Supported by the UKRI funded MARCH Mental Health Network, this new online course is aimed at researchers focused on how community resources, or 'assets', can protect and enhance health and wellbeing, known as an asset-based approach to health.

The UK offers a rich environment for this work with an estimated 1 million assets that include libraries, writing groups, archives, gardens, exercise classes, sporting events, volunteering and charitable groups, and community organisations such as youth services, trade unions, and religious groups. 

RSPH, UCL and the MARCH Network have developed this course to increase the knowledge within this field. Participants will learn:

  • What ‘health’ is and the evidence for the influence of arts activities on health outcomes.
  • The barriers people face to accessing arts activities and how interventions and policies can be designed to help overcome them.
  • The active ingredients or components of arts activities that may lead to health and wellbeing outcomes.
  • The biological, social, psychological and behavioural mechanisms through which arts activities can affect mental and physical health and wellbeing.
  • The contextual factors or moderators that influence how the arts affect our health.
  • How researchers can adopt the principles of complexity science to examine the effect of arts activities on health.

A limited number of free course accounts will be offered to early career researchers and community organisations. The course will also be available to purchase for £30. 

Purchase this course 

This course launched at a MARCH Network Showcase event on Wednesday 13 October 2021. 

The online course was spearheaded by Dr Daisy Fancourt, Associate Professor of Behavioural Science and Health at UCL and Principal Investigator of the MARCH Network. She said, “One of our primary aims with the MARCH Network was to design and deliver a training programme to develop cross-disciplinary skills and expertise amongst the next generation of researchers. This course draws on research done by MARCH and the work with the Arts, Health and Wellbeing Special Interest Research Group to deliver a groundbreaking course for anyone interested in the interplay between arts and health.

Christina Marriot, Chief Executive of the Royal Society for Public Health said: “We are excited to launch this new online course which both adds to our growing portfolio and builds on our long-standing relationship with University College London and our special interest in Arts, Health and Wellbeing”



Dr Daisy Fancourt IRIS

Research Department of Behavioural Science and Health, UCL

University College London



UCL Media Contact: [email protected]

13 October 2021 Launch Event

UCL RSPH Online Course contact:

Alexandra Bradbury: [email protected]

RSPH Contact:

Samantha King: [email protected]