Public Health

Course Outline
To meet the increasing demand for highly trained public health specialists we are offering a Master of Public Health designed to prepare you to investigate, evaluate and address public health challenges, whatever your professional background. Our Master of Public Health programme will equip you with the core knowledge and specialised skills necessary to make a real difference in public health. This is a full-time and structured programme, delivered over 12 months.


Programme Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this programme, students should be able to:

Critically analyse theories and issues related to public health;

Construct arguments around the social, political and economic factors determining the health of populations;

Demonstrate competence in the key underpinning disciplines and theories of public health including epidemiology, communicable diseases including healthcare-associated infections, biostatistics, social and behavioural sciences and social policy;

Analyse and synthesise evidence and apply it to public health;

Demonstrate enhanced knowledge in the chosen specialist pathway (health protection, health promotion, epidemiology and biostatistics);

Demonstrate logical reasoning in written work and discussion;

Employ a range of appropriate research and analysis methods with confidence and correct interpretation;

Critically reflect on their own and others' learning and practice.

Demonstrate their culminating experience in the form of a minor Dissertation.

Why Choose This Course

The MPH is a multi-disciplinary course where you can specialise in health promotion, health protection or advanced epidemiology. The course offers both quantitative and qualitative research methods and you can apply this knowledge to your dissertation. Our modules are developed and taught by a dedicated team of staff, who are experts in a variety of public health areas. Students will experience a wide range of teaching styles: classroom-based, limited field work, and lab sessions.

There is an increasing awareness of the need for highly-trained public health specialists in Ireland and abroad to tackle issues such as health inequalities and their causes and solutions, communicable diseases, international health development, obesity and smoking. The MPH is an innovative course designed to offer multi-disciplinary academic and experiential development for students from a range of professional backgrounds.

Entry requirements

1.All applicants will be required to write a 300-word statement demonstrating suitability to undertake a Master of Public Health.
2.All candidates are required to meet one of the following:

Possess a NFQ level 8 degree in a relevant subject area (minimum 2H1) OR
Possess a NFQ level 9 postgraduate diploma in a relevant subject area (minimum 2H1).

Relevant subject areas are Biological Sciences, Medical and Health Sciences, Public Health and Social Sciences.

Note: In some circumstances, applicants without a primary degree or applicants without a relevant primary degree may be recommended for entry to the programme following a review of their individual qualifications and experience by the course committee. Such applicants may be called for interview and their admission will be subject to the approval of the School of Public Health's Executive Committee.

Garda Vetting
Students, or applicants in receipt of an offer, on this programme will be subject to Garda Vetting as relevant. Students will be prohibited from engaging in a relevant work placement unless the vetting process has been cleared. Click here to view UCC's Student Garda Vetting Policy.

Fitness to Practise
Commencing with the 2013/2014 intake of first year students (including repeats), this programme will be subject to the University's Fitness to Practise Policy - full details may be found here.

Exemptions at point of entry
Applicants may be eligible for exemptions. If eligible, the relevant exemption paperwork must be completed immediately on entering the programme. This application will be reviewed by the School of Public Health's Executive Committee. Please request an application form from the programme administrator.

1.Holders of UCC's Postgraduate Certificate in Health Protection or UCC's Postgraduate Certificate in Public Health will be exempt from certain modules on the programme if he/she undertakes the MPH within five years from the date of award of UCC's Postgraduate Certificate in Health Protection or UCC's Postgraduate Certificate in Public Health.

2.Holders of UCC's BSc in Public Health, UCC's BSc in Public Health Sciences or UCC's BSc in Public Health and Health Promotion will be exempt from EH6025 Principles and Practice of Public Health if he/she undertakes the MPH within five years from the date of award of one of the above mentioned degrees.

English Language Requirements

Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available here.

For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland

Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements, please find our grades comparison by country here.

International/non-EU applicants

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

Assessment Info

You will have a range of written assignments, exams, placement portfolio, presentations and finally, the completion of 10,000-word dissertation.

Subjects taught


The Master of Public Health (MPH) is a full-time programme delivered over 12 months. Lectures take place on Thursdays (3 pm to 9 pm) and on Fridays (9 am to 5 pm). The programme allows students to specialise in a specific pathway as follows:
Health promotion
Health protection

Students take 90 credits as follows:
In Semester 1 (Part I), students take core modules to the value of 30 credits.
In Semester 2 (Part I), students take one core module along with modules from your chosen pathway to the value of 30 credit.
In Semester 3 (Part II), students will undertake research and write a dissertation to the value of 30 credits.

Semester 1
Core Modules - All Pathways
Students take 30 credits as follows:
EH6025 Principles and Practice of Public Health (10 credits)
EH6026 Applied Research for Public Health (10 credits)
EH6027 Public Health Informatics (5 credits)
EH6091 Graduate Information Literacy Skills (5 credits)

Semester 2
Core Module - All Pathways
EH6028 Leadership in Public Health (5 credits)
Plus one of the following Pathways (Pathway preferences will be chosen in consultation with the course director)

Pathway 1: Health Promotion
Students take 25 credits as follows:
EH6029 Health Promotion: Concepts, Principles and Practice (10 credits)
EH6039 Public Health and Behavioural Change (5 credits)
EH6045 Practice Portfolio - Health Promotion (5 credits)

Plus 5 credits from the following:
EH6046 Global and Environmental Health (5 credits)
SS6017 Critical Public Health (5 credits)

Pathway 2: Health Protection
Students take 25 credits as follows:
EH6019 The Principles and Practice of Multi-disciplinary Health Protection (10 credits)
EH6035 Practice Portfolio (5 credits)
EH6046 Global and Environmental Health (5 credits)
MB6000 Microbiology for Health Protection (5 credits)

Pathway 3: Epidemiology & Biostatistics
Students take 25 credits as follows:
EH6031 Advanced Epidemiology (10 credits)
EH6044 Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis (5 credits)
ST6011 Advanced Biostatistics (5 credits)
ST6012 Survival Analysis (5 credits)

Students must achieve an aggregate of 40% overall in Semesters 1 and 2 in order to proceed to the dissertation in Semester 3.

Semester 3
All Pathways
EH6040 Dissertation in Public Health (30 credits)

Additional Teaching Mode Information

Teaching is held on Thursdays and Fridays


Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our book of modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.


1 year Full-time; Maximum 60 months Part-time

All teaching is held on Thursday evenings from 4pm - 9pm and Fridays from 9:30am - 5pm.
Teaching will include SPSS (all students) and STATA labs (Advanced Epidemiology students) and occasional field trips. For two of the pathways (Health Promotion and Health Protection) you are expected to do a ten day placement.

Enrolment dates

Start Date: 9 September 2020

Post Course Info

Skills and Careers Information
Our graduates are currently employed in a range of careers in Ireland, Europe and in other developed and developing countries in diverse public health roles including health services, public health research, surveillance, environmental health and public health agencies.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Part time

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