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Course content

The Public Policy & Ageing MA is a multi-disciplinary course that covers policy making and analysis, specifically how the state addresses the challenges that arise in economic, social, political and health arenas.

You will develop a broad understanding of demographic, policy, social and economic concerns within the management of ageing societies. This course will equip you with the analytical and critical skills relevant for understanding the challenges of public policies and their implementation.

Key benefits

  • Taught by faculty in the Institute of Gerontology, one of the leading centres for the study of aging. The Institute is located in the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine, a unique, research-led interdisciplinary social science department directed by internationally recognised scholars.
  • A highly flexible study programme, drawing on a broad range of professional and disciplinary expertise, including geriatrics, demography, sociology and social policy.
  • We offer close links with, and regular speakers from, social policy and healthcare fields, providing insights and up-to-the-minute knowledge of these areas as they affect ageing and older people.
  • You will gain an awareness of national, crossnational and comparative perspectives of ageing populations, the ageing process and older people in society.
  • We have strong links with King’s Health Partners, one of only six Academic Health Sciences Centres in England bringing together three NHS Trusts (Guy’s and St. Thomas’, King’s College Hospital, and South London and Maudsley).


The Public Policy & Ageing course offers you flexibility, with the choice to study either full or part-time. This multi-disciplinary course is an ideal study pathway for health professionals including geriatricians, psychiatrists, GPs, nurses, social workers, physiotherapists and occupational therapists. The course is also suited to graduates from the social and natural sciences, management, policy and politics, economics, law and the humanities.

Course purpose

Aimed at students interested in government, policy, politics, NGOs, voluntary sector, development work, comparative studies and ageing who wish to develop specialist understanding of policymaking for old age and ageing populations. It combines theoretical studies of public policy with multidisciplinary studies of ageing and later life.

Course format and assessment


We will teach you through a combination of lectures and seminars, and you will typically have 15 hours of this per module over a 10 week term. We also expect you to undertake 135 hours of independent study for each module. For your dissertation, we will provide three 2-hour workshops and six half-hour supervisory sessions and to complement your 591 hours of independent study.


The primary methods of assessment for this course are a combination of essays, written examinations and oral presentations. The course also requires a 10,000-12,000 word word supervised dissertation on the subject of Public Policy & Ageing.

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Visit the Public Policy & Ageing - MA page on the King’s College London website for more details!