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Health Data Science

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What you'll need

As part of the application process, you'll need to submit:

  • School or college transcripts/certificates
  • University transcripts and certified translations if applicable
  • Degree certificates
  • Personal statement outlining your learning ambitions

Our application process

  • Sign into our online portal, Apply Yourself, and start your application
  • Submit your application
  • We'll email you to let you know we're processing your application
  • Track the progress of your application using the Postgraduate Application Tracker (we'll send you a link to the tracker)
  • We'll email you when a decision has been made
  • If you've been made an offer, you can then accept or decline it using the Postgraduate Application Tracker.

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Master of Science

A Master of Science (MSc) is a master’s degree awarded for a postgraduate programme in the sciences.

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Course overview

Discover how to collect, analyse, interpret and present health data on this MSc. You’ll combine this knowledge with the fundamentals of computer science. Using statistical analysis, data visualisation and digital technology, you’ll learn how to identify data-driven enhancements to health care interventions and produce a significant piece of health data science research.

Introduction

Offering specialist training for current and aspiring health data scientists, this MSc combines research-focused teaching, training and development in an emerging discipline.

Whether you’re an experienced professional, recent graduate or intercalating medical student, you’ll benefit from our collaborative team-based approach. We’ll tackle important health research questions and work with new forms of health data, you’ll discover how health data science can enhance our understanding of disease and health care

You’ll receive a comprehensive overview of statistical concepts and explore the role of databases in modern information systems. A combination of theory and practice will prepare you for analysing, manipulating and interpreting the vast amounts of data generated in health care settings.

We’ll also reveal the exciting potential of digital technology for enhancing health care interventions. This includes focusing on actionable analytics, thinking about how to transform data from information into actions that drive real-world improvements in health care settings. Further specialisation in advanced biostatistics, artificial intelligence and data mining is possible.

The culmination of the MSc is a significant research project that enables you to make an original contribution to knowledge in health data science.

This programme is supported by Health Data Research UK – the national institute for health data science.

Who is this course for?

This master’s is suitable for you if you have a strong quantitative background (for example, a background in mathematics, statistics, computer science, physical science, biomedical science including epidemiology, biological sciences, or medicine*) and want to analyse and address health care problems using data.

Plus, if it suits you better, you can study some of the course modules as standalone CPD (Continuing Professional Development) modules. For more information contact: hdsseo@liverpool.ac.uk

*Please note these are examples only and are not the exhaustive list of backgrounds we accept. Please see our entry requirements for full details.

What you'll learn

  • How to use health data to better understand disease and improve care.
  • The benefits and challenges of applying data science to real-world health problems.
  • Key statistical concepts, including variability, sampling and statistical inference.
  • How to collect, analyse, interpret and present data.
  • How to manipulate and evaluate health data sources.
  • The use of databases in modern information systems.
  • Fundamental concepts of computer science.
  • Effective communication and teamwork skills.
  • The role of digital technology in improving health care interventions.
  • How to produce a significant piece of health data science research.

Course content

Discover what you'll learn, what you'll study, and how you'll be taught and assessed.

Studying this course part-time

International students may be able to study this course on a part-time basis but this is dependent on visa regulations. Please visit the Government website for more information about student visas.

If you're able to study part-time, you'll study the same modules as the full-time master's degree over a longer period, usually 24 months. You can make studying work for you by arranging your personal schedule around lectures and seminars which take place during the day. After you complete all the taught modules, you will complete your final dissertation or project and will celebrate your achievements at graduation the following term.

Studying part-time means you can study alongside work or any other life commitments. You will study the same modules as the full-time master's degree over a longer period, usually 24 months. You can make studying work for you by arranging your personal schedule around lectures and seminars which take place during the day. After you complete all the taught modules, you will complete your final dissertation or project and will celebrate your achievements at graduation the following term.

Semester one

Compulsory modules

Introduction to Health Data Science (DASC501)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

Using health data for research can help us to better understand the causes, prevalence, symptoms, and treatment of disease, as well as understanding how to improve health care systems. Health data science can improve our knowledge of health and care, and is an emerging discipline, arising at the intersection of statistics, computer science, and health. The health data science team can generate data-driven solutions through comprehension of complex real-world health problems, employing critical thinking and analytics to derive knowledge from data. This module will provide an understanding of the potential benefits and challenges in the application of data science to healthcare. Students will benefit from research-connected teaching with academic staff, and have opportunities for active learning including communication skills. The module will be taught via formal lectures, seminars from guest speakers, and practical communication sessions. Learning will be assessed via a coursework and a practical assessment.

