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Public Health MPH/MSc/MPH (Primary Care)



For graduates or holders of a relevant professional qualification, who are working or intend to work in public health, the programme provides an opportunity to gain the academic background for leadership roles. Core and optional modules delivered by leading experts in a mix of formats.  There is also an  option to study for an MPH (Primary Care) award.

Key benefits

  • We make extensive use of visiting lecturers from local NHS bodies and central government agencies such as Public Health England and the Department of Health. 

  • The programme is taught in a primarily UK context and has more emphasis on prevention than some programmes.
  • Located in the heart of London.
  • Option to specialise in Primary Care. 

Key information

Application status Open

Duration One year F,T two years PT, September to September. See also 'Attendance Requirements' on the Programme Details page.

Study mode Full Time,Part Time

Credit value UK 180/ECTS 90

Course intake Approximately 20-25FT, 15-20PT.

Course leaders Programme Director: Dr Kalwant Sidhu

Course contact for further information • Before you apply: via our Enquiry Form at • After applying: use the messaging service at Programme Administrator, tel 020 7848 6774

Course contact email,

Awarding institution King's college London

Faculty Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine



Entry requirements

Visit our admissions webpages to view our English language entry requirements.

General entry advice Bachelor’s degree with 2:1 honours (or overseas equivalent). Applicants with a 2:2 (or overseas equivalent) considered if offering significant work experience in a related field. A degree level professional qualification in an appropriate subject, normally with some experience in the broad field of public health (or primary care for MPH (Primary Care) applicants) will also be considered.  For the Master of Public Health degree, rather than the Public Health MSc, students should normally be, or have been, employed in a public health agency.   Full-time students who have not been employed with a public health agency can satisfy this requirement by undertaking their dissertation within a public health agency, such as the Department of Primary Care and Public Health Sciences at King's College London. Some full-time students from overseas undertake their dissertation placement in their home country.  English language proficiency requirements apply for international students: please see this page for more information.  For this programme we would like applicants to have met (and to supply evidence for) the required standard of English Language at the time they submit their application

Application procedure

An application fee of £40 applies (non-refundable). Your application will be assessed by two academics (Admissions Tutors). Shortlisted home candidates are usually interviewed in person, and shortlisted overseas candidates are usually interviewed by telephone. All shortlisted candidates are asked to complete a short numeracy test. We aim to process all applications within eight weeks, but please bear in mind that this programme attracts a very large number of applications. During holiday periods, applications may take longer to process.

The Admissions Tutors normally start to look at applications that have been received around February. Applications are considered in batches, and offers are normally made from each batch. Early application is therefore recommended to maximise your chances of selection, because the number of available places decreases as the application deadline approaches.

Personal statement and supporting information

We encourage applicants to use the personal statement to set out:

  • Their academic background and work experience
  • Why they wish to pursue the course
  • How they see the qualification aiding their career ambitions
  • Specifying any research they might have performed previously (typically this might be undergraduate/postgraduate projects) and indicating whether this resulted in any papers being published or presented.

Application closing date

The deadline for applications is 01 April 2016 for 2016 entry. Prior to this date all applications will be given equal consideration and considered on their individual merits. After this date applications will be considered subject to the availability of places, thus we encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible. Please note that funding deadlines may be earlier.


Course detail


Master of Public Health (MPH)

The Master of Public Health was introduced at King's in 2002 to satisfy the need for a modern generic public health masters programme aimed at assisting public health professionals to prepare for management and leadership roles. The MPH is aimed at graduates or holders of a relevant professional qualification, whether medical or non-medical, who are working or intend to work in the broad field of public health.

The curriculum was originally based on that of the Faculty of Public Health but it has a stronger emphasis on prevention and the broader determinants of health.

Since the Programme’s introduction, elective modules have been developed in Toxicology and Health Protection Science to better meet the needs of those working in health protection and environmental health. Other elective modules have been introduced more recently e.g. in the areas of Health Psychology and Global Public Health.

The orientation is towards high income countries and most subjects are taught in a UK context, though we take many students from overseas.

MPH (Primary Care)

In September 2012, the highly regarded MSc in Primary Health Care merged with the Master of Public Health programme, reflecting the newly combined Department of Primary Care and Public Health Sciences. This has ensured the continued viability of the Primary Health Care programme and enhanced the learning opportunities available to students; ensuring they continue to reflect the demands of practice.

The roles undertaken by GPs, and other members of the Primary Care team have continued to develop and the Health and Social Care Act 2012 introduced further changes to the organization and delivery of healthcare. GPs are playing a central role in these reforms, which include the establishment of clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), with implications for education and training. Furthermore, the requirement of appraisals and advent of revalidation will mean that continuing professional development is ongoing. The MPH (Primary Care) programme will provide the opportunity to fully integrate policy, theory and excellence in practice.

Course purpose

The MPH aims to provide graduates (or holders of a relevant medical or non-medical professional qualifications), with the academic background required for leadership roles in public health. The MPH (Primary Care) specialty aims to enable health professionals involved in primary health care provision to develop both personally and professionally.

Course format and assessment

Specialist lectures; interactive seminars and workshops; project work; computer-based and problem solving exercises; case-study group work. A wide variety of assessment methods, including: conventional unseen essay-type examinations; short answer examinations; case studies; and conventional essays, poster and oral presentations and mini-projects.

