Introduction

Our MSc in Applied Health Sciences provides a flexible programme that can be individually tailored to align with your research interests and careers goals whether that be in public health, global health, human nutrition or health economics.

Study Information

Study Options

Learning Mode
Blended Learning
Degree Qualification
MSc, PgCert or PgDip
Duration
8 months, 12 months, 24 months or 48 months
Study Mode
Full Time or Part Time
Start Month
September or January
Location of Study
Aberdeen
Subject marketing image

Our programme aims to equip students with the skills required to explore and evaluate a variety of health science topics, using one or more specific applied health disciplines as a focus point. These include Public Health, Global Health, Human Nutrition, and Health Economics. With a wide range of courses to choose from, you can tailor your qualification to your research interests and career aspirations.

The programme has been designed with flexibility in mind giving students various entry routes to the programme.

  • Direct entry to the PgCert, PgDip or MSc programmes
  • Use credits earned from our On-Demand short courses towards the PgCert, PgDip or MSc award
  • Option to transfer from other relevant Institute of Applied Health Sciences postgraduate programmes e.g. students studying the PgCert in Research Methods for Health can use their credits towards the PgDip or MSc.

Our MSc Applied Health Sciences is designed for clinicians and other healthcare professionals looking to build towards a certified postgraduate qualification. Excellent training will be provided to enhance your skills and career prospects in public policy, healthcare delivery, healthcare management or research.

Available Programmes of Study

With a wide range of courses to choose from, you can tailor your qualification to your research interests and career goals. You can focus on areas including:

  • Public Health
  • Global Health
  • Human Nutrition
  • Health Economics.

Applied Health Sciences

Qualification Duration Learning Mode Study Mode Start Month Location  
MSc 24 months or 48 months Blended Learning Full Time or Part Time September Aberdeen View

Programme Information

Semester 1

Semester 1

All courses are optional, there are no compulsory courses. We advise that you talk to our Programme Coordinator before making your final course selection as your semester 1 course choices may impact your semester 2 and 3 course choices.


Optional Courses

Full time students should select 2 courses totalling a value of 30 credits. Part-time students should select 1 course totalling a value of 15 credits. Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following:

  • Applied Statistics (PU5017)
  • Open and Reproducible Health Data Science
Fundamentals of Research Design (PU5027)

15 Credit Points

Fundamentals of research design provides the student with skills in both quantitative and qualitative design enabling the student to plan ethical research in a health context. Students are taken through each step - from formulating the research question, to study design, sample selection, methods for data collection to dissemination of results.

Upon completion of this course you will be able to:

  1. Summarise the key factors involved in the research process
  2. Evaluate the appropriateness of study designs commonly used in applied health research studies
  3. Identify the advantages and disadvantages associated with quantitative and qualitative research methodologies
  4. Develop a research proposal to answer a health-related research question which maximises research quality and rigour.v
View detailed information about this course
Epidemiology (PU5030)

15 Credit Points

This course in applied epidemiology gives an introduction to disease measurement at a population level, basic epidemiological study design and analysis, and provides an understanding of key methodological issues needed to apply when designing – or critically appraising – an epidemiological study.

View detailed information about this course
Evidence - Based Health (PU5031)

15 Credit Points

This course aims to enable the fundamental understanding and application of evidence based health at an individual- and population-level, focusing on the use of systematic reviews to synthesise evidence as well as methods to translate and implement evidence to inform health practice and policy. Students on this course will work through the stages of a systematic review unit by unit, completing interactive and practical exercises to develop the skills required to conduct a review. They will then study how the evidence produced from systematic reviews is used to shape health policy and practice, at the level of organisations and individual clinical encounters.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5032)

15 Credit Points

The aim of this course is to provide an introduction to the application of economics to health care. Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

View detailed information about this course
Designing Real - World Trials (PU5038)

15 Credit Points

Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) are used to test the effectiveness of interventions. The aim of this course is to take a student through the process of designing RCTs. The course will focus on RCTs in the evaluation of real world healthcare and public health settings.

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (Online) (PU5039)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound introduction to qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course introduces planning to conduct relevant research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences.

View detailed information about this course
Health, Well Being and Behaviour Change (PU5040)

15 Credit Points

What can health professionals and health care promoters do to improve their own and others health and wellbeing? What influences people’s health behaviours? Why do people find it difficult to change their health behaviour? What are the most promising strategies for improving health and well-being?

Health behaviours cover a wide range of behaviours (e.g. smoking, physical activity, vaccination, diet, taking medication, and practicing safe sex) and have a major impact on peoples’ health, quality of life, and (healthy) life expectancy. Nevertheless, many people have an unhealthy diet, exercise too little, don’t take their medication as prescribed, smoke, drink excessive amounts of alcohol, and so forth.

In this course, we will address these challenges and students will learn key theories about health behaviour and behaviour change, including behaviour change techniques, in order to understand how health behaviours can be influenced by a variety of factors within an individual (e.g., conscious and unconscious thoughts, emotions, goals, and decisions), and also by factors in the environment (e.g., the behaviours and expectations of society; the quality of the communication by health care professionals; or availability and affordability of healthy options in the environment).

Health psychologists and health professionals are expected to be able to develop, evaluate and implement intervention programs to promote healthier behaviour, through changing individuals and their environment.

Within this course you will develop your understanding of health behaviours, what influences them and how to change them. You will experience the role of health behaviours from both the participant’s and researcher view, by developing, participating in and analysing your own behavioural intervention.

View detailed information about this course
Public Health in Action (PU5041)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course provides an introduction to a population-based perspective on health, illness and disease. The course illustrates the practical application of numerical ways of thinking about the health of a population. The course covers the three major public health domains of healthcare evaluation, health protection and health promotion.

This course aims to support students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among a population as a whole.

View detailed information about this course
Key Concepts in Global Health (PU5056)

15 Credit Points

This course introduces students to the field of global health and develops skills to critically appraise organisations, actors, debates and data. Teaching material will cover: key definitions and terminology; institutions, practitioners and scholars in global health; and key drivers and challenges in the global health field. Students will learn about established and emerging topics, how these intersect with broader social, economic and political factors, and how research can make credible contributions in this context

View detailed information about this course
Fundamentals of Human Nutrition and Metabolism (RN5001)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide you with the basic knowledge required to enable you to move on to the complex issues that are addressed in today's society around the role of nutrition and food in disease prevention and management. This course is designed as a refresher course for those who have already undertaken nutrition at undergraduate levels or to enable students with a strong science background to convert their knowledge into the nutrition field.

View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Health (RN5002)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including body composition, dietary intake and energy expenditure assessment. It includes a ‘hands-on’ experience of using a a dietary assessment technique used routinely by nutritionists. The assignments for this course are designed to help you develop the skills you will employ in daily life as a nutritionist these include presenting and conducting a nutritional assessment of a client and being determining the best methods for nutritional assessment.

View detailed information about this course
Foundations of Nutrition (RN5003)

15 Credit Points

Course Aims:

The course aims to enable you to develop a broad knowledge, understanding, and application of the scientific basis of human nutrition.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course, you should be able to:

  1. Summarise the underlying physiology related to human nutrition.
  2. Explain the key concepts of nutrient and energy metabolism.
  3. Distinguish between the metabolism of different macronutrients.
  4. Outline the role of micronutrients and non-nutritive dietary components in human nutrition.
  5. Assess the interactions between nutrients as part of a whole diet.
  6. Prepare, process, interpret, and present topics in human nutrition using formal presentation.
View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Status (RN5008)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including dietary intake, assessment of body composition and energy expenditure applied in the context of energy balance. Theory will be put into practice through a series of practical workshop and laboratory sessions to give you ‘hands-on’ experience of using a range of assessment techniques using state-of-the-art equipment routinely employed by nutritional scientists.

View detailed information about this course
Semester 2

Semester 2

Optional Courses

Full time students should select 2 courses totalling a value of 30 credits. Part-time students should select 1 course totalling a value of 15 credits.

Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following:

  • Advanced Regression Modelling (PU5559)
  • Public Health Nutrition (PU5534)
  • Epidemiology (PU5538)
Global Health (PU5505)

15 Credit Points

This course builds on the learning from the Introduction to Global health course in the first half session. It focusses on the issues that affect the health of all nations of the world, the problems that unite developing and developed countries – the shared risks and vulnerabilities. This is not merely the study of emerging diseases and epidemic threats such as HIV, Ebola and Zika but also the dual burden of over and undernutrition, communicable and non-communicable diseases, the impact of war, conflict and climate change on the health of individuals, nations and world populations.

View detailed information about this course
Applied Statistics (PU5522)

15 Credit Points

This course in Applied Statistics intends to focus on the application of statistical techniques in postgraduate research for health professionals, with a particular emphasis on the correct interpretation of statistical analyses. The course will NOT concentrate on the statistical theory underlying the subject. An important component of the course is the use of a statistical package. The statistical package used on this course will be IBM SPSS Statistics 25 which can be used to implement all of the methods taught on this course.

View detailed information about this course
Health Needs Assessment (PU5525)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course supports students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among the population as a whole.

The course is core to the MPH programme, but also open to students interested in understanding the population-based approach to health. All must be registered for the course and complete all assessments. The course is suitable for students wanting a professional (specialist/ practitioner) public health career and also for those wanting a related academic career.

View detailed information about this course
Systematic Reviewing (PU5526)

15 Credit Points

This course will equip students with the relevant skills to interpret and conduct systematic reviews on the effectiveness of healthcare interventions. Using lectures and practical sessions, students will understand the principles of systematic reviewing and the differences between narrative and systematic reviews. They will learn to formulate a clear research question and undertake each stage of systematic reviewing of randomised controlled trials. They will also learn about the importance of the levels of evidence and systematic reviews of other different study designs. This course will also introduce the students to advances in systematic reviews such as network meta-analysis and use of Individual Patient Data (IPD)

View detailed information about this course
Values and Ethics in Public Health (PU5528)

15 Credit Points

This course challenges you to engage robustly with questions about what is good and right (and why) in public health policy and practice. You will develop your ability to critique and participate effectively in debates about what matters – and what is morally justified - in efforts to improve the health and wellbeing of communities and populations. You will develop the knowledge and confidence to identify value-based assumptions as you examine a range of real-world health problems and practice justifying and objecting to different strategies for addressing them

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (PU5529)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

View detailed information about this course
Health Informatics (PU5532)

15 Credit Points

We live in a time of ‘Big Data’ with the rapid growth in the digital capture of health information. Health Informatics is the science of data capture, linkage and analysis of large datasets to improve health. The demand for health researchers with training and experience in health informatics is high. For people practicing in Public Health, it is a key skill. It will equip students for any career in health research or public health practice and this course is an excellent stepping stone for those wishing to develop a specialist interest in the field.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5546)

15 Credit Points

Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

In this course students will acquire a knowledge and understanding of:

  • Key themes of economic theory applied to health care
  • Some of the main techniques of health care evaluation
  • Main arguments concerning alternative systems for organising and financing health care
View detailed information about this course
Challenges in Global Nutrition (PU5547)

15 Credit Points

This course provides up-to-date knowledge of the challenges of nutrition in the global context. It provides students with an opportunity to develop their understanding of the methods of monitoring population nutritional status, a picture of the current global nutritional status, the determinants of nutritional status in different populations, and skills that will enable them to design, implement and evaluate nutrition interventions and programmes aimed at addressing global nutritional issues. The learning is widely applicable to all populations globally although the main focus is on low and middle-income countries (LMIC).

View detailed information about this course
Work - Based Placement in Applied Health Sciences (PU5548)

15 Credit Points

This work-based placement elective offers a professional placement with a government/public, civic or voluntary health and/or development sector organisation. You will undertake a ten-week placement with your host organisation, either within the organisation, remotely from Aberdeen, or using a combination of both. Placements are subject to availability and are offered on a competitive basis.

