Health economics and health policy analysis can enable decision makers to improve resource use and service delivery across health and care systems. This MSc will enable you to apply economic and policy theory and practice for this purpose, and to a range of complex challenges facing the global community (for example inequalities, mental health, infectious disease, climate change, health and social care provision). The programme will teach you key concepts in economics and policy by drawing on real-world examples from international and UK contexts. This applied focus will ensure you are able to communicate and share economic and policy thinking and evidence with various audiences, including policymakers, academics, and the general public.

You will learn a range of analytical techniques and research methods used by professional health economists and policy analysts, including statistics and econometrics, economic evaluation, qualitative and survey methods, evidence synthesis and modelling. You will also gain valuable practical experience in using appropriate software for qualitative and statistical data analysis, and for building economic models, so that you can confidently select and creatively apply these methods and software in your future careers and make sound, methodological judgements in the absence of complete data.

This MSc encourages you to apply multidisciplinary skills and a multi-stakeholder perspective to health and care challenges. The programme therefore welcomes professionals and students from multiple backgrounds. This MSc is particularly suitable for professionals who have experience of working within health care, social care or pharmaceutical settings, and graduates with a degree in economics, health sciences, mathematics, statistics, social policy or pharmacology.

Programme structure

This programme will be taught in a blended learning format. The first 120 credits will be completed through six taught units, three in each semester; the remaining 60 credits will be achieved through the research dissertation. Five of the 20-credit taught units will have a similar structure, comprising:

  1. A three-day, 18-hour face-to-face teaching block in Bristol.
  2. Seven hours of small group tutorials (face-to-face or online according to preference).
  3. 25 hours of online, largely asynchronous, teaching.
  4. 150 hours of self-study, including reading, skills development, formative and summative assessment.
  5. The remaining unit will have contact time comprising two three-day blocks, and 14 hours of online, asynchronous teaching.

The programme has three 'topic' units and three 'methods' units. The first unit will be the introductory topic unit, providing the core conceptual base. Two methods units, covering quantitative and qualitative/survey methods will also be taken in the first semester. During the second semester, students will study two advanced topic units engaging with complex health system and global health challenges. One concentrates on the UK within its global context, and the second on global health and care settings. Students will also take the final methods unit, covering health economic modelling.

Following completion of the six mandatory units, students will undertake a dissertation (in a published paper format) enabling them to develop more advanced skills in one area of health economics and/or health policy analysis. We will endeavour to provide a number of competitive placements with local, national and international (subject to funding) collaborators.

Visit our programme catalogue for full details.

Entry requirements

An upper second-class honours degree or international equivalent in any subject.

Competence in mathematics must be demonstrated with an undergraduate quantitative unit/module at 2.1/60% (e.g. Statistics, Maths, Econometrics, Quantitative Methods, R/STATA/SPSS/SAS, Psychometrics, Mechanics).

Or GCSE/O level Mathematics grade 7 or above or A/A+.

Or A level Mathematics grade C

Or AS level Mathematics grade B or above (Maths/Statistics/Pure Maths/Further Maths).

For applicants who are currently completing a degree, we understand that their final grade may be higher than the interim grades or module/unit grades they achieve during their studies.

We will consider applicants whose interim grades are slightly lower than the programme's entry requirements. We may make these applicants an aspirational offer. This offer would be at the standard level, so the applicant would need to achieve the standard entry requirements by the end of their degree. Specific module requirements may still apply.

We will consider applicants whose grades are slightly lower than the programme's entry requirements if they have at least one of the following:

  • evidence of significant relevant work experience (minimum 2 years) in the following sectors/areas: Health, Pharmaceutical, Economist, Accountancy, Actuary.
  • a relevant postgraduate qualification (merit or above).

If this is the case, applicants should include their CV (curriculum vitae / résumé) when they apply, showing details of their relevant work experience and/or qualifications.

See international equivalent qualifications on the International Office website.

Read the programme admissions statement for important information on entry requirements, the application process and supporting documents required.

Go to admissions statement

If English is not your first language, you will need to reach the requirements outlined in our profile level B.

Further information about English language requirements and profile levels.

Fees and funding

UK: full-time
£15,300 per year
UK: part-time (two years)
£7,650 per year
UK: part-time (three years)
£5,100 per year
Overseas: full-time
£31,300 per year

Fees are subject to an annual review. For programmes that last longer than one year, please budget for up to an 8% increase in fees each year.

More about tuition fees, living costs and financial support.

Alumni discount

University of Bristol students and graduates can benefit from a 25% reduction in tuition fees for postgraduate study. Check your eligibility for an alumni discount.

Funding for 2024/25

Further information on funding for prospective UK and international postgraduate students.

Career prospects

This MSc will enable you to work both autonomously and within multidisciplinary teams to implement tasks at the level of a professional health economist/policy analyst/health economic modeller. Skills and knowledge in health economics and health policy analysis are in high demand both nationally and internationally. Consequently, this is an area with high employment potential across a range of settings including government, health and care services, research and academia, the pharmaceutical and medical device industries, not-for-profit organisations and consultancy services.