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Statistics (Medical Statistics) MSc

Medical statistics is a fundamental scientific component of health research. Medical statisticians interact with biomedical researchers, epidemiologists and public health professionals and contribute to the effective translation of scientific research into patient benefits and clinical decision-making. As new biomedical problems emerge, there are exciting challenges in the application of existing tools and the development of new superior models.

Covid-19 programme updates

Due to COVID-19, there may have been updates to this programme for the 2020 academic year. Where there has been an update, these are indicated with a red alert and a link which will provide further information.

Key information

Programme starts

September 2020

Modes and duration

Full time: 1 year
Part time: 2 years

Studying on a part-time basis involves spreading the taught modules over two years, but with the same teaching times as for full-time students (i.e. Monday-Friday during the daytime).

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 1 November 2019
Close: 13 March 2020

Tuition fees (2020/21)

UK/EU:
£11,830 (FT)
£5,975 (PT)
Overseas:
£28,290 (FT)
£14,160 (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.

Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a quantitative discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Knowledge of mathematical methods and linear algebra at university level and familiarity with introductory probability and statistics is required. Relevant professional experience will also be taken into consideration.

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: Standard

Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English

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

The UCL Medical Statistics degree provides students with a sound background in theoretical statistics as well as practical hands-on experience in designing, analysing and interpreting health studies, including trials and observational studies. The taught component equips students with analytical tools for healthcare economic evaluation, and the research project provides experience in using real clinical datasets.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of a foundation course, six core modules (90 credits) two optional modules (30 credits) and the research dissertation (60 credits).

Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MSc in Statistics (Medical Statistics).

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

  • Foundation Course (not credit bearing)
  • Statistical Inference
  • Statistical Models and Data Analysis
  • Medical Statistics I
  • Medical Statistics II
  • Statistical Computing
  • Applied Bayesian Methods

Optional modules

  • At least one from:
  • Advanced Computational Biology
  • Bayesian Methods in Health Economics
  • and at least one from:
  • Epidemiology
  • Statistical Design of Investigations
Covid-19 module updates
Due to COVID-19, there may be updates to the modules for your chosen programme of study this year. Some modules may not be available or may need to be moved to a later term or year of study. These updates are relevant for 2020-21 academic year only.  The full list of modules will be available in the module catalogue from late August.  From the first week of September, you will be invited to complete module selection from Portico, our student record system. There may need to be additional updates or changes to modules during the academic year to allow for new guidance from the UK Government and Public Health England. Your department shall keep you updated of these changes as they become available.

Dissertation/report

All MSc students undertake an individual research project, culminating in a dissertation of approximately 10,000–12,000 words.

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, tutorials and classes, some of which are dedicated to practical work. External organisations deliver technical lectures and seminars where possible. Assessment is through written examination and coursework. The research project is assessed through the dissertation and a 15-minute presentation.

Workshops running during the teaching terms provide preparation for this project and cover the communication of statistics, for example, the presentation of statistical graphs and tables.

Covid-19 contact hours on campus
In Term One, while campus will be open, all the learning activity for the core content of your modules will take place online – including lectures, tutorials, seminars and assessments. By “core content” we mean everything you need to learn to complete the module successfully. In addition to these online contact hours, we will be offering some face-to-face educational activities for students on campus, and we will provide alternative online activities for those students unable to join us on campus. These activities, which will include contact with academic staff, will be relevant to your programme of study may include seminars, academic and employability skills workshops, small-group or individual tutorials, lab and practice-based teaching. UK Government safety guidelines will limit the amount of ‘in person’ activity we can offer and while it will vary from programme to programme, is likely to be no more than 1-2 hours per week. This will vary across departments, particularly if your programme includes laboratory/practical/studio/workshop sessions. You will be updated with more specific details as they are available and your timetable will indicate which sessions will be on campus and which will be available online.
Covid-19 assessment updates
There may be changes to the format of assessments for modules in this programme due to COVID-19. These will be summarised for each module on the module catalogue from 17 August 2020.   If any changes to assessments need to be made during the academic year due to updates in government guidance, these will be communicated to you as soon as possible from your department.    
Communicating further Covid-19 mitigation plans
We are continuing to follow UK Government guidance, as well as the expertise of our researchers, including specialists in health, education, human behaviour and infection prevention, to make sure UCL is as safe as possible during the COVID-19 pandemic. If it becomes necessary to make further changes to your programme as a result of new guidance/regulations, UCL and your department will communicate these as soon as this becomes clear. We will keep you up-to-date with our plans throughout term one, so you have the information you need to be able to take decisions that are right for your circumstances. Please ensure that you keep in touch with your department by regularly checking your UCL emails, Moodle courses, the Coronavirus FAQs for Students page and any UCL online groups or social media you follow.

