Core modules

  • Preventive Cariology Theory and Practice
  • Research Methods
  • Reflective Clinical Practice
  • Research Project

Optional specialist modules

  • Smoking Cessation
  • Nutrition and Weight Management
  • Physical Activity and Exercise
  • Medical Management
  • Risk Estimation
  • DIabetes

Core modules


Preventive cardiology theory and practice (PGCert and MSc) [10 ECTS]

This module develops a broad understanding of the evidence and clinical practice of preventive cardiology, with reference to the national and international cardiovascular disease prevention guidelines. The efficacy of lifestyle interventions (smoking, diet and physical activity), medical management of cardiovascular risk factors and the use of cardioprotective medications are explored. A critical appraisal of the evidence for behavioural and social care models is included as well as practical therapeutic applications.

Module Leader - Catriona Jennings (BA, RN, PhD)

  • Specialist nurse in cardiovascular disease prevention and rehabilitation
  • EUROACTION nurse coordinator and senior research nurse in the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London
  • Chair of ESC Council on Cardiovascular Nursing and Allied Professions (CCNAP)
  • Past President of the British Association for Nursing in Cardiovascular Care

Research methods (MSc) [15 ECTS]

This module aims to develop the students understanding of evidence based practice and consolidate their knowledge of the principles and concepts of the research process. Their understanding of the role of research in preventive cardiology will be extended, gaining the skills needed to gather and analyse data, both quantitative and qualitative. The student will also gain an understanding of study designs commonly used in health-related research.

Module Leader - Professor David Wood (MSc, FRCP, FRCPE, FFPHM, FESC)

  • Garfield Weston Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine at the National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London
  • President Elect of the World Heart Federation
  • Past president of the European Association for Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation

Reflective clinical practice (MSc) [5 ECTS]

This module aims to develop students’ reflective skills. The module involves students participating in a number of core clinical visits where a wide range of preventive cardiology practice is observed. Additional visits are associated with the specialist areas selected by the student. Following each visit a reflection on practice is completed. These are then presented in a form of a portfolio at the end of the course.

Module Leader - Tim Grove (MSc)

  • Senior Teaching Fellow at Imperial College
  • Lead Exercise Specialist for Imperial Healthcare NHS Trust, which run family based preventive and rehabilitation programmes for vascular health.
  • He also lectures on anatomy and exercise physiology for the British Association for Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation.

Research project (MSc only) [30 ECTS]

The MSc project will entail investigating a topic in preventive cardiology, culminating in the submission of an 8,000 word (excluding references) dissertation. The project will draw on a literature review around the research question, providing the scientific background to understanding the issues with the research. The student will also submit a research proposal, outlining their project and its significance, for assessment before the project period. The project can be focused on existing data, or may require the collection of new data, or can aim to develop and test a new method. On completion of the project a written report will be produced and submitted for an examination followed by a viva in September with an internal and external examiner, prior to the MSc Examination Board meeting in late September.

Full time students can commence their project from January and must be completed by September. Part-time students complete their research projects over the duration of their second year of study. The project will be drawn broadly from the five themed areas of preventive cardiology covered in the course. The project will be supervised by a member of the course faculty. Both project content and supervisory arrangements must be approved by the course director. The projects may be conducted, in part or in whole at external research institutions or agencies in the UK or overseas. In this case, students will also have an additional external supervisor based at the external institution.

Module Leader - Dr Alison Atrey (PhD, SRD)

  • Specialist dietitian in cardiovascular disease prevention and rehabilitation
  • Council member of BACPR
  • Past Chair of the UK Heart Health Dietetic Interest Group of the BDA.

Optional specialist modules


Smoking cessation [10 ECTS]

This module looks at the approach to smoking cessation recommended by the Department of Health (DH). It presents the importance of smoking cessation and evaluates the current literature into the effectiveness of behavioural, pharmacological and combination interventions. The module includes clinical observation of smoking cessation clinics in practice.

Module Leader - Catriona Jennings (BA, RN, PhD)

  • Specialist nurse in cardiovascular disease prevention and rehabilitation
  • EUROACTION nurse coordinator and senior research nurse in the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London
  • Chair of ESC Council on Cardiovascular Nursing and Allied Professions (CCNAP)
  • Past President of the British Association for Nursing in Cardiovascular Care

Nutrition and weight management [10 ECTS]

The aim of this module is to promote the acquisition of evidence based knowledge and skills needed for safe and effective professional practice of dietary and weight management in the prevention of cardiovascular disease.

Module Leader - Dr Alison Atrey (PhD, SRD) & Professor Gary Frost (PhD, SRD)

  • Specialist dietitian in cardiovascular disease prevention and rehabilitation
  • Council member of BACPR
  • Past Chair of the UK Heart Health Dietetic Interest Group of the BDA.
  • Professor in Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Governor, British Nutrition Foundation, British Nutrition Foundation, 2013 - 2015
  • Panel Member, NIHR Post Doctoral Fellowship Panel, National Institute of Health Research, 2008 - 2015

Physical activity and exercise [10 ECTS]

This module aims to critically review the evidence base for the role of physical inactivity in the aetiology of CVD. Students will also evaluate how the evidence base for physical activity can be translated into practical strategies to help reduce CVD.

Module Leader - Tim Grove (MSc)

  • Senior Teaching Fellow at Imperial College
  • Lead Exercise Specialist for Imperial Healthcare NHS Trust, which run family based preventive and rehabilitation programmes for vascular health.
  • He also lectures on anatomy and exercise physiology for the British Association for Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation.

Medical risk factor management [10 ECTS]

This module discusses the scientific background for blood pressure and cholesterol and its application to the prevention and treatment of CVD with pharmacological therapies. The module aims to identify and evaluate best practice in the use of prophylactic drug therapies in the prevention of CVD. It explores the associated clinical outcome data associated with best-practice and explores the current health care structure and policies that govern current practice.

Module Leader - Dr Susan Connolly (MB, MRCPI, PhD)

  • Consultant Cardiologist, Imperial College NHS Healthcare Trust
  • Honorary Senior Lecturer, Imperial College London
  • Member of the 3rd Joint British Societies Guidelines for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention in Clinical Practice writing group.
  • UK National Coordinator for CVD Prevention for the European Society of Cardiology on behalf of the British Cardiovascular Society.

Risk estimation [10 ECTS]

This module encompasses the Department of Health publication of ‘Putting Prevention First’ and the public health agenda in screening for and managing individuals at high cardiovascular risk as a top priority. Students are equipped with the necessary knowledge and practical skills to critically estimate risk using a number of tools and approaches.

Module Leader - Dr Kornelia Kotseva (MD, PhD, FESC)

  • Senior clinical research fellow at the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine at the National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London
  • Honorary Consultant in Cardiology to the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust based at Charing Cross Hospital
  • Fellow of the European Society of Cardiology
  • Member of the International Editorial Board of the European Journal of Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation
  • Expert assessor for British Medical Association grant applications.

Prevention and management of diabetes [10 ECTS]

This module discusses the scientific background and its application to the detection, prevention and treatment of diabetes, both through lifestyle and pharmacological therapies. An update on clinical guidelines and trial evidence in prevention and treatment of diabetes are explored.

Module Leader - Dr Anne Dornhorst and Dr Sufyan Hussain

  • Consultant Physician & Honorary Senior Lecturer