These courses provide students with the knowledge and skills to contribute to the improved health of populations and particular groups within them through the promotion of health and prevention of diseases; the development and evaluation of care practices; and the investigation and control of environmental threats to health. Students are instructed in the development, use and critical evaluation of conceptual models, evidence, methods of analysis, and practical interventions.
These programmes provide students with the knowledge and skills to address diverse public health issues in low, middle and high income settings. The varied curriculum allows students to opt for a broad range of knowledge or to concentrate on specialised areas. The programme offers four alternative streams; the general Public Health stream and three specialist streams: Environment and Health; Health Promotion and Health Services Management.
Students on this programme come from diverse backgrounds. Many are health professionals working at a service or policy level, while others wish to obtain public health skills that they can apply to their work in development, community services, government, research or teaching.
CourseYou studyStudy period
Master's: Either 14 modules or 11 modules plus a project report: 2-5 years
Postgraduate Diploma: 10 modules: 2-5 years
Postgraduate Certificate: 6 modules: 1-5 years
Individual modules: Studying individual modules is an ideal option if you wish to update your professional knowledge or sample the programme.:
Application deadline for PG Cert, PG Dip and MSc: 31 August
Application deadline for individual modules: 31 August
Registration deadline for PG Cert, PG Dip and MSc: 30 September
Registration deadline for individual modules: 31 October
Start of the course: October
Examinations (take place the following year after registration): June
Public Health by Distance Learning
Dr Dina Khan who works for the World Health Organization, studied the School's MSc Public Health by distance learning.
Youtube link Watch the video on Youtube Image Citation Jingwen Xie, China Quote
"The distance learning programme at the School fulfils my needs, as I cannot commit to full-time on-campus study."
- Postgraduate Certificate (6 modules): 4 compulsory core modules + 2 further PHM1 modules
- Postgraduate Diploma (10 modules): 4 compulsory core modules + 2 further PHM1 modules + 4 elective modules. At least 2 modules must be taken from the selection group PHM2.
- MSc (14 modules OR 11 modules and a project report): 4 compulsory core modules + 1 stream-specific PHM1 module + 1 further PHM1 module + 1 stream-specific PHM2 module + EITHER 7 elective modules OR 4 elective modules and a project report). Note: at least 4 of the elective modules must be taken from the selection group PHM2 (including the stream-specific compulsory module).
Our Public Health diagrams show suggested schedules for completing the programmes within different time frames.
- Click here for module specifications
The Postgraduate Certificate comprises the four core modules which are also common to the Diploma and MSc courses:
- PHM101 Basic Epidemiology
- PHM102 Basic Statistics for Public Health and Policy
- PHM103 Introduction to Health Economics
- PHM104 Principles of Social Research
All students take two additional PHM1 modules, selected from:
- PHM105 Issues in Public Health
- PHM106 Environment, Health & Sustainable Development
- PHM107 Foundations of Health Promotion
- PHM108 Health Services
- PHM109 Health Policy, Process & Power
To complete the Postgraduate Diploma, four elective modules (in addition to the four core modules and two further modules) must be studied. At least two of these (three are recommended) must be taken from the PHM2 list below.
Master's Degree (MSc)
Students registered for the General stream must select eight modules from the list below OR complete five from the list (of which at least four must be PHM2 modules) and a final year project.
Students registered for a specialised stream (Health Promotion, Environment and Health or Health Services Management) must select seven modules from the list below in addition to the stream-specific compulsory PHM2 module OR complete four from the list (of which at least three must be PHM2 modules), the stream-specific compulsory PHM2 module, and a final year project.
Note that restrictions and pre-requisites may apply to some of the modules below. Not all modules will be available every year.
- PHM201 Analytical Models for Decision Making
- PHM203 Economic Analysis for Management & Policy
- PHM204 Economic Evaluation
- PHM205 Environmental Epidemiology
- PHM206 Environmental Health Policy
- PHM207 Health Care Evaluation
- PHM209 Globalisation & Health
- PHM210 Managing Health Services
- PHM211 Medical Anthropology in Public Health
- PHM212 Organisational Management
- PHM213 Principles and Practice of Health Promotion
- PHM214 Conflict and Health
- PHM215 History and Health
- PHM216 Sexual Health
- PHM218 Applied Communicable Disease Control
- PHM219 Evaluation of Public Health Interventions
- PHM305 Project Report
- EPM202 Statistical Methods in Epidemiology
- IDM201 Bacterial Infections
- IDM202 Nutrition and Infection
- IDM203 Parasitology
- IDM205 Healthcare-associated Infection
- IDM213 Immunology of Infection and Vaccines
- IDM215 Water, Sanitation and Hygiene
- IDM301 Epidemiology and Control of Infectious Diseases in Developing Countries
- IDM501 HIV/AIDS
- IDM502 Tuberculosis
- IDM503 Malaria
All MSc students have the option to apply to undertake a project report specific to their chosen stream, which is equivalent to three module credits.
How you study
You receive access to your study materials after you register. Details of the study materials provided for each module can be found in the module specification documents located on the Structure tab on the Public Health programme page. You also have access to the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine's online library resources. We also provide all students with a student registration card.
We know that if you have a full-time job, family or other commitments, and wish to study at a distance, you will have many calls on your time. The course allows you to study independently, at a time and pace that suits you (subject to some course-specific deadlines) using the comprehensive study materials provided, with support available from academic staff.You have between 1-5 years in which to complete the Postgraduate Certificate, and between 2-5 years in which to complete the Postgraduate Diploma or the MSc.
The study year for most modules runs from the beginning of October through to the June exams. Tutorial support is available throughout this time. Students carrying out projects are assigned personal supervisors to support their project work which is carried out in their final year.
- a web-based learning environment (including web conferencing, allowing you to engage in academic discussions with tutors and fellow students)
- personalised feedback from teaching staff and advice on assignments
- tutors are allocated to each module and are available to answer queries and promote discussion during the study year, through the online Virtual Learning Environment
- communicate with other distance learning students, either individually or through learning support groups
Blended learning: taking modules in London
After successful completion of a minimum number of core modules, Postgraduate Diploma and MSc students may also be eligible for the blended learning option, which allows for the study of up to two modules only (from a restricted list) at the School in London during the Spring or Summer terms in place of distance learning modules. Please note that these options, and the dates when the modules are held at the School, are subject to change - full details will be sent to all distance learning students in July each year.
How to apply
The School's distance learning programmes are run in collaboration with the University of London International Programmes. For the distance learning courses applications must be made online to the University of London.
Need help with completing your application online? Please check the "How to Apply" section of the University of London website.
If you have any enquiries, please submit your questions online to the University of London. Alternatively, please contact:
Student Advice Centre, University of London, Stewart House, 32 Russell Square, London,
WC1B 5DN, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)20 7862 8360/8361/8362
Assessment varies from module to module but will include a combination of unseen written examinations and written assignments. Details are given in the module specifications.
Examinations take place once a year in June (please note: it is not possible to hold examinations at other times of year). These are normally held in a student's country of residence. We have examination centres in over 180 countries worldwide (for details please visit the assessment and examinations section).
Examinations are arranged mainly through Ministries of Education or the British Council. Students taking examinations will need to pay a fee to their local examination centre. Please note that if you fail an examination at the first entry you will be allowed one further attempt.
Credits will be awarded for all elements successfully completed: 10 credits for each PHM1 module; 15 credits for PHM elective modules; and 45 credits for the project option. To successfully pass an award, the following credits must be gained:
Postgraduate Certificate - 60 credits
Postgraduate Diploma - 120 credits
Master's - 180 credits