Postgraduate Taught

MSc Applied Global Health

Do you want to make a difference to the health of people in low-resource settings? Are you passionate about social justice or looking for a qualification that will enable you to work at a senior level in health policy and practice in the UK or abroad, particularly in low and middle income settings? Our flexible and highly respected range of global health courses could be the perfect stepping stone for your career.

The Institute for Global Health and Development (IGHD) at QMU is a unique academic institution. We offer a range of postgraduate courses aimed specifically at those who wish to work in health policy and practice, particularly in low and middle income settings. Our courses put a strong focus on the social aspects of health and on health systems strengthening from a community-based perspective. They will equip you to assist in improving the lives of the most vulnerable people in the world, whether that be overseas or locally in Scotland.

Why QMU?

  • If you want to make a difference in the world of global health, a qualification from QMU can be a major turning point in your career. You will develop a strong understanding of current global health and development issues and will equip yourself with the tools you need to forge positive change locally, nationally or internationally.
  • You will learn from experienced figures in the field and make connections that could last your whole working life. At IGHD we work directly with ministries of health, international and national organisations and local communities to develop real solutions to health and development problems.
  • We are on a compassion mission. Our work at IGHD addresses the health and wellbeing of those in greatest need, whether that be vulnerable populations in Scotland or those living in low or middle income countries.  
  • Our teaching and research expertise spans multiple aspects of global health and development. These range from health financing, support to fragile and conflict-affected settings, to refugee integration and child protection. 

Course overview

If you desire to develop a set of relevant practical skills that can be applied to global health programming and interventions, you can enrol on our new MSc Applied Global Health. This degree will give you the skills and competencies you need to promote health of populations through contextually appropriate health policies, services and interventions.

The global health field has become more complex in the past two decades with the dramatic increase in donor funding channelled through global health initiatives, the rise of more complex patterns of co-morbidity, emerging infectious diseases such as COVID-19, anti-microbial resistance and the impact of conflict and migration on health and health systems. These issues are targeted through a wide range of health and social development interventions that are implemented by diverse partners in multiple countries and regions of the world. Many global health funding agencies, governments and non-governmental organisations increasingly seek short-term as well as longer-term consultant advisors and technical experts. Practical expertise in developing, planning, implementing and evaluating both research projects as well as interventions through a range of approaches and methods are essential for graduates hoping to find employment in the applied global health arena. This MSc is geared to provide you with these skills to find employment in global health.

This course will equip you with the skills and competencies to promote the health of populations in low-, middle- and high-income countries and settings through the development of effective and relevant health policies, services and interventions.


You can opt to study for the full MSc, a PgDip* or a PgCert. You can also register as an associate student to complete a single module for CPD. On completion of a single module, you may wish to complete further modules and progress your studies to a named award.

Exit awards

MSc (180 credits)/ PgDip (120 credits)/ PgCert (60 credits)

Teaching learning and assessment

Teaching is comprised of a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, case studies, simulation exercises and projects. Assessment is continuous and incorporates assignments, action plans, projects and presentations.

For your dissertation projects, you can chose to do a desk study involving a literature review or conduct primary data collection in collaboration with national or international organisations working in health and development.

Teaching hours and attendance

Your exact attendance requirements at QMU will depend on the module you are studying and whether you are studying full-time or part-time. In addition, for each module students spend approximately 10-12 hours of each week on preparatory class work independently and with colleagues, including readings and exercises available on dedicated web-based learning platforms.

Class sizes

We expect approximately 15-20 students to enrol for this course each year.


  • Global Public Health and Social Policy (20 credits)
  • Global Health Research (20 credits)
    Health Systems, Services and Communities (20 credits)
  • plus a further 60 credits from three of the following: Programme Evaluation in Global Health and Development; Project Design and Management; Research Proposal Writing; and Qualitative Research Methods.
  • plus one further module can be freely chosen from other available electives that include topics such as Global Approaches to Gender and Health; Health Systems in Fragile Setting; and Psychosocial Interventions for Displaced Populations, among others.

For the MSc award the culmination of your study will be completion of a dissertation involving desk study or fieldwork on an approved topic related to global health (60 credits).

The modules listed for each course are correct at time of posting (October 2021) but are subject to change. In the event that modules change, QMU will seek to use reasonable endeavours to ensure that there is no detrimental impact on students. Please check this site or contact IGHD for any updates.

Single modules for CPD

A variety of modules can be studied for CPD, for example:

Contact IGHD for more information.


Our courses have been helping people successfully advance their careers in global health for many years. Our graduates have gone on to make measurable  improvements in a variety of international health environments.

Examples of positions filled by IGHD graduates include:

  • Health Advisor for Save the Children UK
  • Senior Coordinator for International Operations with Partners in Health
  • Policy Development Officer in the Scottish NGO sector
  • Public Health Policy Workers for First Nation’s communities in Canada
  • Humanitarian worker with Islamic Relief

Others have taken internships with organizations such as the WHO on graduation, and others have progressed to doctoral studies.

The MSc Applied Global Health will enable you to work on programming related aspects such as monitoring and evaluation, programme design and management and developing and implementing research studies.

Entry requirements

A UK honours degree or equivalent from a relevant subject area (arts, humanities, health or social sciences). Students without an honours degree may be considered if they have other relevant qualifications and/or appropriate work experience.

International: You will be required to provide evidence of English language competence at no less than IELTS 6.0 with no individual component score less than 5.5. Please note the PgCert Health Interventions in Fragile and Conflict-Affected States is only open to applicants who do not require a student visa to study.

Application deadline

For International applicants only (Jan 2023 start):  Applications submitted after Sunday 20th November 2022 will automatically be considered for the next available intake after January which will be in September 2023. 

There is no formal deadline, but you should be aware of the time requirements of visa applications which vary by country. We do not accept applications where the candidate will not be able to arrive on the term start date, but if the application otherwise meets our criteria, will recommend a start at the next available course start date (January or September).

More information and contacts

Contact Admissions or Georgina Pearson on tel: +44(0)131 474 0000


International applicants may apply for a competitive Commonwealth Scholarship.

Links with industry and professional bodies

Our work with a number of internationally recognised organisations and professional bodies helps shape the content of our courses. We have links with various bodies, including the following:

At QMU we host the NIHR Research Unit on Health in Situations of Fragility (RUHF).

Open Day presentation

Fees and transitionary scholarships for postgraduate EU students in 21/22 and 22/23

As part of our management of the Brexit transition, for many of our courses, including this one, we have introduced an EU transitional scholarship for EU full-time postgraduate students commencing their studies on campus in academic years 2021/22 and 2022/23. This provides a 40% discount on international tuition fees. The scholarship is available to EU students for whom the international fee rate applies and covers the courses marked with a # in the Postgraduate Fees – Full-Time Study section of our Fees page. This transitional scholarship is not applicable to students from the Republic of Ireland, who will continue to be eligible for the home fee rate.

Start date

September 2022. A January 2023 start date may be available.

Please Note:

The delivery of this course is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our  2022/23 Entry - Terms and Conditions (Postgraduate).

Teaching staff is subject to change.

Course Overview

1 Year full-time OR 2-7 years part-time
Start Date
September 2022
Start Date
January 2023
Study Abroad
Fees & Funding

Useful Links

Staff and Student Stories