View detailed information about this course
Women’s Health in A Global Setting (PU5549)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the challenges faced in women’s health and health care in a global setting. Students will gain knowledge of how gender differences, equality, women’s family roles, community and society support, and approaches to health care systems all play a role in women’s health. It will also present how women’s health intersects with broader social, economic and political factors.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition for Disease Prevention (RN5503)

15 Credit Points

Chronic diseases account for 70% of annual deaths in the world and present a great burden for the society. Emerging clinical evidence suggests that improving diet and nutrition can substantially reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

This course addresses the link between diet and the risk of developing chronic diseases. Furthermore, this course provides scientific evidence as to how nutrition may be used as a tool to prevent chronic diseases such as metabolic syndrome, type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and other chronic diseases. It also highlights the importance of scientific research on developing public health policy frameworks, which encompass a range of educational and regulatory measures aiming to contribute to chronic disease prevention.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health Through the Life Stages (RN5504)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. During the course you will also develop the skills required to select and critically appraise scientific evidence.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition (RN5505)

15 Credit Points

Clinical nutrition is the study of diet in relation to the development and treatment of human disease. This specialism course provides an up-to-date and detailed knowledge on the role of nutrition in the aetiology, prevention and treatment of disease in humans, with particular emphasis on disease prevention. The course covers key topics surrounding nutrition and disease, and how clinical nutrition links with public health and molecular nutrition. The course also provides an overview of research tools widely used in clinical nutrition research, and a training on evidence-based analysis of nutrition case studies.

View detailed information about this course
Sustainable Diets and Global Food Systems (RN5506)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the complex nature of sustainable diets and how they can be achieved in a global food system. Sustainable diets are needed to tackle some of the biggest global challenges, such as poor dietary health, climate change and environmental degradation, and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. It will address the multidimensional complexity of sustainable diets, that includes nutrition, environmental impact, culture and society, and economics, and explore the challenge of combining these attributes into a single entity.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health (RN5507)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways to e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. In addition, it will also provide insight into the effects of malnutrition and food processing on health. A combination of lectures, and a laboratory class will help consolidate your understanding of the impact food and nutrients on health.

View detailed information about this course
Semester 3

Semester 3

Students enrolling directly on the MSc Applied Health Sciences may select courses from any of the following projects and placements.

Students enrolling directly on the PgDip Applied Health Sciences may select from any of the 30 credit courses. These courses are not available to those enrolling directly on the PgCert Applied Health Sciences. Credits for PgCert should be obtained through taught courses in the first and second sessions.

Projects and placements are optional as all credits can be obtained through taught courses in the first and second sessions. The 30 credit courses can be taken in any summer session of the student’s programme. 60 and 90 credit research projects should only be completed in the final summer session of the student’s programme.

These courses should be chosen considering the credits needed to fulfil the award requirements and the duration of study of the student.


Optional Courses
  • Masters Research Project (Laboratory) (MB5904)
Rapid Research Project (PU5916)

30 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to gain experience of the different processes involved in scientific research or other scholarly investigation in either in a laboratory, clinical, academic or public health setting, under the supervision of an experienced researcher. Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. All projects offered will have a defined research question, a full protocol and where appropriate all regulatory approvals before the start of the project.

View detailed information about this course
Advanced Research Project (PU5045)

90 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to lead a substantial piece of data-driven, empirical work within their field of study, under the supervision of an experienced researcher. Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. Alongside supervisors, students will identify a suitable topic area, develop a research protocol, design and implement an empirical study. Students will be involved alongside the supervisors in the process of defining the research question, and developing the research protocol, and where appropriate obtaining all regulatory approvals.

View detailed information about this course
Evaluating Policy Effects in Practice (PU5919)

30 Credit Points

The case study provides students with the opportunity to select, design, conduct and report on a detailed systematic investigation of a topic within an applied health field. The aim is to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of a particular topic, including the academic background, relevant policy and the roles played by various actors and agencies. The case study is conducted in an academically robust and ethically sensitive manner.

View detailed information about this course
Masters Research Project (PU5922)

60 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to complete a substantial piece of data-driven, empirical work within their field of study under the supervision of an experienced researcher.

Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. Alongside supervisors, students will identify a suitable topic area, describe an appropriate study design and implement an empirical study to be completed within a laboratory setting. Students will be involved alongside the supervisors in the process of defining the research question, and developing the research plan and, where appropriate, obtaining regulatory approvals. This course is for non-laboratory based projects (if you are intending to undertake a project in a scientific laboratory setting you should register on MB5913)

View detailed information about this course
Extended Work - Based Placement in Applied Health Sciences (PU5923)

30 Credit Points

This work-based placement elective offers a professional placement with a government/public, industrial, civic or voluntary

health and/or development sector organisation. Students will undertake a ten-week placement with a host organisation, either within the organisation, remotely from Aberdeen, or using a combination of both. University of Aberdeen staff will co-supervise student placements. Placements are subject to availability and are offered on a competitive basis.

View detailed information about this course

Programme Fees

Please refer to our InfoHub Tuition Fees page for fee information for this programme, or contact study@abdn.ac.uk.

MSc 24 months or 48 months Blended Learning Full Time or Part Time January Aberdeen View

Programme Information

Semester 1

Semester 1

All courses are optional, there are no compulsory courses. We advise that you talk to our Programme Coordinator before making your final course selection.


Optional Courses

Full time students should select 2 courses totalling a value of 30 credits. Part-time students should select 1 course totalling a value of 15 credits. Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following.

  • Advanced Regression Modelling (PU5559)
  • Public Health Nutrition (PU5534)
  • Epidemiology (PU5538)
Global Health (PU5505)

15 Credit Points

This course builds on the learning from the Introduction to Global health course in the first half session. It focusses on the issues that affect the health of all nations of the world, the problems that unite developing and developed countries – the shared risks and vulnerabilities. This is not merely the study of emerging diseases and epidemic threats such as HIV, Ebola and Zika but also the dual burden of over and undernutrition, communicable and non-communicable diseases, the impact of war, conflict and climate change on the health of individuals, nations and world populations.

View detailed information about this course
Applied Statistics (PU5522)

15 Credit Points

This course in Applied Statistics intends to focus on the application of statistical techniques in postgraduate research for health professionals, with a particular emphasis on the correct interpretation of statistical analyses. The course will NOT concentrate on the statistical theory underlying the subject. An important component of the course is the use of a statistical package. The statistical package used on this course will be IBM SPSS Statistics 25 which can be used to implement all of the methods taught on this course.

View detailed information about this course
Health Needs Assessment (PU5525)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course supports students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among the population as a whole.

The course is core to the MPH programme, but also open to students interested in understanding the population-based approach to health. All must be registered for the course and complete all assessments. The course is suitable for students wanting a professional (specialist/ practitioner) public health career and also for those wanting a related academic career.

View detailed information about this course
Systematic Reviewing (PU5526)

15 Credit Points

This course will equip students with the relevant skills to interpret and conduct systematic reviews on the effectiveness of healthcare interventions. Using lectures and practical sessions, students will understand the principles of systematic reviewing and the differences between narrative and systematic reviews. They will learn to formulate a clear research question and undertake each stage of systematic reviewing of randomised controlled trials. They will also learn about the importance of the levels of evidence and systematic reviews of other different study designs. This course will also introduce the students to advances in systematic reviews such as network meta-analysis and use of Individual Patient Data (IPD)

View detailed information about this course
Values and Ethics in Public Health (PU5528)

15 Credit Points

This course challenges you to engage robustly with questions about what is good and right (and why) in public health policy and practice. You will develop your ability to critique and participate effectively in debates about what matters – and what is morally justified - in efforts to improve the health and wellbeing of communities and populations. You will develop the knowledge and confidence to identify value-based assumptions as you examine a range of real-world health problems and practice justifying and objecting to different strategies for addressing them

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (PU5529)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

View detailed information about this course
Health Informatics (PU5532)

15 Credit Points

We live in a time of ‘Big Data’ with the rapid growth in the digital capture of health information. Health Informatics is the science of data capture, linkage and analysis of large datasets to improve health. The demand for health researchers with training and experience in health informatics is high. For people practicing in Public Health, it is a key skill. It will equip students for any career in health research or public health practice and this course is an excellent stepping stone for those wishing to develop a specialist interest in the field.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5546)

15 Credit Points

Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

In this course students will acquire a knowledge and understanding of:

  • Key themes of economic theory applied to health care
  • Some of the main techniques of health care evaluation
  • Main arguments concerning alternative systems for organising and financing health care
View detailed information about this course
Challenges in Global Nutrition (PU5547)

15 Credit Points

This course provides up-to-date knowledge of the challenges of nutrition in the global context. It provides students with an opportunity to develop their understanding of the methods of monitoring population nutritional status, a picture of the current global nutritional status, the determinants of nutritional status in different populations, and skills that will enable them to design, implement and evaluate nutrition interventions and programmes aimed at addressing global nutritional issues. The learning is widely applicable to all populations globally although the main focus is on low and middle-income countries (LMIC).

View detailed information about this course
Work - Based Placement in Applied Health Sciences (PU5548)

15 Credit Points

This work-based placement elective offers a professional placement with a government/public, civic or voluntary health and/or development sector organisation. You will undertake a ten-week placement with your host organisation, either within the organisation, remotely from Aberdeen, or using a combination of both. Placements are subject to availability and are offered on a competitive basis.

View detailed information about this course
Women’s Health in A Global Setting (PU5549)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the challenges faced in women’s health and health care in a global setting. Students will gain knowledge of how gender differences, equality, women’s family roles, community and society support, and approaches to health care systems all play a role in women’s health. It will also present how women’s health intersects with broader social, economic and political factors.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition for Disease Prevention (RN5503)

15 Credit Points

Chronic diseases account for 70% of annual deaths in the world and present a great burden for the society. Emerging clinical evidence suggests that improving diet and nutrition can substantially reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

This course addresses the link between diet and the risk of developing chronic diseases. Furthermore, this course provides scientific evidence as to how nutrition may be used as a tool to prevent chronic diseases such as metabolic syndrome, type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and other chronic diseases. It also highlights the importance of scientific research on developing public health policy frameworks, which encompass a range of educational and regulatory measures aiming to contribute to chronic disease prevention.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health Through the Life Stages (RN5504)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. During the course you will also develop the skills required to select and critically appraise scientific evidence.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition (RN5505)

15 Credit Points

Clinical nutrition is the study of diet in relation to the development and treatment of human disease. This specialism course provides an up-to-date and detailed knowledge on the role of nutrition in the aetiology, prevention and treatment of disease in humans, with particular emphasis on disease prevention. The course covers key topics surrounding nutrition and disease, and how clinical nutrition links with public health and molecular nutrition. The course also provides an overview of research tools widely used in clinical nutrition research, and a training on evidence-based analysis of nutrition case studies.

View detailed information about this course
Sustainable Diets and Global Food Systems (RN5506)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the complex nature of sustainable diets and how they can be achieved in a global food system. Sustainable diets are needed to tackle some of the biggest global challenges, such as poor dietary health, climate change and environmental degradation, and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. It will address the multidimensional complexity of sustainable diets, that includes nutrition, environmental impact, culture and society, and economics, and explore the challenge of combining these attributes into a single entity.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health (RN5507)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways to e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. In addition, it will also provide insight into the effects of malnutrition and food processing on health. A combination of lectures, and a laboratory class will help consolidate your understanding of the impact food and nutrients on health.

View detailed information about this course
Semester 2

Semester 2

Optional Courses

Students enrolling directly on the MSc Applied Health Sciences may select courses from any of the following projects and placements. Students enrolling directly on the PgDip Applied Health Sciences may select from any of the 30 credit courses. These courses are not available to those enrolling directly on the PgCert Applied Health Sciences. Credits for PgCert should be obtained through taught courses in the first and third sessions.

