Biomedical Sciences

Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (Online Learning) MSc, PgDip (ICL), PgCert (ICL), PgCert, PgDip, PgProfDev

This three-year Masters programme will provide you with a detailed knowledge and understanding of infection disciplines.

Amal provides her experience of the online Masters in Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Disease

Programme overview

The programme is designed to develop your understanding of the biology and transmission of pathogens, as well as infectious disease diagnosis, treatment and prevention. Specific topics include:

  • Immune responses to infection
  • Science and biology of bacterial, viral, fungal and parasitic pathogens
  • Modern and emerging diagnostic technologies for infectious diseases
  • Infection prevention and control and anti-infective therapy
  • Infections in different contexts such as community- acquired infections, emerging infectious diseases, and infectious diseases associated with travel.

Beyond the fundamental knowledge gained, our aim is to enable you to develop and critically assess cutting edge research questions in clinical microbiology and infectious diseases. You will be encouraged to: 

  • Develop an increased understanding and awareness of the scientific and medical background of infectious diseases.
  • Achieve a command of existing knowledge in your field of research, through a critical and (where relevant) comprehensive review of relevant literature.
  • Understand the principles of data analysis, dissemination of results and implementation of key findings and thus make informed judgements on new and emerging treatments.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how specialist knowledge in clinical microbiology and infectious diseases is applied to advise treatments and management of infectious diseases.
  • Successfully communicate, in writing and verbally, scientific results and information in research.
  • Ensure an understanding of infectious diseases to enable the undertaking of independent research.


What will you learn?

Courses are offered as five-week courses, each worth 10 credits. 

Year 1: Postgraduate Certificate

The courses currently on offer in Year 1 are compulsory and include:

Year 2: Postgraduate Diploma

In year 2 you will select six option courses. Year two course offerings and availability are subject to annual academic review and demand. Courses currently on offer during year two include:  

Year 3: Masters

In Year 3 you can opt between a number of proposed reflective elements such as a written dissertation (either current or historical) a casebook or portfolio.

Course information

Career Impact

We designed the programme with your training and your professional development aspirations in mind. To do this, we drew on British medical curriculum for combined infection training and relevant speciality training of the Royal College of Pathologists and joint Royal Colleges of Physicians training board. Our programme is ideal for junior doctors who wish to specialise in infectious diseases or clinical microbiology.

This degree will also be attractive to those who have completed their training but wish to fulfill continuing medical education requirements, or those who wish to obtain a formal qualification in Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases. It is also an excellent opportunity to advance knowledge and skills for many professionals such as biomedical scientists, researchers, educators and health care professionals.

The programme is aligned with JRCPTB and RCPath training in infection disciplines: Combined Infection Training and Higher Specialty Training in Infectious Diseases, Medical Microbiology and Medical Virology. It is designed to support trainees/specialists in preparation for FRCPath Part 1/Diploma in Infection, Infection Specialty end of training assessments and hospital-based practice.


Programme Structure

Why Choose Edinburgh?

  • Edinburgh is ranked 24th in the world for Life Sciences and Medicine and Biological Sciences and 18th in the world for Anatomy and Physiology (QS World University Rankings by subject, 2022).
  • Our graduates are ranked 25th in the world by employers (QS World University Rankings 2022).
  • The University of Edinburgh is 4th in the UK based on the quality and breadth of its research - known as research power - and is Scotland’s top ranked institution, according to Times Higher Education's REF 2021 power ratings.
  • Our current students come from a diversity of professions such as junior doctors, biomedical scientists, pharmacists, public health professionals, biomedical researchers, scientific officers, medical labaratory scientists and educators. We have a truly global student community, with current students based in the UK, Africa, Europe, Asia, New Zealand and North America.

Entry Requirements 

These entry requirements are for the 2023/24 academic year and requirements for future academic years may differ. Entry requirements for the 2024/25 academic year will be published on 2 October 2023. 

  • A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in a biomedical, medical, public health or relevant bio-science topic. 
  • We may also consider your application if you have relevant work experience; please contact the programme team to check before you apply. You may be admitted to certificate level only in the first instance.

Information about international qualifications and English language requirements can be found on the University Degree Finder.



You will need to pay this non-refundable deposit before an unconditional offer can be made:

  •  £500 (this contributes towards your tuition fees)

Full details about fees and deposits are available on the University Degree Finder. 


Speak to a current student

Want to speak to a current student about their online experience? You can email an online student through our student portal, Unibuddy.

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