This course aims to provide an introduction to the concepts and methods used in reproductive and sexual health research and to equip students with the principles, methods and research skills necessary to conduct policy-relevant research. It provides a non-clinical foundation in the main aspects of reproductive and sexual health: family planning, obstetric health and AIDS/STIs (not including laboratory-based studies). The MSc is Europe's only graduate course in reproductive health research and is designed mainly for those interested in the developing world, but developed world issues are also accommodated.
This course is recognized by the ESRC as providing high-quality research training and a small number of ESRC scholarships (including 1+3 scholarships) are available to UK or EU residents. These are advertised each year with the School scholarships information.
Graduates go into public health and reproductive health programmes, evaluation of family planning programmes, research for governmental and non-governmental agencies and university teaching.
A prize is awarded each year to the student who has submitted the best project of the year for examination.
By the end of this course students should be able to: demonstrate advanced knowledge and understanding of evidence-based approaches to research of reproductive and sexual health issues; critically assess and apply these research approaches to inform development, health and social welfare programmes; demonstrate a good understanding of the socio-cultural, political and ethical issues surrounding reproductive and sexual health; identify and address appropriate research questions in reproductive and sexual health, using methods from a range of public health disciplines; carry out research activities to identify effective components of reproductive and sexual health services within programmes.
Programme specifications- showing which of the various elements of the Course support and achieve each of these specific Objectives.
Students take the following compulsory modules: Basic Demographic Methods; Epidemiology; Foundations in Reproductive Health; Principles of Social Research; Statistics with Computing and either Population Studies, Health Policy, Process & Power or Introduction to Health Economics. Additional options: Introduction to Computing; Environment, Health, and Sustainable Development.
Terms 2 and 3
Students take a total of six study modules, one from each timetable slot. One module is compulsory. A typical selection of modules is given below; not all modules will be available in any one year.
C1: Research Design & Analysis; Health Care Evaluation
C2: Family Planning Programmes; Statistical Methods in Epidemiology; Qualitative Methodologies; Conflict & Health; Health Impact and Decision Analysis; Health Promotion Approaches & Methods; Design and Analysis of Epidemiological Studies.
D1: Medical Anthropology in Public Health; Social Epidemiology; Designing Disease Control Programmes in Developing Countries; Population, Poverty, and Environment; Maternal & Child Nutrition
D2: Sexual Health
E1: AIDS; Proposal Development; Gender & Health; Modelling & the Dynamics of Infectious Diseases.
E2: Analysing Survey & Population Data; Current Issues in Safe Motherhood & Perinatal Health; Control of Sexually Transmitted Diseases; Advanced Statistical Methods in Epidemiology; History & Health; Sociological Approaches to Health.
A restricted number of modules may be taken by self-study, using electronic access teaching material.
Students complete a research project. Acceptable types of project are data analysis; a project proposal; an original literature or policy review.
Students normally remain in London for the preparation of their project report. Overseas travel during this period is granted in particular circumstances only.
Full-time for one year or part-time over two years. Students taking the course over two years can choose to attend part-time throughout both years (this involves attending the School at least two days each week during term-time).
Alternatively, students taking the course by split study over two years attend full-time for part of Year 1 and then undertake the remainder of their course in Year 2. The split can occur anytime between the Christmas break and the end of the formal teaching in May, by prior arrangement with the Course Director. For the split study, Paper 1 of the formal exams may be taken at the end of Year 1 or at the end of Year 2. Paper 2 must be taken at the end of Year 2. Interested applicants should indicate their choice of study mode on the application form.
Either a Second-class Honours degree of a recognized university in any discipline or a degree in medicine. Applicants with an appropriate technical qualification and work experience, or equivalent qualifications, are also welcome to apply and their applications will be considered.