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Health and Social Care

Staff List and HOD Names

Ms Lois Murray (HOD)

Mrs Helena McAlister

Ms Michelle Mullan

Aims of Department

The Health & Social Care department is well established and very popular subject areas on the Key Stage 4 & 5 curriculum. With the recent challenging and subsequently changing times we find ourselves in, the need for professional care and support is needed more than ever. Courses in Health & Social Care offer many opportunities to study and

Health and Social Care is at its core, the study of health and well-being. The aims of the department are to develop in our pupils: the ability to research, analyse and critically evaluate information; to communicate effectively and make informed decisions.


The subject is offered at GCSE and A-level with the examination board CCEA.


The specifications encourage pupils to:

  • develop as effective and independent learners;

  • develop higher order thinking skills;

  • draw together areas of knowledge, skills and understanding related to the health, social care and Early Years sectors;

  • foster their interest in, and increase their understanding of the health, social care and Early Years sectors

  • understand aspects of personal development and the health, social care and Early Years sectors by investigating and evaluating a range of services and organisations;

  • examine issues that affect the nature and quality of human life, including an appreciation of diversity and culture;

  • develop skills, aptitudes, and values for employment in the health, social care and Early Years sectors; and develop a critical and analytical approach to decision making and problem solving in relation to the specified content.

Outline of Key Stage 4 and Key Stage 5

Key Stage 4- GCSE

Unit 1: Personal Development, Health and Well-Being; external written examination - 1 hour 30 mins.

In this unit, pupils investigate human development throughout the life stages. Investigation of the factors affecting health and well-being, including relationships and the impact of major life changes are also undertaken.



Unit 2: Working in the Health, Social Care and Early Years Sectors - Controlled Assessment.

In this unit, pupils develop their understanding of the world of work in the Health, Social Care, and Early Years sectors and how the needs of different service user groups are met. Pupils will learn how practitioners apply the values of care through a range of job roles.


Key Stage 5- A Level

A-Level Health and Social Care appeals to pupils with an interest in health, well-being and caring for others. Pupils are given the opportunity to study a range of topics including Promoting Positive Care, Communication in Care Settings, Family Changes and Health Promotion.


Through work experience and practical activities, pupils apply their knowledge and understanding to work-related contexts and develop skills including research, investigation, analysis, and evaluation.




Unit 1: Promoting Positive Care (Controlled Assessment)

Pupils must produce a written report based on a health, social care or Early Years setting that they have experienced. This will involve relevant work experience in the Health and Social Care sector.


Unit 2: Communication in Health, Social Care and Early Years Settings (Controlled Assessment)

Pupils must produce a report examining communication skills within a health, social care or Early Years setting. Work experience will be a key element in completing the report.


Unit 3: Health and Well-Being (2hr examination)

Pupils will learn about: Concepts of Health and Well-being, Factors Affecting Health and Well-being, Health Promotion and The Approaches Used, Organisations Responsible for Health and Well-being and Discrimination and Anti-discriminatory Practice.



In the A2 year, the students will have access to pre-release material to prepare for the examination. 


A2 Unit 3: Providing Services: (Examination)

Pupils will learn about: the effects of legislation and policy on services, the way in which needs are identified and met, the roles of the various practitioners involved in the delivery of service provision; the importance of working in teams and quality assurance processes.


A2 Unit 4: Public Health and Health Promotion: (Controlled Assessment)

Pupils produce a report on current health improvement priorities in NI, undertake a health promotion activity and report their findings.


A2 Unit 5: Supporting the Family: (Controlled Assessment) Students produce a review of changes to family structures, a case study of a real or fictional family and a report on services for families experiencing particular issues.

Career Opportunities

Nursing, midwifery, degrees associated with allied health professionals, social sciences, social policy, social work and Early Years.

Additional Information

The Head of department is Ms L. Murray and for further information on any of the courses offered in the Health and Social Care:

Ms L. Murray-

Ms H. McAlister-

Ms M. Mullan-

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