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Public Health (Public Health stream) (MSc)

Course Description

This stream provides the knowledge and skills necessary to improve the health of populations across high-, middle- and low-income settings. The emphasis is on the use, development and critical evaluation of conceptual models; evidence and methods of analysis; and on practical, effective interventions.

Graduates from this stream work in health care, health policy and public health organisations at local, national and international level in service and academic public health roles.

If your main interest is public health in low-income countries please refer to the MSc Public Health for Development.

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

- Full programme specification (pdf) (http://www.lshtm.ac.uk/edu/qualityassurance/ph_ph_progspec.pdf)

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).

Visit the website http://www.lshtm.ac.uk/study/masters/msphph.html

An additional requirement for the MSc Public Health (all streams) is some evidence of ability in mathematics, post-16 year education. Preference will also be given to applicants with relevant work experience.

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.


By the end of this stream students should be able to demonstrate ability to apply knowledge of the core disciplines of public health, consisting of statistics; epidemiology; health economics; and social research, to real health problems. In addition, they should be able to:

- critically assess key public health functions

- demonstrate knowledge and skills in a range of topics related to public health

- formulate, implement and evaluate appropriate policy responses to public health problems

- show competence in critically evaluating and communicating research evidence


Term 1:
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

In addition, students intending to follow this stream must take Issues in Public Health. The remaining module can be selected from:

Environment, Health & Sustainable Development
Health Promotion Theory
Health Policy, Process & Power
Health Services

Terms 2 and 3:
Students take a total of five study modules, one from each timetable slot (Slot 1, Slot 2 etc.). The list below shows recommended modules. There are other modules which may be taken only after consultation with the Course Directors.

- Slot 1:
Drugs, Alcohol and Tobacco
Economic Evaluation
Health Care Evaluation
Health Promotion Approaches and Methods
Research Design & Analysis
Study Design: Writing a Study Proposal

- Slot 2:
Conflict and Health
Design & Analysis of Epidemiological Studies
Health Systems
History & Health
Qualitative Methodologies
Statistical Methods in Epidemiology

- Slot 3:
Applied Communicable Disease Control
Economic Analysis for Health Policy
Epidemiology of Non-Communicable Diseases
Medical Anthropology and Public Health
Organisational Management

- Slot 4:
Analytical Models for Decision Making
Design & Evaluation of Mental Health Programmes
Environmental Epidemiology
Epidemiology & Control of Communicable Diseases
Ethics, Public Health & Human Rights
Evaluation of Public Health Interventions
Globalisation & Health
Nutrition Related Chronic Diseases
Reviewing the Literature

- Slot 5:
Principles and Practice of Public Health (compulsory)

By arrangement, students may be able to substitute specified Distance Learning modules for up to two modules in certain timetable slots. Any such substitutions will need to be discussed with the Course Directors. Full details are contained in the MSc Course Handbook.

Further details for the course modules - http://www.lshtm.ac.uk/study/currentstudents/studentinformation/msc_module_handbook/section2_coursedescriptions/tphe_6.html

Project Report:
Students prepare a project report during the summer months (July - August), for submission by early September.

Intercalating this course

Undergraduate medical students can take a year out either to pursue related studies or work. The School welcomes applications from medical students wishing to intercalate after their third year of study from any recognised university in the world.

Why intercalate with us?:
Reputation: The School has an outstanding international reputation in public health & tropical medicine and is at the forefront of global health research. It is highly rated in a number of world rankings including:

- World’s leading research-focused graduate school (Times Higher Education World Rankings, 2013)
- Third in the world for social science and public health (US News Best Global Universities Ranking, 2014)
- Second in UK for research impact (Research Exercise Framework 2014)
- Top in Europe for impact (Leiden Ranking, 2015)

Highly recognised qualification: possessing a Master's from the School will give you a focused understanding of health and disease, broaden your career prospects and allow you to be immersed in research in a field of your choice.

Valuable skills: you will undertake an independent research project (summer project) in your chosen topic, equipping you with research skills that will distinguish you in a clinical environment. While your medical qualification will give you a breadth of knowledge; undertaking an intercalated degree will allow you to explore your main area of interest in greater depth.