Projects and placements are optional as all credits can be obtained through taught courses in the first and third sessions. The 30 credit courses can be taken in any summer session of the student’s programme. 60 and 90 credit research projects should only be completed in the final summer session of the student’s programme. These courses should be chosen considering the credits needed to fulfil the award requirements and the duration of study of the student.

  • Masters Research Project (Laboratory) (MB5904)
Rapid Research Project (PU5916)

30 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to gain experience of the different processes involved in scientific research or other scholarly investigation in either in a laboratory, clinical, academic or public health setting, under the supervision of an experienced researcher. Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. All projects offered will have a defined research question, a full protocol and where appropriate all regulatory approvals before the start of the project.

View detailed information about this course
Masters Research Project (PU5922)

60 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to complete a substantial piece of data-driven, empirical work within their field of study under the supervision of an experienced researcher.

Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. Alongside supervisors, students will identify a suitable topic area, describe an appropriate study design and implement an empirical study to be completed within a laboratory setting. Students will be involved alongside the supervisors in the process of defining the research question, and developing the research plan and, where appropriate, obtaining regulatory approvals. This course is for non-laboratory based projects (if you are intending to undertake a project in a scientific laboratory setting you should register on MB5913)

View detailed information about this course
Advanced Research Project (PU5045)

90 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to lead a substantial piece of data-driven, empirical work within their field of study, under the supervision of an experienced researcher. Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. Alongside supervisors, students will identify a suitable topic area, develop a research protocol, design and implement an empirical study. Students will be involved alongside the supervisors in the process of defining the research question, and developing the research protocol, and where appropriate obtaining all regulatory approvals.

View detailed information about this course
Evaluating Policy Effects in Practice (PU5919)

30 Credit Points

The case study provides students with the opportunity to select, design, conduct and report on a detailed systematic investigation of a topic within an applied health field. The aim is to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of a particular topic, including the academic background, relevant policy and the roles played by various actors and agencies. The case study is conducted in an academically robust and ethically sensitive manner.

View detailed information about this course
Extended Work - Based Placement in Applied Health Sciences (PU5923)

30 Credit Points

This work-based placement elective offers a professional placement with a government/public, industrial, civic or voluntary

health and/or development sector organisation. Students will undertake a ten-week placement with a host organisation, either within the organisation, remotely from Aberdeen, or using a combination of both. University of Aberdeen staff will co-supervise student placements. Placements are subject to availability and are offered on a competitive basis.

View detailed information about this course
Semester 3

Semester 3

Optional Courses

Full time students should select 2 courses totalling a value of 30 credits. Part-time students should select 1 course totalling a value of 15 credits. Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following.

  • Open and Reproducible Health Data Science
  • Applied Statistics (PU5017)
Fundamentals of Research Design (PU5027)

15 Credit Points

Fundamentals of research design provides the student with skills in both quantitative and qualitative design enabling the student to plan ethical research in a health context. Students are taken through each step - from formulating the research question, to study design, sample selection, methods for data collection to dissemination of results.

Upon completion of this course you will be able to:

  1. Summarise the key factors involved in the research process
  2. Evaluate the appropriateness of study designs commonly used in applied health research studies
  3. Identify the advantages and disadvantages associated with quantitative and qualitative research methodologies
  4. Develop a research proposal to answer a health-related research question which maximises research quality and rigour.v
View detailed information about this course
Epidemiology (PU5030)

15 Credit Points

This course in applied epidemiology gives an introduction to disease measurement at a population level, basic epidemiological study design and analysis, and provides an understanding of key methodological issues needed to apply when designing – or critically appraising – an epidemiological study.

View detailed information about this course
Evidence - Based Health (PU5031)

15 Credit Points

This course aims to enable the fundamental understanding and application of evidence based health at an individual- and population-level, focusing on the use of systematic reviews to synthesise evidence as well as methods to translate and implement evidence to inform health practice and policy. Students on this course will work through the stages of a systematic review unit by unit, completing interactive and practical exercises to develop the skills required to conduct a review. They will then study how the evidence produced from systematic reviews is used to shape health policy and practice, at the level of organisations and individual clinical encounters.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5032)

15 Credit Points

The aim of this course is to provide an introduction to the application of economics to health care. Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

View detailed information about this course
Designing Real - World Trials (PU5038)

15 Credit Points

Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) are used to test the effectiveness of interventions. The aim of this course is to take a student through the process of designing RCTs. The course will focus on RCTs in the evaluation of real world healthcare and public health settings.

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (Online) (PU5039)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound introduction to qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course introduces planning to conduct relevant research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences.

View detailed information about this course
Health, Well Being and Behaviour Change (PU5040)

15 Credit Points

What can health professionals and health care promoters do to improve their own and others health and wellbeing? What influences people’s health behaviours? Why do people find it difficult to change their health behaviour? What are the most promising strategies for improving health and well-being?

Health behaviours cover a wide range of behaviours (e.g. smoking, physical activity, vaccination, diet, taking medication, and practicing safe sex) and have a major impact on peoples’ health, quality of life, and (healthy) life expectancy. Nevertheless, many people have an unhealthy diet, exercise too little, don’t take their medication as prescribed, smoke, drink excessive amounts of alcohol, and so forth.

In this course, we will address these challenges and students will learn key theories about health behaviour and behaviour change, including behaviour change techniques, in order to understand how health behaviours can be influenced by a variety of factors within an individual (e.g., conscious and unconscious thoughts, emotions, goals, and decisions), and also by factors in the environment (e.g., the behaviours and expectations of society; the quality of the communication by health care professionals; or availability and affordability of healthy options in the environment).

Health psychologists and health professionals are expected to be able to develop, evaluate and implement intervention programs to promote healthier behaviour, through changing individuals and their environment.

Within this course you will develop your understanding of health behaviours, what influences them and how to change them. You will experience the role of health behaviours from both the participant’s and researcher view, by developing, participating in and analysing your own behavioural intervention.

View detailed information about this course
Key Concepts in Global Health (PU5056)

15 Credit Points

This course introduces students to the field of global health and develops skills to critically appraise organisations, actors, debates and data. Teaching material will cover: key definitions and terminology; institutions, practitioners and scholars in global health; and key drivers and challenges in the global health field. Students will learn about established and emerging topics, how these intersect with broader social, economic and political factors, and how research can make credible contributions in this context

View detailed information about this course
Fundamentals of Human Nutrition and Metabolism (RN5001)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide you with the basic knowledge required to enable you to move on to the complex issues that are addressed in today's society around the role of nutrition and food in disease prevention and management. This course is designed as a refresher course for those who have already undertaken nutrition at undergraduate levels or to enable students with a strong science background to convert their knowledge into the nutrition field.

View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Health (RN5002)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including body composition, dietary intake and energy expenditure assessment. It includes a ‘hands-on’ experience of using a a dietary assessment technique used routinely by nutritionists. The assignments for this course are designed to help you develop the skills you will employ in daily life as a nutritionist these include presenting and conducting a nutritional assessment of a client and being determining the best methods for nutritional assessment.

View detailed information about this course
Foundations of Nutrition (RN5003)

15 Credit Points

Course Aims:

The course aims to enable you to develop a broad knowledge, understanding, and application of the scientific basis of human nutrition.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course, you should be able to:

  1. Summarise the underlying physiology related to human nutrition.
  2. Explain the key concepts of nutrient and energy metabolism.
  3. Distinguish between the metabolism of different macronutrients.
  4. Outline the role of micronutrients and non-nutritive dietary components in human nutrition.
  5. Assess the interactions between nutrients as part of a whole diet.
  6. Prepare, process, interpret, and present topics in human nutrition using formal presentation.
View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Status (RN5008)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including dietary intake, assessment of body composition and energy expenditure applied in the context of energy balance. Theory will be put into practice through a series of practical workshop and laboratory sessions to give you ‘hands-on’ experience of using a range of assessment techniques using state-of-the-art equipment routinely employed by nutritional scientists.

View detailed information about this course

Programme Fees

Please refer to our InfoHub Tuition Fees page for fee information for this programme, or contact study@abdn.ac.uk.

PgCert 8 months or 12 months Blended Learning Full Time or Part Time September Aberdeen View

Programme Information

Semester 1

Semester 1

Students must complete 60 courses credits to be awarded the Postgraduate Certificate (PgCert) in Applied Health Sciences.

All courses are optional, there are no compulsory courses. We advise that you talk to our Programme Coordinators before making your final course selection.


Optional Courses

Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following.

  • Open and Reproducible Health Data Science
  • Applied Statistics (PU5017)
Fundamentals of Research Design (PU5027)

15 Credit Points

Fundamentals of research design provides the student with skills in both quantitative and qualitative design enabling the student to plan ethical research in a health context. Students are taken through each step - from formulating the research question, to study design, sample selection, methods for data collection to dissemination of results.

Upon completion of this course you will be able to:

  1. Summarise the key factors involved in the research process
  2. Evaluate the appropriateness of study designs commonly used in applied health research studies
  3. Identify the advantages and disadvantages associated with quantitative and qualitative research methodologies
  4. Develop a research proposal to answer a health-related research question which maximises research quality and rigour.v
View detailed information about this course
Epidemiology (PU5030)

15 Credit Points

This course in applied epidemiology gives an introduction to disease measurement at a population level, basic epidemiological study design and analysis, and provides an understanding of key methodological issues needed to apply when designing – or critically appraising – an epidemiological study.

View detailed information about this course
Evidence - Based Health (PU5031)

15 Credit Points

This course aims to enable the fundamental understanding and application of evidence based health at an individual- and population-level, focusing on the use of systematic reviews to synthesise evidence as well as methods to translate and implement evidence to inform health practice and policy. Students on this course will work through the stages of a systematic review unit by unit, completing interactive and practical exercises to develop the skills required to conduct a review. They will then study how the evidence produced from systematic reviews is used to shape health policy and practice, at the level of organisations and individual clinical encounters.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5032)

15 Credit Points

The aim of this course is to provide an introduction to the application of economics to health care. Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

View detailed information about this course
Designing Real - World Trials (PU5038)

15 Credit Points

Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) are used to test the effectiveness of interventions. The aim of this course is to take a student through the process of designing RCTs. The course will focus on RCTs in the evaluation of real world healthcare and public health settings.

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (Online) (PU5039)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound introduction to qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course introduces planning to conduct relevant research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences.

View detailed information about this course
Health, Well Being and Behaviour Change (PU5040)

15 Credit Points

What can health professionals and health care promoters do to improve their own and others health and wellbeing? What influences people’s health behaviours? Why do people find it difficult to change their health behaviour? What are the most promising strategies for improving health and well-being?

Health behaviours cover a wide range of behaviours (e.g. smoking, physical activity, vaccination, diet, taking medication, and practicing safe sex) and have a major impact on peoples’ health, quality of life, and (healthy) life expectancy. Nevertheless, many people have an unhealthy diet, exercise too little, don’t take their medication as prescribed, smoke, drink excessive amounts of alcohol, and so forth.

In this course, we will address these challenges and students will learn key theories about health behaviour and behaviour change, including behaviour change techniques, in order to understand how health behaviours can be influenced by a variety of factors within an individual (e.g., conscious and unconscious thoughts, emotions, goals, and decisions), and also by factors in the environment (e.g., the behaviours and expectations of society; the quality of the communication by health care professionals; or availability and affordability of healthy options in the environment).

Health psychologists and health professionals are expected to be able to develop, evaluate and implement intervention programs to promote healthier behaviour, through changing individuals and their environment.

Within this course you will develop your understanding of health behaviours, what influences them and how to change them. You will experience the role of health behaviours from both the participant’s and researcher view, by developing, participating in and analysing your own behavioural intervention.

