Public Health MPH

This course is experiential, and the learning is contextual and authentic: principles taught can be applied to your public health practice.


This programme aims to develop your interest in, and knowledge and understanding of, Public Health Theory and Practice in a Global context. By global health we mean health issues impacting across the world including locally, regionally and nationally in Scotland and the UK. 

The programme is relevant to UK and international students aiming to develop careers within public health as well as for those wishing to promote the health of the public as part of their current professional role. The programme takes a practical and applied approach and will equip you with the relevant transferable academic skills, professional/practical skills and knowledge to practice in a manner that achieves the purpose of public health i.e., dealing with pandemics, epidemics, reducing health inequalities and prolonging life through the implementation of a broad range of interventions to improve public health outcomes. 

Many words related to public health on a colourful background.

Mode of Study:

Full-time (available as Part-time)


1 years

Start date:


Course details

The programme has been designed to be relevant to UK and international students aiming to develop careers within public health as well as for those wishing to promote the health of the public as part of their current professional role.

Subjects include:

Principles and Theory of Public Health for Health Improvement (20credits) and Applied Epidemiology (20 credits)

Leadership and collaborative working in Public Health (20 credits) and Contemporary Global Issues in Public Health (40 credits

Contemporary Global Issues in Public health (Continued from Tri 3)

Research Methods (20 credits)

Dissertation (60 credits over 2 Trimesters) 


The programme is also being offered as a fully online/distance learning programme as part of our Global Online suite of programmes.

Lead academics:

Dr Janette Pow is Programme Lead for the MPH. Janette has been a lecturer within the School of Health and Social Care for 12 years. Her teaching and research interests are in public health, young people’s health and wellbeing, health improvement evaluation and complex interventions. Janette has published extensively in peer reviewed Journals in this area. As well as being a reviewer for a number of healthcare journals she is reviewer/assessor for Carnegie Trust, HISES and NIHR. She was also recently elected to the editorial board for the Scottish University Press.  

Dr Martin Sharp is Deputy Programme Lead for the MPH and Research Degrees Lead for the School of Health and Social Care. Martin is an experienced academic, lecturing in endocrinology, public health and epidemiology. His research interests centre around the endocrine reactivity to social defeat, female reproductive health (precocious puberty/contraception//menopause), and most aspects of social epidemiology. Martin has published extensively in peer reviewed journals, is reviewer for high impact endocrine journals, external examiner, and grant reviewer.

Dr Yvonne Greig has been a midwife for over 30 years. She is passionate about maternal, fetal and public health issues and has a particular interest in developing professional practice and optimising maternal health for those who live with obesity. Yvonne has delivered education to communities in Kenya, East Africa as part of the World Millennium Goal project to improve maternal health and in turn population health where both maternal and infant mortality are high. Yvonne has also been advisor to the British University of Egypt and has supported colleagues in Athens to develop a midwifery BSc programme. She joined Edinburgh Napier in January 2021 having previously combined academic and clinical work. She looks forward to supporting you during your MPH programme.

Dr Andrew Maine is a lecturer and researcher. He is also responsible for mentoring and supporting early career researchers within School of Health and Social Care. Dr Maine lecturers on the Bachelor of Learning Disability Nursing programme at Edinburgh Napier University. His areas of research/teaching expertise include critical perspectives of learning disability nursing, systematic reviews, and quantitative methodological approaches.   

Dr Mary Abboah-Offei is a lecturer, researcher, and a nurse by profession. Mary’s teaching and research interests are in global health, quality improvement in health and social care, health and wellbeing across the lifespan, palliative care and developing and evaluating complex interventions using the Medical Research Councils’ framework, with a particular interest in person-centred interventions. Mary also has expertise in systematic, intervention and policy reviews, with special interest in policy issues relating to early childhood development in the context of the Nurturing Care Framework. Mary has published in peer reviewed Journals in the areas of expertise mentioned and has been a reviewer for a number of journals including reviewing a grant application for NIHR. 

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    How you’ll be taught

    The programme adopts an authentic approach with emphasis on meeting real-world challenges such as, health improvement initiatives and complex interventions, multi/interdisciplinary working with a strong focus on implementation and evaluation for health improvement. This aims to support future practice that is underpinned by a sound understanding of relevant theory and evidence-based knowledge
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    Formative and summative assessments are used to evaluate your learning against the module learning outcomes. Formative feedback is provided to guide you on how you are progressing and to give constructive guidance to inform development for your final summative assignment.

