MSc in Public Health


Program Description

This Masters of Science in Public Health is designed to equip students with the marketable and transferable skill set and competencies that will enhance their career in public health or other health-related disciplines, both locally and internationally. The programme can be taken part-time or full-time.  This competency-based blended learning programme is made up of five core modules, a practicum and a research project. Modules will be delivered in a blended format through a mix of case studies, online lectures, classroom-based workshops, group assignment work, and individual projects. The Public Health MSc has been awarded an Agency for Public Health Education Accreditation (APHEA) accreditation for its outstanding curriculum in the public health field.


The focus of this Masters of Science in Public Health programme is to move from the traditional public health teaching into the competency-based and applied public health. The programme is exceptional in the strength of our modules in global health and sustainable development, the social determinants of health and health systems, public health research and data analysis, designing, monitoring and evaluation of public health interventions. From this MSc, any graduate irrespective of their professional background would be able to investigate, design, evaluate and address public health challenges and offers them a unique opportunity for interdisciplinary study and work. The student will also reflect critically on their own and others' learning styles and practice. 

The programme is made up of five core modules with online lectures, face to face skills-building workshops on campus, practicum and a research project. Students can register on a full-time or part-time basis. The full-time programme runs for one academic year.

Learning Outcomes:

1.1 Knowledge - Breadth and Kind:

  • Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the complexity of public health and health systems in different contexts. 
  • Investigate problems that hinder health nationally and globally and identify the challenges facing the achievement of the Sustainable Developmental Goals 

Knowhow and Skill - Range and Selectivity: 

  • Utilize various approaches, tools and metrics to design, deliver, monitor and evaluate public health interventions. 

Competence - Context and Role:

  • Develop quantitative and qualitative research and data analysis skills to critically appraise and design different methodological approaches to address public health issues.

1.2. Competence - Learning to Learn:

  • Develop analytical and professional skills in planning, managing, monitoring and evaluating health services, policies, programmes, projects and initiatives.
  • Apply a design thinking approach to identify, test, and implement creative public health solutions to improve global health issues.
  • Critically evaluate contemporary issues in healthcare leadership and examine trends and developments in strategic management related to public health organizations.

1.3. Competence - Insight:

  • Engage in meaningful reflection to identify, interpret, improve and evaluate personal, cultural, and professional competencies to guide their career.

Programme Content

Each module will run as six weeks’ block. During the first three weeks, students will work individually on case studies and will receive a series of on-line lectures and tutorials that covers the contents areas of this module. Students will be required to answer a series of multiple-choice questions based on each lecture and case studies.  On the fourth week of the module, students will engage with fellow learners and tutors in workshops and group assignments on campus.

The last two weeks of the module will be dedicated to individual projects where students will have the opportunity to demonstrate competence in applying the knowledge and skills they acquired throughout the module. Through the module, students will use an e-portfolio to document and reflect on their competencies attainment. Feedback on their learning will be provided on an ongoing basis and students will be able to track their own personal development throughout the programme.

The other great feature is that students will have the opportunity to attend these one-week residential workshops in Limerick or in one of our collaborating campuses in Sao Paulo in Brazil, Boston in the United States, and in India.

The practicum module is 8 weeks’ competency-based, planned, supervised, and evaluated practice experience. This module introduces the students to the real-world practice of public health, as a way to translate the competencies that students have acquired during MSc in Public Health into action to gain professional experience.

The research project module will enable students to identify a gap in public health research, formulate their research questions and design a research project. At the end of the module, students will be expected to submit their final report in journal article format. All modules are listed in the table below, including the semesters in which the modules run:


Year 1 Full time - Autumn

  • Public Health & Health Systems (9 ECTS)
  • Public Health Interventions (9 ECTS)
  • Public Health Research & Data Analysis (9 ECTS)

Year 1 Full time - Spring

  • Monitoring & Evaluation in Public Health (9 ECTS)
  • Global Health & Sustainable Development (9 ECTS)
  • Public Health Practicum (15 ECTS)