Alumni network: the School has a strong international and diverse alumni community, with more than 20,000 alumni in over 180 countries.

MSc vs. BSc: undertaking an MSc is an excellent opportunity to develop in-depth specialist knowledge in your chosen topic and enhance your skills in scientific research. Postgraduate qualifications are increasingly sought after by clinicians and possessing a Masters qualification can assist you in your future career progression.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.lshtm.ac.uk/study/masters/msphph.html#sixth

Visit the Public Health (Public Health stream) (MSc) page on the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Jessica Mears

142.gif Having grown up in London but been away for the last 4 years, returning to study at LSHTM has given me a new and extraordinary experience of my home town. It has provided and exposed exciting opportunities in previously unknown and impenetrable areas in London.

The teaching is quite different to that I experienced during my undergraduate studies, including a lot more discussion and creative group work fit into full, well-structured days. I was worried that having no clinical background would make the course more challenging, but it is organised in a way that accommodates and challenges both the clinically and non-clinically trained students. With so much choice over what modules to take, the Public Health course is easy to mould into an experience that meets your individual needs; satisfying those that have very specific objectives as well as those for whom the course is an exploration into public health.

For me, the MSc is exploratory as I have no definite career plans. I am one of the younger students at LSHTM and initially I was concerned that I would not be able to contribute as much as others who had been working in fascinating settings all over the world for many years. However, I soon realised that the experiences that I myself have had are as informative as those of others, and that the mixture of perspectives that students at LSHTM hold are what creates such a valuable learning experience. I have also been impressed by how forthcoming my fellow students have been with advice and ideas for my future. I am very lucky to be able to learn directly from the careers and experiences of students at different stages of their lives with whom I share similar interests and aspirations.

(Student Profile)

Sofia de Figueiredo Ribeiro

4361.jpg I applied to the MSc because it is most similar to the course I am due to take as part of my Medical Residency of Public Health training in Portugal.

When going through the program, I was impressed by how flexible it is apart from the core disciplines in Public Health. The possibility of tailoring my MSc program to my needs and preferences was definitely a key factor that influenced my choice.

Being a member of the Student Representatives Council was also an incredible experience that allowed me to develop leadership skills and provide a better experience to other students.

(Student Profile)

Nathan Barusch

4403.jpg I completed my third year of medical school at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska before coming to the School for my MSc in Public Health. Next year I hope to finish medical school and go into psychiatry and mental health policy. I first heard about the School while interning at the World Health Organization. I chose the School for its stellar reputation in global health, the variety of coursework to choose from, the ability to complete my MSc in one year and of course the opportunity to live in such an incredible city.

I couldn’t be happier with my choice! The professors are fantastic! I frequently notice that the papers and books I am reading are authored by the School’s faculty, who are very enthusiastic and approachable teachers. My fellow students are also remarkably accomplished with diverse backgrounds. Classes are focused on building skills and teaching us to think in new ways about public health. It has been one of the most educational, exciting, and enjoyable years of my education.

(Student Profile)

Chance Pistoll

4404.jpg Every day at the School is like diving into a global swimming pool of experience, with so much learning occurring outside the classroom in the context of a truly international and multicultural student cohort. From conversations with fellow students, I have learned about the medical politics of Kenya; the format of medical school interviews in the USA; and have even had the chance to test theories from a policy class against their architects in Geneva. The School presents a unique environment and opportunity, not easily replicated anywhere in the world.

(Student Profile)

Jenric Ng

4405.jpg One of the strengths of the School is the diversity of students”, remarked a Dean during orientation. The School attracts the brightest from all over the world, and with their wealth of knowledge and personal backgrounds, the learning opportunities are immense. Despite their outstanding accomplishments, the students here are extremely friendly and humble. I have learnt so much from my classmates and made life-long friends within this short year. All this would not have been possible without the unique environment at the School, where diversity, passion and the warmth of the students are true strengths.


Entry Requirements

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; OR 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.

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Recipient: London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

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