    Summative assignments take the form of authentic assessments and include editorials, literature review protocols, posters and presentations and briefing documents


Modules that you will study* as part of this course

Applied Epidemiology Taught/Blended MPH ( HSC11161 )

This module aims to enable you to critically appreciate the interdependencies between public health policy drivers (including epidemiological evidence and other public health intelligence information) and the varied dimensions of resultant health policy responses; critically explore the principles, practice and context of epidemiological research applications in public health policy and intervention contexts; critically evaluate aspects of the knowledge transfer process in relation to public health policy formation, including the creation, organisation, function and diffusion of public health responses.

Further information

Contemporary Global Issues in Public Health Taught/Blended Programme ( HSC11163 )

This module aims to examine contemporary global health issues as identified by the World Health Organization (WHO 2020). Its aim is to equip you to develop critical understanding and in-depth knowledge of the issues that impact on global health. By global health we mean health issues impacting across the world including locally, regionally and nationally in Scotland and the UK.
You will critically examine the evidence that may inform solutions to global health challenges by applying the principles of public health policy. Issues pertaining to health practice, the law and related human and equality rights will be critically examined to explore how they impact on both individuals and communities with respect to particular health needs.

Our focus on public health issues will encompass both communicable and non-communicable diseases; from a primary, secondary and tertiary prevention perspective. Examples of topics include HIV, COVID, obesity, drug and alcohol addiction, and domestic violence. For communicable diseases we will also include public health practices in surveillance, infection control and outbreak management. We will also explore examples of the public health impact of disasters on communities and a range of associated public health responses to the management of these.
Throughout this module you will review the role of public healthcare professionals as part of a wider disciplinary team and critically analyse the value of the wider team(s) considering how this collaborative approach can positively impact on public health issues in a variety of situations.

Further information

Dissertation Module MPH Taught/Blended ( HSC11165 )

The master?s dissertation is a cumulation of your learning and knowledge gained from undertaking the modules during your master?s journey to independently carry out a piece of research, either through conducting a literature review or piece of original primary research (small scale study) or the writing of a substantial research proposal (that can potentially be taken forward for doctoral study) on a topic aligned to public health and your research interestsModule Content: Skills resources online via Moodle• How to choose your research topic and develop an original research question (L01)• How to choose an appropriate and feasible research design in order to answer your research question? (LO1)• How to develop a literature search strategy (L02)• Critical appraisal of literature using standardized tools (L02)• How to navigate ethical and research governance issues (LO3) • Methods of data collection/extraction (L04) • Analysis and synthesis of data (L04) • Writing up your project (L05)

Further information

Leadership and Collaborative Working in Public Health MPH Taught/Blended ( HSC11167 )

This module aims to enhance your knowledge and understanding in relation to the theories and models of leadership and management relevant to public health. You will explore theories of leadership, collaboration and partnership and their implications for health improvement in public health settings. Different public health contexts including community development, health promotion projects, health services and emergency planning will be explored. You will reflect on learning needs in relation to skills for collaborative leadership for service improvement. You will also critically consider other models for planning, implementing, leading and evaluating public health projects in a range of contexts.

Further information

Principles and Theory of Public Health for Health Improvement MPH Taught/Blended ( HSC11169 )

This module aims to enhance your knowledge and understanding in relation to the key principles and theories underpinning public health and how these apply to public health practice for health improvement. This will include an overview of the history of public health and the current theoretical frameworks. The principles of health needs assessment will be examined. The importance of public health policies as well as factors influencing the formulation of public health policies will be explored. Additionally, you will critically explore the impact of social determinants of health and wellbeing and reflect upon the extent to which public health practice is evidence based.

Further information

Research Methods MPH Taught/Blended Programme ( HSC11171 )

The module aims to enable you to critically appreciate the value of empirical literature, research design and data interpretation, relating to public health. The module will provide further knowledge on the critical appraisal of evidence from published literature, qualitative and quantitative research methodologies, structured literature reviewing, ethics, data collection and analysis. The intention is for you to be able to discriminate between different research methodologies suitable to answer specific pertinent public health questions

Further information

* These are indicative only and reflect the course structure in the current academic year. Some changes may occur between now and the time that you study.


Study modules mentioned above are indicative only. Some changes may occur between now and the time that you study.

Full information is available in our disclaimer.

