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Health Research - MSc


Course Description

This course offers an introduction to the key methodological and theoretical aspects of health-related research from a social scientific perspective. You combine perspectives from the areas of sociological research methods, and the specific application of these research methods, to the burgeoning health context of an ageing population and increased need for health care.

This programme should be of interest if you wish to pursue a career in health-related research, or employment in health related governmental and non-governmental organisations, or to pursue further postgraduate study to doctoral level.

On our course, you gain:
-Knowledge of the core areas of social science, organisational studies and health, including health policy, public health, epidemiology and medical sociology
-An understanding of the qualitative and quantitative approaches to researching issues of health and healthcare
-Advanced training in researching psychosocial aspects of health and wellbeing

Our MA Health Research is one of two programmes we offer that can either be taken simply as Masters-level programmes or alternatively can be used as the Masters element of our ESRC-accredited pathways for our Doctoral Training Centre.

As part of our ESRC-funded doctoral training pathway, your course content, aims and outcomes are closely allied to the ESRC ‘7 Global Research Challenges’ criteria. This currently means that we focus on developing areas of scholarship in terms of the issues of health, well-being and psychosocial issues, understanding individual behaviour and global economic performance, policy and management.

Please note that this course can also be studied via modular, credit accumulation.

Our expert staff

Our staff are multi-professional, including clinically-qualified lecturers, sociologists and social policy and management specialists, so they have clinical and academic credibility.

Your future

We currently have graduates working in both clinical and management positions in local trusts, hospitals and care organisations, as well as in local and county councils.

This course also lends itself to progression onto our PhD Health Research, or our PhD Health and Organisational Research.

A postgraduate qualification is a major achievement and greatly valued by employers. For some jobs a postgraduate qualification may be essential, for others it offers a competitive edge. Our graduates go into a variety of jobs, where the key employability skills and knowledge they have gained through postgraduate study are put to good use.

Example structure

-Dissertation
-Introduction to Quantitative Analysis
-Panel Data Methods
-Qualitative Health Research
-Theory and Method in Health Research
-Introduction to Survey Design and Management
-Legal and Ethical Issues (optional)
-Leadership in Health and Social Care (optional)
-Research Design and Critical Appraisal (optional)
-Applied Sampling (optional)

Visit the Health Research - MSc page on the University of Essex website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Kate Simpson

“I decided to study at the University of Essex because of the postgraduate course offered by the School of Health and Human Sciences, and because the University’s location enabled me to stay living at home, which made further study a financially viable option.

I chose to study MSc Speech and Language Therapy because my undergraduate degree in English Language created an interest in language, while my later work experience further fuelled my interest in communication, speech and language therapy.

I particularly enjoy the flexibility of my course content, and staff within the School of Health and Human Sciences are very approachable so that, for example, if we feel we need more study on a particular area for example we can ask for it. The support from all my tutors has been amazing.

After I finish my studies at the University of Essex, I plan to work as a speech and language therapist. My course has an excellent reputation so I am already applying for posts in this area.”

(Student Profile)

Susan McGill

"Studying to be an occupational therapist was, in some ways, the most difficult but easiest decision I ever made! At 42 years of age with a well paid job and a young children, giving up our family security unnecessarily seemed rather risky. However, I knew something had to change if I was to be passionate about my job. I was employed in customer-focused/business roles and knew that working with people was a motivating factor for me. However, as I climbed into managerial responsibilities, I discovered I was getting further from the actual customer and more dissatisfied with each role I took.

Once my children were in full-time school, so money and time were less scarce, I began to research a career change. I saw a life coach, spoke to friends and family, and conducted extensive research through the internet. I knew I needed to work with people and do something purposeful, that made a difference.

I gradually narrowed my search and came up with occupational therapy - it met all my requirements and then some! I have always been 'a do-er', trying out many different life experiences, and I believe passionately in the sense of purpose and zest for life that occupation can bring. Learning that the central philosophy in occupational therapy mirrored this, and that such a career met all my motivating drivers, was an epiphany!

It is early days on my course at Essex but I'm enjoying every minute of it. I thought it would be tough going into the world of academia and on to an accelerated Masters course but I have not doubted my decision for one second. In fact, as I learn more about the profession, it feels that where I am now is a culmination of everything I've done before and I know I have made the right choice."


Scholarships

Entry Requirements


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