support doctoral research students and members of staff who are early career researchers. Antje Lindenmeyer is also qualitative lead for the Intercalated BMedSc programme.
Additionally, we contribute qualitative and social science expertise to the following study programmes and modules:


MBChB (5 year programme) including:
  • People, Patients and Populations (PPP)
  • Doctors, Patients and Society (DPS)
  • Evidence Based Medicine and Research Methods (EBM&RM)
  • Self-selected areas of study (years 1 and 2); Electives (Year 4)
MBChB Graduate Entry course (4 year programme) including:
  • Medicine in Society (MIS)
  • Year 3 Health Improvement Evidence Review (HIER)


  • Epidemiology, Statistics and Research Methods
  • Systematic Review and Evidence Synthesis
Other MSc Programmes:
  • Introduction to social science methods in health (MSc Genomic Medicine/ MSc Blood Sciences)

Intercalated (POSH) BMedSc

The Intercalated degree programme, structured within the framework of Medicine in Society lasts one academic year and is available to MBChB students after the end of Years 2, 3, as well as to BDS students at the end of Year 2. It also admits students from other UK medical and dental schools. Students attend taught modules, which are taken in the first semester, in one of five themed areas:

  • Heathcare, Ethics and Law
  • History of Medicine
  • International Health
  • Psychological Medicine
  • Public Health

In the Second Semester the sole activity of the student is the research towards a 10,000-word dissertation. Many students undertake this work abroad or in other parts of the UK, for which there is substantial financial support from the Medical School.

Additional details relating to the programme are available from the Intercalated Degree course page.  

Short Electives in the History of Medicine

A number of shorter courses exploring medicine from ethical, social or historical angles are available to undergraduate medical students in years 1, 2 and 3. Each module involves students attending some lectures on a specialist subject, designing a project in collaboration with a member of staff, writing up a research essay based on primary and secondary sources and presenting their findings to their group at the end of the module.

BA History, Years 2 and 3: Research Preparation and Dissertations

(Dr Heggie and Professor Reinarz)

History undergraduate students can undertake research into aspects of the history of medicine. In their second year, students in History and Cultures identify potential supervisors for their final-year projects as part of their Research Methods teaching. As part of their Dissertation Preparation module, they meet their supervisors and design suitable research topics, undertaking literature surveys and archival research. During third-year, students write up their findings in close collaboration with supervisors and a 12,000-word dissertation is submitted in Winter Term.

MA in Birmingham and Midland History 

(Professor Reinarz)

The School of Historical Studies runs a two-year, part-time MA in the history of Birmingham and West Midlands History. As part of this course, students receive three lectures on aspects of midland history from Jonathan Reinarz. Lectures include an introduction to the sources in the history of medicine, the history of business in Victorian Birmingham and the history of Birmingham medicine in the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries. Students may chose a subject related to the history of medicine for their dissertations, which are due at the conclusion of the second year. In the past, students have researched subjects, including the history of midland friendly societies, WWI hospitals, and the health of female munitions workers in Birmingham.