HP4F1E      Half Unit
Impact Evaluation in Healthcare

This information is for the 2021/22 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Pepita Barlow COW 2.05


This course is compulsory on the Executive MSc in Evaluation of Health Care Interventions and Outcomes, in collaboration with NICE. This course is not available as an outside option.

Course content

The objective of this course is to introduce students to key concepts in evaluation in healthcare. The course will provide an overview of the principles and models of evaluation, and the role of theories, concepts, and hypotheses. In terms of research design, it will cover study design choices in light of bias, validity and other design tradeoffs. It will introduce students to experimental, quasi-experimental, non-experimental, and qualitative designs for evaluating healthcare interventions, programmes and policies aimed at achieving high quality care, reducing costs, and improving health outcomes. Data and measurement considerations for both quantitative and qualitative studies will be discussed alongside the importance of using mixed-methods and triangulation for interpreting findings and taking a critical approach to the results of evaluation. The course will conclude with practical and ethical issues when undertaking evaluation studies. 


Given the executive nature of this course, it will be offered as an intensive, accelerated, and compressed module within a 1-week duration. The course will be delivered as 10 hours of lectures and 10 hours of seminars in the ST

Formative coursework

Students will be expected to produce 1 piece of coursework in the ST.

Following the group presentations delivered on the last day of the course, students will continue developing their projects individually. The formative assessment will be a more detailed written outline of their projects written individually. Students will receive detailed feedback (individually and not as a group) on their formative assessments and continue developing their project reports individually. The formative feedback is intended to help the students while developing their final project reports. 

Indicative reading

Angrist JD and Pischke J-S (2014). Mastering Metrics: The Path from Cause to Effect. Princeton University Press.

Cartwright N and Hardie J (2012). Evidence-Based Policy: A practical guide to doing it better. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. 

Patton, MQ (2005). Qualitative research. John Wiley & Sons Ltd. 

Ovretveit, John. Evaluating health interventions: an introduction to evaluation of health treatments, services, policies and organizational interventions. McGraw-Hill International, 1998.


Project (100%, 3000 words) post-summer term.

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2021/22 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the differing needs of students in attendance on campus and those who might be studying online. For example, this may involve changes to the mode of teaching delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: Health Policy

Total students 2020/21: Unavailable

Average class size 2020/21: Unavailable

Controlled access 2020/21: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Specialist skills