International Programme in Addiction Studies

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MSc

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Part Time, Full Time

| Admissions status: Open
STRUCTURE OVERVIEW
Core programme content
  • Addiction Policy
  • Biological Basis of Addiction
  • Public Health Issues & Approaches to Addiction
  • Treatment of Addiction: Critical Issues
  • Treatment of Addiction: Pharmacotherapies
  • Treatment of Addiction: Psychosocial Interventions
  • Research Methodology in Addictions
  • Research Project in Addictions.

FORMAT AND ASSESSMENT
Each module lasts ten weeks, followed by one week for review and examination before the start of the next module. Full-time students take two modules at once, part-time students take one module over a ten week period. Pre-recorded lectures are audio-streamed within the Virtual Learning Environment and assessment is based on participation in non-synchronous online discussions, written assignments, and unseen examinations.

MODULES
More information on typical programme modules.
NB it cannot be guaranteed that all modules are offered in any particular academic year.

Teaching staff: This module is delivered online by Virginia Commonwealth University.
Module code: 7PAGIADP
Credit level: 7
Credit value: 20 credits
1. Two written assignments
2. Short answer examination
3. Online discussion board participation

This module is designed to provide students of differing backgrounds with an understanding of the process by which international addiction health policy is formed and reformed around the use and misuse of both licit and illicit drugs. The module looks at the epidemiology of addiction around the world and the relationship between the burden of addiction and the corresponding effects of national and international drug policies.

Teaching staff: This module is delivered online by the University of Adelaide
Module code: 7PAGIINT
Credit level: 7
Assessment:  written examination/s;  coursework; 
1. Written assignment
2. Short answer written examination
3. Online discussion board participation

This module is designed to provide an overview of the neuropharmacology of drugs of abuse and dependence, including basic principles of drug action as well as comprehensive coverage of the major classes of drugs (opioids, stimulants, nicotine, alcohol, sedatives, cannabis, hallucinogens). Students study mechanisms of action, effects, pharmacokinetics as well as tolerance and dependence for each of these drugs/drug classes. The reasons for addiction including biological, genetic, cultural and other determinants are discussed. Students learn about laboratory-based methods used in addiction research.

Teaching staff: This module is delivered online by Virginia Commonwealth University
Module code: 7PAGIPHA
Credit level: 7
Credit value: 20 credits
Assessment:  written examination/s;  coursework; 
1. 4 short written assignments
2. Short answer examination
3. Online discussion board participation

This module provides an introduction to basic concepts and research methods in Public Health and Epidemiology as they relate to the study of addictions, as well as an in-depth consideration of the personal, social, economic, and cultural burdens/costs associated with drug and alcohol abuse and dependence. Individual and community-based risk and protective factors related to addictions and primary and secondary prevention efforts aimed at reducing the addictions-related public health burden are also a focus. An online lecture format featuring presentations by leading researchers and policymakers in the field of addictions is used, along with readings, online discussions, and writing assignments, to (a) gain a greater understanding of the enormous costs of addictions at every level of society, and (b) introduce students to some of the current thinking and programs related to the primary and secondary prevention of addictions.

Teaching staff: This module is delivered online by the University of Adelaide.
Module code: 7PAGIRES
Credit level: 7
Credit value: 60 credits
Assessment:  coursework 

This module is designed to allow students to participate in the research process. Students are given the opportunity to complete a small research project under supervision. The submitted written text will be a minimum of 10,000 words in length, and is required to demonstrate a critical knowledge of the chosen topic area. The ability to apply scientific scrutiny to a topic related to aspects of drug and alcohol aetiology, treatment, prevention, public health or policy as identified by the programme team is required. The research project may involve original data collection, secondary analysis of previously collected data sets, or other quantitative or qualitative research methods. The necessary defining feature is that the research project should demonstrate an appropriate level of academic rigor and understanding of the scientific implications of the findings of the project. Students need to demonstrate competence in the integration and analysis of data to further the translation of this knowledge into more effective policies and practices, in keeping with the stated aims of the programme.

Teaching staff: This module is delivered online by King's College London.
Module code: 7PAGITAC
Credit level: 7
Assessment:  written examination/s;  coursework; 
1. Written assignment
2. Short answer examination
3. Online discussion board participation

This module is designed to enable students to gain advanced understanding of the critical issues involved in the identification, recruitment, assessment, diagnosis and classification of individuals who misuse substances. Local, national and international barriers to treatment (stigma, culture, religion, politics, legal issues, civil commitment, cost, attitudes and beliefs) are considered. Students explore and critically examine treatment options in special settings (for instance, prisons and the workplace) and in special populations (for instance, addicted healthcare professional, co-morbid patients, pregnancy).

Teaching staff: This module is delievered online by the University of Adelaide.
Module code: 7PAGITAP
Credit level: 7
Assessment:  written examination/s;  coursework; 
1. Written assignment
2. Short answer examination
3. Online discussion board participation

This module is designed to provide an overview of the pharmacological management of alcohol and drug addiction. It covers the management of withdrawal from alcohol, sedatives, opioids, cannabis and stimulants as well as long term management of dependence on opioids, tobacco and alcohol. Additional topics include international perspectives on management of dependence, management of dependence during pregnancy and the process of medication development.

Teaching staff: This module is delivered online by King's College London
Module code: 7PAGITAI
Credit level: 7
Credit value: 20 credits
Assessment:  written examination/s;  coursework; 
1. Written assigment
2. Short answer examination
3. Online discussion board participation

This module is designed to explore the scientific basis and treatment of substance misuse from a psychological perspective germane to the management of drug, alcohol and nicotine dependence. Students have the opportunity to evaluate the principles of different theoretical approaches underlying psychological assessment and evidence-based practice. During this module students develop a critical awareness of the current literature related to psychological theories of addiction. Students examine the use and comparative efficacy of different psychological therapies in clinical practice including brief interventions, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Motivational Interviewing /MET. Other interventions (case management, group work, self help, integrated treatment for co-occurring disorders etc) are also examined alongside the evidence base for Relapse Prevention, Contingency Management and Therapeutic Communities. Finally, students have the opportunity to explore psychological approaches used with specialist populations such as young people and adolescents.


KEY FACTS
Programme leader/s
Dr Kyle Dyer
Awarding institution
Jointly awarded by King's College London and University of Adelaide, Australia and Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond USA
Credit value (UK/ECTS equivalent)
UK 180/ECTS 90
Duration
One year FT, two years PT, August to August.
Location
Online, with access to facilities at King's, University of Adelaide and Virginia Commonwealth University.
Student destinations
Students follow a variety of careers e.g. clinical specialist/director, positions in local/national organisations requiring understanding of policies dissemination at local, state, national and/or international level, manager of addictions services, drugs worker, substance misuse nurse specialist, psychology assistant, research assistant, or further study e.g. PhD or Doctorate in Clinical Psychology.
Year of entry 2015
Offered by
Students in discussion