View detailed information about this course
Public Health in Action (PU5041)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course provides an introduction to a population-based perspective on health, illness and disease. The course illustrates the practical application of numerical ways of thinking about the health of a population. The course covers the three major public health domains of healthcare evaluation, health protection and health promotion.

This course aims to support students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among a population as a whole.

View detailed information about this course
Key Concepts in Global Health (PU5056)

15 Credit Points

This course introduces students to the field of global health and develops skills to critically appraise organisations, actors, debates and data. Teaching material will cover: key definitions and terminology; institutions, practitioners and scholars in global health; and key drivers and challenges in the global health field. Students will learn about established and emerging topics, how these intersect with broader social, economic and political factors, and how research can make credible contributions in this context

View detailed information about this course
Fundamentals of Human Nutrition and Metabolism (RN5001)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide you with the basic knowledge required to enable you to move on to the complex issues that are addressed in today's society around the role of nutrition and food in disease prevention and management. This course is designed as a refresher course for those who have already undertaken nutrition at undergraduate levels or to enable students with a strong science background to convert their knowledge into the nutrition field.

View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Health (RN5002)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including body composition, dietary intake and energy expenditure assessment. It includes a ‘hands-on’ experience of using a a dietary assessment technique used routinely by nutritionists. The assignments for this course are designed to help you develop the skills you will employ in daily life as a nutritionist these include presenting and conducting a nutritional assessment of a client and being determining the best methods for nutritional assessment.

View detailed information about this course
Foundations of Nutrition (RN5003)

15 Credit Points

Course Aims:

The course aims to enable you to develop a broad knowledge, understanding, and application of the scientific basis of human nutrition.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course, you should be able to:

  1. Summarise the underlying physiology related to human nutrition.
  2. Explain the key concepts of nutrient and energy metabolism.
  3. Distinguish between the metabolism of different macronutrients.
  4. Outline the role of micronutrients and non-nutritive dietary components in human nutrition.
  5. Assess the interactions between nutrients as part of a whole diet.
  6. Prepare, process, interpret, and present topics in human nutrition using formal presentation.
View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Status (RN5008)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including dietary intake, assessment of body composition and energy expenditure applied in the context of energy balance. Theory will be put into practice through a series of practical workshop and laboratory sessions to give you ‘hands-on’ experience of using a range of assessment techniques using state-of-the-art equipment routinely employed by nutritional scientists.

View detailed information about this course
Semester 2

Semester 2

Optional Courses

Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following.

  • Advanced Regression Modelling (PU5559)
  • Public Health Nutrition (PU5534)
  • Epidemiology (PU5538)
Global Health (PU5505)

15 Credit Points

This course builds on the learning from the Introduction to Global health course in the first half session. It focusses on the issues that affect the health of all nations of the world, the problems that unite developing and developed countries – the shared risks and vulnerabilities. This is not merely the study of emerging diseases and epidemic threats such as HIV, Ebola and Zika but also the dual burden of over and undernutrition, communicable and non-communicable diseases, the impact of war, conflict and climate change on the health of individuals, nations and world populations.

View detailed information about this course
Applied Statistics (PU5522)

15 Credit Points

This course in Applied Statistics intends to focus on the application of statistical techniques in postgraduate research for health professionals, with a particular emphasis on the correct interpretation of statistical analyses. The course will NOT concentrate on the statistical theory underlying the subject. An important component of the course is the use of a statistical package. The statistical package used on this course will be IBM SPSS Statistics 25 which can be used to implement all of the methods taught on this course.

View detailed information about this course
Health Needs Assessment (PU5525)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course supports students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among the population as a whole.

The course is core to the MPH programme, but also open to students interested in understanding the population-based approach to health. All must be registered for the course and complete all assessments. The course is suitable for students wanting a professional (specialist/ practitioner) public health career and also for those wanting a related academic career.

View detailed information about this course
Systematic Reviewing (PU5526)

15 Credit Points

This course will equip students with the relevant skills to interpret and conduct systematic reviews on the effectiveness of healthcare interventions. Using lectures and practical sessions, students will understand the principles of systematic reviewing and the differences between narrative and systematic reviews. They will learn to formulate a clear research question and undertake each stage of systematic reviewing of randomised controlled trials. They will also learn about the importance of the levels of evidence and systematic reviews of other different study designs. This course will also introduce the students to advances in systematic reviews such as network meta-analysis and use of Individual Patient Data (IPD)

View detailed information about this course
Values and Ethics in Public Health (PU5528)

15 Credit Points

This course challenges you to engage robustly with questions about what is good and right (and why) in public health policy and practice. You will develop your ability to critique and participate effectively in debates about what matters – and what is morally justified - in efforts to improve the health and wellbeing of communities and populations. You will develop the knowledge and confidence to identify value-based assumptions as you examine a range of real-world health problems and practice justifying and objecting to different strategies for addressing them

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (PU5529)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

View detailed information about this course
Health Informatics (PU5532)

15 Credit Points

We live in a time of ‘Big Data’ with the rapid growth in the digital capture of health information. Health Informatics is the science of data capture, linkage and analysis of large datasets to improve health. The demand for health researchers with training and experience in health informatics is high. For people practicing in Public Health, it is a key skill. It will equip students for any career in health research or public health practice and this course is an excellent stepping stone for those wishing to develop a specialist interest in the field.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5546)

15 Credit Points

Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

In this course students will acquire a knowledge and understanding of:

  • Key themes of economic theory applied to health care
  • Some of the main techniques of health care evaluation
  • Main arguments concerning alternative systems for organising and financing health care
View detailed information about this course
Challenges in Global Nutrition (PU5547)

15 Credit Points

This course provides up-to-date knowledge of the challenges of nutrition in the global context. It provides students with an opportunity to develop their understanding of the methods of monitoring population nutritional status, a picture of the current global nutritional status, the determinants of nutritional status in different populations, and skills that will enable them to design, implement and evaluate nutrition interventions and programmes aimed at addressing global nutritional issues. The learning is widely applicable to all populations globally although the main focus is on low and middle-income countries (LMIC).

View detailed information about this course
Work - Based Placement in Applied Health Sciences (PU5548)

15 Credit Points

This work-based placement elective offers a professional placement with a government/public, civic or voluntary health and/or development sector organisation. You will undertake a ten-week placement with your host organisation, either within the organisation, remotely from Aberdeen, or using a combination of both. Placements are subject to availability and are offered on a competitive basis.

View detailed information about this course
Women’s Health in A Global Setting (PU5549)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the challenges faced in women’s health and health care in a global setting. Students will gain knowledge of how gender differences, equality, women’s family roles, community and society support, and approaches to health care systems all play a role in women’s health. It will also present how women’s health intersects with broader social, economic and political factors.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition for Disease Prevention (RN5503)

15 Credit Points

Chronic diseases account for 70% of annual deaths in the world and present a great burden for the society. Emerging clinical evidence suggests that improving diet and nutrition can substantially reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

This course addresses the link between diet and the risk of developing chronic diseases. Furthermore, this course provides scientific evidence as to how nutrition may be used as a tool to prevent chronic diseases such as metabolic syndrome, type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and other chronic diseases. It also highlights the importance of scientific research on developing public health policy frameworks, which encompass a range of educational and regulatory measures aiming to contribute to chronic disease prevention.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health Through the Life Stages (RN5504)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. During the course you will also develop the skills required to select and critically appraise scientific evidence.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition (RN5505)

15 Credit Points

Clinical nutrition is the study of diet in relation to the development and treatment of human disease. This specialism course provides an up-to-date and detailed knowledge on the role of nutrition in the aetiology, prevention and treatment of disease in humans, with particular emphasis on disease prevention. The course covers key topics surrounding nutrition and disease, and how clinical nutrition links with public health and molecular nutrition. The course also provides an overview of research tools widely used in clinical nutrition research, and a training on evidence-based analysis of nutrition case studies.

View detailed information about this course
Sustainable Diets and Global Food Systems (RN5506)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the complex nature of sustainable diets and how they can be achieved in a global food system. Sustainable diets are needed to tackle some of the biggest global challenges, such as poor dietary health, climate change and environmental degradation, and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. It will address the multidimensional complexity of sustainable diets, that includes nutrition, environmental impact, culture and society, and economics, and explore the challenge of combining these attributes into a single entity.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health (RN5507)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways to e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. In addition, it will also provide insight into the effects of malnutrition and food processing on health. A combination of lectures, and a laboratory class will help consolidate your understanding of the impact food and nutrients on health.

View detailed information about this course

Programme Fees

Please refer to our InfoHub Tuition Fees page for fee information for this programme, or contact study@abdn.ac.uk.

PgCert 8 months or 12 months Blended Learning Full Time or Part Time January Aberdeen View

Programme Information

Semester 1

Semester 1

Optional Courses

Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following.

  • Advanced Regression Modelling (PU5559)
  • Public Health Nutrition (PU5534)
  • Epidemiology (PU5538)
Global Health (PU5505)

15 Credit Points

This course builds on the learning from the Introduction to Global health course in the first half session. It focusses on the issues that affect the health of all nations of the world, the problems that unite developing and developed countries – the shared risks and vulnerabilities. This is not merely the study of emerging diseases and epidemic threats such as HIV, Ebola and Zika but also the dual burden of over and undernutrition, communicable and non-communicable diseases, the impact of war, conflict and climate change on the health of individuals, nations and world populations.

View detailed information about this course
Applied Statistics (PU5522)

15 Credit Points

This course in Applied Statistics intends to focus on the application of statistical techniques in postgraduate research for health professionals, with a particular emphasis on the correct interpretation of statistical analyses. The course will NOT concentrate on the statistical theory underlying the subject. An important component of the course is the use of a statistical package. The statistical package used on this course will be IBM SPSS Statistics 25 which can be used to implement all of the methods taught on this course.

View detailed information about this course
Health Needs Assessment (PU5525)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course supports students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among the population as a whole.

The course is core to the MPH programme, but also open to students interested in understanding the population-based approach to health. All must be registered for the course and complete all assessments. The course is suitable for students wanting a professional (specialist/ practitioner) public health career and also for those wanting a related academic career.

View detailed information about this course
Systematic Reviewing (PU5526)

15 Credit Points

This course will equip students with the relevant skills to interpret and conduct systematic reviews on the effectiveness of healthcare interventions. Using lectures and practical sessions, students will understand the principles of systematic reviewing and the differences between narrative and systematic reviews. They will learn to formulate a clear research question and undertake each stage of systematic reviewing of randomised controlled trials. They will also learn about the importance of the levels of evidence and systematic reviews of other different study designs. This course will also introduce the students to advances in systematic reviews such as network meta-analysis and use of Individual Patient Data (IPD)

View detailed information about this course
Values and Ethics in Public Health (PU5528)

15 Credit Points

This course challenges you to engage robustly with questions about what is good and right (and why) in public health policy and practice. You will develop your ability to critique and participate effectively in debates about what matters – and what is morally justified - in efforts to improve the health and wellbeing of communities and populations. You will develop the knowledge and confidence to identify value-based assumptions as you examine a range of real-world health problems and practice justifying and objecting to different strategies for addressing them

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (PU5529)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

View detailed information about this course
Health Informatics (PU5532)

15 Credit Points

We live in a time of ‘Big Data’ with the rapid growth in the digital capture of health information. Health Informatics is the science of data capture, linkage and analysis of large datasets to improve health. The demand for health researchers with training and experience in health informatics is high. For people practicing in Public Health, it is a key skill. It will equip students for any career in health research or public health practice and this course is an excellent stepping stone for those wishing to develop a specialist interest in the field.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5546)

15 Credit Points

Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

In this course students will acquire a knowledge and understanding of:

  • Key themes of economic theory applied to health care
  • Some of the main techniques of health care evaluation
  • Main arguments concerning alternative systems for organising and financing health care
View detailed information about this course
Challenges in Global Nutrition (PU5547)

15 Credit Points

This course provides up-to-date knowledge of the challenges of nutrition in the global context. It provides students with an opportunity to develop their understanding of the methods of monitoring population nutritional status, a picture of the current global nutritional status, the determinants of nutritional status in different populations, and skills that will enable them to design, implement and evaluate nutrition interventions and programmes aimed at addressing global nutritional issues. The learning is widely applicable to all populations globally although the main focus is on low and middle-income countries (LMIC).

