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MSc in Epidemiology and Biostatistics

Course Description

What is Epidemiology?

Epidemiology is the science that underpins a large area of medical research and public health. It describes the burden of disease at the population level and seeks to identify causes of disease which can help to inform effective interventions and high quality treatment strategies. Postgraduates from this course will have a wide range of career options, and are in demand in universities, government, national health services, non-government organisations and industry.

What is Biostatistics?

Biostatistics is the science of collecting, analysing, presenting and drawing inferences from data for research in medicine and health. Context is vitally important as methods developed in one area of statistics can be misleading when unthinkingly applied elsewhere. For example, basic regression assumes independence whereas data on patients is rarely independent as they share common treatment pathways within e.g. hospitals. Postgraduates from this course will learn a wide range of contemporary statistical methods and, most importantly, when and where they should be applied.

What will this course teach me?

Training the next generation of scientists...

This course will train you to be a researcher with excellent analysis skills. The course culminates in a research project tailored to your chosen theme, which you will write up for publication in a journal. The project will be conducted under the supervision of leading researchers in their field.

Designed to fit an area of need, you will be attractive to future employers, whether in academic research or industry.

The curriculum

The course aims to train scientists to pursue careers in epidemiology, biostatistics, public health and health-services research. Students all undertake the five Common Core modules before choosing a Specialist Theme to focus on. Three further modules are then completed within the chosen Specialist Theme before moving on to the Research Project.

Common Core

This new MSc offers a common core of modules and three specialist themes (of which you choose one). The specialist themes are:

Statistical Epidemiology;
Non-communicable Disease Epidemiology and
Applied Population Health.


The taught modules for this MSc come to 120 credits in total, comprising of 75 credits of 'Common Core' modules plus an additional 45 credits from optional modules, which you will tailor to suit your chosen specialism. You will then go on to complete a 60 credit Research Project.

Your five Common Core 15 credit modules will be:

Core Epidemiology,
Introduction to Modelling,
Statistical Inference,
Advanced Epidemiology and
Professional Spine.

You will then choose a Specialist Theme and will undertake four 15 credit modules within that specialism.

Professional Spine

This is an innovative aspect of the course; it is designed to provide you with the skills and experience necessary to work effectively in research. The spine runs throughout the second semester and consists of:

◾Working in epidemiology and public health
◾Critical appraisal skills for evidence review and synthesis
◾Academic writing for publication
◾Presentation skills
◾Consultancy skills
◾Management and Leadership

Research project

The course culminates in your research project, which you will start to think about in the first semester. Working in collaboration with the teaching team you will be choosing, designing, conducting and writing your research project, which you will tailor to suit your chosen specialism. You can either choose from a range of projects designed by the supervisors, or you can design one yourself.
The final outcome will be to write up a paper, suitable for publication in a journal. We will encourage you to submit the article, using our experience and reputation to augment this process.

Visit the MSc in Epidemiology and Biostatistics page on the University of Leeds website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Normally a first degree in a science allied with medicine, including biology, ecology, biochemistry, statistics, mathematics, computing, psychology, economics or biomedical science (at least 2:2). We will also consider working experience (two years or more) of research in a quantitative subject area. We also offer the course as an intercalated programme to high-achieving medical students. English language requirements – an overall score of 7.0 on IELTS (or equivalent).

Course Fees

For 2016/17 the fees are £7,500 for UK/EU and £19,000 for outside of the EU

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