Public Health MPH

The science and art of public health is a major force. Designed for the 21st century practitioner, this Masters in Public Health reflects the multidisciplinary nature of public health with a flexible, innovative curriculum. You will be studying public health under the supervision of some of the country's leading experts.

Key facts

  • MPH: 12 months full-time; 24 or 36 months part-time
  • PgDip 9 months full-time; 21 or 33 months part-time
  • PgCert 5 months full-time; 10 months part-time
  • Contact:

Why this programme

  • The Masters in Public Health programme is taught by academics and practitioners from a wide variety of disciplines including; Health Protection Scotland, Environmental Health, and Public Health Medicine and Business/Management.
  • This programme is multidisciplinary in focus, including health protection and health promotion, epidemiology, sociology, psychology, statistics and health economics.
  • The University of Glasgow has been involved in teaching public health since 1839. The Master of Public Health (MPH) programme has been taught since 1981. Over the years the programme has responded to the changing emphasis in public health debates, making it the perfect environment for studying public health.
  • Public health has a central role in guiding clinical practice, influencing health policy and improving population health. If you work or intend to work in an organisation which has public health responsibilities or aims to improve population health; and you want to develop knowledge and skills around the theory and practice of public health, this Masters Degree in Public Health is designed for you.
  • The Academic Unit was among the earliest to move towards a multidisciplinary range of courses involving staff from a number of areas. Currently disciplines represented include health protection and health promotion, epidemiology, sociology, psychology, statistics and health economics, making it one of the best Universities for public health learning.
  • Public health practitioners are drawn not only from the health services, but are also employed in the education system, national and local government, the voluntary sector, as well as industry or commerce. In essence, anyone who works or intends to work in an organisation which has public health responsibilities or aims to improve population health.
  • You will benefit from our teaching which is provided by practitioners from a wide variety of agencies and disciplines including Health Protection Scotland, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, public health medicine, environmental health and business/management. 

Programme structure

You will attend interactive lectures, seminars and individual tutorials and take part in lab, project and team work.

Core courses

  • Principles of public health
  • Introduction to statistical methods
  • Introduction to epidemiology
  • Research methods.

Optional courses (three courses chosen)

  • Communicable diseases
  • Economic evaluation
  • Environmental health
  • Further epidemiology and statistics
  • Globalisation and public health
  • Health economics
  • Health promotion: principles and practice
  • Managing healthcare organisations
  • Oral health (this course is offered every second year)
  • Psychosocial approaches to public health
  • Qualitative research methods.

If you are studying for the MPH, you will also undertake a research project of 15,000–20,000 words.

Core and optional courses

Core Courses

Introduction to Statistical Methods (Semester one)
1. To introduce fundamental concepts in biostatistics, especially uncertainty, variation, estimation and comparison.
2. To examine statistical issues in study design.
3. To introduce the most commonly used methods of analysis of data.
4. To give students a framework for critically reading published papers.
5. To give students experience of carrying out standard statistical analysis of small data sets using a computer.

Principles of Public Health (Semester one)  
Aims: This course provides an introduction to the degree programme. It outlines the meaning of Public Health and the factors that influence health in different settings. It will also introduce students to specific public health activities and challenges.

Research methods (Semester one)
Aims: This course aims to introduce the key principles of, and skills used in, public health research. The course aims to give the students both theoretical grounding and practical ‘hands on’ experience of research skills. It will explore the whole research process from identifying a topic of interest, through to presenting and disseminating results. In addition to introducing public health research designs and methods, the course provides the foundations for successful completion of the Research Project.

Research Project (Semesters one, two and three)
Aims: The Research Project is an independent learning exercise and creates an opportunity for the postgraduate student to carry out an original piece of work. This may consist of the following:

Introduction to Epidemiology (Semester two)
Aims: To introduce students to the epidemiological approaches that are used to understand the health of populations.

Optional Courses (choose three)

Qualitative Research Methods (Semesters one & two)
Aims: To provide students with the knowledge required to understand qualitative research as applied to research in public health.

