PHARMACY 111G Drugs and Society

PHARMACY 111G | Open Schedule | Semester Two 2020 | City Campus


This course is designed to enhance understanding and appreciation of the multifaceted and diverse roles that drugs play in human societies, particularly in contemporary New Zealand.
Several topics will be covered over five themes, including:

  • The basics of how drugs work in the body
  • Infections and treatments
  • Cancers and treatments
  • Cardiovascular disorders and treatments
  • Mental health disorders and treatments

Who should take this course?

This course is for students who are interested in the variety of drugs in our society, and for those who want more insight into how these drugs work and the different available therapies. 

Learning outcomes

  • To understand the basic principles behind drugs and medicines
  • To understand the basic concepts of drug safety and optimal use of medicines
  • To be able to discuss common alternative and complementary medicines such as herbal and homeopathic remedies 
  • To understand drug treatment options for common diseases in New Zealand, such as infections, cancer, cadiovascular and mental health disorders
  • To develop an awareness of the future for drugs and societies, particularly the issues and developments arising in western societies
  • To develop an understanding of how research evidence is used as the basis for the use of drugs in society

Topics covered

  • An introduction to drugs
  • Infections
  • Cancer treatment
  • Cardiovascular diseases, prevention and treatment
  • Mental health

Delivery format

Lectures: 30 one-hour lectures

Tutorials: Five one-hour tutorials (after each module block to cover the topic)


Assessment 1: Five multi-choice question tests (20%)

There will be test one at the end of each block of lectures

Asssessment 2: 1,500 word essay (30%)

Assessment 3: Final examination (50%)

The exam is two hours long and will be comprised of short answer qustions covering all aspects of the course.


No required text.

Additional course readings will be supplied.

For More Information

Course Co-ordinator:  Dr Kebede Beyene

Email:  Phone: +64 9 373 7599 Ext. 88531

Course Director: Dr Jeff Harrison

Email: Phone +64 9 373 2144