Year 1 Full time - Summer

  • Research Project (30 ECTS)


Year 1 Part-time - Autumn

  • Public Health & Health Systems (9 ECTS)
  • Public Health Interventions (9 ECTS) 
  • Public Health Research & Data Analysis (9 ECTS)

Year 1 Part-time - Spring

  • Monitoring & Evaluation in Public Health (9 ECTS)
  • Global Health & Sustainable Development (9 ECTS)

Year 2 Part-time - Autumn

  • Public Health Practicum (15 ECTS)

Year 2 Part-time - Spring

  • Research project (30 ECTS)

Programme Delivery

Week 1-3 (Online) - Week 4 (On Campus) - Week 5-6 (Individual Project)

Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5-6 
Unit 1 Unit 2 Unit 3 5 days skills-based workshop   Individual project (Product)                       
5 hours of online material 5 hours of online material 5 hours of online material Complex Case Scenarios -
Case Study Case Study Case Study Group Project -
25 MCQs exam 25 MCQs exam 25 MCQs exam Presentations -
Marks: 10% Marks: 10% Marks: 10% Marks: 20% 50 %

Entry Requirements

Who can apply

Graduates of Medicine, Public Health, Pharmacy Dentistry, Paramedics, Nursing, Allied health professionals, Psychology, Engineering, Developmental studies, Environmental sciences, Law, Statistics, Economics, Policy Studies, Social sciences, Business, management, marketing, and other relevant or appropriate subjects 

Applicants must hold a minimum of 2.1 (second-class honours grade 1) result in their first honours bachelor degree (NFQ Level 8 or another internationally recognised equivalent). Awards of 2:2 or less may be considered if applicants demonstrate at least five years of relevant public health work experience.

What to include with your application

  • A concept note of the research project they intend to do as part of the programme.
  • A personal statement detailing why they wish to undertake the programme.
  • Qualification transcripts and certificates.
  • Certified English translations of your transcripts/certificates where the originals are in a language other than English. 
  • A copy of your birth certificate/passport (showing your legal name).

English Language Requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English must provide evidence of either prior successful completion of a degree qualification taught through the medium of English or meet one of the criteria below (no longer than two years prior to application):

Acceptable English Language qualifications include the following:

  • Matriculation examinations from European countries where English is presented as a subject and an acceptable level are achieved.
  • Irish Leaving Certificate English –Ordinary Level Grade D or above.
  • TOEFL – 580 (paper-based) or 90 (internet-based).
  • IELTS – Minimum score of 6.5 with no less than 6 in any one component.
  • English Test for English and Academic Purposes (ETAPP) – Grade C1.
  • GCE ‘O’ level English Language/GCSE English Language – Grade C or above.
  •  Cambridge Assessment English - Certificate of Proficiency in English - Grade C / Certificate in Advanced English Grade B.
  • GCE Examination Boards – Oxford Delegacy of Local Examinations – Grade C / Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate – School Certificate Pass 1-6 / the University of London Entrance and School Examinations Council – School Certificate Pass 1-6.

Results in examinations other than those listed above may also be accepted as meeting our English language requirements. Contact the International Education Division for advice. 

Graduate Profile

This programme will set up the graduates for a successful career in the field of public health as an academic researcher, data analyst, epidemiologist, health policy officer, project manager, health economist, public health nurse, public health dentist in various settings including health, research, business, government, national, international and non-governmental organisations. 

This master programme is recommended to students who are looking to acquire marketable and transferable skillset, and those who would like to get the sense of personal accomplishment, and those who would like to move in positions of leadership in healthcare. The programme will equip students with differentiated competencies including tangible skills that will not only be marketed to future employers, but they also prepare our graduates for self-employment and consultancies.

Last updated Nov 2020

About the School

The University of Limerick is a distinctive, pioneering and connected university that shapes the future through educating and empowering people to meet the real challenges of tomorrow.

The University of Limerick is a distinctive, pioneering and connected university that shapes the future through educating and empowering people to meet the real challenges of tomorrow. Read less