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MSc Infectious Diseases

Course Description

The MSc in Infectious Diseases has been designed for students who wish to gain an advanced education and training in the biological sciences, within the context of a range of human diseases that affect a significant proportion of the global population.

The programme provides training in the modern practical, academic and research skills that are used in academia and industry. Through a combination of lectures, small-group seminars and practical classes, you apply this training towards the development of new strategies to combat the spread of infectious diseases.

You learn skills in experimental design using appropriate case studies that embed you within the relevant research literature. You also gain experience of analysis and statistical interpretation of complex experimental data.

The programme culminates with a research project under the supervision of faculty that currently perform research on disease-causing microorganisms.

Visit the website https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/361/infectious-diseases

About the School of Biosciences

The University of Kent’s School of Biosciences ranks among the most active in biological sciences in the UK. We have recently extended our facilities and completed a major refurbishment of our research laboratories that now house over 100 academic, research, technical and support staff devoted to research, of whom more than 70 are postgraduate students.

Research in the School of Biosciences revolves around understanding systems and processes in the living cell. It has a strong molecular focus with leading-edge activities that are synergistic with one another and complementary to the teaching provision. Our expertise in disciplines such as biochemistry, microbiology and biomedical science allows us to exploit technology and develop groundbreaking ideas in the fields of genetics, molecular biology, protein science and biophysics. Fields of enquiry encompass a range of molecular processes from cell division, transcription and translation through to molecular motors, molecular diagnostics and the production of biotherapeutics and bioenergy.

In addition to research degrees, our key research strengths underpin a range of unique and career-focused taught Master’s programmes that address key issues and challenges within the biosciences and pharmaceutical industries and prepare graduates for future employment.

Course structure

The MSc in Infectious Diseases involves studying for 120 credits of taught modules, as indicated below. The taught component takes place during the autumn and spring terms, while a 60-credit research project take place over the summer months.

The assessment of the course will involve a mixture of practical classes, innovative continuous assessment to gain maximise transferable and professional skills, and examinations.

In addition to traditional scientific laboratory reports, experience is gained in a range of scientific writing styles relevant to future employment, such as literature reviews, patent applications, regulatory documents, and patient information suitable for a non-scientific readership.


The following modules are indicative of those offered on this programme. This list is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year. Please note the modules listed below for this programme are compulsory core modules:

BI845 Research project
BI853 - Bacterial Pathogens (15 credits)
BI854 - Fungi as Human Pathogens (15 credits)
BI855 - Advances in Parasitology (15 credits)
BI856 - Viral Pathogens (15 credits)
BI830 - Science at Work (30 credits)
BI836 - Practical and Applied Research Skills for Advanced Biologists (30 credits)


Assessment is by examination, coursework and the research project.

Programme aims

This programme aims to:

- provide an excellent quality of postgraduate level education in the field of infectious diseases, their biology and treatments

- provide a research-led, inspiring learning environment

- provide a regional postgraduate progression route for the advanced study of diseases that affect a high proportion of the global population

- promote engagement with biological research into infectious diseases and inspire students to pursue scientific careers inside or outside of the laboratory

- develop subject-specific and transferable skills to maximise employment prospects

- promote an understanding of the impact of scientific research on society and the role for scientists in a range of professions.

Research areas

Research in the School of Biosciences is focused primarily on essential biological processes at the molecular and cellular level, encompassing the disciplines of biochemistry, genetics, biotechnology and biomedical research.

The School’s research has three main themes:

- Protein Science – encompasses researchers involved in industrial biotechnology and synthetic biology, and protein form and function

- Molecular Microbiology – encompasses researchers interested in yeast molecular biology (incorporating the Kent Fungal Group) and microbial pathogenesis

- Biomolecular Medicine – encompasses researchers involved in cell biology, cancer targets and therapies and cytogenomics and bioinformatics.

Each area is led by a senior professor and underpinned by excellent research facilities. The School-led development of the Industrial Biotechnology Centre (IBC), with staff from the other four other schools in the Faculty of Sciences, facilitates and encourages interdisciplinary projects. The School has a strong commitment to translational research, impact and industrial application with a substantial portfolio of enterprise activity and expertise.


The MSc in Infectious Diseases provides advanced research skills training within the context of diseases that affect significant proportions of the UK and global populations. With the UK being a world leader in infectious diseases research and pharmaceutical development, and Kent having a strong research focus in this area, there are significant opportunities for career progression for graduates of this programme in academia (PhD) and industry.

There are also opportunities for careers outside the laboratory in advocacy, media, public health and education.

Find out how to apply here - https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/apply/

Visit the MSc Infectious Diseases page on the University of Kent website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Minimum 2:1 honours degree in a biosciences-related subject. For detailed information see our English language requirements web pages (View Website).

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