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MSc Public Health


This course covers the whole breadth of public health, which focuses on high-, middle- and low-income countries. Students can follow a general public health course or concentrate on one of five more specific streams. Which stream to follow will depend on individual needs and is decided with support of course directors and tutors during Term 1.

On successful completion of the course, students will receive an Master's degree in Public Health. This will reflect their choice of stream:

The decision of which stream to follow will depend on the needs of the student and can be discussed with the Course Directors, while the Course FAQs provide further details on choosing a stream.

In addition to the MSc Public Health, other courses at the School may be relevant to students with an interest in public health and applicants should review the pages of other courses as follows: (i) MSc Public Health for Development - for those with an interest in low-income countries; (ii) MSc Health Policy, Planning & Financing - for applicants with a particular interest in Health Policy; (iii) MSc Nutrition for Global Health - for those with an interest in nutrition.

Duration: one year full time; part-time or split-study over two years. Modes of study explained.

This course is accredited by the Agency for Accreditation of Public Health Education in the European Region (APHEA) which is the accreditation body of the Association of Schools of Public Health in the European Region (ASPHER).


Watch Course Directors and students talk about the course.

The diversity and international experience of lecturers and students is visible through the impressive level of international and national research and publications.
Cecilia de Villiers, South Africa


Term 1

All students complete the Public Health common core, consisting of four compulsory modules:

  • Basic Statistics for Public Health & Policy
  • Basic Epidemiology
  • Introduction for Health Economics
  • Principles of Social Research

Term 1 Additional Modules

All students take two additional modules, selected from the following:

  • Environment, Health & Sustainable Development
  • Health Policy, Process & Power
  • Health Promotion Theory
  • Health Services
  • Issues in Public Health

Important note: one of these modules may be compulsory for a particular stream. Those who have not completed the named module in Term 1 will not be able to take that stream in Terms 2 and 3.

Term 1 Supplementary Modules

Students unfamiliar with computers will need to take the introductory course in basic computer skills. Students are also encouraged to attend the Global Health Lecture Series and seminars organised by Research Modules.

Terms 2 and 3

By the middle of Term 1 students must have selected one of the six streams. During Terms 2 and 3 all students will take a total of five study modules, one from each timetable slot. For most streams two of these modules are compulsory. Which modules these are, and what other modules are available, differs according to the stream.

Further details for the course modules

Project Report

In addition, all students prepare a project report during the summer months (July - August), for submission by early September. The nature of this project may differ between streams, and the content must be relevant to the stream.

Titles of some recent summer projects completed by students on this MSc

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

The normal minimum entry requirements for the MSc Public Health are:

  • An honours degree: entry to the MSc Public Health is highly competitive and applicants are recommended to have a 2:1 or high 2:2 from a UK university, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard, in a natural sciences, clinical disciplines or social science.
  • Work experience: preference will be given to applicants with relevant work experience, this includes both paid and voluntary work, internships etc.
  • Additional requirement: applicants for the MSc Public Health (all streams) will need to provide some evidence of ability in mathematics, post-16 year education. This could include:
    • "A" level or a higher school certificate,
    • a module within an undergraduate degree (such as quantitative methods, epidemiology or statistics)
    • statistics studied as part of a general research methods course.

Any student who does not meet the minimum academic entry requirement above but who has significant relevant professional experience may still be eligible for admission.

Admissions FAQs
English Language Requirements FAQs

Intercalating students

You will need a Bachelor's degree or equivalent to undertake this MSc. This usually means you  have a BSc or have completed the first three years of your medical degree. More information on intercalating an MSc at the School.

Fees and funding

Fees 2017/2018
Home Full-time £9,150
  Part-time / Split-study £4,575
Overseas Full-time £21,500
  Part-time / Split-study £10,750

Scholarships and funding opportunities

Finances and Funding FAQs

How to apply

Applications should be made online. Paper application forms are available upon request and will normally incur an administration fee of £50. You must send a copy of the personal details and photograph page of your passport with all paper applications. Your application will not be considered until you have provided the above documents.

Applicants wishing to be considered for School scholarships should apply as early as possible. Deadlines for scholarship applications appear on the Master's funding page. Course applications will be considered until all places on the course have been filled. Notification of when a course is closed will appear on the relevant course page. All applicants should be able to start the course on the first day of the academic year.

Students interested in part-time or split-study should contact the Course Directors, via the Registry, to discuss course requirements and likely timetables, and should read the Master's degree information.

Application deadlines

All applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible to ensure availability of a place and a timely decision on their application. This is particularly important for applicants with sponsorship deadlines.

The final closing date for taught Master’s applications is as follows:

  • 11th August 2016 by midnight British Summer Time (BST) for international applicants requiring a Tier 4 Student Visa, and
  • 29th August 2016 by midnight British Summer Time (BST) for applicants not requiring a Tier 4 Student Visa.

Do you need a visa?

EEA Nationals

If you have EU nationality or you are from Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland, you do not need immigration permission to come to the UK. You can enter, study and work in the UK without restriction. If you have dual nationality, and you choose to come to the UK using your EEA or Swiss passport, you do not need immigration permission.

For useful guidance on EEA nationals in the UK, go to the UKCISA website.

Students from outside the EEA

All non-EEA nationals who want to study in the UK must hold immigration permission that allows you to study in the UK.

If you are coming to the School to study on a full time degree programme and you have no other immigration permission for the UK, you will need to apply for a Tier 4 Student visa. You can only apply for Tier 4 when your offer at the School is unconditional.

If you already hold a Tier 4 visa for a different institution, you will probably have to apply for a Tier 4 visa for the School before you can start studying with us.

Still unsure on whether you need a visa?

Admission status

Closed for 2016/17. Apply in Nov for 2017/18.
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