This programme has been designed to provide an integrated, coherent and multidisciplinary approach to public health activity. It will have an emphasis on advancing critical awareness and problem solving skills in order to develop innovative, reflective and pro-active approaches to meeting challenging and complex health needs. Examples include critical health issues such as obesity and mental health, and those linked with public protection such as climate change and infectious diseases.
It will be delivered by a range of teaching methods such as core lectures, group work, online activities, use of case studies and directed learning approaches. Shared learning with other professionals will be a focus of this course and students will be encouraged to develop a critical, evaluative approach to the knowledge which underpins present-day public health practice.
“I was lucky to be among the first graduates of the MSc Public Health programme run by the University of Northampton. During my time, I had great support from my personal academic tutor and my dissertation supervisor, Kirsty Mason. I remember telling her I am ready to stretch the limits to be the best I can. I received positive critical feedback from Kirsty on my essays and my final dissertation. It was such a positive learning experience for me, which positioned me to be a life-long learner.”
Toyib Adedamola Olaniyan, Doctoral Candidate, University of Cape Town.
Park Campus, the larger of the two campuses, is set in 80 acres of open green parkland, occupying an impressive and spacious site.
Facilities available on-site include a sports hall, restaurant, Students’ Union, Student Centre, shop, bar and nightclub. Safe and secure accommodation for more than 1,300 students is spread throughout Park Campus, with the majority placed within our student village combining stunning green spaces with welcoming Halls of Residence.
A Multi-Faith Chaplaincy and Medical Centre (providing a full GP service and free counselling) are also available at Park Campus.
Park Campus is within easy walking distance of a busy, local shopping area, complete with banks, supermarkets, shops and pubs.
The University of Northampton
Boughton Green Road
This postgraduate award prepares students for a career in Public Health at both strategic and operational levels. The full MSc consists of six compulsory modules, and one designated module. Compulsory modules are those which every student must undertake. The designated module can be chosen from a variety of modules which have been identified as offering a range of public health topics which students can choose dependent on their experience. All modules (except the Professional Project) incorporate 200 hours of learning, which incorporates taught sessions as well as self-directed independent study and assignment preparation. Furthermore, (included in the 200 hours) are six study days, in which students are expected to either attend lectures or work online on electronic activities via the online learning environment, NILE.
The teaching team have created a flexible and challenging Public Health programme, which incorporates face to face teaching, workshops and tutorials, as well as three of the core modules having an extensive self-directed online component. Opportunities exist to undertake a volunteering post within the Public Health environment and to gain experience of working within a Non-Governmental Organisation whilst ‘giving back’ to the vulnerable in society.
Embedded within the course are sessions from the Changemaker Hub, who offer support and advice to students in both cohort groups and on a one to one basis for; CV writing, interview techniques and help with locating a volunteer placement. These skills are invaluable when it comes to applying for employment or PhD study.
Programme and Module Leader: Mrs Kirsty Mason
Kirsty Mason has been a Programme Leader of Masters Level Courses in the Faculty of Health and Society for numerous years and has 13 years’ experience of working as a Senior Lecturer in Public Health. Prior to working in academia Kirsty worked as a Specialist Public Health Practitioner within Primary Care and has extensive experience of working with individuals, families and communities to improve their health and wellbeing. Kirsty is interested in teaching Public Health and Health Promotion as well as supervising Public Health Masters Dissertations. Her MSc in Public Health and Primary Health Care was gained from the University of Warwick and Kirsty has a keen interest in undertaking research using a phenomenological approach, her recent research activity includes researching non-medical prescribing in public health and how Children’s Centres enhance health outcomes for families.
Module Leader: Dr Melinda Spencer
Dr Melinda Spencer has been lecturing at the University of Northampton since 2013. She has taught on psychology undergraduate modules and presently leads on several undergraduate and Master’s modules in Health Studies including Health and Society, Contemporary Issues in Healthcare and Integrated Perspectives on Disease and Epidemiology. Prior to lecturing, Melinda worked on a number of research projects with the Institute of Health and Wellbeing, University of Northampton. Melinda’s main research interests are health and wellbeing, family life, transitions and development over the life course.