View detailed information about this course
Work - Based Placement in Applied Health Sciences (PU5548)

15 Credit Points

This work-based placement elective offers a professional placement with a government/public, civic or voluntary health and/or development sector organisation. You will undertake a ten-week placement with your host organisation, either within the organisation, remotely from Aberdeen, or using a combination of both. Placements are subject to availability and are offered on a competitive basis.

View detailed information about this course
Women’s Health in A Global Setting (PU5549)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the challenges faced in women’s health and health care in a global setting. Students will gain knowledge of how gender differences, equality, women’s family roles, community and society support, and approaches to health care systems all play a role in women’s health. It will also present how women’s health intersects with broader social, economic and political factors.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition for Disease Prevention (RN5503)

15 Credit Points

Chronic diseases account for 70% of annual deaths in the world and present a great burden for the society. Emerging clinical evidence suggests that improving diet and nutrition can substantially reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

This course addresses the link between diet and the risk of developing chronic diseases. Furthermore, this course provides scientific evidence as to how nutrition may be used as a tool to prevent chronic diseases such as metabolic syndrome, type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and other chronic diseases. It also highlights the importance of scientific research on developing public health policy frameworks, which encompass a range of educational and regulatory measures aiming to contribute to chronic disease prevention.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health Through the Life Stages (RN5504)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. During the course you will also develop the skills required to select and critically appraise scientific evidence.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition (RN5505)

15 Credit Points

Clinical nutrition is the study of diet in relation to the development and treatment of human disease. This specialism course provides an up-to-date and detailed knowledge on the role of nutrition in the aetiology, prevention and treatment of disease in humans, with particular emphasis on disease prevention. The course covers key topics surrounding nutrition and disease, and how clinical nutrition links with public health and molecular nutrition. The course also provides an overview of research tools widely used in clinical nutrition research, and a training on evidence-based analysis of nutrition case studies.

View detailed information about this course
Sustainable Diets and Global Food Systems (RN5506)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the complex nature of sustainable diets and how they can be achieved in a global food system. Sustainable diets are needed to tackle some of the biggest global challenges, such as poor dietary health, climate change and environmental degradation, and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. It will address the multidimensional complexity of sustainable diets, that includes nutrition, environmental impact, culture and society, and economics, and explore the challenge of combining these attributes into a single entity.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health (RN5507)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways to e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. In addition, it will also provide insight into the effects of malnutrition and food processing on health. A combination of lectures, and a laboratory class will help consolidate your understanding of the impact food and nutrients on health.

View detailed information about this course
Semester 2

Semester 2

Optional Courses

Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following.

  • Open and Reproducible Health Data Science
  • Applied Statistics (PU5017)
Fundamentals of Research Design (PU5027)

15 Credit Points

Fundamentals of research design provides the student with skills in both quantitative and qualitative design enabling the student to plan ethical research in a health context. Students are taken through each step - from formulating the research question, to study design, sample selection, methods for data collection to dissemination of results.

Upon completion of this course you will be able to:

  1. Summarise the key factors involved in the research process
  2. Evaluate the appropriateness of study designs commonly used in applied health research studies
  3. Identify the advantages and disadvantages associated with quantitative and qualitative research methodologies
  4. Develop a research proposal to answer a health-related research question which maximises research quality and rigour.v
View detailed information about this course
Epidemiology (PU5030)

15 Credit Points

This course in applied epidemiology gives an introduction to disease measurement at a population level, basic epidemiological study design and analysis, and provides an understanding of key methodological issues needed to apply when designing – or critically appraising – an epidemiological study.

View detailed information about this course
Evidence - Based Health (PU5031)

15 Credit Points

This course aims to enable the fundamental understanding and application of evidence based health at an individual- and population-level, focusing on the use of systematic reviews to synthesise evidence as well as methods to translate and implement evidence to inform health practice and policy. Students on this course will work through the stages of a systematic review unit by unit, completing interactive and practical exercises to develop the skills required to conduct a review. They will then study how the evidence produced from systematic reviews is used to shape health policy and practice, at the level of organisations and individual clinical encounters.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5032)

15 Credit Points

The aim of this course is to provide an introduction to the application of economics to health care. Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

View detailed information about this course
Designing Real - World Trials (PU5038)

15 Credit Points

Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) are used to test the effectiveness of interventions. The aim of this course is to take a student through the process of designing RCTs. The course will focus on RCTs in the evaluation of real world healthcare and public health settings.

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (Online) (PU5039)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound introduction to qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course introduces planning to conduct relevant research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences.

View detailed information about this course
Health, Well Being and Behaviour Change (PU5040)

15 Credit Points

What can health professionals and health care promoters do to improve their own and others health and wellbeing? What influences people’s health behaviours? Why do people find it difficult to change their health behaviour? What are the most promising strategies for improving health and well-being?

Health behaviours cover a wide range of behaviours (e.g. smoking, physical activity, vaccination, diet, taking medication, and practicing safe sex) and have a major impact on peoples’ health, quality of life, and (healthy) life expectancy. Nevertheless, many people have an unhealthy diet, exercise too little, don’t take their medication as prescribed, smoke, drink excessive amounts of alcohol, and so forth.

In this course, we will address these challenges and students will learn key theories about health behaviour and behaviour change, including behaviour change techniques, in order to understand how health behaviours can be influenced by a variety of factors within an individual (e.g., conscious and unconscious thoughts, emotions, goals, and decisions), and also by factors in the environment (e.g., the behaviours and expectations of society; the quality of the communication by health care professionals; or availability and affordability of healthy options in the environment).

Health psychologists and health professionals are expected to be able to develop, evaluate and implement intervention programs to promote healthier behaviour, through changing individuals and their environment.

Within this course you will develop your understanding of health behaviours, what influences them and how to change them. You will experience the role of health behaviours from both the participant’s and researcher view, by developing, participating in and analysing your own behavioural intervention.

View detailed information about this course
Public Health in Action (PU5041)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course provides an introduction to a population-based perspective on health, illness and disease. The course illustrates the practical application of numerical ways of thinking about the health of a population. The course covers the three major public health domains of healthcare evaluation, health protection and health promotion.

This course aims to support students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among a population as a whole.

View detailed information about this course
Key Concepts in Global Health (PU5056)

15 Credit Points

This course introduces students to the field of global health and develops skills to critically appraise organisations, actors, debates and data. Teaching material will cover: key definitions and terminology; institutions, practitioners and scholars in global health; and key drivers and challenges in the global health field. Students will learn about established and emerging topics, how these intersect with broader social, economic and political factors, and how research can make credible contributions in this context

View detailed information about this course
Fundamentals of Human Nutrition and Metabolism (RN5001)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide you with the basic knowledge required to enable you to move on to the complex issues that are addressed in today's society around the role of nutrition and food in disease prevention and management. This course is designed as a refresher course for those who have already undertaken nutrition at undergraduate levels or to enable students with a strong science background to convert their knowledge into the nutrition field.

View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Health (RN5002)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including body composition, dietary intake and energy expenditure assessment. It includes a ‘hands-on’ experience of using a a dietary assessment technique used routinely by nutritionists. The assignments for this course are designed to help you develop the skills you will employ in daily life as a nutritionist these include presenting and conducting a nutritional assessment of a client and being determining the best methods for nutritional assessment.

View detailed information about this course
Foundations of Nutrition (RN5003)

15 Credit Points

Course Aims:

The course aims to enable you to develop a broad knowledge, understanding, and application of the scientific basis of human nutrition.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course, you should be able to:

  1. Summarise the underlying physiology related to human nutrition.
  2. Explain the key concepts of nutrient and energy metabolism.
  3. Distinguish between the metabolism of different macronutrients.
  4. Outline the role of micronutrients and non-nutritive dietary components in human nutrition.
  5. Assess the interactions between nutrients as part of a whole diet.
  6. Prepare, process, interpret, and present topics in human nutrition using formal presentation.
View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Status (RN5008)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including dietary intake, assessment of body composition and energy expenditure applied in the context of energy balance. Theory will be put into practice through a series of practical workshop and laboratory sessions to give you ‘hands-on’ experience of using a range of assessment techniques using state-of-the-art equipment routinely employed by nutritional scientists.

View detailed information about this course

Programme Fees

Please refer to our InfoHub Tuition Fees page for fee information for this programme, or contact study@abdn.ac.uk.

PgDip 12 months or 24 months Blended Learning Full Time or Part Time September Aberdeen View

Programme Information

Semester 1

Semester 1

Students must complete 120 course credits to be awarded the Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip) in Applied Health Sciences.

All courses are optional, there are no compulsory courses. We advise that you talk to our Programme Coordinators before making your final course selection as your semester 1 course choices may impact your semester 2 and 3 course choices.


Optional Courses

Full time students should select 2 courses totalling a value of 30 credits. Part-time students should select 1 course totalling a value of 15 credits. Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following.

  • Open and Reproducible Health Data Science
  • Applied Statistics (PU5017)
Foundations of Nutrition (RN5003)

15 Credit Points

Course Aims:

The course aims to enable you to develop a broad knowledge, understanding, and application of the scientific basis of human nutrition.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course, you should be able to:

  1. Summarise the underlying physiology related to human nutrition.
  2. Explain the key concepts of nutrient and energy metabolism.
  3. Distinguish between the metabolism of different macronutrients.
  4. Outline the role of micronutrients and non-nutritive dietary components in human nutrition.
  5. Assess the interactions between nutrients as part of a whole diet.
  6. Prepare, process, interpret, and present topics in human nutrition using formal presentation.
View detailed information about this course
Fundamentals of Research Design (PU5027)

15 Credit Points

Fundamentals of research design provides the student with skills in both quantitative and qualitative design enabling the student to plan ethical research in a health context. Students are taken through each step - from formulating the research question, to study design, sample selection, methods for data collection to dissemination of results.

Upon completion of this course you will be able to:

  1. Summarise the key factors involved in the research process
  2. Evaluate the appropriateness of study designs commonly used in applied health research studies
  3. Identify the advantages and disadvantages associated with quantitative and qualitative research methodologies
  4. Develop a research proposal to answer a health-related research question which maximises research quality and rigour.v
View detailed information about this course
Epidemiology (PU5030)

15 Credit Points

This course in applied epidemiology gives an introduction to disease measurement at a population level, basic epidemiological study design and analysis, and provides an understanding of key methodological issues needed to apply when designing – or critically appraising – an epidemiological study.

View detailed information about this course
Evidence - Based Health (PU5031)

15 Credit Points

This course aims to enable the fundamental understanding and application of evidence based health at an individual- and population-level, focusing on the use of systematic reviews to synthesise evidence as well as methods to translate and implement evidence to inform health practice and policy. Students on this course will work through the stages of a systematic review unit by unit, completing interactive and practical exercises to develop the skills required to conduct a review. They will then study how the evidence produced from systematic reviews is used to shape health policy and practice, at the level of organisations and individual clinical encounters.

