MPH Public Health (Online)

Earn a Masters in Public Health from Scotland’s top-rated University for Health Sciences research.

Public Health (Online)

Key facts

  • Award Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate, MPH
  • Start date September 2022, January 2023, May 2023
  • Duration MPH part-time: 36 months (September start), 44 months (January/February start), 40 months (May start)
  • Mode of study part time
  • Delivery online


Public health has a central role in influencing health policy, protecting the public and improving population health. As COVID-19 has highlighted, public health filters through all aspects of our lives and the world needs more highly trained and skilled people working directly and indirectly in public health roles who can lead the change towards a healthier and fairer society.  

Whether you’re already involved in public health research, policy and practice, or are planning a career in those areas, this Masters course is designed to support your future career ambitions, either in the UK or abroad.

Shaped by some of the leading thinkers in public health, the course will equip you with unique insights into modern public health theory and methods and teach you how to apply them to your work. You’ll interact with experts in the field as you develop a critical understanding of public health approaches and learn how to make a positive impact on the wellbeing of individuals and communities.

You can study the course entirely online, making it an ideal option if you want to gain a Masters qualification while working. The module choices are flexible, allowing you to create a tailored programme that suits your own learning needs, interests and goals in public health.

Top reasons to study with us

Course objectives

This course is for anyone who wants to explore the current and emerging issues in public health while reflecting on their own practice, experiences and interests. Through your studies, you’ll learn how to:

  • explore and understand public health theory and techniques appropriate to your own area of interest
  • gain first-hand insight into approaches used by researchers, practitioners and policymakers
  • develop practical and transferable skills, including report writing, team working, literature searching, research methods, and critical appraisal

A distinctive Masters course

This course has a multidisciplinary focus, teaching and delivering both practical and theoretical skills in collaboration with public and third sector partners.

It focuses on how societies, groups and individuals can improve public health and tackle health inequalities, considering both top-down and bottom-up approaches (e.g. government policies versus grassroots movements). There is a focus on helping you develop skills that will be relevant to current and future careers in public health, through individual study and collaborations with other students and staff.

By the time you graduate, you’ll be equipped with expert knowledge and different perspectives from across research, policy and practice, focusing on contemporary public health issues that are relevant locally, nationally and internationally.

Flexible learning

If you’re interested in studying a module from this course, the Postgraduate Certificate or the Postgraduate Diploma then please email Graduate Admissions to discuss your course of study.

Research overview

100% of our research environment, 80% of our research impact and 83% of our overall research in Allied Health Professions and Nursing is classed as world-leading or internationally excellent (Research Excellence Framework 2021) – highlighting our commitment to producing world-leading research that improves healthcare and reduces health inequalities on a global and local scale.

You’ll be supported in your studies by a group of influential academics with strong and established research records, public health experience and a wealth of world-class publications.

Entry requirements

Academic requirements

A minimum of a second class Honours degree (2:1 preferred) or equivalent. Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant appropriate/relevant work/life experience are encouraged to apply.

International entry requirements

View the entry requirements for your country.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

  • IELTS Academic or UKVI 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each sub-skill
  • Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) 176 overall with a minimum of 169 in each sub-skill
  • Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE) 180 overall with a minimum of 169 in each sub-skill
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic) 62 overall with 60 in each sub-skill
  • IBT TOEFL 80 overall with 18 in reading, 23 in writing, 19 in listening and 21 in speaking
  • IBT TOEFL Special Home Edition Test 80 overall with 18 in reading, 23 in writing, 19 in listening and 21 in speaking
  • Trinity ISE II Pass overall and Merit in all sub-skills, ISE III Pass overall and in all sub-skills, ISE IV Pass overall and in all sub-skills
  • Aptis (4 skills) CEFR B2 overall and B2 in all sub-skills
  • Duolingo 105 overall with a minimum of 95 in each sub-skill
  • LanguageCert International ESOL B2 Communicator - High Pass with a minimum of 152/200 overall and 33 in each sub-skill

Last updated: 24 March 2022

You must also check the specific English language requirements for your country.

For more information on ways that you can meet our English language requirements, including options to waive the requirement, please read our information on English language requirements.

Course details

Expand your knowledge and skills in public health and enhance your career prospects with this unique online course.