Subject Specialist and Marker: Mrs Helen Kimble
Helen Kimble joined the University Of Northampton in 2012 as a member of the Primary Health Senior Lecturer team and is Programme Leader for Specialist Community Public Health Practice in the School of Health. Prior to working in academia, Helen worked as a Specialist Community Public Health Practitioner within Primary Care for over 10 years and had extensive experience of working with individual children and young people, families and communities during that time. Helen has interests in teaching Public Health and supervising Public Health Masters Dissertations. As well as her Post Grad Diploma in SCPHN, Helen holds a Master’s in Education and values promoting learning as a lifelong skill within public health practice.
Course modules (16/17)
Leading Public Health Practice
- Module code: NURM009
- Core module Y
This module aims to develop your knowledge and skills to initiate change, and respond to a continuously evolving public health agenda that takes account of global influences on the nation's health.
Leadership: The People Challenge
- Module code: PODM003
- Core module N
This module addresses the themes of 'Motivation' and 'Releasing talent' from 'Embodying Leadership' (2000). It enables participants to draw upon their existing experiences together with existing models and frameworks to enable them to see the development of people as the 'core business' of their service and relate this to current policy such as Agenda for Change (2004).
Principles and Perspectives of Health Promotion
- Module code: NURM018
- Core module Y
This module aims to explore the concept of health promotion, and develop appropriate knowledge, attitudes and skills to plan, implement and evaluate health promotion interventions that address contemporary health needs of both individuals and the wider community.
- Module code: SLSM001
- Core module Y
This module aims to enable you to develop critical awareness of the variety of sources and methods for acquiring appropriate information for research purposes, and advance their capabilities of communication of epidemiological studies and procedures of investigation in appropriate contexts.
Research Methods – Philosophy and Study Design
- Module code: SLSM004
- Core module Y
This module aims to develop skills, knowledge and understanding of health and social care related research, and facilitates selection and proper utilisation of analytical and interpretive methods in order to develop a research design for a project.
Comparative Health Care Systems
- Module code: SLSM005
- Core module Y
This module aims to develop your critical awareness of the principal factors that constitute and frame health care systems and influence the health status of populations.
- Module code: OTHM010
- Core module Y
This module aims to provide you with an opportunity to design and undertake an investigation of a topic of specific interest within your specialist area and support you to produce a project based upon that investigation.
Substance Use and Misuse
- Module code: NURM002
- Core module N
This module aims to provide a forum to recognise and analyse the impact of substance use and misuse on the health of individuals, families and society, and identify and critically evaluate the clinical, political and societal responses to promote health.
Therapeutic Communication Interventions
- Module code: NURM008
- Core module N
This module aims to develop psychological skills which promote individual, family and community wellbeing.
Voluntary Sector Placement
- Module code: NURM029P
- Core module N
The purpose of this placement is to provide post-graduate students with an opportunity to gain experience of working with bona-fide voluntary organizations at local, national or international level. This will facilitate networking opportunities and exposure to a range of experiences which support acquisition of practical skills for promoting public health.
Innovations and Creativity
- Module code: PODM002
- Core module N
This module addresses the themes of 'Decision Taking' and 'Innovation and creativity' from 'Embodying Leadership' (2000). It empowers participants to make decisions more effectively at a local level and supports current thinking from the Modernisation Agency (2001) where their services are poor or failing in helping to get these organisations back on track.
Managing Advanced Professional Practice
- Module code: PODM001
- Core module N
Based on an understanding of leadership and management theories, the module will build on some of the concepts identified within the foundations of professional knowledge and advanced clinical professional practice. The emphasis will be on discussion and meaningful challenge of perceptions surrounding the delivery of advanced healthcare.
