UCL Graduate degrees


Applied Infectious Disease Epidemiology MSc

This programme builds on UCL’s research strengths in epidemiological skills applied to the field of infectious diseases - a field that has become centre stage due to the coronavirus pandemic. You will also focus on new technologies (omics) for analysing pathogens and their applications in tackling global public health challenges. You will be equipped for a career at the intersection of epidemiology and biological science, with a strong emphasis on public health medicine.

Key information

Programme starts

September 2021

Modes and duration

Full time: 1 year
Part time: 2 years
Flexible: up to 5 years

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 9 November 2020
Close: 31 May 2021
Applications may close earlier if all places on the programme are filled.

Tuition fees (2021/22)

£12,500 (FT)
£6,250 (PT)
£25,800 (FT)
£12,900 (PT)

Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees. Fees for flexible, modular study are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session.

Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Honours in a relevant degree of a UK university, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard, a professional qualification in a health related area such as medicine or nursing of an equivalent standard. Relevant research, work or volunteer experience will be viewed favourably. Students without the minimum academic standards may be considered if they have extensive relevant work or research experience.

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Good

Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

About this degree

You will learn principles of basic statistics and epidemiology, transmission dynamics, and infection pathogenesis. You will also study infectious diseases in high-, middle-, and low-income settings, using examples in the classroom drawn from a range of conditions, including STIs, HIV, TB, influenza and other airborne viruses, and emerging, vaccine-preventable, vertically transmitted, and vector-borne diseases.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

Students will learn key concepts in infection and population health, and synthesise understanding about microbiology, immunology, and epidemiology of pathogens to inform infection control and public health interventions.

The programme consists of five compulsory modules (90 credits), two optional modules (30 credits), and a dissertation (60 credits).

Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MSc in Applied Infectious Disease Epidemiology.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

Compulsory modules

There is no laboratory component in the taught modules of this MSc, given the programme’s focus on developing epidemiological and statistical skills. The programme will provide a theoretical grounding in microbiology and immunology as part of the training given to students to understand the impact and control of infections on a population level.

  • Fundamental Principles of Infection and Population Health
  • Epidemiology and Infectious Diseases
  • Basic Statistics for Medical Sciences
  • Molecular Epidemiology for Infectious Diseases
  • Regression Modelling
  • Dissertation in Applied Infectious Disease Epidemiology

Optional modules

Options may include the following:

  • Advanced Statistical Modelling
  • Climate Change and Health
  • Conflict, Humanitarianism and Health
  • Economic Evaluation in Healthcare
  • Evaluating Interventions
  • Immunisation and Communicable Diseases
  • Key Principles of Health Economics
  • Mobile Health (m-Health) for Infectious Diseases - Diagnostics, Management, Prevention and Surveillance
  • Public Health Data Science
  • Research in Action: The Qualitative Approach
  • Urban Health

Other optional modules may include Evolution and Infectious Diseases; Global Eradication of Viruses; HIV Frontiers from Research to Clinic.


All MSc students undertake a 7,000 word individual research project on a topic relevant to applied infectious disease epidemiology. 

Teaching and learning

The programme will be delivered through a mixture of lectures and tutorials, practical sessions, critical appraisal, interpretation of data, application of evidence to hypothetical and real scenarios, presentations by peers, peer evaluation and marking, debates, critique of policy documents, and Moodle discussion forums. In addition to the programme and module leads, this programme is delivered by UCL academics with wide-ranging and international expertise in epidemiology, public health, social science, and basic science research of infectious diseases. 

Classes take place during business hours. Modules are delivered as blocks of study. The duration of modules ranges from one to ten weeks.

Additional costs

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.


Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.


Funding opportunties relevant to this programme include:

  • Institute for Global Health Postgraduate Bursary
  • Africa Health Research Institute (AHRI) Dissertation Studentship. 

Find out more on the Institute for Global Health website

Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.

African Graduate Scholarship

Deadline: 5pm (BST), 03 May 2021
Fees, accommodation and a living allowance (1 year)
Based on both academic merit and financial need

IGH Postgraduate Bursaries

Deadline: 9am (BST), 30 June 2021
£2,000 (1 year)
UK, EU, Overseas
Based on financial need

Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme (CSSS)

Applications for this scholarship are now closed for 2021/22
Full fees, flights, stipend, and other allowances (1 year)
Based on both academic merit and financial need

Prof. Don Brothwell Scholarship

Deadline: 9am (BST), 30 June 2021
£3,750 (1 year)
Based on financial need

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.


The programme has two pathways of optional modules that map on to the careers market.

Pathway 1 is aimed at students considering a career as an infectious disease epidemiologist requiring strong quantitative and data analysis skills.

Pathway 2 is designed for those intending on a career in international global health and policy-related work where their focus will be on infectious disease control.


A major focus in this programme will be on the practical application of knowledge and skills to infection and population health problems. We will also encourage students to critically appraise and intellectually challenge the evidence in infection and population health, and to work in multidisciplinary teams to seek solutions to hypothetical and real-world public health problems. These are all vital transferrable skills in the job market.

Why study this degree at UCL?

Infection prevention and control is a major global health priority. Researchers, public health personnel, security analysts, international health professionals, policymakers, and those working in health-related finance all need to understand infectious disease epidemiology at some level, and the barriers that prevent infection control. 

Tomorrow’s infectious disease epidemiologists will need a firm grounding in core principles such as transmission dynamics and study design and analysis. However, radical developments and scientific advances, including sequencing and other molecular technologies, big data opportunities, and the microbiota, have changed the way we can measure host-pathogen relationships. 

This MSc takes an interdisciplinary approach to infectious disease epidemiology, layering basic and clinical science, bioinformatics and molecular epidemiology on top of essential statistical, epidemiological and critical appraisal skills.

Department: Institute for Global Health

What our students and staff say

Staff view

"I am a researcher as well as a teacher and I am excited by the innovative role UCL is taking in placing our ground-breaking research at the heart of our teaching. As a senior clinical lecturer I split my time between working as a consultant in the NHS, teaching postgraduates, and conducting research in the sexual health and HIV field. I love teaching and my work, cross-disciplinary in nature, sits at the intersection between biology, politics, law, economics and health systems."

Dr Maryam Shahmanesh

Applied Infectious Disease Epidemiology MSc
UCL Institute for Global Health

Application and next steps


Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

This programme requires two references. Further information regarding references can be found in our How to apply section.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.

Who can apply?

Applications are encouraged from a variety of academic and professional backgrounds including researchers and non-governmental organisation workers, medical and veterinary doctors, nurses, and development practitioners. This diversity increases opportunities to learn from other students' skills and experiences.

Application deadlines

All applicants
31 May 2021

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Applied Infectious Disease Epidemiology at graduate level
  • why you want to study Applied Infectious Disease Epidemiology at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this challenging programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree.

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

In addition to the above, please ensure your personal statement addresses why you have chosen the programme with particular regard to its focus on quantitative epidemiology and statistics.

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Page last modified on 28 August 2021