Communicable Diseases (Semester two)
Aims: To review the threats to Public Health from communicable disease and appraise the tools available to respond to these.

Health Economics (Semester 2) 
Aims: This unit aims to provide students with a basic understanding of health economics, its value and limitations. It will familiarise students with the principles of health economics and the techniques of economic appraisal.

Health Promotion: Principles and Practice (Semester two)
Aims: To introduce students to the principles, methods and theoretical approaches to Health Promotion. Including the planning and evaluation of health promotion programmes at local, regional and national levels. 

Managing Health Care Organisations (Semester two)
Aims: The aim of this course is to provide an introductory overview of Managing Health Care Organisations and organisation theory, drawing on areas that have particular relevance in the public health context.

Oral health (Semester two)
Aims: Provide an update on the aetiology and prevention of caries, periodontal disease (PDD) and oral cancer.

Psychosocial Approaches to Public Health (Semester two)
Aims: To explore the main psychological and sociological concepts of direct relevance to public health.

Environmental Health (Semester two)
Aims: To understand the role of the physical environment in determining health status and perpetuating inequalities in human health.
To be familiar with strategies for measuring and controlling environmental exposures for public health purposes.

Economic Evaluation (Semester three)
Aims: To develop skills in economic evaluation and decision analysis and to provide an environment in which to practice/apply these.

Further Epidemiology and Statistics (Semester three)
Students must have successfully completed introduction to epidemiology and introduction to statistical methods before undertaking this course
Aims: To build on the concepts and methods introduced in the introductory courses on statistical methods and epidemiology
To introduce students to the application of more advanced, but commonly used, methods of analysis of data; to give students practical experience of the application of these methods to the analysis of data using a statistical computing package (STATA).
To demonstrate the application of epidemiological principles and interpret the rationale for and results of statistical analyses applied to specific areas including cardiovascular disease, cancer and psychiatric disease.

Globalisation and Public Health (Semester three)
Aims: To provide an overall view of Globalisation and its impact on public health. To examine the major themes within the globalisation debate from different disciplinary perspectives. The course will also examine a number of major global health challenges and their overall impact on the Global Burden of Disease.


What our students say

Do you have any advice for new students coming to the University?
"Be close to your personal tutors and supervisors, you will learn a lot from them. The library is very resourceful, so make use of it."

Sheriff Adewunmi, NHS Surveillance Epidemiologist Immunisation/Respiratory Division
Master of Public Health 2008

"Looking at career progression and professional development, I was drawn to Glasgow because of the reputation of the University of Glasgow. If you are going to do a Masters then I'd recommed Glasgow."

Fiona MacFarlane, HNS Health Promotion Officer (Oral Health and Nutrition)
Master of Public Health 2011

What are the three things that you have enjoyed most about your time here?
"Made many new friends. Exposure of opportunities. Improved knowledge and skills."

Faisal Bhatti, NHS Health Scotland Public Health Adviser,
Master of Public Health 2008

Why study at Glasgow?
"University of Glasgow is one of the top ranking universities with excellent, latest resources and facilities for learning... regular research forums, seminars and practical sessions, which provide excellent platform for the exchange of ideas and experiences."

Kashif Shafique
Master of Public Health 2009

Three terms to describe the University of Glasgow?
"Good learning environment, good faculty, good support system."

Manu Raj Mathur
Master of Public Health 2008

What did you enjoy most about being a student at Glasgow?
"The cordial relationship between the students and the lecturers and most especially the welcoming attitude of the people of Glasgow."

Bukky Olokun
Master of Public Health 2008

Why study at Glasgow?
"... because it is one of the highly ranked international universities with a great reputation. Additionally, Scottish people are well known of their hospitality, kindness and warmth, which is very important to me as a foreigner and international student."

Lamia Al-Tekreeti
Master of Public Health 2009

On completion:
"I expect to go into the international field."

