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Professional Doctorate in Public Health (Health Promotion stream) (MSc)

About This Professional Doctorate

Course Description

This stream provides a sound understanding of the theoretical and empirical basis of health promotion, equipping students with the conceptual and practical skills to design and evaluate health promotion interventions and programmes. Health promotion draws on ideas from sociology, psychology, anthropology, education, epidemiology and other disciplines to understand how the health of populations can be maintained and strengthened.

- Full programme specification (pdf) (https://www.lshtm.ac.uk/files/phhp_progspec.pdf)

This course is accredited by the Agency for Accreditation of Public Health Education in the European Region (APHEA) which is the accreditation body of the Association of Schools of Public Health in the European Region (ASPHER). - See more at: https://www.lshtm.ac.uk/study/masters/public-health-promotion

Visit the website https://www.lshtm.ac.uk/study/masters/public-health-promotion

An additional requirement for the MSc Public Health (all streams) is some evidence of ability in mathematics, post-16 year education. Preference will also be given to applicants with relevant work experience.

Any student who does not meet the minimum entry requirement above but who has relevant professional experience may still be eligible for admission. Qualifications and experience will be assessed from the application.


By the end of this stream, students should be able to demonstrate ability to apply knowledge of the core disciplines of public health, consisting of: statistics; epidemiology; health economics; and social research, to real health problems. In addition, they should be able to:

- demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the principal theories, methods and interventions used in health promotion

- understand the development of the discipline of health promotion in the UK and internationally

- assess the appropriate use of population-wide versus targeted health promotion interventions

- formulate health promotion policy and practice that is relevant to varying needs in diverse contexts

- be able to appraise and communicate research evidence

- apply the knowledge and analytical skills gained to inform health promotion policy-making, programme planning, implementation and evaluation


Term 1:

Students complete the Public Health common core, consisting of four compulsory modules:

Basic Statistics for Public Health & Policy

Basic Epidemiology

Introduction for Health Economics

Principles of Social Research

In addition, students intending to follow this stream must take Health Promotion Theory. The remaining module can be selected from:

Environment, Health & Sustainable Development

Health Policy, Process & Power

Health Services

Issues in Public Health

Terms 2 and 3:

Students take a total of five study modules, one from each timetable slot (Slot 1, Slot 2 etc.). The list below shows recommended modules. There are other modules which may be taken only after consultation with the Course Directors.

*Recommended modules

- Slot 1:

Health Promotion Approaches and Methods (compulsory)

- Slot 2:

Conflict and Health*

Design & Analysis of Epidemiological Studies*

Family Planning Programmes*

History & Health*

Population, Poverty and Environment*

Qualitative Methodologies*

Statistical Methods in Epidemiology*

Health Systems

- Slot 3:

Applied Communicable Disease Control*

Current Issues in Safe Motherhood and Perinatal Health*

Epidemiology of Non-Communicable Diseases*

Medical Anthropology and Public Health*

- Slot 4:

Environmental Epidemiology*

Epidemiology & Control of Communicable Diseases*

Ethics, Public Health & Human Rights*

Evaluation of Public Health Interventions*

Globalisation & Health*

Reviewing the Literature*

Sexual Health*

Analytical Models for Decision Making

- Slot 5:

Integrating Module: Health Promotion (compulsory)

By arrangement, students may be able to substitute specified Distance Learning modules for up to two modules in certain timetable slots. Any such substitutions will need to be discussed with the Course Directors. Full details are contained in the MSc Course Handbook.

Further details for the course modules - https://www.lshtm.ac.uk/study/masters/public-health-promotion#structure

Project Report:

Students prepare a project report during the summer months (July - August), for submission by early September.

Intercalating this course

Undergraduate medical students can take a year out either to pursue related studies or work. The School welcomes applications from medical students wishing to intercalate after their third year of study from any recognised university in the world.

Why intercalate with us?:

Reputation: The School has an outstanding international reputation in public health & tropical medicine and is at the forefront of global health research. It is highly rated in a number of world rankings including:

- World’s leading research-focused graduate school (Times Higher Education World Rankings, 2013)

- Third in the world for social science and public health (US News Best Global Universities Ranking, 2014)

- Second in UK for research impact (Research Exercise Framework 2014)

- Top in Europe for impact (Leiden Ranking, 2015)

Highly recognised qualification: possessing a Master's from the School will give you a focused understanding of health and disease, broaden your career prospects and allow you to be immersed in research in a field of your choice.

