Academic year 2021/22
All our intensive MSc programmes will offer a mix of online and on campus teaching during the 2021/22 academic year.
This means that each programme will involve an element of module level teaching on campus and students will be required to attend part of the programme in person. Within a programme, some modules may be online only, others may combine online and campus teaching.
On campus laboratory teaching is essential to achieve all the Programme Learning Outcomes. Consequently, in order to study and complete your degree with us, it will be necessary for you to attend some laboratory practical sessions at our campus in London. Should the ongoing pandemic escalate, resulting in Government measures preventing us from delivering on campus teaching, students on lab-based programmes may be required to suspend their studies until such time that access to laboratories can be reinstated. Please check our Applicants and Offer Holders FAQs.
This programme provides core training in the theoretical and practical aspects of medical parasitology, covering the protozoan and metazoan parasites of humans and the vectors which transmit them. Students will gain specialised skills to enable them to pursue a career in research, control or teaching related to medical parasitology.
Duration: one year full-time or split-study over two years. Ways to study explained.
Video - Medical Parasitology
Watch Programme Director, Mary Cameron, and students talk about the programme.
"We gain incredible hands-on experience, both in the lab and in the field which, in my opinion, is unmatched by other schools."
By the end of this programme students should be able to demonstrate:
- demonstrate detailed knowledge and understanding of the biology, life cycles, pathogenesis, diagnosis of parasitic infections in humans and their relevance for human health and strategies for control
- demonstrate detailed knowledge and understanding of the biology and strategies for control of the vectors and intermediate hosts of human parasites
- carry out practical laboratory identification of the various parasite stages both free and in tissues and diagnose infections
- demonstrate specialised skills acquired through taking modules on: advanced diagnostic, molecular, immunological, genetic, chemotherapeutic, ecological and/or control aspects of the subject
- demonstrate the ability to design a laboratory or field based research project, apply relevant research skills, critically analyse and interpret data, and work with minimal supervision
- prepare a written report including a critical literature review of relevant scientific publications; and show competence in communicating scientific information and findings.
The below structure outlines the proposed modules for this programme. Programme and module specifications provide full details about the aims and objectives of each module, what you will study and how the module is assessed.
- View programme specification (2021/22)
- View module specifications (2020/21)
- Module availability chart (2020/21) (xls)
There is a one-week orientation period that includes an introduction to studying at LSHTM, sessions on key computing and study skills and an introduction to major groups of pathogens, followed by two compulsory core modules:
- Parasitology & Entomology
- Analysis & Design of Research Studies
Recommended module: Molecular Biology
Sessions on basic computing, molecular biology and statistics are run throughout the term for all students.
Terms 2 and 3
Students take a total of five modules, one from each timetable slot (Slot 1, Slot 2 etc.). Some modules can be taken only after consultation with the Programme Director.
- Malaria: From Science to Policy and Practice*
- Molecular Biology & Recombinant DNA Techniques*
- Advanced Immunology 1
- Designing Disease Control Programmes in Developing Countries
- Advanced Diagnostic Parasitology (compulsory)
- Vector Sampling, Identification & Incrimination*
- Advanced Training in Molecular Biology*
- Spatial Epidemiology
- Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, and Health
- Molecular Research in Infectious Diseases*
- Vector Biology & Vector-Parasite Interactions*
- Epidemiology & Control of Communicable Diseases
- Immunology of Parasitic Infection (not available in 2020-21)
- Antimicrobial Chemotherapy*
- Integrated Vector Management*
- Cell Biology of Host-Pathogen Interactions*
- Pathogen Genomics*
- Vaccine Immunology (not available in 2020-21)
- Neglected Tropical Diseases (not available in 2020-21)
Residential Field Trip
There is a compulsory one week field course, between Terms 2 and 3, on vector and parasite sampling and identification methods. The cost of this is included in the field trip fee.
During the summer months (July - August), students complete a research project, for submission by early September. This may be based on a critical review of an approved topic, analysis of a collection of results or a laboratory study. Students undertaking projects overseas will require additional funding of up to £1,500 to cover costs involved.
The majority of students who undertake projects abroad receive financial support for flights from LSHTM's trust funds set up for this purpose.
Please note: due to the unpredictable nature of the pandemic, we are not currently in a position to guarantee that overseas or field based projects will be possible or that London based laboratories will be accessible. Whilst we are hopeful that the situation will change before next summer, should it be the case that you are unable to travel overseas or access labs, you will be able to complete an alternative desk-based project allowing you to obtain your qualification within the original timeframe. Alternatively, you will be able to defer your project to the following year.
The Patrick Buxton Memorial Medal and Prize is awarded to the best student of the year.
Changes to the programme
LSHTM will seek to deliver this programme in accordance with the description set out on this programme page. However, there may be situations in which it is desirable or necessary for LSHTM to make changes in course provision, either before or after registration. For further information, please see our page on changes to courses.
A student must normally satisfy the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine general entrance requirements and the additional programme specific entrance requirements as follows:
The normal minimum entrance qualification for registration at the School on a Master's programme is at least one of the following:
- a second-class honours degree of a UK university, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard, in a subject appropriate to that of the course of study to be followed
- a registrable qualification appropriate to the course of study to be followed, in medicine, dentistry or veterinary studies
Applications with an appropriate technical qualification, or equivalent qualification and experience from overseas, are also welcomed.
An additional preferred requirement for the MSc Parasitology is an interest in parasites of public health importance and disease transmission.
Any student who does not meet the minimum entry requirement above but who has relevant professional experience may still be eligible for admission. Qualifications and experience will be assessed from the application.
English Language Requirements
If English is not your first language, you will need to meet these requirements: Band B
Please see our English Language Requirements FAQs for information
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 medical degree. More information on intercalating an MSc at the School
Graduates from this programme enter global health fields ranging from diagnostics through to applied basic research and operational control to higher degree studies and academic/teaching-related positions.
Below you will find just a few of the positions and organisations that our graduates from this course have entered after graduating:
- Example job titles:
Applied Research Analyst
Microbiology Laboratory Technician
Veterinary Parasitologist Housing Officer
- Example organisations:
Laboratory of Government Chemists
London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
Medical Research Council
National History Museum
National Institute for Medical Research
The Institute of Cancer Research
University of Oxford
NIBSC (National Institute for Biological Standards and Control
Delta Vector Control
"The practicals were fantastic, and I can’t stress enough how much you learn during them. The option to take our final research project abroad was also a huge attractant to me, giving the opportunity to go into the field and put all the theory we learnt during the year into practice, with full support from supervisors and the School."
Applications should be made online and will only be considered once you have provided all required information and supporting documentation.
Please also read LSHTM's Admissions policies prior to submitting your application.
You can apply for up to two master's. Make sure to list them by order of preference as consideration will be given to your top choice first.
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.
We strongly advise that you apply early as popular programmes will close earlier than the stated deadline if they become full.
The final closing dates for all taught Master’s applications for entry in the 2021/22 academic year is:
- Sunday 27 June 2021 at 23:59 UK time for all students requiring a Student visa
- Sunday 8 August 2021 at 23:59 UK time for all UK, Irish and non-Student visa students
A standard application fee of £50 applies to all taught Master’s degree programmes and is payable upon application submission.
Tuition fee deposit
Applicants are required to respond to their Offer of Admission and pay the £500 deposit within 28 days of receipt, or their place will be released and the offer automatically declined. The deposit is deductible from tuition fees upon full registration with LSHTM.