Studying online

There are now 2 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

Click on an offering mode for more details.

Unit Overview


This unit provides an introduction to the interdisciplinary field of humanities for health and medicine, and to the methods of enquiry and interpretive approaches used by the disciplines that contribute to this field. Learning in this unit is achieved through a series of 6 modules that explores the relationships between the humanities and medicine and connects todays practice of medicine and healthcare to interactions with culture, history, literature, art and music, spirituality, philosophy and the environment

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 2UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 2 core unit in the Humanities in Health and Medicine major sequence
  • Level 2 option in the Human Sciences (Anatomy and Physiology) major sequence

Students are able to (1) explain the development of medical humanities and the art of caring; (2) discuss how beliefs around health may develop e.g. experience, reason, scientific method of enquiry; (3) explore ways in which the humanities can improve the understanding of social and cultural issues affecting health and the delivery of health care; (4) explore the role of the arts and humanities in health; (5) discuss what it means to be human and explore how this is applied to health care provision; and (6) discuss philosophical reasoning in areas of medical ethics and professional practice.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) interview and case study; (2) narrative essay with group presentation (10%); and (3) object based reflection. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Professor Sandra Carr and Dr Kelby Smith-Han
Unit rules
Successful completion of
level 1 24 points Unit(s)
Advisable prior study
For students in the HHMED major, at least one of ANTH1001 Being Human: Culture, Identity and Society, PSYC1102 Psychology: Behaviour in Context, PHIL1002 Introduction to Critical Thinking, INDG1150 Aboriginal Encounters: Strangers in our Backyard, ENGL1902 Reading Bodies
OR NEUR1001 Neuroscience in Society
Contact hours
Every week a 1 hour large group seminar/lecture is scheduled. There are also weekly online activities and 5, 2 hour workshops spread out during semester and one 90 minute visit to Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery. Bookings for the workshops is through CAS.
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.