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.

Accessibility

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

Funding

Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.

Brown Family Bursary

Note:
This scheme is now closed for 2020/21
Value:
£15,000 (1 year)
Eligibility:
UK
Criteria:
Based on both academic merit and 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.

Careers

Medical statisticians enable the application of the best possible quantitative methods in health research and assist in the reliable translation of research findings to public and patients’ health care.

The National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) has identified medical statistics as one of the priority areas in their capacity building strategy.

Employability

There is an acute shortage of medical statisticians in the UK and employment opportunities are excellent. Recent graduates from this programme have been employed by clinical trials units, the pharmaceutical industry, NHS trusts and universities (e.g. London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UCL).

Why study this degree at UCL?

One of the strengths of UCL Statistical Science is the breadth of expertise on offer; the research interests of staff span the full range from foundations to applications, and make important original contributions to the development of statistical science.

UCL is linked with four NHS hospital trusts and hosts three biomedical research centres, four clinical trial units and an Institute of Clinical Trials and Methodology. Established links between UCL Statistical Science, the NIHR UCLH/UCL Biomedical Research Centre and the Clinical Trial Units provide high-quality biomedical projects for Master's students and opportunities for excellent postgraduate teaching and medical research.

Department: Statistical Science

What our students and staff say

Staff view

"UCL Statistical Science was the first independent statistics department to be established worldwide. My research focuses on the development and application of Monte-Carlo methods for model calibration. In an era of big data, mathematical models are becoming increasingly challenging, so fitting a model to observations many times requires developing new computational algorithms that will go far beyond standard techniques."

Alexandros Beskos

Statistics MSc and Statistics (Medical Statistics) MSc
UCL Statistical Science
Staff view

"I enjoy teaching, particularly the opportunity to engage with graduate students in statistical science and to help them become more confident and interested in this branch of mathematics. I work on a variety of applied and methodological projects in biostatistics. On the applied side, I contribute statistical expertise to collaborative projects in medical science, such as clinical trials, and large cohort studies in areas such as rheumatology, ophthalmology and neuroscience."

Aidan O'Keefe

Statistics MSc, Statistics (Medical Statistics) MSc, Drug Discovery and Development MSc
UCL Statistical Science
Staff view

"UCL is a world-leading institution with a very strong inter-disciplinary culture. It's also very well connected to both other universities and industry. It has a very long tradition in statistics (it was the first university statistics department in the world!) with a great mix of applied and methodological research. My work focuses on building statistical models for complex processes.The impact of my work depends on the application at hand. In ecological applications, for example, the aim was to improve our understanding of complex biological systems such as the immune system or how animals respond to environmental triggers.I also really enjoy the interaction with our students, from 1st year undergraduates to research students, and the opportunity to teach them, inspire them, and prepare them to be the statisticians of the future."

Dr Ionna Manolopoulou

Statistics MSc, Statistics (Medical Statistics) MSc, Data Science (with specialisation in Statistics) MSc
UCL Statistical Science

Application and next steps

Applications

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.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £80 for online applications and £105 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.

Who can apply?

The programme is accessible to students with first degrees in a quantitative discipline, (such as mathematics, statistics, physics, chemistry, biology, computer science, engineering or economics) who wish to gain advanced training in medical statistical theory and applications in order to enter specialist employment or academic research.

Application deadlines

All applicants
13 March 2020

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 Statistics (Medical Statistics) at graduate level
  • why you want to study Statistics (Medical Statistics) at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic background meets the demands of this 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.

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.

Page last modified on 13 August 2020