View detailed information about this course
Fundamentals of Human Nutrition and Metabolism (RN5001)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide you with the basic knowledge required to enable you to move on to the complex issues that are addressed in today's society around the role of nutrition and food in disease prevention and management. This course is designed as a refresher course for those who have already undertaken nutrition at undergraduate levels or to enable students with a strong science background to convert their knowledge into the nutrition field.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5032)

15 Credit Points

The aim of this course is to provide an introduction to the application of economics to health care. Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Health (RN5002)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including body composition, dietary intake and energy expenditure assessment. It includes a ‘hands-on’ experience of using a a dietary assessment technique used routinely by nutritionists. The assignments for this course are designed to help you develop the skills you will employ in daily life as a nutritionist these include presenting and conducting a nutritional assessment of a client and being determining the best methods for nutritional assessment.

View detailed information about this course
Designing Real - World Trials (PU5038)

15 Credit Points

Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) are used to test the effectiveness of interventions. The aim of this course is to take a student through the process of designing RCTs. The course will focus on RCTs in the evaluation of real world healthcare and public health settings.

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (Online) (PU5039)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound introduction to qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course introduces planning to conduct relevant research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences.

View detailed information about this course
Public Health in Action (PU5041)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course provides an introduction to a population-based perspective on health, illness and disease. The course illustrates the practical application of numerical ways of thinking about the health of a population. The course covers the three major public health domains of healthcare evaluation, health protection and health promotion.

This course aims to support students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among a population as a whole.

View detailed information about this course
Health, Well Being and Behaviour Change (PU5040)

15 Credit Points

What can health professionals and health care promoters do to improve their own and others health and wellbeing? What influences people’s health behaviours? Why do people find it difficult to change their health behaviour? What are the most promising strategies for improving health and well-being?

Health behaviours cover a wide range of behaviours (e.g. smoking, physical activity, vaccination, diet, taking medication, and practicing safe sex) and have a major impact on peoples’ health, quality of life, and (healthy) life expectancy. Nevertheless, many people have an unhealthy diet, exercise too little, don’t take their medication as prescribed, smoke, drink excessive amounts of alcohol, and so forth.

In this course, we will address these challenges and students will learn key theories about health behaviour and behaviour change, including behaviour change techniques, in order to understand how health behaviours can be influenced by a variety of factors within an individual (e.g., conscious and unconscious thoughts, emotions, goals, and decisions), and also by factors in the environment (e.g., the behaviours and expectations of society; the quality of the communication by health care professionals; or availability and affordability of healthy options in the environment).

Health psychologists and health professionals are expected to be able to develop, evaluate and implement intervention programs to promote healthier behaviour, through changing individuals and their environment.

Within this course you will develop your understanding of health behaviours, what influences them and how to change them. You will experience the role of health behaviours from both the participant’s and researcher view, by developing, participating in and analysing your own behavioural intervention.

View detailed information about this course
Key Concepts in Global Health (PU5056)

15 Credit Points

This course introduces students to the field of global health and develops skills to critically appraise organisations, actors, debates and data. Teaching material will cover: key definitions and terminology; institutions, practitioners and scholars in global health; and key drivers and challenges in the global health field. Students will learn about established and emerging topics, how these intersect with broader social, economic and political factors, and how research can make credible contributions in this context

View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Status (RN5008)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including dietary intake, assessment of body composition and energy expenditure applied in the context of energy balance. Theory will be put into practice through a series of practical workshop and laboratory sessions to give you ‘hands-on’ experience of using a range of assessment techniques using state-of-the-art equipment routinely employed by nutritional scientists.

View detailed information about this course
Semester 2

Semester 2

Optional Courses

Full time students should select 2 courses totalling a value of 30 credits. Part-time students should select 1 course totalling a value of 15 credits. Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following.

  • Advanced Regression Modelling (PU5529)
  • Public Health Nutrition (PU5534)
  • Epidemiology (PU5538)
Global Health (PU5505)

15 Credit Points

This course builds on the learning from the Introduction to Global health course in the first half session. It focusses on the issues that affect the health of all nations of the world, the problems that unite developing and developed countries – the shared risks and vulnerabilities. This is not merely the study of emerging diseases and epidemic threats such as HIV, Ebola and Zika but also the dual burden of over and undernutrition, communicable and non-communicable diseases, the impact of war, conflict and climate change on the health of individuals, nations and world populations.

View detailed information about this course
Applied Statistics (PU5522)

15 Credit Points

This course in Applied Statistics intends to focus on the application of statistical techniques in postgraduate research for health professionals, with a particular emphasis on the correct interpretation of statistical analyses. The course will NOT concentrate on the statistical theory underlying the subject. An important component of the course is the use of a statistical package. The statistical package used on this course will be IBM SPSS Statistics 25 which can be used to implement all of the methods taught on this course.

View detailed information about this course
Health Needs Assessment (PU5525)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course supports students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among the population as a whole.

The course is core to the MPH programme, but also open to students interested in understanding the population-based approach to health. All must be registered for the course and complete all assessments. The course is suitable for students wanting a professional (specialist/ practitioner) public health career and also for those wanting a related academic career.

View detailed information about this course
Systematic Reviewing (PU5526)

15 Credit Points

This course will equip students with the relevant skills to interpret and conduct systematic reviews on the effectiveness of healthcare interventions. Using lectures and practical sessions, students will understand the principles of systematic reviewing and the differences between narrative and systematic reviews. They will learn to formulate a clear research question and undertake each stage of systematic reviewing of randomised controlled trials. They will also learn about the importance of the levels of evidence and systematic reviews of other different study designs. This course will also introduce the students to advances in systematic reviews such as network meta-analysis and use of Individual Patient Data (IPD)

View detailed information about this course
Values and Ethics in Public Health (PU5528)

15 Credit Points

This course challenges you to engage robustly with questions about what is good and right (and why) in public health policy and practice. You will develop your ability to critique and participate effectively in debates about what matters – and what is morally justified - in efforts to improve the health and wellbeing of communities and populations. You will develop the knowledge and confidence to identify value-based assumptions as you examine a range of real-world health problems and practice justifying and objecting to different strategies for addressing them

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (PU5529)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

View detailed information about this course
Health Informatics (PU5532)

15 Credit Points

We live in a time of ‘Big Data’ with the rapid growth in the digital capture of health information. Health Informatics is the science of data capture, linkage and analysis of large datasets to improve health. The demand for health researchers with training and experience in health informatics is high. For people practicing in Public Health, it is a key skill. It will equip students for any career in health research or public health practice and this course is an excellent stepping stone for those wishing to develop a specialist interest in the field.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition (RN5505)

15 Credit Points

Clinical nutrition is the study of diet in relation to the development and treatment of human disease. This specialism course provides an up-to-date and detailed knowledge on the role of nutrition in the aetiology, prevention and treatment of disease in humans, with particular emphasis on disease prevention. The course covers key topics surrounding nutrition and disease, and how clinical nutrition links with public health and molecular nutrition. The course also provides an overview of research tools widely used in clinical nutrition research, and a training on evidence-based analysis of nutrition case studies.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health Through the Life Stages (RN5504)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. During the course you will also develop the skills required to select and critically appraise scientific evidence.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5546)

15 Credit Points

Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

In this course students will acquire a knowledge and understanding of:

  • Key themes of economic theory applied to health care
  • Some of the main techniques of health care evaluation
  • Main arguments concerning alternative systems for organising and financing health care
View detailed information about this course
Challenges in Global Nutrition (PU5547)

15 Credit Points

This course provides up-to-date knowledge of the challenges of nutrition in the global context. It provides students with an opportunity to develop their understanding of the methods of monitoring population nutritional status, a picture of the current global nutritional status, the determinants of nutritional status in different populations, and skills that will enable them to design, implement and evaluate nutrition interventions and programmes aimed at addressing global nutritional issues. The learning is widely applicable to all populations globally although the main focus is on low and middle-income countries (LMIC).

View detailed information about this course
Women’s Health in A Global Setting (PU5549)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the challenges faced in women’s health and health care in a global setting. Students will gain knowledge of how gender differences, equality, women’s family roles, community and society support, and approaches to health care systems all play a role in women’s health. It will also present how women’s health intersects with broader social, economic and political factors.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition for Disease Prevention (RN5503)

15 Credit Points

Chronic diseases account for 70% of annual deaths in the world and present a great burden for the society. Emerging clinical evidence suggests that improving diet and nutrition can substantially reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

This course addresses the link between diet and the risk of developing chronic diseases. Furthermore, this course provides scientific evidence as to how nutrition may be used as a tool to prevent chronic diseases such as metabolic syndrome, type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and other chronic diseases. It also highlights the importance of scientific research on developing public health policy frameworks, which encompass a range of educational and regulatory measures aiming to contribute to chronic disease prevention.

View detailed information about this course
Work - Based Placement in Applied Health Sciences (PU5548)

15 Credit Points

This work-based placement elective offers a professional placement with a government/public, civic or voluntary health and/or development sector organisation. You will undertake a ten-week placement with your host organisation, either within the organisation, remotely from Aberdeen, or using a combination of both. Placements are subject to availability and are offered on a competitive basis.

View detailed information about this course
Sustainable Diets and Global Food Systems (RN5506)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the complex nature of sustainable diets and how they can be achieved in a global food system. Sustainable diets are needed to tackle some of the biggest global challenges, such as poor dietary health, climate change and environmental degradation, and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. It will address the multidimensional complexity of sustainable diets, that includes nutrition, environmental impact, culture and society, and economics, and explore the challenge of combining these attributes into a single entity.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health (RN5507)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways to e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. In addition, it will also provide insight into the effects of malnutrition and food processing on health. A combination of lectures, and a laboratory class will help consolidate your understanding of the impact food and nutrients on health.

View detailed information about this course
Semester 3

Semester 3

Optional Courses

Students enrolling directly on the PgDip Applied Health Sciences may select from any of the 30 credit courses. These courses are not available to those enrolling directly on the PgCert Applied Health Sciences. Credits for PgCert should be obtained through taught courses in the first and second sessions.

Projects and placements are optional as all credits can be obtained through taught courses in the first and second sessions. The 30 credit courses can be taken in any summer session of the student’s programme. 60 and 90 credit research projects should only be completed in the final summer session of the student’s programme. These courses should be chosen considering the credits needed to fulfil the award requirements and the duration of study of the student.

  • Masters Research Project (Laboratory) (MB5904)
Rapid Research Project (PU5916)

30 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to gain experience of the different processes involved in scientific research or other scholarly investigation in either in a laboratory, clinical, academic or public health setting, under the supervision of an experienced researcher. Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. All projects offered will have a defined research question, a full protocol and where appropriate all regulatory approvals before the start of the project.

View detailed information about this course
Advanced Research Project (PU5045)

90 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to lead a substantial piece of data-driven, empirical work within their field of study, under the supervision of an experienced researcher. Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. Alongside supervisors, students will identify a suitable topic area, develop a research protocol, design and implement an empirical study. Students will be involved alongside the supervisors in the process of defining the research question, and developing the research protocol, and where appropriate obtaining all regulatory approvals.

View detailed information about this course
Evaluating Policy Effects in Practice (PU5919)

30 Credit Points

The case study provides students with the opportunity to select, design, conduct and report on a detailed systematic investigation of a topic within an applied health field. The aim is to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of a particular topic, including the academic background, relevant policy and the roles played by various actors and agencies. The case study is conducted in an academically robust and ethically sensitive manner.

View detailed information about this course
Masters Research Project (PU5922)

60 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to complete a substantial piece of data-driven, empirical work within their field of study under the supervision of an experienced researcher.

Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. Alongside supervisors, students will identify a suitable topic area, describe an appropriate study design and implement an empirical study to be completed within a laboratory setting. Students will be involved alongside the supervisors in the process of defining the research question, and developing the research plan and, where appropriate, obtaining regulatory approvals. This course is for non-laboratory based projects (if you are intending to undertake a project in a scientific laboratory setting you should register on MB5913)

View detailed information about this course
Extended Work - Based Placement in Applied Health Sciences (PU5923)

30 Credit Points

This work-based placement elective offers a professional placement with a government/public, industrial, civic or voluntary

health and/or development sector organisation. Students will undertake a ten-week placement with a host organisation, either within the organisation, remotely from Aberdeen, or using a combination of both. University of Aberdeen staff will co-supervise student placements. Placements are subject to availability and are offered on a competitive basis.