Entry requirements

What are the entry requirements for Public Health?

To apply you will need a Bachelor (Honours) Degree at 2:2 or above in a Health or Health Sciences related subject. 

Other qualifications/experience which demonstrate through our recognition of prior learning process that you have appropriate knowledge and skills may be considered on an individual basis.

Can I get admission into Public Health based on my working experience in this sector?

This course has academic entry requirements which are assessed alongside relevant work experience. Full details of any relevant work experience, including references should be submitted with your application and may be considered for entry where the minimum academic entry requirements are below those required.

Usually, unrelated work experience is not considered sufficient for entry without meeting the minimum academic entry requirements. Please contact us with your specific circumstances by submitting an enquiry form above and we will be happy to discuss your options.

Can I make an appointment with an advisor to discuss further about the admission process?

If you want to get more information on the admission process, please get in touch with the postgraduate admissions team by submitting an enquiry form above.

If your first language isn't English, you'll normally need to undertake an approved English language test.  The English Language requirements for this programme are IELTS (Academic) with an overall score of 6.5 with no individual component score of less than 6.5.  For guidance on the acceptability of other English Language tests please contact

This may not apply if you have completed all your school qualifications in English, or your undergraduate degree was taught and examined in English (within two years of starting your postgraduate course). Check our country pages to find out if this applies to you.

We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.
Entry requirements by country

Please note that international students are unable to enrol onto the following courses:
  • BM Midwifery/MM Midwifery
  • All Graduate Apprenticeship courses.

See who can apply for more information on Graduate Apprenticeship courses.

We’re committed to admitting students who have the potential to succeed and benefit from our programmes of study. 

Our admissions policies will help you understand our admissions procedures, and how we use the information you provide us in your application to inform the decisions we make.

Undergraduate admissions policies
Postgraduate admissions policies

Fees & funding

The course fees you'll pay and the funding available to you will depend on a number of factors including your nationality, location, personal circumstances and the course you are studying. We also have a number of bursaries and scholarships available to our students.

Tuition fees
Students from 2024/25 2025/26
Scotland, England, Wales, Northern Ireland, and Republic of Ireland £7,280 £tba
Overseas and EU £20,395 £tba
Please note tuition fees are subject to an annual review and may increase from one year to the next. For more information on this and other Tuition Fee matters please see Frequently Asked Questions about Fees Click this link for Information of Bursaries and Scholarships
The University offers a 20% discount on Postgraduate Taught Masters programmes to its alumni. The discount applies to all full-time, part-time and online programmes. The discount can only be applied to year one of a full-time Postgraduate degree, any additional years are exempt from the discount. For part time Postgraduate degrees the discount will apply to years one, two and three only and any additional years will be exempt from the discount.
Please note that the tuition fees liable to be paid by EU nationals commencing their studies from 1 August 2021 will be the Overseas fee rate. The University offers a range of attractive Tuition Fee bursaries to students resident in specific countries. More information on these can be found here.

Please note:

The discount for Edinburgh Napier alumni can only be applied to year one of a full-time Postgraduate degree, any additional years are exempt from the discount.

For part time Postgraduate degrees the discount will apply to years one, two and three only and any additional years will be exempt from the discount.

Please read our full T&C here


close-up of a patient's arm as a nurse takes their blood pressure

What can you do with a public health degree?

By studying public health at Edinburgh Napier University, you will gain the skills and practical knowledge to work in public health at local, national and global level. The course will prepare you for a range of public health roles as well as doctoral level study. A Master of public health offers you the opportunity to progress in your current health related field of practice as part of the wider public health workforce or allow you to progress in a core public health role i.e., public health intelligence analyst, public health practitioner, public health research assistant or epidemiologist. You will become an excellent communicator, and also hone your teamworking and interpersonal skills. If you have an interest in improving public health and enjoy working with other people, then this might be the right course for you.

What does an epidemiologist do?

As an epidemiologist you will have strong report writing, analytical and communication skills, with the ability to collect and analyse complex data. You will be responsible for understanding how disease is spread and the risk it poses to the public. You will create strategy to reduce spread and control the spread of disease and current viral outbreaks.

Daily tasks and responsibilities in this role may include:

  • Collecting data
  • Data analysis
  • Fieldwork
  • Report writing
  • Outbreak surveillance
  • Advising on public health policy with government and local health authorities
graduating female is throwing her graduation hat in the air outside Usher Hall