Module information is quoted for 16/17 currently. The course modules for 17/18 will be confirmed in Spring, any changes will be communicated to applicants accordingly.
Methods of Learning
The programme is offered through a full time or part time route. The part time programme is through flexible modular delivery which enables part time students to access modules at a pace that suits individual needs. The full time programme is more structured in order to enable students to complete within a one year time frame.
There are a range of teaching and learning methods used within this programme including core lectures; action learning and group work; online activity; tutorials and workshops. It is anticipated that students will have some background within public health environments and will therefore bring some knowledge and skills to this learning experience. Students will be encouraged to debate, discuss and reflect on contemporary public health issues in order to enhance learning.
This programme comprises of a range of assessment strategies which enables students to demonstrate knowledge, synthesis and analysis in a variety of forms. Assessment strategies include exams, vivas, reports, proposals, essays, audio taped interventions and presentations. The aim of the assignment programme is not only to test knowledge and skills but also to develop these skills (for instance, the ability to present to a group of people). Students can expect between one and three items of assessment per module and these are spread evenly throughout the three trimesters which make up the academic year.
Facilities and Special Features
Students have the opportunity to undertake a designated Voluntary Placement module and engage in a minimum of 50 hours of volunteering in a placement relevant to Public Health. This course will also:
- develop and enhance current knowledge and skills regarding public health practice
- extend and apply both knowledge and practical skills to current circumstances
- identify learning needs and develop independent learning skills to meet these needs
- encourage inter-professional learning
Although many of the books that you will need for your course will be available at no cost from the library, should you wish to purchase your own texts then the following would be suggested:
|Book Title||Author(s)||Retail Price|
|Health Promotion: Planning and Strategies||Jackie Green, Keith Tones||£31.00 (approximately)|
|Practical Health Promotion||John Hubley, June Copeman||£20.00 (approximately)|
|Essential Public Health: Theory and Practice||Stephen Gillam, Jan Yates, Padmanabhan Badrinath||£40.00 (approximately)|
Public Health is a growing field of study, therefore there is an abundance of job opportunities to suit a variety of interests and skills. A Master’s degree will help career advancement within a variety of organisations and professions such as health and social care, local authority, and voluntary organisations. Our Public Health students develop excellent communication and analytical skills and have entered a diverse range of jobs as well as further study.
Students have the opportunity to undertake a designated Voluntary Placement module and engage in a minimum of 50 hours of volunteering in a placement relevant to Public Health.
How to apply
For application information please see our how to apply page.
Applicants for whom English is not their first language will need to demonstrate that they meet the minimum English language requirement of IELTS 6.5 (or equivalent).
Students who do not have a first or second class honours degree but can demonstrate its equivalent in terms of experience relevant to the programme of study, may be able to access the course as associate students. For more information regarding this please contact the course leader Kirsty Mason at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For information regarding English language requirements at the University, please see our IELTS page.
Fees and funding
Fees quoted relate to study in the Academic Year 17/18 only and may be subject to inflationary increases in future years.
|Part Time:||£720 per 20 credit module for home and EU students|
It is important to note that there may be additional costs associated with the course in relation to purchasing relevant Public Health and Research books, travelling to and from voluntary placements and travelling to any ‘off site’ modules. Students who are not successful at first attempt of modules, may decide to retake these and incur further module fees and accommodation costs and require an extension to their Tier 4 Visa.
Students starting a postgraduate Master’s course in 2017/18 either full time or part time* may be able to apply for a loan of up to £10,000 Postgraduate Loan (PGL) through Student Finance England.
*Maximum period of study allowed for part time courses is two years.
This course is available to international students.
Full-time international tuition fees
For information on our international tuition fees, please see our Tuition fees for international students page.
How to apply as an international student
For information on how to apply to study with us, please see our How to apply page.
Scholarships available to international students
For information on the scholarships available to you as an international student, please see our International scholarships page.