View detailed information about this course

Programme Fees

Please refer to our InfoHub Tuition Fees page for fee information for this programme, or contact study@abdn.ac.uk.

PgDip 12 months or 24 months Blended Learning Full Time or Part Time January Aberdeen View

Programme Information

Semester 1

Semester 1

All courses are optional, there are no compulsory courses. We advise that you talk to our Programme Coordinator before making your final course selection.


Optional Courses

Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following list.

  • Advanced Regression Modelling (PU5559)
  • Public Health Nutrition (PU5534)
  • Epidemiology (PU5538)
Global Health (PU5505)

15 Credit Points

This course builds on the learning from the Introduction to Global health course in the first half session. It focusses on the issues that affect the health of all nations of the world, the problems that unite developing and developed countries – the shared risks and vulnerabilities. This is not merely the study of emerging diseases and epidemic threats such as HIV, Ebola and Zika but also the dual burden of over and undernutrition, communicable and non-communicable diseases, the impact of war, conflict and climate change on the health of individuals, nations and world populations.

View detailed information about this course
Applied Statistics (PU5522)

15 Credit Points

This course in Applied Statistics intends to focus on the application of statistical techniques in postgraduate research for health professionals, with a particular emphasis on the correct interpretation of statistical analyses. The course will NOT concentrate on the statistical theory underlying the subject. An important component of the course is the use of a statistical package. The statistical package used on this course will be IBM SPSS Statistics 25 which can be used to implement all of the methods taught on this course.

View detailed information about this course
Health Needs Assessment (PU5525)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course supports students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among the population as a whole.

The course is core to the MPH programme, but also open to students interested in understanding the population-based approach to health. All must be registered for the course and complete all assessments. The course is suitable for students wanting a professional (specialist/ practitioner) public health career and also for those wanting a related academic career.

View detailed information about this course
Systematic Reviewing (PU5526)

15 Credit Points

This course will equip students with the relevant skills to interpret and conduct systematic reviews on the effectiveness of healthcare interventions. Using lectures and practical sessions, students will understand the principles of systematic reviewing and the differences between narrative and systematic reviews. They will learn to formulate a clear research question and undertake each stage of systematic reviewing of randomised controlled trials. They will also learn about the importance of the levels of evidence and systematic reviews of other different study designs. This course will also introduce the students to advances in systematic reviews such as network meta-analysis and use of Individual Patient Data (IPD)

View detailed information about this course
Values and Ethics in Public Health (PU5528)

15 Credit Points

This course challenges you to engage robustly with questions about what is good and right (and why) in public health policy and practice. You will develop your ability to critique and participate effectively in debates about what matters – and what is morally justified - in efforts to improve the health and wellbeing of communities and populations. You will develop the knowledge and confidence to identify value-based assumptions as you examine a range of real-world health problems and practice justifying and objecting to different strategies for addressing them

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (PU5529)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

This course provides a sound overview of the methods involved in qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of different qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course covers planning to conduct qualitative research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences. The course is delivered by experienced qualitative researchers, and you will gain insight into the practicalities of undertaking qualitative research via practical workshops and lecture sessions.

View detailed information about this course
Health Informatics (PU5532)

15 Credit Points

We live in a time of ‘Big Data’ with the rapid growth in the digital capture of health information. Health Informatics is the science of data capture, linkage and analysis of large datasets to improve health. The demand for health researchers with training and experience in health informatics is high. For people practicing in Public Health, it is a key skill. It will equip students for any career in health research or public health practice and this course is an excellent stepping stone for those wishing to develop a specialist interest in the field.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5546)

15 Credit Points

Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

In this course students will acquire a knowledge and understanding of:

  • Key themes of economic theory applied to health care
  • Some of the main techniques of health care evaluation
  • Main arguments concerning alternative systems for organising and financing health care
View detailed information about this course
Challenges in Global Nutrition (PU5547)

15 Credit Points

This course provides up-to-date knowledge of the challenges of nutrition in the global context. It provides students with an opportunity to develop their understanding of the methods of monitoring population nutritional status, a picture of the current global nutritional status, the determinants of nutritional status in different populations, and skills that will enable them to design, implement and evaluate nutrition interventions and programmes aimed at addressing global nutritional issues. The learning is widely applicable to all populations globally although the main focus is on low and middle-income countries (LMIC).

View detailed information about this course
Work - Based Placement in Applied Health Sciences (PU5548)

15 Credit Points

This work-based placement elective offers a professional placement with a government/public, civic or voluntary health and/or development sector organisation. You will undertake a ten-week placement with your host organisation, either within the organisation, remotely from Aberdeen, or using a combination of both. Placements are subject to availability and are offered on a competitive basis.

View detailed information about this course
Women’s Health in A Global Setting (PU5549)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the challenges faced in women’s health and health care in a global setting. Students will gain knowledge of how gender differences, equality, women’s family roles, community and society support, and approaches to health care systems all play a role in women’s health. It will also present how women’s health intersects with broader social, economic and political factors.

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Clinical Nutrition for Disease Prevention (RN5503)

15 Credit Points

Chronic diseases account for 70% of annual deaths in the world and present a great burden for the society. Emerging clinical evidence suggests that improving diet and nutrition can substantially reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

This course addresses the link between diet and the risk of developing chronic diseases. Furthermore, this course provides scientific evidence as to how nutrition may be used as a tool to prevent chronic diseases such as metabolic syndrome, type-2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and other chronic diseases. It also highlights the importance of scientific research on developing public health policy frameworks, which encompass a range of educational and regulatory measures aiming to contribute to chronic disease prevention.

View detailed information about this course
Nutrition and Health Through the Life Stages (RN5504)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. During the course you will also develop the skills required to select and critically appraise scientific evidence.

View detailed information about this course
Clinical Nutrition (RN5505)

15 Credit Points

Clinical nutrition is the study of diet in relation to the development and treatment of human disease. This specialism course provides an up-to-date and detailed knowledge on the role of nutrition in the aetiology, prevention and treatment of disease in humans, with particular emphasis on disease prevention. The course covers key topics surrounding nutrition and disease, and how clinical nutrition links with public health and molecular nutrition. The course also provides an overview of research tools widely used in clinical nutrition research, and a training on evidence-based analysis of nutrition case studies.

View detailed information about this course
Sustainable Diets and Global Food Systems (RN5506)

15 Credit Points

This course will explore the complex nature of sustainable diets and how they can be achieved in a global food system. Sustainable diets are needed to tackle some of the biggest global challenges, such as poor dietary health, climate change and environmental degradation, and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. It will address the multidimensional complexity of sustainable diets, that includes nutrition, environmental impact, culture and society, and economics, and explore the challenge of combining these attributes into a single entity.

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Nutrition and Health (RN5507)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide a detailed knowledge of the relationships between diet, human development, health, and disease. Topics covered include diet and nutrition across the life course, integration and adaptability of different metabolic pathways to e.g. starvation, exercise, and the role of diet in the development of diseases including cancer and cardiovascular disease. In addition, it will also provide insight into the effects of malnutrition and food processing on health. A combination of lectures, and a laboratory class will help consolidate your understanding of the impact food and nutrients on health.

View detailed information about this course
Semester 2

Semester 2

Optional Courses

Students enrolling directly on the PgDip Applied Health Sciences may select from any of the 30 credit courses. These courses are not available to those enrolling directly on the PgCert Applied Health Sciences. Credits for PgCert should be obtained through taught courses in the first and third sessions.

Projects and placements are optional as all credits can be obtained through taught courses in the first and third sessions. The 30 credit courses can be taken in any summer session of the student’s programme. 60 and 90 credit research projects should only be completed in the final summer session of the student’s programme. These courses should be chosen considering the credits needed to fulfil the award requirements and the duration of study of the student.

  • Masters Research Project (Laboratory) (MB5904)
Rapid Research Project (PU5916)

30 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to gain experience of the different processes involved in scientific research or other scholarly investigation in either in a laboratory, clinical, academic or public health setting, under the supervision of an experienced researcher. Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. All projects offered will have a defined research question, a full protocol and where appropriate all regulatory approvals before the start of the project.

View detailed information about this course
Masters Research Project (PU5922)

60 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to complete a substantial piece of data-driven, empirical work within their field of study under the supervision of an experienced researcher.

Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. Alongside supervisors, students will identify a suitable topic area, describe an appropriate study design and implement an empirical study to be completed within a laboratory setting. Students will be involved alongside the supervisors in the process of defining the research question, and developing the research plan and, where appropriate, obtaining regulatory approvals. This course is for non-laboratory based projects (if you are intending to undertake a project in a scientific laboratory setting you should register on MB5913)

View detailed information about this course
Advanced Research Project (PU5045)

90 Credit Points

This course offers students the opportunity to lead a substantial piece of data-driven, empirical work within their field of study, under the supervision of an experienced researcher. Topics available will be varied but within the domain of their field of study. Alongside supervisors, students will identify a suitable topic area, develop a research protocol, design and implement an empirical study. Students will be involved alongside the supervisors in the process of defining the research question, and developing the research protocol, and where appropriate obtaining all regulatory approvals.

View detailed information about this course
Evaluating Policy Effects in Practice (PU5919)

30 Credit Points

The case study provides students with the opportunity to select, design, conduct and report on a detailed systematic investigation of a topic within an applied health field. The aim is to demonstrate an in-depth understanding of a particular topic, including the academic background, relevant policy and the roles played by various actors and agencies. The case study is conducted in an academically robust and ethically sensitive manner.

View detailed information about this course
Extended Work - Based Placement in Applied Health Sciences (PU5923)

30 Credit Points

This work-based placement elective offers a professional placement with a government/public, industrial, civic or voluntary

health and/or development sector organisation. Students will undertake a ten-week placement with a host organisation, either within the organisation, remotely from Aberdeen, or using a combination of both. University of Aberdeen staff will co-supervise student placements. Placements are subject to availability and are offered on a competitive basis.

View detailed information about this course
Semester 3

Semester 3

Optional Courses

Students enrolling directly on any of the Applied Health Sciences awards may select courses from the following list.

  • Applied Statistics (PU5017)
  • Open and Reproducible Health Data Science
Fundamentals of Research Design (PU5027)

15 Credit Points

Fundamentals of research design provides the student with skills in both quantitative and qualitative design enabling the student to plan ethical research in a health context. Students are taken through each step - from formulating the research question, to study design, sample selection, methods for data collection to dissemination of results.

Upon completion of this course you will be able to:

  1. Summarise the key factors involved in the research process
  2. Evaluate the appropriateness of study designs commonly used in applied health research studies
  3. Identify the advantages and disadvantages associated with quantitative and qualitative research methodologies
  4. Develop a research proposal to answer a health-related research question which maximises research quality and rigour.v
View detailed information about this course
Epidemiology (PU5030)

15 Credit Points

This course in applied epidemiology gives an introduction to disease measurement at a population level, basic epidemiological study design and analysis, and provides an understanding of key methodological issues needed to apply when designing – or critically appraising – an epidemiological study.

View detailed information about this course
Evidence - Based Health (PU5031)

15 Credit Points

This course aims to enable the fundamental understanding and application of evidence based health at an individual- and population-level, focusing on the use of systematic reviews to synthesise evidence as well as methods to translate and implement evidence to inform health practice and policy. Students on this course will work through the stages of a systematic review unit by unit, completing interactive and practical exercises to develop the skills required to conduct a review. They will then study how the evidence produced from systematic reviews is used to shape health policy and practice, at the level of organisations and individual clinical encounters.