William Tigbe
Master of Public Health 2010

"here there is communication between academic staff and students and that's really good. You don't attend a lecture and reproduced it, in some way you make it your own and it makes you much more proud."

Ibiyinka Ladapo
Master of Public Health 2010

What's the best thing about your course?
"Very well organised."

What did you enjoy the most about being a student at Glasgow?
"I enjoyed being a student in one of the oldest universities in the UK."

Mustafa Hasin
Master of Public Health 2011

"It's a new system of studying... my experience in a nutshell is 'great'!"

Oono Inalegwu
Master of Public Health 2010

Why did you chosse your course?
"To obtain the qualification in PUblic Health to make an addition to my existing degree (MBBS). Public Health affects masses, it's a great honour and gift from God to help the people who are present and will be here in future."

Farooq Tareen
Master of Public Health 2010

What do you plan to do after you have completed your studies?
"I would love to transfer knowledge and skills gained into further and broader Public health activity. I recently was granted a three years UK PhD studentship... I am currently carrying out a research in Service User Involvement in relation to Emergency and Urgent Care Services."

Bimpe Kuti
Master of Public Health 2010

Do you have any advice for new students coming to the University?
"Work hard, play hard."

George Emelike
Master of Public Health 2010

What do you enjoy the most about being a student at Glasgow?
"As an international student and the class rep. I enjoyed being able to relate freely with my course mates from around the world and the lecturers and professors."

Kanayo Enwemadu
Master of Public Health 2009

Entry requirements

for entry in 2015

A relevant first degree, at least at 2:1 honours level, or equivalent in addition to a minimum of six months work experience in public health or health care. Exceptionally, if a first degree is not relevant then a professional qualification and experience in the practice of public health for at least two years at a professional level is required.

English language requirements

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)

  • overall score 6.5
  • no sub-test less than 6.0
  • or equivalent scores in another recognised qualification (see below)

Common equivalent English language qualifications

All stated English tests are acceptable for admission for both home/EU and international students for this programme:

  • ibTOEFL: 92; no sub-test less than 20
  • CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English):  176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • PTE Academic (Person Test of English, Academic test): 60; no sub-test less than 59

For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use these tests to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level programmes. The University is also able to accept an IELTS test (Academic module) from any of the 1000 IELTS test centres from around the world and we do not require a specific UKVI IELTS test for degree level programmes. We therefore still accept any of the English tests listed for admission to this programme.

Pre-sessional courses

The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the Language Centre Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:


What do I do if...

my language qualifications are below the requirements?

The University's Language Centre offers a range of Pre-Sessional Courses to bring you up to entry level. The course is accredited by BALEAP, the UK professional association for academic English teaching; see Links.

my language qualifications are not listed here?

Please contact the Recruitment and International Office:


For further information about English language requirements, please contact the Recruitment and International Office:

Fees and funding

Tuition fees for 2016-17


Home and EU
Full time fee£6950
Part time 20 credits£772
Full time fee£20500


Home and EU
Full time fee£2317
Part time 20 credits£772
Full time fee£6833


Home and EU
Full time fee£4633
Part time 20 credits£772
Full time fee£13667

Fees are subject to change and for guidance only


The University requires a deposit to be paid by International (beyond the EU) applicants in receipt of an offer to this programme: please see: Deposits for entry in 2015/16

Funding opportunities

Career prospects

Career opportunities include specialist registrar and consultant positions in public health, lecturer, clinical university teacher, health development manager, public health advisor, health programme specialists, epidemiologist, research positions.

How to apply

We ask that you apply online for a postgraduate taught degree. Our system allows you to fill out the standard application form online and submit this to the University within 42 days of starting your application.

You need to read the guide to applying online before starting your application. It will ensure you are ready to proceed, as well as answer many common questions about the process.

Guide to applying online

Do I have to apply online for a postgraduate taught degree?

Yes. To apply for a postgraduate taught degree you must apply online. We are unable to accept your application by any other means than online.

Do I need to complete and submit the application in a single session?

