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MSc Veterinary Epidemiology


This is a joint programme provided by the School and the Royal Veterinary College (RVC). There is a shortage of trained veterinary epidemiologists and there are excellent career opportunities for graduates. This course provides training in essential methodological skills for the design, conduct, analysis, interpretation and communication of epidemiological studies; and surveillance and disease control in animal and human populations.

This course is also available as a Postgraduate Diploma

Graduates from this course hold positions in a variety of organisations including: Ministries of Agriculture & Food; Veterinary Investigation Laboratories; Animal Disease Research Institutes; Animal Health Trusts; Veterinary Faculties in Universities and International Organisations concerned with global health (DFID, FAO, WHO, OIE, etc).

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


Watch Course Directors and former students talk about the course.

As an intercalating student, the course was an opportunity for me to pursue a subject I had developed an interest in during the pre-clinical stage of my undergraduate degree and to broaden my career prospects.
Alun Simpson, United Kingdom


By the end of this course students will be able to:

  • design and implement epidemiological studies and surveillance systems
  • analyse and interpret data from epidemiological studies
  • undertake risk analysis and apply this to animal health economics
  • apply epidemiological principles to disease control within animal and human populations
  • give pragmatic advice on animal health linked to welfare, production and public health
  • communicate effectively on the health of animal and human populations to a range of audiences, including the general public, farmers, researchers, politicians and other key policy makers


Term 1 

All students take the compulsory modules and usually take the recommended modules.

Compulsory modules

  • Extended Epidemiology
  • Epidemiological Aspects of Laboratory Investigation
  • Surveillance of Animal Health & Production
  • Statistics for Epidemiology and Population Health
  • Data Management for Epidemiological Studies
  • Communication Skills in Epidemiology


  • Public Health Lecture Series


  • Epidemiology in Context
  • Molecular Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases
  • Introduction to Computing

Terms 2 and 3

Students take a total of five compulsory study modules, one from each timetable slot (Slot 1, Slot 2 etc.).

Slot 1: Animal Health Economics

Slot 2: Statistical Methods in Epidemiology

Slot 3: Modelling and the Dynamics of Infectious Diseases

Slot 4: Epidemiology & Control of Communicable Diseases

Slot 5: Applied Veterinary Epidemiology

Further details for the course modules

Project Report (MSc only)

During the summer months (July - August), students complete a research project on a topic in veterinary epidemiology, for submission by early September.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have a first- or second-class university honours degree or equivalent. Individuals with degrees in biological sciences, veterinary or human medicine, mathematics or statistics, and relevant postgraduate experience, are all encouraged to apply.  Applicants are expected to have a high level of numeracy skills (e.g. A Level Mathematics or Statistics or a module with a good mark in their university degree).

Applicants from overseas will be required to provide evidence of proficiency in spoken and written English, including scientific usage and comprehension.

Intercalating Students

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

Fees and funding

Fees 2016/2017
Home Full-time £8,320
  Part-time Pro Rata
Overseas Full-time £21,060
  Part-time Pro Rata

Scholarships and funding opportunities

How to apply

Application forms and further information may be obtained from:

Admissions Royal Veterinary College
Royal College Street
London NW1 0UT

Email: admissions@rvc.ac.uk
Royal Veterinary College website

Admission status


Course Directors

  • Ellen Fragaszy (LSHTM)
  • Professor Dirk Pfeiffer (RVC)
  • Dr Kristien Verheyen (RVC)
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Wednesday 3 February 2016

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