Preventative Medicine

Preventative Medicine: Exercise and the Environment

Academic Coordinator: Dr Richard Pulsford

Campus: Streatham/St Luke's

Session: Session 1 & Session 2

Preventive Medicine: Exercise and the Environment offers a detailed exploration into preventive health issues related to physical activity and the environment.  Drawing upon sustained research in these topics at Exeter, you will gain a deeper understanding of the science behind the interaction of physical activity and the environment with health across the lifespan.

This course is aimed primarily at those undergraduates and graduates with a keen interest in exercise, physical activity, health, medicine and the environment.  If you have a background in biology, sports science, kinesiology, medicine, psychology, or professions allied to medicine, you will be well prepared for this course.

Topics will include physiological and psychological aspects of health and wellbeing, natural and virtual environments and their impact on health. These topics will encompass the lifespan, from childhood to old age. You will be able to interact with internationally renowned and world-class researchers over a series of lectures, seminars and practical sessions and have a chance to practise and promote preventive medicine.

The programme creates a challenge for you academically whilst also providing you with the skills to apply theoretical concepts in real-world laboratory and field settings. The aims of the course are: 

  • To provide a thought-provoking and insightful examination of the interaction between physical activity, the environment and our health which reflects the University’s strong and unique reputation for internationally excellent multi-method and multidisciplinary research and teachings in this field.
  • To provide a sound basis in quantitative approaches to the study of physical activity, exercise and health.
  • To work with the research expertise of staff across various, diverse disciplines (psychology, physiology, exercise medicine, paediatric exercise science, the environment) to allow a rounded exploration of how physical activity and the environment can influence population health.

Key texts:

Adrianne E. Hardman, David J. Stensel, Physical Activity and Health: The evidence explained (2nd ed. Routledge, 2009)

Claude Bouchard, Steven N. Blair, William Haskell, Physical Activity and Health (Human Kinetics, 2007)

More information on the structure of the programme and our teaching style can be found on our Academic programme page.  If you have any questions please email 

‘The International Summer School atmosphere gives a unique perspective on each topic, giving a better understanding of the global nature of public health concerns’ - Jennifer Stenback, University of South Florida