Singapore University of Social Sciences

Medical Sociology

Medical Sociology (SOC361)

Applications Open: 01 October 2022

Applications Close: 15 December 2022

Next Available Intake: January 2023

Course Types: To be confirmed

Language: English

Duration: 6 months

Fees: $1378

Area of Interest: Business Administration, International Trade, Science and Technology

Schemes: To be confirmed

Funding: To be confirmed

School/Department: School of Humanities & Behavioural Sciences


Medical Sociology covers a wide range of issues exploring the relationship between health and the notions of illness and wellness as they are shaped by society. The healthcare relationship across societies and their populations will provide an important focus for a part of the course. We will address how socio-economic and cultural factors influence perceptions and access to healthcare. This involves an examination of gender, class, ethnicity, age and religious practices within the context of healthcare access and delivery. The role of medical technology is also explored as they demonstrate how current trends in medicine have shaped the health and well-being of both man and woman, especially in the area of sexual reproduction. In addition, the role of the medical profession will be explored. While well-being and illness may be socially constructed, a section is devoted to understanding individual responses to notions of health.

Level: 3
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: Every January


  • Introduction and overview: introduction and understanding the social construction of health and medicine
  • Comparative healthcare systems: healthcare in the West and in Asia; Medical technology and ethics
  • Health and the individual: personal experience of illness; the patient's perspective on healthcare; Healthcare utilization and barriers
  • Determinants of health inequalities: health, class and social inequalities
  • Men's and women's health: key issues and dilemmas
  • Health profession: issues and perspectives -- power and politics of health; professional/patient relations

Learning Outcome

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the basic concepts, theories, current debates and methods covered in the sociology of health and medicine
  • Appraise the various models of approaching health and medicine
  • Discuss the socioeconomic and cultural factors which influence and contribute to health inequalities at the individual and societal levels
  • Illustrate the dynamic roles of healthcare professionals and their contributions to healthcare delivery
  • Compare and contrast the different healthcare systems existing in the world today
  • Examine health policies and the role of government in addressing health and medical issues
  • Analyse the influence of power, and power structures in health outcomes, medical practices and the medical profession
  • Propose strategies and health policies that facilitate easier access to healthcare
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