Switch to low bandwidth version Close

Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene


Start Date: Late September/early October 2016 (exact start date to be confirmed)

End Date: Friday, 16 December 2016 



The Diploma in Tropical Medicine & Hygiene (DTM&H) is an intensive, three-month, full-time course in tropical medicine and public health for physicians. 

It combines practical laboratory work, a series of lectures and seminars and some limited clinical experience designed to provide doctors with the clinical and factual knowledge that will form the basis of professional competence in tropical medicine. It is designed for physicians who intend to work in the tropics, physicians with tropical experience who have returned for a refresher, or practitioners who may be working in non-tropical countries and who need experience in clinical parasitology, imported diseases and travel medicine.

The School has been providing advanced and interdisciplinary research training for future senior academics, policy-makers, practitioners, and research workers in the global health, medical and public health community for over 100 years. The diversity of our students and staff is exceptional; staff come from 45 countries and our postgraduate students from over 120 countries and this provides a rich environment for students to learn. School alumni are now working in more than 160 countries; many former students hold prominent positions in health ministries, universities and international organisations throughout the world.

The academic staff teaching on the course, most of whom have lived and worked in the tropics, come from all departments of the School and from many external institutions. The Hospital for Tropical Diseases provides the setting for clinical training; students should be aware however that bedside clinical teaching is not usually offered.

Aims of the Course

The course aims to teach doctors the skills required to understand, diagnose, treat and prevent diseases that are especially prevalent in tropical and developing countries where resources may be limited. The course has a strong epidemiological base but the scientific basis of infectious diseases is also given priority.

A particular feature of the course is the diversity of students who attend. Among the 70 students who take the diploma course each year, more than 25 different countries are usually represented. Students range in experience from recently qualified doctors (though usually no earlier than 3 years post-graduation) to specialist infectious disease physicians and surgeons with many years of experience working in tropical and developing countries.

The course is continually updated in response to changing needs, new developments in knowledge and technology, and student feedback. It has remained highly popular with students throughout its history which spans over 100 years.

Course outline

Much of the course is devoted to seminars, in which a multi-disciplinary team of experts from within and outside the School covers a particular disease or group of diseases in depth. Lectures cover the causative organisms, epidemiology, pathogenesis, clinical features, diagnosis, management and prevention of these diseases. Time is set aside after each lecture for discussion. Implications for travel medicine are discussed where appropriate.

Other seminars focus on aspects of community health. These include an introduction to epidemiological methods used in the study of communicable diseases, and lectures on water supply, sanitation and nutrition. Seminars are also held on maternal and child health, non-communicable disease, population and reproductive health and health in emergencies.

One day a week is devoted to parasitology teaching. Lectures are followed by practicals in which the laboratory diagnosis of all the major parasitic diseases is taught. One day a week entails clinical teaching, often at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases. Clinical activities include problem-based teaching, small group discussions, and, because the number of clinical cases in the Hospital is often limited, case presentations of "paper cases" derived from recent cases seen at the Hospital.

The course is intensive, without much free time during the three months. Sessions start at 09.00 most mornings and teaching continues most days until 17.00 hours. Beginning in the 2016/2017 academic year students registered for the full year Masters in Tropical Medicine and International Health will take the DTM&H course in its entirety, joining the 70 students taking the three-month diploma course. For all students passing the end of term exams this course will constitute academic credit amounting to one third of the MSc TMIH course.

Examination and Accreditation

The DTM&H has been approved as a postgraduate certificate qualification. It will be awarded by LSHTM following successful completion of end of course examinations on 15th and 16th December 2016.

The Accreditation Committee of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene has approved the curriculum of the DTM&H course as suitable for doctors training in clinical tropical medicine and travellers' health in the USA. Completion of an accredited course and examination is a required part of this training.

In addition, the course received 150 points accreditation from the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).


A small number of School scholarships are normally available each year.  It is unlikely that details for scholarships for the September 2016-intake will be confirmed until spring 2016. Overseas students should ask their local British Council Office and their own government education department for details of scholarships and grants available. It should be noted that in the past most of the candidates attending this course have funded themselves.

Who should apply for the course?

The DTM&H is open to doctors who hold a medical qualification from a recognised medical school in any country, and who are registered for medical practice in that country. Numbers are limited to a maximum of 70. Priority may be given to students from low and middle income countries and to those with at least three years of post-qualification clinical experience. Applicants must have a good standard of written and spoken English and of English comprehension. The School will require applicants to provide evidence of a satisfactory standard of English. The School has approved certain English tests. These requirements must be fulfilled before the end of March 2016 or the School will reallocate the place to the next candidate on the waiting list.

How to apply


The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine is committed to improving global health through its programme of short and full-time postgraduate study.

Please note:
  • If you have been offered a place on the course you will not be able to register without bringing formal ID (Passport) and without having obtained the correct visa.
  • It is essential that you read the current visa requirements for short course students. To view this information please click here.
  • The School may cancel courses two weeks before the first day of the course if numbers prove insufficient.  In those circumstances, course fees will be refunded.
  • The School cannot accept responsibility for accommodation, travel and other losses incurred as a result of the course being cancelled.
" Over more than a century the LSHTM has contributed to a significant metamorphosis in the understanding of tropical diseases. Ambrose Okeke from Nigeria studied for Diploma in Tropical Medicine & Hygiene - Full profile
Back to top