Global Health (2014 entry)

MSc, 1 year full time

Subject overview

Brighton and Sussex Medical School (BSMS) logo

The excellent reputation of Sussex in research related to medicine has been enhanced by the opening of BSMS ten years ago. Working with partners such as the Genome Damage and Stability Centre at Sussex, BSMS executes high-quality research on disease identification from its molecular basis, developing new therapeutic interventions and driving forward translational research to ensure basic research is taken forward into clinical trials for the benefit of patients and the community. 

BSMS is a Wellcome Trust Centre for Global Health Research and works on a range of health topics with partners around the world. 

At present, 100 per cent of full-time PhD students at BSMS have successfully completed their studies within four years. 

Medicine and health studies at BSMS was ranked 18th in the UK in The Guardian University Guide 2015 and 25th in the UK in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2014.

Our postgraduates have gone on to careers in policy-making, working for NGOs and medical charities, undertaking research for academia and the media, and health journalism. A research degree from BSMS gives you a competitive edge if you wish to enter a research career in the NHS or pharmaceutical sectors. You may be able to teach undergraduates while undertaking research, as good preparation for a career in academia. 

On most BSMS degrees, you will have the opportunity to hear nationally or internationally renowned speakers from senior posts in the clinical setting. 

Postgraduate students at BSMS are encouraged to present their work at national and international conferences. Many students have been awarded travel grants to present their work in the US or in Europe. 

Programme outline

‘Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in healthcare is the most shocking and inhumane.’ Martin Luther King, Jr 

In the 21st century, improving health and achieving equity in health are among the world’s greatest challenges. At a time of unprecedented integration and interdependence of economies, environments, societies and cultures, global processes interact with national, local and personal factors to impact the health of individuals and populations. This MSc aims to develop your understanding of these global health determinants and their potential solutions in order to enable you to contribute to the improvement of health and the achievement of equity in health worldwide. 

The MSc brings together experts from disciplines within and beyond the health sciences to deliver a vibrant course that will appeal widely, covering topics such as poverty, inequalities and health; cultural understandings of health and healing; emerging infectious diseases; global disease burden of infectious and non-communicable disease; climate change and health; and the relationship between disease, globalisation and global governance. 

This MSc adopts dynamic and interactive teaching methods, using case studies alongside current evidence and insights to facilitate your understanding of global health issues. 

You are encouraged to be self-directed and to manage your own learning through making use of the wide range of learning resources available at BSMS. The dissertation, which can be based in the UK or abroad, allows you to develop an area of expertise through in-depth focus on a topic of your particular interest.


Assessment is by a combination of unseen written exams, term papers, oral presentation and dissertations.  

Course structure

We continue to develop and update our modules for 2014 entry to ensure you have the best student experience.

Core modules include Global Disease Burden • Global Health Principles • Research Methods and Critical Appraisal. 

You select two options from Critical Perspectives in Global Health • Cultural Understandings of Health and Healing • Global Politics of Disease • Global Sexual and Reproductive Health • Health and Development • Values, Ethics and Politics in Global Health. You also undertake work on your dissertation. 

Entry requirements

UK entrance requirements

A first- or upper second-class undergraduate honours degree in any subject, or successful completion of at least three years basic medical science at a UK medical school (having gained at least 360 credits) with a guaranteed place to continue medical studies on completion of the MSc.

