Economics MA(SocSci)/BAcc/BSc/MA

Health Economics ECON4052

  • Academic Session: 2021-22
  • School: Adam Smith Business School
  • Credits: 15
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1 (Alternate Years)
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: Yes

Short Description

The course aims to introduce students to the key themes of economic theory as applied to health and medical care issues. The course will investigate alternative systems for organising and financing health and medical care; the controversial nature of applying economic theories to health, and the main techniques of health care evaluation.


10 x 2-hour lecture;

1 x 1-hour revision lecture.


Please refer to MyCampus for timetable.

Excluded Courses



ILO (covered)

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? No

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below.

Course Aims

The course aims to enable students to comprehend and appreciate

■ Key themes of economic approaches to issues of health and health care

■ The mainstream economic techniques of evaluation in health care

■ Alternative systems for providing health care

■ The nature of controversies in health economics 

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

1. Elucidate and explain the distinctive economic features of health care 

2. Critically analyse the mainstream approach to health economics, be aware of critiques of the mainstream approach, and be able to describe and explain the nature of alternative economic approaches

3. Compare and contrast the standard health economic evaluation techniques and apply them to appropriate circumstances.

4. Critically analyse the merits and otherwise of an array of alternative governance and financial arrangements in providing health care.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.