Statistics for Health Research (DASC502)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

Statistics is the science concerned with the collection, analysis, interpretation and presentation of data to extract knowledge. Understanding key statistical concepts is fundamental to the health data scientist. In this module students will be introduced to the concepts of variability and sampling and the different paradigms for statistical inference. The essential skills of reading data, structuring data, conducting statistical analyses and the importance of data visualisation will be covered to gain an in-depth knowledge and understanding of statistical methods used in the analysis and presentation of health data. Students will benefit from research-connected teaching with academic staff, and have opportunities for active learning. The module will be taught via formal lectures, seminars from guest speakers, and computer practical sessions. Learning will be assessed via a poster presentation and a practical assessment.

Using Routine Data for Public Health (DASC503)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

The volume of data generated by modern healthcare and public health systems is immense. Unfortunately, this data is often disconnected, carries biases, and is encoded with diverse disease ontology frameworks. However, the opportunity to transform this reality is within our grasp. We can forge a more interconnected and fair health system through collaboration and collective effort. This module offers research-focused teaching, empowering students to effect change and emerge as leaders in the field. The curriculum comprises formal lectures, seminars from guest speakers, and hands-on computer lab sessions, ensuring students are well-prepared for the challenges ahead. Through a practical evaluation and a pre-recorded oral poster presentation, students will be equipped to make a tangible impact on real-world healthcare and public health challenges. Learning will be assessed via a practical assessment, and a poster and pre-recorded oral presentations.

Dissertation (DASC500)

Credits: 60 / Semester: whole session

Independent research is the defining feature of a postgraduate student. In this module, students will conduct a mix of applied and methodological research study under the supervision of one member of staff from Biostatistics, Computer Science or Public Health, with the potential addition of a domain expert or Health Care Professional if it is required by the subject of the dissertation. Students will identify the research question and use appropriate methodologies to answer a specific gap in existing knowledge in health data science. There will be a minimum of 12 hours of supervisory meetings to assist each student in achieving this. The written assessment is a 10,000 word dissertation.

Optional modules

Database and Information Systems (COMP518)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

This module focuses on how databases are used in modern information systems. They are at the heart of almost all systems, such as supermarket checkouts, online banking, home rentals, and much more. One of the most successful data definition and manipulation languages is SQL, which will be covered in detail. The module will also introduce some of the fundamental concepts in computer science, as well as the mathematical underpinnings of relational databases and the techniques used to support concurrency and reliability in large information systems.

Qualitative Research Methods (ENVS441)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

This module is intended to explore qualitative research methods in a holistic manner; moving from research philosophy, through design to individual research methods and analysis. The module covers a range of qualitative research methods through a mixture of lectures and workshops. In undertaking this module students will consider how research design and individual research methods need careful selection to suit the specific research problems or questions under investigation.

Programme details and modules listed are illustrative only and subject to change.

Our curriculum

The Liverpool Curriculum framework sets out our distinctive approach to education. Our teaching staff support our students to develop academic knowledge, skills, and understanding alongside our graduate attributes:

  • Digital fluency
  • Confidence
  • Global citizenship

Our curriculum is characterised by the three Liverpool Hallmarks:

  • Research-connected teaching
  • Active learning
  • Authentic assessment

All this is underpinned by our core value of inclusivity and commitment to providing a curriculum that is accessible to all students.

Course options

Studying with us means you can tailor your degree to suit you. Here's what is available on this course.

Study as a CPD module

You can study some of the modules on this course as standalone CPD (Continuing Professional Development) modules. Contact us using the buttons at the bottom of the course page to find out more.

Learn more about CPD at Liverpool.

Study as an intercalated degree

Intercalation allows you take a break from your medical degree, usually after year 3 or 4, and study an additional qualification. Most intercalating students choose to study a master's degree. This gives you the opportunity to explore a subject of interest at an advanced level and acquire new skills and knowledge that will enhance and/or complement your medical degree.

Postgraduate Certificate

If you enrol on a master’s degree and complete 60 credits you may be able to exit the programme early and earn a Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) for the work you have completed. This usually amounts to one semester when completed full-time.

Postgraduate Diploma

If you enrol on a master’s degree and have completed 120 credits you may be able to exit the programme early and earn a Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) for the work completed. This usually amounts to two full semesters when completed full-time, without having to complete the final dissertation module.

Your experience

The Institute of Population Health draws on over 100 years of teaching delivered by dedicated staff with real-world, practical experience. We are a hub for an extensive network of professionals, academics and researchers, you can be confident that a degree from us will prepare you for a lifelong career in healthcare services.