Overseas entrance requirements

Overseas qualifications

If your country is not listed below, please contact the University at E

CountryOverseas qualification
Australia Bachelor (Honours) degree with second-class upper division
Brazil Bacharel, Licenciado or professional title with a final mark of at least 8
Canada Bachelor degree with CGPA 3.3/4.0 (grade B+)
China Bachelor degree from a leading university with overall mark of 75%-85% depending on your university
Cyprus Bachelor degree or Ptychion with a final mark of at least 7.5
France Licence with mention bien or Maîtrise with final mark of at least 13
Germany Bachelor degree or Magister Artium with a final mark of 2.4 or better
Ghana Bachelor degree from a public university with second-class upper division
Greece Ptychion from an AEI with a final mark of at least 7.5
Hong Kong Bachelor (Honours) degree with second-class upper division
India Bachelor degree from a leading institution with overall mark of at least 60% or equivalent
Iran Bachelor degree (Licence or Karshenasi) with a final mark of at least 15
Italy Diploma di Laurea with an overall mark of at least 105
Japan Bachelor degree from a leading university with a minumum C/GPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or equivalent
Malaysia Bachelor degree with a CGPA of 3.3/4.0 or B+
Mexico Licenciado with a final mark of at least 8
Nigeria Bachelor degree with second-class upper division or CGPA of at least 3.5/5.0
Pakistan Four-year bachelor degree, normally with a GPA of at least 3.3
Russia Magistr or Specialist Diploma with a minimum average mark of at least 4
South Africa Bachelor (Honours) degree or Bachelor degree in Technology with an overall mark of at least 70%
Saudi Arabia Bachelor degree with an overall mark of at least 70% or CGPA 3.5/5.0 or equivalent
South Korea Bachelor degree from a leading university with CGPA of at least 3.5/4.0 or equivalent
Spain Licenciado with a final mark of at least 2/4
Taiwan Bachelor degree with overall mark of 70%-85% depending on your university
Thailand Bachelor degree with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or equivalent
Turkey Lisans Diplomasi with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0 depending on your university
United Arab Emirates Bachelor degree with CGPA of at least 3.5/4.0 or equivalent
USA Bachelor degree with CGPA 3.3-3.5/4.0 depending on your university
Vietnam Masters degree with CGPA 3.5/4.0 or equivalent

If you have any questions about your qualifications after consulting our overseas qualifications, contact the University at E

English language requirements

IELTS 7.5, with not less than 7.0 in each section.

For more information, refer to What qualifications do I need?

Visas and immigration

Find out more about Visas and immigration.

Additional admissions information

Applications to MSc Global Health are made via the University of Brighton online application system. To read more about the course and to apply please visit the Brighton and Sussex Medical School global health website.

For more information about the admissions process at Sussex

For pre-application enquiries:

Student Recruitment Services
T +44 (0)1273 876787

For post-application enquiries:

Postgraduate Admissions,
University of Sussex,
Sussex House, Falmer,
Brighton BN1 9RH, UK
T +44 (0)1273 877773
F +44 (0)1273 678545

Fees and funding


Fees for studying on courses available on a part-time basis will be charged at 50 per cent of the full-time fees listed below.

Home UK/EU students: £6,000 per year1
Channel Island and Isle of Man students: £6,000 per year2
Overseas students: £16,400 per year3

1 The fee shown is for the academic year 2014.
2 The fee shown is for the academic year 2014.
3 The fee shown is for the academic year 2014.

To find out about your fee status, living expenses and other costs, visit further financial information.


The funding sources listed below are for the subject area you are viewing and may not apply to all degrees listed within it. Please check the description of the individual funding source to make sure it is relevant to your chosen degree.

To find out more about funding and part-time work, visit further financial information.

We are in the process of updating funding sources for postgraduate study in the academic year 2014/15. For general information, refer to Funding.

For more information on scholarships go to the Scholarships web pages.

Faculty interests

The research interests of BSMS faculty are based around a range of research areas briefly described below and right. For more information, visit Brighton and Sussex Medical School: Research.


Researchers in this area are investigating varied topics such as imaging of tumour angiogenesis and the spread of cancer cells, cancer biomarkers, epigenetics, and developing communication skills in working with patients with cancer. 

Cell and developmental biology

Research in this area includes investigations into the fundamental mechanisms underlying stem-cell pluripotency, cell migration, tissue regeneration, cell signalling and gene expression. 

Elderly care and stroke

This group uses health services research methods to develop and evaluate new ways of maintaining health and managing disease. 

Global health 

BSMS is a Wellcome Trust Centre for Global Health Research and works on a range of health topics with partners around the world. 


This is a vibrant interdisciplinary programme of imaging research at BSMS, supported through PET and MRI facilities at the Clinical Imaging Sciences Centre at Sussex and Nuclear Medicine at the Royal Sussex County Hospital. 

Infection and immunology

Infection and immunology encompasses a diverse group of researchers at BSMS, all of whom are trying to understand the roles that immunological, genetic, pathogenic or environmental factors play in disease. 