No. You have 42 days to submit your application once you begin the process. You may save and return to your application as many times as you wish to update information, complete sections or upload additional documents such as your final transcript or your language test.

What documents do I need to provide to make an application?

As well as completing your online application fully, it is essential that you submit the following documents:

  • A copy (or copies) of your official degree certificate(s) (if you have already completed your degree)
  • A copy (or copies) of your official academic transcript(s), showing full details of subjects studied and grades/marks obtained
  • Official English translations of the certificate(s) and transcript(s)
  • Two supporting reference letters on headed paper
  • Evidence of your English Language ability (if your first language is not English)
  • Any additional documents required for this programme (see Entry requirements for this programme)
  • A copy of the photo page of your passport (Non-EU students only)

If you do not have all of these documents at the time of submitting your application then it is still possible to make an application and provide any further documents at a later date, as long as you include a full current transcript (and an English translation if required) with your application. See the ‘Your References, Transcripts and English Qualification’ sections of our Frequently Asked Questions for more information.

Do my supporting documents need to be submitted online?

Yes, where possible, please upload the supporting documents with your application.

How do I provide my references?

You must either upload the required references to your online application or ask your referees to send the references to the University as we do not contact referees directly. There is two main ways that you can provide references: you can either upload references on headed paper when you are making an application using the Online Application (or through Applicant Self-Service after you have submitted your application) or you can ask your referee to email the reference directly to See the 'Your References, Transcripts and English Qualifications' section of the Frequently Asked Questions for more information.

What if I am unable to submit all of my supporting documents online?

If you cannot upload an electronic copy of a document and need to send it in by post, please attach a cover sheet to it that includes your name, the programme you are applying for, and your application reference number.

You may send them to:

Recruitment & International Office
71 Southpark Avenue
G12 8QQ
Fax: +44 141 330 4045

Can I email my supporting documents?

No. We cannot accept email submissions of your supporting documents.

What entry requirements should I have met before applying? Where can I find them?

You should check that you have met (or are likely to have met prior to the start of the programme) the individual entry requirements for the degree programme you are applying for. This information can be found on the ‘entry requirements’ tab on each individual programme page, such as the one you are viewing now.

What English Language requirements should I have met before applying? Where can I find them?

If you are an international student, you should also check that you have met the English Language requirements specific to the programme you are applying for. These can also be found on the ‘entry requirements’ tab for each specific programme.

Further Information

Please see the Frequently Asked Questions for more information on applying to a postgraduate taught programme.

Guidance notes for using the online application

These notes are intended to help you complete the online application form accurately, they are also available within the help section of the online application form. If you experience any difficulties accessing the online application then you should visit the Application Troubleshooting/FAQs page.

  • Name and Date of birth: must appear exactly as they do on your passport. Please take time to check the spelling and lay-out.
  • Contact Details: Correspondence address. All contact relevant to your application will be sent to this address including the offer letter(s). If your address changes, please contact us as soon as possible.
  • Choice of course: Please select carefully the course you want to study. As your application will be sent to the admissions committee for each course you select it is important to consider at this stage why you are interested in the course and that it is reflected in your application.
  • Proposed date of entry: Please state your preferred start date including the month and the year. Taught masters degrees tend to begin in September. Research degrees may start in any month.
  • Education and Qualifications: Please complete this section as fully as possible indicating any relevant Higher Education qualifications starting with the most recent. Complete the name of the Institution (s) as it appears on the degree certificate or transcript.
  • English Language Proficiency: Please state the date of any English language test taken (or to be taken) and the award date (or expected award date if known).
  • Employment and Experience: Please complete this section as fully as possible with all employments relevant to your course. Additional details may be attached in your personal statement/proposal where appropriate.
  • References: Please provide the names and contact details of two academic references. Where applicable one of these references may be from your current employer. References should be completed on letter headed paper and uploaded on to your application.

Standard application deadlines

  • International applications (non-EU): 22 July 2016 
  • UK and EU applications: 26 August 2016

Classes start September 2016 and you may be expected to attend induction sessions the week before.

Apply now