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Supporting your learning

From arrival to alumni, we’re with you all the way:

An exciting place to study

  • Major centre for education and research in health sciences
  • State-of-the-art facilities
  • Opportunities for in-depth study and development of advanced clinical skills
  • Flexible programmes for postgraduate study
  • Active research environment
  • Provides specialist training with taught and clinical placement components.

What students say...

What I enjoyed the most was conducting a genome-wide study on real-life data from the UK Biobank, which I undertook as part of my dissertation. It was great to work with academics in and across departments on this project, learn valuable research skills and work on developing the research idea into a full publication.  

, MSc Health Data Science

Careers and employability

Developing transferable skills to enhance your employability is a key theme of the programme.

Potential employers are involved in the delivery of the course and you will be able to attend careers events with representation from higher education institutions, the NHS, industry and government agencies. This will ensure you have a variety of opportunities to network and build useful contacts.

Whenever possible, your dissertation project will be linked with external partner organisations, connecting you to potential employment and career progression opportunities.

Career planning

Three career coaches standing outside the Careers Studio

Our campus Career Studio is a space for students and graduates to drop into and talk to a career coach. Career coaches are highly trained to help no matter what stage you are at in your career planning. You can access support to find and apply for full-time and part-time roles, placements, internships and graduate schemes. You will also find the help you need if you have a start-up idea or want to create a business plan. You can explore the world of work, prepare for job interviews, and access careers events and workshops. The Career Studio is open Monday to Friday from 10am-5pm, simply drop in at a time that works for you.

From education to employment

Two graduates in postgraduate robes.

We develop our programmes with employers in mind. You will be supported to enhance your long-term employment prospects as you learn. We do this by exposing you to professionals, a variety of sectors and supporting you to work collaboratively with others to develop transferable skills. You are equipped with a clearer view of what to focus on in your area of interest, and to reflect on your studies. Our digital employability tools give you a tech-enhanced curriculum experience and make it easy for you to prepare for the world of work. You can use tools like the Handshake platform to connect with employers and message the Career Studio 24/7.

Networking events

Postgraduate students hold a discussion while sat round a table in in the Liverpool Guild of Students.

You can start building good professional networks by attending events and employability activities. Our events are designed to develop your skills and expose you to many different employers, as well as to help you make contacts in your field. We help you improve your confidence when speaking to employers and give you access to unique opportunities. Our networking events also boost your understanding of the competencies and skills that employers are looking for in their recruitment process, giving you a competitive edge.

Your future

The health sector is a fast-growing employment sector around the world. There is an increasing need for professionals with strong quantitative skills to evaluate health care interventions and information systems.

The MSc Health Data Science is tailored to develop the statistical and computational skills needed to pursue a successful career as a data scientist working in academia, healthcare or biopharmaceutical sectors.

99% of health sciences students from the University of Liverpool find their main activity after graduation meaningful.

Graduate Outcomes, 2018-19.

Fees and funding

Your tuition fees, funding your studies, and other costs to consider.

Tuition fees

UK fees (applies to Channel Islands, Isle of Man and Republic of Ireland)
Full-time place, per year £11,600
Part-time place, per year £5,800
International fees
Full-time place, per year £27,200
Part-time place, per year £13,600
Fees stated are for the 2024-25 academic year.

Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching and assessment, operating facilities such as libraries, IT equipment, and access to academic and personal support.

If you're a UK national, or have settled status in the UK, you may be eligible to apply for a Postgraduate Loan worth up to £12,167 to help with course fees and living costs. Learn more about paying for your studies..

Additional costs

We understand that budgeting for your time at university is important, and we want to make sure you understand any course-related costs that are not covered by your tuition fee. This could include buying a laptop, books, or stationery.

Find out more about the additional study costs that may apply to this course.

Additional study costs

We understand that budgeting for your time at university is important, and we want to make sure you understand any course-related costs that are not covered by your tuition fee. This could include buying a laptop, books, or stationery.

Find out more about additional study costs.

Scholarships and bursaries

We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries that could help pay your tuition and living expenses.

We've set the country or region your qualifications are from as United Kingdom. Change it here


Postgraduate Global Advancement Scholarship

  • International students

If you’re an international student starting this course with us from September 2024, you could be eligible to receive a discount of £5,000 off your master’s tuition fees, if you haven’t studied with us before.

Graduate Loyalty Advancement Scholarship

  • Home and international students

If you’re a University of Liverpool graduate starting this master’s degree with us from September 2024, you could be eligible to receive a loyalty discount of up to £2,500 off your master’s tuition fees.