Medical education

Medical education research at BSMS has developed along with the undergraduate BM BS degree through the Medical Education Unit (MEU), a multi-professional group involved in undergraduate and postgraduate teaching and learning. 

Medical ethics

This group researches topics including stem-cell research, foetal medicine, embryo experimentation, antenatal screening, ethics of cancer and palliative care, treatment of neurodegenerative disease, and bioethics research and practice in the developing world. 

Medical informatics

Researchers at BSMS are working with specialists in informatics at the Universities of Sussex and Brighton, developing a programme of interdisciplinary research in electronic patient records. 


This group is focused on neurological conditions such as dementia, stroke, multiple sclerosis, motor neurone disease and chronic pain. Using molecular, physiological and neuroimaging techniques, researchers are examining the underlying mechanisms, diagnosis and treatments of these conditions, as well as the normal functioning of the nervous system.  


Research in this area focuses on the relationship of genetic make-up with the susceptibility to asthma in children. 

Primary care and health services 

The work of this group focuses mainly on allergy, sexually transmitted disease and cancer. Working with existing data sets enables this group to understand causes of disease and patterns of disease referral and management. 


Psychiatry at BSMS has strengths in affective neuroscience, biological psychiatry, neuropsychiatry and psychological medicine. Neuroimaging research programmes seek to define brain mechanisms underpinning normal and aberrant behaviours in psychiatric and neurological populations. 


This research group seeks to improve the understanding of disease mechanisms and treatment strategies with the ultimate aim of translating cutting-edge research into clinical practice. 

Careers and profiles

This MSc aims to develop your skills to work as global health practitioners, policy makers or researchers in academia, health systems, governments, non-governmental organisations and international health and development agencies. 

Hannah's student perspective

Hannah Franklin

‘With an undergraduate degree in anthropology, I was keen to do a Masters that would expand my understanding of large-scale issues in an increasingly interconnected world. The subject of health therefore particularly appealed to me as a universal concern with varying political, social, economic and cultural implications, and the interdisciplinary ethos of BSMS really lends itself to this subject.

‘The programme content is interesting, varied and well structured but also leaves you room to pursue your own interests. For the dissertation in particular you can conduct research in an area of your choosing, with opportunities do this abroad. I’m off to Ethiopia in May to collect primary data on a neglected tropical disease.

‘Interactive sessions led by experts in their field give a real taste of what a career in global health entails, and the regular debates held in seminars are my particular favourite. With a mix of students from varying academic fields and backgrounds, the wide range of opinions and specialties in a diverse subject such as global health entails are heatedly discussed!’

Hannah Franklin
MSc in Global Health

Sonia's student perspective

Sonia Salzano

‘I received my undergraduate degree in pharmacy from the University of Napoli and then went on to work as a researcher in a pharmacological institute. When the chance to undertake a PhD degree at Sussex showed up I took it because I saw it as an opportunity for research training and practice with a great qualification at the end.

'The Universities of Sussex and Brighton organise and offer courses on various practical topics that allow me to further improve my professional skills. I’ve developed different techniques, and learnt how to manage and plan experiments and how to interpret data.

‘My supervisor is always available to support me if and when needed, and post-doctoral researchers and other colleagues share their knowledge and expertise, which helps to enrich my research. I would strongly recommend this experience for people who are interested in taking up a career in scientific research.’

Sonia Salzano
PhD in Medicine

For more information, visit Careers and alumni.

School and contacts

Brighton and Sussex Medical School

Brighton and Sussex Medical School (BSMS) is a partnership between the Universities of Sussex and Brighton, and the Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust. The School offers a number of dynamic, innovative postgraduate degree programmes that will prepare you for a wide range of career opportunities.


Discover Postgraduate Study information sessions

You’re welcome to attend one of our Discover Postgraduate Study information sessions. These are held in the spring and summer terms and enable you to find out more about postgraduate study and the opportunities Sussex has to offer.

Visit Discover Postgraduate study to book your place.

Other ways to visit Sussex

We run weekly guided campus tours every Wednesday afternoon, year round. Book a place online at Visit us and Open Days.

You are also welcome to visit the University independently without any pre-arrangement.


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