Public Health MSc

Postgraduate (12 months full-time, part-time)

Cambridge, Chelmsford

January, September

Intermediate awards: PG Cert, PG Dip

Course duration: 12 months full-time (September starts), 12 months full-time (January starts), up to 2 years part-time.

Start dates: September (Chelmsford only), January (Cambridge only).

Apply online

Apply directly to ARU


Gain the knowledge and skills you need for a public health career worldwide. From epidemiological research to addiction and disease, policy-making to service commissioning, this course covers the key concepts.

For a full breakdown of module options and credits, please view the following documents:

Full description


Whether you want to work in local public services or for a global non-governmental organisation, we'll provide you with valuable knowledge and skills.

In fact this is ideal academic and career development for anyone in any capacity where public health and well-being is a consideration.

Modules & assessment

Core modules

  • Addictions and Communicable Disease Management
    Develop skills for presenting detailed clinical information on particular conditions. During this module you’ll develop a critical understanding of two contrasting types of widespread forms of public health challenge: those presented by addictions (alcohol, tobacco, illicit drugs, food etc) and the public health issues associated with infectious disease management within the UK, Europe and globally. The social, economic, cultural and political determinants affecting the health and wellbeing of populations around the world in relation to addictions and infections will be addressed. Critical comparisons will be made between developed and developing world strategies, the influence of multinational markets, pandemic and epidemic management, and central and local initiatives.
  • Essential Issues in Public Health Policy
    During this module you will develop a critical understanding of public health. You will be encouraged to engage in critical debate using historical and theoretical perspectives to examine major public health issues and policy developments. You will be encouraged to draw on and share your own experience to inform your understanding of contemporary public health. Emphasis will be placed on collaborative working in evaluating current policies and practices, as well as in generating new ideas. Social inequalities, particularly the widening health gap, are a key theme in developing and developed nations. You will have the opportunity to apply generalised knowledge to specific areas of public health policy and practice, and to reflect critically on the implications of policy interventions across disciplines and agencies.
  • Epidemiological Research Methods
    Learn about the statistical and research techniques to manage the gathering, presentation and interpretation of public health data. Epidemiology is an underlying feature of all our course modules, but this module will provide the practical skills needed to interpret data, the opportunity to explore and review the research process (research protocols, literature review, design, methodology and presentation of findings) and the skills to evaluate public health research data.
  • Strategic Management and Commissioning
    Here, you will become familiarised with the planning and types of various community assessment methods that inform priority-setting and equable service provision. The module will introduce the principles and methods of partnership working, leadership and change management. It’ll offer you the opportunity to develop leadership skills within an inter-professional context in order to achieve public health improvement. It’s aimed at developing skills in carrying out population needs-assessments and setting local priorities and commissioning in health, local government and third-sector services. These skills can be extrapolated to countries outside the European Union. This module is multidisciplinary in content, drawing on sociological, behavioural, psychological and contemporary public health perspectives with students from various disciplines sharing practical applied experience.
  • Major Project
    The Major Project is of central importance to your Masters award. You’ll be expected to bring together aspects of learning from previous modules as well as using that learning as the basis for planning, conducting and writing a research or work-based project.


To graduate you need to demonstrate that you've a sound understanding of the theory you've learnt and the ability to apply it. We've designed coursework and assessment with this in mind. You'll be assessed through essays, reports, case studies, data analysis, patchwork text, a portfolio and your Masters project.

Please note that you will need to complete all of the above core modules. This course does not have any optional modules. Modules are subject to change and availability.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

The Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine and Social Care is the largest in ARU, with over 7,000 students. Our Faculty is teeming with expertise and primed to meet the demand for creating health professionals, teachers, doctors, scientists and educators for the three districts we serve: Chelmsford, Cambridge and Peterborough.

We have been training undergraduates for professional roles for over 25 years, with a reputation for quality, dedication and ambition balanced with student satisfaction.

We know that to give our students the very best experiential learning, prior to getting into the workplace, simulation is second to none, for safe, realistic, learning environments. We have invested heavily in purpose built simulated wards, science labs and skills space, to support our students through their learning.

Where can I study?

Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

Our campus is close to the centre of Cambridge, often described as the perfect student city.

Explore our Cambridge campus

Tindal Building on our Chelmsford campus

Our striking, modern campus sits by the riverside in Chelmsford's University and Innovation Quarter.

Explore our Chelmsford campus

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK students starting 2021/22 (per year)


UK students starting 2021/22 (part-time, per year)


International students starting 2021/22 (per year)


International students starting 2021/22 (part-time, per year)


Important fee notes

The part-time course fee assumes that you're studying at half the rate of a full-time student (50% intensity). Course fees will be different if you study over a longer period. All fees are for guidance purposes only.

How do I pay my fees?

UK students

You can pay your fees upfront, in full or in instalments – though you won't need to pay until you've accepted an offer to study with us.

How to pay your fees directly

International students

You can pay your fees upfront, in full or in two instalments. We will also ask you for a deposit of £4,000 or a sponsorship letter. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees

Funding for postgraduate students

It’s important to decide how to fund your course before applying. Use our finance guide for postgraduate students to learn more about postgraduate loans and other funding options.

We offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships and bursaries, which provide extra financial support while you're at university.

International students

As well as a number of scholarships, we offer an early payment discount. Explore your options:

Entry requirements

Loading... Entry requirements are not currently available, please try again later.

Important additional notes

Whether you're studying entirely online or through a blend of on-campus and online learning from September 2020, you'll need a computer and reliable internet access to successfully engage with your course. A small number of our courses require additional technical specifications or specialist materials. Before starting the course, we recommend that you check our technical requirements for online learning. Our website also has general information for new students about starting university in 2020-21.

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements. Other equivalent qualifications may be accepted for entry to this course, please email for further information.

Due to the national lockdown all universities in England, including ARU, are only able to provide face to face teaching on campus for a limited number of courses. Visit our restrictions page for details.

Teaching options when not in a lockdown

In response to the COVID-19 global pandemic all our students can choose to either study face to face on campus or online only, and students are able to change their mode of delivery at given dates throughout the trimester.

For on campus teaching, we offer at least 4 hours face to face teaching related contact time per week for our undergraduate full time programmes supported by online learning using our established online learning systems. The number of contact hours vary course by course, and you can contact us for further information. The provision offered is subject to change due to the possibility of further Government restrictions, however the University remains committed to delivering face to face teaching and ensuring a COVID-19 secure environment.

In the event that there are further changes to the current restrictions that are in place within the UK due to the pandemic, we may need to move some courses online only at short notice to remain in line with Government guidelines and ensure the continued safety of our students and staff.

National Lockdown (from 5 January 2021) 

View the impact of the current restrictions

International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

Whether you're studying entirely online or through a blend of face-to-face and online learning from September 2020, you'll need a computer and reliable internet access to successfully engage with your course. Before starting the course, we recommend that you check our technical requirements for online learning.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for postgraduate courses.

Check the standard entry requirements for IELTS requirements for this course.

Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

Suggested courses that may interest you

Sociology MA

Full-time, part-time postgraduate (12 months)


January, September

International Law LLM

Full-time postgraduate (12 months, 16 months)


September, January

Get more information

UK & EU applicants

01245 68 68 68

Enquire online

International applicants

+44 1245 68 68 68

Enquire online