Valuable skills: you will undertake an independent research project (summer project) in your chosen topic, equipping you with research skills that will distinguish you in a clinical environment. While your medical qualification will give you a breadth of knowledge; undertaking an intercalated degree will allow you to explore your main area of interest in greater depth.

Alumni network: the School has a strong international and diverse alumni community, with more than 20,000 alumni in over 180 countries.

MSc vs. BSc: undertaking an MSc is an excellent opportunity to develop in-depth specialist knowledge in your chosen topic and enhance your skills in scientific research. Postgraduate qualifications are increasingly sought after by clinicians and possessing a Masters qualification can assist you in your future career progression.

Find out how to apply here - https://www.lshtm.ac.uk/study/masters/public-health-promotion#how-to-apply

Visit the Public Health (Health Promotion stream) (MSc) page on the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Amina Ahmad-Shehu

139.gif Studying at The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine was the realization of a long-held ambition of mine. And I was not disappointed! The quality of the teaching, and the number and diversity of students, staff and courses at the school surpassed all my expectations. One of the greatest things about the school is that this diversity is utilized to enhance the whole learning process, allowing one to come away with an extremely enriching experience

Coming from a medical background, I had a scientific approach to everything, but the course has allowed me to broaden my way of thinking and given me knowledge and tools to further my career in Public Health.

I have had a great time and would ask all those who are thinking about coming to LSHTM to just do it. It’s definitely worth it!

(Student Profile)

Alysha Ahmed

Prior to starting the course here, I was completed my undergrad at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, majoring in psychology and minoring in the social studies of medicine. I became interested in public health after being introduced to some of the key concepts in a sociology of medicine course. I chose to study it because I am an ardent believer in addressing the impact of structural and population-level factors on health. I enjoy health promotion because of its roots in psychology and sociology. I am interested in health inequalities as well as public science education. I chose the School because it is small and specialized, has an impeccable reputation, and is located in beautiful London! I’ve enjoyed our small and tight-knit community, the plethora of exciting guest lectures, and having the opportunity to split time between theoretical and applied study. I hope to work in programme implementation and management in the future as well as study medicine, both of which I have been well prepared for by choosing the health promotion stream.

(Student Profile)

Sarah Borg

4406.jpg At the end of 2012 I completed a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery at The University of Adelaide. I then worked as a junior doctor in Adelaide until the commencement of this Master’s programme.

I have always been interested in Public Health and this is a topic that was not covered well in my medical degree. In 2012 I commenced an external postgraduate diploma of Public Health and Tropical medicine through James Cook University part time whilst working. I wanted to upgrade to a Master’s degree but wished to do it full time, as I didn’t really enjoy studying externally. I missed the benefits of full time study, like being able to participate in seminar discussions, mixing with colleagues and lecturers, and fully submersing myself in the student experience. The School is one of the best in the world in its field, and the calibre and experience of the lecturers is first class. I also couldn’t say no to the chance to study abroad and live in a new country.

The best thing about studying at the School is the chance to mix with such a worldy and experienced student body, as well as the fantastic lecturers and speakers that we have the opportunity to learn from. For example, earlier this year we had the chance to attend a talk from Dr Margaret Chan, the Director-General of the World Health Organization!

I appreciated the range of different Modules available to us, allowing students to study subjects that they are most interested in. I also appreciated the study support provided to students. Most lectures were accompanied by a practical with only 20 or so students and a tutor to guide you through worked examples and answer questions. This was particularly conducive to my learning style and helped me get the most out of my lectures.

Having such an internationally renowned degree will definitely help me secure internships and a job in my future career. I am not a hundred percent sure what I want to do after this degree, but I am interested in refugee health, global health, health and international policy, human rights, paediatrics, women’s health, sexual health, health promotion, and journalism.

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Entry Requirements

The normal minimum entrance qualification for registration at the School on a Master's programme is at least one of the following: a second-class honours degree of a UK university, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard, in a subject appropriate to that of the course of study to be followed; OR a registrable qualification appropriate to the course of study to be followed, in medicine, dentistry or veterinary studies. Applications with an appropriate technical qualification, or equivalent qualification and experience from overseas, are also welcomed.

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