ANID Chile Scholarship

  • International students
  • Chile

If you’re a Chilean student joining a master’s degree, you could be eligible to apply for a 20% discount on your tuition fees with an ANID Chile Scholarship.

Chevening Scholarships

  • International students

If you’re an international student from an eligible country, joining a one-year master’s course, you could apply to have your master’s fees paid, up to a maximum of £18,000, and receive additional help with living costs.

CONACYT Award

  • International students
  • Mexico

If you’re a Mexican student joining a master’s degree, you could be eligible to apply for a 30% discount on your tuition fees with a CONACYT Award.

FIDERH Award

  • International students
  • Mexico

If you’re a Mexican student joining a master’s degree and you’re in receipt of a FIDERH graduate loan, you could benefit from a 20% discount on your tuition fees with a FIDERH Award.

Fulbright Scholarship

  • International students
  • United States

If you’re a USA student joining a master’s degree, you can apply to be considered for a tuition fee discount of £20,000 with a Fulright Scholarship. One Fulbright Scholarship for master’s study is available in each academic year.

FUNED Awards

  • International students
  • Mexico

If you’re a Mexican student joining a master’s degree and you’re in receipt of a FUNED loan, you can apply to be considered for a 20% tuition fee discount. A total of up to ten awards will be available to master’s and PhD students per academic year.

Graduate Association Hong Kong & Tung Postgraduate Scholarships

  • International students
  • China
  • Hong Kong

If you’re a master’s student from Hong Kong or the People’s Republic of China who can demonstrate academic excellence, you may be eligible to apply for a scholarship worth up to £10,000 in partnership with the Tung Foundation.

Health Data Research UK Master’s Degree Scholarships

  • Home students

Joining our Health Data Science MSc? If you’re a UK student, you could be eligible to apply for £10,000 of funding and the opportunity to conduct a research project with one of HDRUK’s partner organisations. Partners include Diabetes UK and Alzheimer’s Research UK.

Health Data Science Scholarships

  • Home and international students

Joining our Health Data Science MSc? If you’re a UK student, you could be eligible to apply to have your tuition fees paid in full. If you’re an international student, the equivalent amount to the UK fee would be offered as a fee discount if you’re the chosen recipient of this award.

HRH Princess Sirindhorn University of Liverpool Scholarship (Thailand)

  • International students
  • Thailand

If you’re a student from Thailand joining a one-year master’s degree, you might be eligible to apply to have your tuition fees paid in full and receive help with living costs. One award is available and only students who are new to the University will be considered.

JuventudEsGto Scholarship

  • International students
  • Mexico

If you’re a resident of the state of Guanajuato in Mexico joining a master’s degree, you could be eligible for a 10% discount on your tuition fees with a JuventudEsGto Scholarship.

Marshall Scholarship

  • International students
  • United States

If you’re a USA student joining an eligible master’s with us, you could apply to be considered for a Marshall Scholarship. If your application is successful, your master’s tuition fees will be paid in full. One Marshall Scholarship for master’s study is available in each academic year.

Postgraduate Opportunity Bursary

  • Home students

If you’re a UK University of Liverpool graduate joining a master’s degree with us, you could be eligible to receive £3,000 off your tuition fees. You must have graduated in the last two years and received a widening access scholarship during your undergraduate studies.

Turkish Ministry of Education Scholarship

  • International students
  • Turkey

If you’re a Turkish student joining a master’s degree, you could be eligible to apply for a 20% discount on your tuition fees with a Turkish Ministry of Education Scholarship.

Humanitarian Scholarships for Master’s Programmes

  • International students

Do you have recognised status as a refugee or person with humanitarian protection outside the UK? Or are you a Ukrainian who’s sought temporary protection in the EU? You could be eligible to apply for the full payment of your master’s fees and additional financial support.

University of Liverpool International College Excellence Scholarship

  • International students

Completed a Pre-Master’s at University of Liverpool International College (UoLIC)? We’re offering a £5,000 fee discount off the first year of master’s study to some of the highest achieving students joining one of our non-clinical master’s courses from UoLIC.

University of Liverpool International College Impact Progression Scholarships

  • International students

If you’re a University of Liverpool International College student awarded a Kaplan Impact Scholarship, we’ll also consider you for an Impact Progression Scholarship. If selected, you’ll receive a fee discount worth £3,000 off the first year of your master’s course.

Vice-Chancellor’s International Attainment Scholarship for Mainland China

  • International students
  • China

Are you a high-achieving graduate from the People’s Republic of China with a degree from a Chinese university? You could be eligible to apply for a £5,000 fee discount if you’re joining an eligible master’s course. Up to 15 eligible students will receive this scholarship.

