Credit points



PUBH302 Applied Public Health 1

Teaching organisation

150 hours of focused learning

Unit description and aim

Applied Public Health 2 is the second unit in a full-year professional (2 semester) internship placement where students gain first-hand knowledge and experience in public health practice. Students are placed in one of a range of partner organisations with established and successful engagement with local communities. Students thus gain insight into professional public health practice, which relies heavily on effective community engagement. The placement sites generally have a focus on marginalised and otherwise disadvantaged communities, either within Australia or internationally. Through this experience, students gain substantial insight into the cultural, social, moral, spiritual, economic and environmental aspects that underpin the health and well-being of communities and individuals. As the internship unfolds, students will apply their own core curriculum learnings within the cultural safety of well-established community based organisations, thus facilitating their development as competent and caring public health professionals.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Analyse, evaluate and link public health and health promotion theory to practice. (GAs 2, 4, 5) 

LO2 - Reflect critically upon the values underpinning the relationships, roles and functions of staff and clients within a community organisation/s; (GA2) 

LO3 - Demonstrate progress towards meeting industry expectations of professional competency relevant to public health and health promotion (GA: 5,7) 

LO4 - Articulate a strategic, defined plan of career goals. (GA: 3, 4, 5) 

Graduate attributes

GA2 - recognise their responsibility to the common good, the environment and society 

GA3 - apply ethical perspectives in informed decision making

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA7 - work both autonomously and collaboratively 


Fieldwork will be organised in government and non-government health and/or community development organisations. Within the workplace, students will be allocated a series of tasks related to a specific project of relevance to public health or health promotion. The actual content and nature of the project will be determined by negotiation between the host organisation, the student and the ACU public health Professional Experience Coordinator. It is anticipated that each student will make a positive contribution to the public health work of the host organisation and develop a greater knowledge and appreciation of the potential this work may have for community well-being. Over the course of the placement duration, students will be introduced to progressively advanced tasks and responsibilities, correspondent to their development as public health professionals.  

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

This unit is delivered primarily through a work-integrated learning framework, supplemented by face-to-face workshop sessions on campus. The unit uses an active learning approach where activities support students to acquire essential theoretical knowledge in public health practice relevant to the specific workplace of their placement. Online content (e.g. readings) via the ACU Learning Environment Online (LEO) also support this acquisition. Workshops provide students the opportunity to apply workplace experiences to broader public health contexts/scenarios, and progressively develop higher level skills of analysis and application of theory in public health practice. 


Students will undertake placements in host organisations approved by the ACU Public Health National Professional Practice Coordinator and the campus LIC. Learning and performance will be determined by the University and the appointed fieldwork supervisor through a predefined and monitored set of criteria including skills and outcomes expected to be achieved. The fieldwork will comprise a minimum of 200 hours (combined over PUBH302 and PUBH305). 

Assessment strategy and rationale

A range of assessment procedures will be used to meet the unit learning outcomes and develop graduate attributes consistent with University assessment requirements. In order to successfully complete this unit, students need to complete and submit three graded assessment tasks and obtain an aggregate mark of greater than 50%. 


PUBH305 assessment tasks are designed to document and contextualise the work within a specific public health setting. This assessment strategy allows students to progressively develop their knowledge and skills to the level consistent with the competencies outlined in the 2016 revised CAPHIA competencies for public health graduates. 


The first assessment provides a structure for students to follow to enable the production of a high quality piece of work. In this assessment, students build on their essay in PUBH302, to identify, analyse and describe critical public health issues and processes relevant to the context of their field placement. In the assessment task 2, students will summarise their own fieldwork placement experience in the form of an oral presentation. This will help students to develop an understanding of the role of public health officer, their daily activities, and professional competencies relevant to public health and health promotion. The last assessment task is a further assessment of the quality of the student presentation. This assessment task emphasises the importance of effective communication through high quality visual aids. 

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Hurdle requirement: Host organisation supervisor final report 

To demonstrate compliance with the 200hr minimum attendance requirements 

Pass or Fail 


GA5, GA7 

Assessment 1: Major Essay Part 2 (see PUBH302 for Part 1) 

To enable and assess ability to identify, analyse and explain critical public health issues and processes relevant to a public health work setting. 


LO2, LO3 

GA2, GA4, GA5 

Assessment 2a: Seminar presentation 

To enable and assess students’ ability to analyse and describe their own role within a public health work setting. 



GA2, GA4, GA5 

Assessment 2b: Submission of presentation slides To enable and assess students’ ability to design and prepare visual aids as part of an oral communication 




GA5, GA7 

Representative texts and references

Guest, C.,Ricciardi, W. Kawachi, I, & Lang, I. (Eds). (2013). Oxford handbook of public health practice (3rd ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press. 


Lin, V., Smith J., & Fawkes, S. (2007). Public health practice in Australia: the organised effort. Crows Nest: Allen & Unwin. 


Prilleltensky, I. & Prilleltensky, O. (2006). Promoting wellbeing: Linking personal, organization, and community change. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley. 

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