You’ll be required to complete four core modules, two optional modules and a research project to earn your MPH in Public Health. You can also graduate with a Postgraduate Diploma by completing four core modules and two optional modules in two years, or a Postgraduate Certificate by completing three core modules in one year.



The module information below provides an example of the types of course module you may study. The details listed are for the current academic year (September 2021). Modules and start dates are regularly reviewed and may be subject to change in future years.

Course Details


We use a range of teaching methods, including:

  • a mixture of lectures (live interactive webinars and recorded podcasts)
  • group work
  • online discussions
  • independent (guided and self-guided) study
  • reflection on learning and independent research

These are all designed with the online student in mind, allowing flexibility and interactions that suit you.

You're expected to complete no more than one module per semester.


You’ll be assessed using a variety of methods, including essays, short-answer exams, project plans, objective test questions, posters, presentations, policy briefs and academic journal manuscripts.

For example, we have also developed a unique research project module where instead of a traditional 12,000 word dissertation following your research project, our students write a draft journal article manuscript (with a real submission possible and encouraged), a policy brief and a presentation.

Classroom hours

Some modules have scheduled lectures/discussions which typically take place in the evening (UK time). The exact day and time will vary depending on the module, but these sessions are recorded and can be viewed at a later date.

Key staff

Teaching on the course will be provided by colleagues within the Faculty, including in particular the Institute for Social Marketing and Health.

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Jayne Donaldson

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Fees and funding

Fees and costs

2022/23 fees
 Home / EU studentsOverseas students
Total MSc course fee 




2021/22 fees
 UK and Republic of Ireland studentsOverseas students
Total MSc course fee



This course is only offered on a part-time basis. The total course fee will be split over the years that you study. The total fee will remain the same and will be held at the rate it was set in your year of entry.

If you need to extend your period of study or repeat study, you will be liable for additional fees.

For more information on courses invoiced on an annual fee basis, please read our tuition fee policy.

Postgraduate tuition fee loans

If you complete this course in 36 months or less, you may be eligible for a postgraduate tuition fee loan from one of the UK’s governments. See the Scholarships and funding section, below, for more details.

Additional costs

There are some instances where additional fees may apply. Depending on your chosen course, you may need to pay additional costs, for example for field trips. Learn more about additional fees.

Scholarships and funding

Postgraduate tuition fee loans

Scottish students who complete this course in 36 months or less may be eligible to apply to the Students Award Agency for Scotland (SAAS) for loans of up to £10,000 to cover tuition fees and associated living costs.

English students can apply for a loan of up to £11,570 each year as part of the Postgraduate Masters Loan Scheme

Welsh students can apply for financial support of up to £18,025 as a combination of grant and loan from Student Finance Wales

Northern Irish students can apply for a postgraduate tuition fee loan of up to £5,500 from Student Finance NI.

Payment options

We aim to be as flexible as possible, and offer a wide range of payment methods - including the option to pay fees by instalments. Learn more about how to pay

After you graduate

You’ll graduate with the relevant theoretical and practical skills needed for a career as a public health researcher, policymaker or practitioner across the public, private, voluntary, community and not-for-profit sectors.

  • Increase your value to employers by expanding your public health knowledge and research skills
  • Continue your career as you study through our distance learning approach
  • Expand your knowledge – and opportunities – in multiple aspects of public health

Public heath practitioner roles differ greatly in the work they focus on and in their specific job titles. Some examples of the types of roles you’ll be qualified for include:

  • Health Policy Advisor
  • Public Health Advisor
  • Substance Misuse Worker
  • Heath Improvement Practitioner
  • Public Health Nutritionist
  • Teenage Pregnancy Co-ordinator
  • Smoking Cessation Advisor
  • Advanced Health Improvement Practitioner
  • Environmental Scientist
  • Health/Education Advisor
  • Support Worker

Companies we work with

This course has a multidisciplinary focus, teaching and delivering both practical and theoretical skills in collaboration with public and third sector partners such as the NHS.

What our students said

Oluwaseun Ajibawo
Oluwaseun Ajibawo
Masters in Public Health
At the University of Stirling, I have been exposed to a wide array of learning tools, journals and books which have made concepts in the MPH course easier to understand. The modules in the course are designed to equip students with knowledge that can be applied globally. The Student learning services also provides numerous resources which help students in overcoming potential areas of difficulty such as critical thinking and writing. Stirling is a forward thinking and innovative university.
Read Oluwaseun's story

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