Entry requirements

The qualifications and exam results you'll need to apply for this course.

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Your qualification Requirements

About our typical entry requirements

Postgraduate entry requirements

You will normally need a 2:1 honours degree or above, or equivalent. This degree should include substantial quantitative methods content in statistics and/or computer science.

We are able to offer a level of flexibility for applicants. Those with a 2:2 honours degree will be considered on an individual basis.

We also encourage applications from those working in health-related professions or those with non-standard qualifications. Each application will be assessed on its own merits.

As part of your application, you will be required to provide a personal statement outlining your learning ambitions, past achievements in academic or professional activities relevant to the programme and data science experience to date.

Please note, some of the optional modules on the course require programming skills of a standard equivalent to a first degree in computer science.

International qualifications

If you hold a bachelor’s degree or equivalent, but don’t meet our entry requirements, you could be eligible for a Pre-Master’s course. This is offered on campus at the University of Liverpool International College, in partnership with Kaplan International Pathways. It’s a specialist preparation course for postgraduate study, and when you pass the Pre-Master’s at the required level with good attendance, you’re guaranteed entry to a University of Liverpool master’s degree.

English language requirements

You'll need to demonstrate competence in the use of English language, unless you’re from a majority English speaking country.

We accept a variety of international language tests and country-specific qualifications.

International applicants who do not meet the minimum required standard of English language can complete one of our Pre-Sessional English courses to achieve the required level.

English language qualification Requirements
IELTS 6.5 overall, with no component below 6.0
TOEFL iBT 88 overall, with minimum scores of listening 19, writing 19, reading 19 and speaking 20
Duolingo English Test 120 overall, with no component below 105
Pearson PTE Academic 61 overall, with no component below 59
LanguageCert Academic 70 overall, with no skill below 65
PSI Skills for English B2 Pass with Merit in all bands
INDIA Standard XII National Curriculum (CBSE/ISC) - 75% and above in English. Accepted State Boards - 80% and above in English.
WAEC C6 or above

PRE-SESSIONAL ENGLISH

Do you need to complete a Pre-Sessional English course to meet the English language requirements for this course?

The length of Pre-Sessional English course you’ll need to take depends on your current level of English language ability.

Find out the length of Pre-Sessional English course you may require for this degree.

Pre-sessional English

If you don’t meet our English language requirements, we can use your most recent IELTS score, or the equivalent score in selected other English language tests, to determine the length of Pre-Sessional English course you require.

Use the table below to check the course length you're likely to require for your current English language ability and see whether the course is available on campus or online.

Your most recent IELTS score Pre-Sessional English course length On campus or online
6.0 overall, with no component below 6.0 6 weeks On campus
6.0 overall, with no component below 5.5 10 weeks On campus and online options available
6.0 overall, with no more than one component below 5.5, and no component below 5.0 12 weeks On campus and online options available
5.5 overall, with no more than one component below 5.5, and no component below 5.0 20 weeks On campus
5.0 overall, with no more than one component below 5.0, and no component below 4.5 30 weeks On campus
4.5 overall, with no more than one component below 4.5, and no component below 4.0 40 weeks On campus

If you’ve completed an alternative English language test to IELTS, we may be able to use this to assess your English language ability and determine the Pre-Sessional English course length you require.

Please see our guide to Pre-Sessional English entry requirements for IELTS 6.5, with no component below 6.0, for further details.

About our entry requirements

Our entry requirements may change from time to time both according to national application trends and the availability of places at Liverpool for particular courses. We review our requirements before the start of the new application cycle each year and publish any changes on our website so that applicants are aware of our typical entry requirements before they submit their application.

We believe in treating applicants as individuals, and in making offers that are appropriate to their personal circumstances and background. Therefore the offer any individual applicant receives may differ slightly from the typical offer quoted on the website.

More about life in Liverpool

Discover more about the city and University.

Why study at Liverpool? Victoria Gallery & Museum

Why Liverpool?

Liverpool bursts with diversity and creativity which makes it ideal for you to undertake your postgraduate studies and access various opportunities for you and your family.

Accommodation Postgraduate students walking through the campus.

Accommodation

To fully immerse yourself in the university experience living in halls will keep you close to campus where you can always meet new people. Find your home away from home.

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Fees and Finance

Discover what expenses are covered by the cost of your tuition fees and other finance-related information you may need regarding your studies at Liverpool.

Changes to Health Data Science MSc

See what updates we've made to this course since it was published. We document changes to information such as course content, entry requirements and how you'll be taught.

23 March 2023: New postgraduate taught course pages

New course pages launched.