View detailed information about this course
Health Economics (PU5032)

15 Credit Points

The aim of this course is to provide an introduction to the application of economics to health care. Resources available for the provision and payment for health care are limited. However, knowledge of economics helps ensure that available resources are used in the most effective way possible. Economics allows more informed decision making about a variety of issues: choosing between alternative treatments; setting priorities between patients; choosing between alternative new technologies; organising the provision of health care.

View detailed information about this course
Designing Real - World Trials (PU5038)

15 Credit Points

Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) are used to test the effectiveness of interventions. The aim of this course is to take a student through the process of designing RCTs. The course will focus on RCTs in the evaluation of real world healthcare and public health settings.

View detailed information about this course
Qualitative Health Research (Online) (PU5039)

15 Credit Points

This course provides a sound introduction to qualitative health research. You will consider the relevance and value of qualitative methodologies which respond to current health agendas. The course introduces planning to conduct relevant research and a range of methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data. You will gain insight into issues of rigour, quality and ethics, and understand the importance of engaging with relevant audiences.

View detailed information about this course
Health, Well Being and Behaviour Change (PU5040)

15 Credit Points

What can health professionals and health care promoters do to improve their own and others health and wellbeing? What influences people’s health behaviours? Why do people find it difficult to change their health behaviour? What are the most promising strategies for improving health and well-being?

Health behaviours cover a wide range of behaviours (e.g. smoking, physical activity, vaccination, diet, taking medication, and practicing safe sex) and have a major impact on peoples’ health, quality of life, and (healthy) life expectancy. Nevertheless, many people have an unhealthy diet, exercise too little, don’t take their medication as prescribed, smoke, drink excessive amounts of alcohol, and so forth.

In this course, we will address these challenges and students will learn key theories about health behaviour and behaviour change, including behaviour change techniques, in order to understand how health behaviours can be influenced by a variety of factors within an individual (e.g., conscious and unconscious thoughts, emotions, goals, and decisions), and also by factors in the environment (e.g., the behaviours and expectations of society; the quality of the communication by health care professionals; or availability and affordability of healthy options in the environment).

Health psychologists and health professionals are expected to be able to develop, evaluate and implement intervention programs to promote healthier behaviour, through changing individuals and their environment.

Within this course you will develop your understanding of health behaviours, what influences them and how to change them. You will experience the role of health behaviours from both the participant’s and researcher view, by developing, participating in and analysing your own behavioural intervention.

View detailed information about this course
Public Health in Action (PU5041)

15 Credit Points

Public health is the art and science of improving health through the organised efforts of society. This course provides an introduction to a population-based perspective on health, illness and disease. The course illustrates the practical application of numerical ways of thinking about the health of a population. The course covers the three major public health domains of healthcare evaluation, health protection and health promotion.

This course aims to support students in developing a critical understanding of the breadth of public health approaches to protecting, promoting, monitoring and improving health among a population as a whole.

View detailed information about this course
Key Concepts in Global Health (PU5056)

15 Credit Points

This course introduces students to the field of global health and develops skills to critically appraise organisations, actors, debates and data. Teaching material will cover: key definitions and terminology; institutions, practitioners and scholars in global health; and key drivers and challenges in the global health field. Students will learn about established and emerging topics, how these intersect with broader social, economic and political factors, and how research can make credible contributions in this context

View detailed information about this course
Fundamentals of Human Nutrition and Metabolism (RN5001)

15 Credit Points

This course will provide you with the basic knowledge required to enable you to move on to the complex issues that are addressed in today's society around the role of nutrition and food in disease prevention and management. This course is designed as a refresher course for those who have already undertaken nutrition at undergraduate levels or to enable students with a strong science background to convert their knowledge into the nutrition field.

View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Health (RN5002)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including body composition, dietary intake and energy expenditure assessment. It includes a ‘hands-on’ experience of using a a dietary assessment technique used routinely by nutritionists. The assignments for this course are designed to help you develop the skills you will employ in daily life as a nutritionist these include presenting and conducting a nutritional assessment of a client and being determining the best methods for nutritional assessment.

View detailed information about this course
Foundations of Nutrition (RN5003)

15 Credit Points

Course Aims:

The course aims to enable you to develop a broad knowledge, understanding, and application of the scientific basis of human nutrition.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course, you should be able to:

  1. Summarise the underlying physiology related to human nutrition.
  2. Explain the key concepts of nutrient and energy metabolism.
  3. Distinguish between the metabolism of different macronutrients.
  4. Outline the role of micronutrients and non-nutritive dietary components in human nutrition.
  5. Assess the interactions between nutrients as part of a whole diet.
  6. Prepare, process, interpret, and present topics in human nutrition using formal presentation.
View detailed information about this course
Assessment of Nutritional Status (RN5008)

15 Credit Points

This course will give you a detailed theoretical and practical understanding of the methods used to assess nutritional status, including dietary intake, assessment of body composition and energy expenditure applied in the context of energy balance. Theory will be put into practice through a series of practical workshop and laboratory sessions to give you ‘hands-on’ experience of using a range of assessment techniques using state-of-the-art equipment routinely employed by nutritional scientists.

View detailed information about this course

Programme Fees

Please refer to our InfoHub Tuition Fees page for fee information for this programme, or contact study@abdn.ac.uk.

We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to timetabling and other constraints. Please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

How You'll Study

Learning Methods

  • E-learning
  • Individual Projects
  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops

Assessment Methods

A variety of different approaches (e.g. essays, exams, poster presentation in mini conference style, oral presentation) are used to assess student understanding, progress and performance throughout the programme.

Why Study Applied Health Sciences?

  • You can create a tailor-made masters programme by selecting from a broad range of elective courses that include health services research, health economics, clinical trials and other core skills.
  • You can study while you work with our flexible approach to learning and gradually build to masters level. A choice of online courses and our blended learning approach allows you to accommodate work, family, distance or other circumstances.
  • Coordinators will work with you to guide the selection of elective courses at an early stage to ensure your qualification is aligned to your research interests and career aspirations.
  • You will be taught by academics from the Institute of Applied Health Sciences, a multidisciplinary grouping of University and NHS researchers, who have been training healthcare professionals for decades and who work to promote health and healthcare delivery.
  • Many of the academics involved in the delivery of our nutrition courses are based at the Rowett Institute, one of the leading and oldest nutrition research institutes in Europe.

Entry Requirements

Qualifications

The information below is provided as a guide only and does not guarantee entry to the University of Aberdeen.

A health-related honours degree (a 2:2 or at least 60%) or be able to demonstrate evidence of equivalent experience in healthcare practice or research. We also consider applications from students with a pure science, social science or a humanities first degree who have a keen interest in health.

If you do not meet these entry requirements, you can use our online short courses as a route into this degree. Complete two of the short courses that are part of this MSc and you’ll have proved you can study at this level. You can then apply to transfer onto the full Masters. This gives you a route to the MSc without having an undergraduate degree.

Please enter your country to view country-specific entry requirements.

English Language Requirements

To study for a Postgraduate Taught degree at the University of Aberdeen it is essential that you can speak, understand, read, and write English fluently. The minimum requirements for this degree are as follows:

IELTS Academic:

OVERALL - 6.5 with: Listening - 5.5; Reading - 5.5; Speaking - 5.5; Writing - 6.0

TOEFL iBT:

OVERALL - 90 with: Listening - 17; Reading - 18; Speaking - 20; Writing - 21

PTE Academic:

OVERALL - 62 with: Listening - 59; Reading - 59; Speaking - 59; Writing - 59

Cambridge English B2 First, C1 Advanced, C2 Proficiency:

OVERALL - 176 with: Listening - 162; Reading - 162; Speaking - 162; Writing - 169

Read more about specific English Language requirements here.

Document Requirements

You will be required to supply the following documentation with your application as proof you meet the entry requirements of this degree programme. If you have not yet completed your current programme of study, then you can still apply and you can provide your Degree Certificate at a later date.

CV
an up-to-date CV/Resumé
Degree Certificate
a degree certificate showing your qualifications
Degree Transcript
a full transcript showing all the subjects you studied and the marks you have achieved in your degree(s) (original & official English translation)
Personal Statement
a detailed personal statement explaining your motivation for this particular programme

Fee Information

Additional Fee Information

  • Fees for individual programmes can be viewed in the Programmes section above.
  • In exceptional circumstances there may be additional fees associated with specialist courses, for example field trips. Any additional fees for a course can be found in our Catalogue of Courses.
  • For more information about tuition fees for this programme, including payment plans and our refund policy, please visit our InfoHub Tuition Fees page.

Scholarships

Eligible self-funded international Masters students will receive the Aberdeen Global Scholarship. Visit our Funding Database to find out more and see our full range of scholarships.

Aberdeen Global Scholarship (EU)

The Aberdeen Global Scholarship is open to European Union (EU) students.

This is a £2,000 tuition fee discount available to eligible self-funded Postgraduate Masters students who are classed as International fee status and are domiciled in the EU, plus another £3,000 discount for eligible Postgraduate Masters students who would have previously been eligible for Home fees (Scottish/EU) fee status.

View Aberdeen Global Scholarship

Careers

MSc Applied Health Sciences will help you progress your career in healthcare. Your MSc qualification will be recognised by employers and educational institutions around the world.

This flexible degree allows you to develop your knowledge, experience, and a portfolio of work relating to your interests, strengths, previous training, and career aspirations. Whatever your professional goals, a qualification tailored this closely to your strengths and areas of interest will help you unlock a rewarding career.

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Top 20 UK University

The University of Aberdeen is ranked 20th in the UK by the Guardian University Guide 2021

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Flexible Study

Enhance your career and skills by selecting from our suite of applied health sciences courses. Start with one course and work towards a Masters degree in your own time and at your own pace.

Our Experts

Other Experts
Dr Rute Vieira
Dr Neil Scott
Dr Kirsty Kiezebrink
Dr Kathryn Martin
Dr Mairead Black
Dr Patricia Norwood
Dr Kirsty McCormack
Dr Zoë Skea
Professor Shantini Paranjothy
Dr Heather Morgan
Dr Sohinee Bhattacharya
Dr Amudha Poobalan
Dr Miriam Brazzelli
Professor Vikki Entwistle
Dr Dimitra Blana
Dr Janet Kyle
Dr Peter Murchie
Dr Fiona Campbell
Dr Alan Sneddon
Dr Frank Thies
Professor Jennie Macdiarmid
Corina Weir
Dr Sara MacLennan
Dr Mary Kynn
Professor Lesley Anderson
Dr Rodolfo Hernandez
Dr Alyaa Mostafa
Sylvia Stephen
Dr Madalina Neacsu
Dr Bill Rees
Dr Silvia Gratz
Programme Coordinator
Dr Leone Craig

Information About Staff Changes

You will be taught by a range of experts including professors, lecturers, teaching fellows and postgraduate tutors. Staff changes will occur from time to time; please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

Facilities

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Health Sciences Building

Health Sciences Building

The Health Sciences building, located on the Foresterhill Health Campus, houses the purpose built Clinical Research Facility, researchers from the Institute of Applied Health Sciences and the Imaging Department which boasts state-of-the-art equipment

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Foresterhill Health Campus

Foresterhill Health Campus

The Foresterhill Health Campus is one of the largest clinical complexes in Europe which includes the Medical School, large teaching hospital, the Institute of Medical Sciences and the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health.

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Library facilities

Library facilities

A dedicated Medical Library on the Foresterhill Health Campus and the fantastic facilities in the Sir Duncan Rice Library at King’s College, are complemented by online access to the key medical and health sciences journals and textbooks.

Get in Touch

Contact Details

Address
Student Recruitment & Admissions Service
University of Aberdeen
University Office
Regent Walk
Aberdeen
AB24 3FX