Extra information

What is the difference between the MPH and the MSc in Public Health?
Academically there is no difference between the MPH and the MSc. They are both rated at 180 credits at level 7 under the National Credit Framework and at King's College London they both share the same core module requirements. All students are initially registered for the MPH, but in most cases graduating students are eligible for both the MSc and the MPH, in which case we ask them to indicate their preference. Normally, MPH students have some practical experience in the field of public health. MPH students either bring this experience with them or can gain field experience when undertaking their dissertation project. The MPH dissertation is required to be 'vocational '- ie directed towards the improvement of public health service delivery. A laboratory-based dissertation might be accepted for MSc, but would not be acceptable as an MPH dissertation.

Attendance requirements
The MPH runs from September to September, and all students start in September. Most lectures are held during Terms 1 and 2. Each term is normally 12 weeks long. Full-time students typically attend lectures two full days per week (normally Mondays and Thursdays) and part-time students typically attend lectures one full day per week (normally Thursdays in the first year and Mondays in the second year). Some non-mainstream elective modules are scheduled on other days of the week – normally Wednesdays and Fridays. A student’s actual days of attendance will therefore depend on which modules they are studying.

Lectures are normally held from 10am to 1pm, and from 2pm to 5pm. Each module normally has one three-hour lecture per week, over a 12-week term. Two of the elective modules are run over one full-time week (Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm).

Essentials of Environmental Public Health Science is normally held during one week in November, and Essentials of Toxicology for Health Protection is normally held during one week in late May / early June.

Study Leave
For an estimate of study leave requirements, an example for a full-time MPH student taking the mainstream elective modules would be, as a minimum:

• Programme Induction – 1 day
• Attendance at lectures – 48 days
• Attendance at examinations (x 6) – 3 days (6 x ½ days)

Please note that this is only an example.  Exact study leave requirements would depend on your elective module choices, attendance at optional sessions, etc., and individual students would need to calculate their total study leave requirements themselves when requesting study leave from their employers.  Students might also need to factor in self-directed study time, if their employer allows for this.  In addition, finalist students must ensure that they can be available on the date of the external examiners’ visit, as external examiners are entitled to interview a sample of finalist students as part of their moderating role.

Optional sessions:

There are other optional sessions (workshops, tutorials, pre-exam revision sessions, etc.) scheduled throughout the year. Some are occasional lunchtime sessions on lecture days, but students may need to book additional study leave time for some optional sessions (or take annual leave) if they are interested in attending. A few tutorials and events may take place after 5pm – these tutorials and events are also normally optional.

Self-directed Study
Students are expected to put in at least one hour of self-directed study for each taught hour of lectures – eg a full-time student would need to undertake at least an additional two days of self-directed study per week on top of the two days of lectures. Individual students may find that they need to study more or less than this for specific topics depending on their background.

Additional self-directed study time will be required to complete module assignments, to revise for examinations and to work on the dissertation project. The dissertation is submitted in early September (part-time students submit their dissertation at the end of their second year). Examinations are mainly held during the January and May examination periods (the Essentials of Toxicology for Health Protection examination is, however, normally held during the August examination period). Resit and replacement examinations are normally scheduled during the August examination period.

Management of your study time
The MPH is an intensive programme – and students will need to manage their study time carefully alongside their other commitments to complete the programme successfully.

We do not advise that students are employed in full-time work whilst undertaking the MPH.

Careers in Public Health
A useful site for information on careers in public health is PHORCAST (Public Health Online Resource for Careers, Skills and Training - You might find it helpful to review the information on this website as a starting point if you are considering a career in public health, or would like to further your current career in public health.



Career prospects

Job titles of recent MPH graduates include: Public Health Specialist; Head of Public Health Intelligence; Health Partnership Programme Manager; Health Promotion Campaign Manager; Epidemiologist; Health Data Analyst; Project Coordinator; Public Health Advisor; Health Protection Specialist; Public Health Screening Coordinator; Vascular Prevention Programme Coordinator; Health Improvement Practitioner; Public Health Specialist: Healthy Living; and Lecturer in Public Health . Other MPH students have gone on to PhDs at King's and other universities.

A useful site for information on careers in public health is PHORCAST (Public Health Online Resource for Careers, Skills and Training) - You might find it helpful to review the information on this website as a starting point if you are considering a career in public health, or would like to further your current career in public health.

Graduates from the previous MSc in Primary Health Care have gone on to become some of the leading academics in general practice and into positions at the forefront of research. Many graduates have also reported attaining teaching posts and clinical posts. Examples of job titles: Senior Clinical Lecturer, VTS Programme Director, Principal GP.



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Fees and funding

Full time tuition fees - Home/EU

£9,000 (MSc, 2016) £9,000 (MPH, 2016)

Full time tuition fees - Overseas

£22,500 (MSc, 2016); £23,400 (MPH, 2016)

Part time tuition fees - Home/EU

£4,500 (MSc, 2016); £4,500 (MPH, 2016)

Part time tuition Fees - Overseas

£11,250 (MSc, 2016); £11,700 (MPH, 2016)

Sponsorship by student's employer, or self-funded.

Although there are no scholarships specifically available to Master of Public Health students, information for international students regarding general scholarships can be found at:,FeesScholarships.aspx

In addition, information on Graduate School administered masters degree (PGT) funding schemes can be found here:

Please visit our web pages on fees and funding for more information.


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