MSc Data Science for Health and Social Care

Is this programme for me?

Our students come from a variety of backgrounds and bring a wide range of qualifications and experience. We will work with you to identify your needs and tailor the ideal course for you.

Students will meet with their programme tutor as part of the induction process to start tailoring the learning pathway. Personal tutors will guide students through the core qualification specific competencies in order to identify pre-existing competencies and discuss choosing the most appropriate elective courses for your learning needs and career aspirations. 

Here are some examples of student personas below to help you relate to your own personal learning pathway. 


Computer scientist looking for a change of career 

smiling woman on laptop

Kiera is a computer scientist. She works in the finance sector and is considering a change of career. She wants to acquire new skills to maintain her marketability. Kiera has an undergraduate degree in computer science, so is very technically minded. She is keen to expand her professional network and would like to meet other learners from different sectors as she would like to pursue opportunities in the health and social care sector. She has a long commute, which she intends to use as study time, so she will be wanting excellent mobile learning access.  

After completing the first year compulsory course she chooses the following elective courses: 

  • Data ethics and ownership 

  • Health, social and care services delivery and organisation 

  • Data visualisation: Knowledge transfer and exchange 

  • Service user-driven design 

Social care professional wishing to improve local service provision ​​​​​​

scottish social worker smiling

John is a social care locality manager. He has 20 years' experience in social services working as a social worker. John would like to learn more about how data driven innovation can improve local service provision. He has two motivations for completing the MSc:

  • to enhance his ability to improve services for the benefits of the communities he works with 
  • he sees it as a route to career progression.  

John’s key strength is people and he is good at collaborating. John is self-motivated but struggles on a daily basis dealing with crises at his job, so flexibility when learning is key.  As a people person, he is excited about meeting students and learning with a diverse peer network. He has not studied formally since completing his undergraduate degree 15 years ago. 

After completing the first year compulsory course he chooses the following elective courses: 

  • Introduction to statistics in health and social care 

  • Digital health and social care 

  • Service user-driven design 

  • Health, social and care services delivery and organisation 

Senior clinician keen to develop research career 

male clinician smiling

Sebastien is a mid-career consultant, working in a hospital. He is a clinician, leading a clinical team, but he wants to develop his career into research. He feels that having this MSc will give him more credibility as a researcher within his institution. He sees this as an opportunity to learn from the expertise of staff at The University of Edinburgh, but it does not occur to him that he may also have much to learn from his fellow students. He has a busy and demanding job, so he often struggles with time and needs flexibility. He values choice and the ability to design his own learning journey. 

After completing the first year compulsory course he chooses the following elective courses: 

  • Managing and leading data-driven innovation 
  • Data Analysis with R 
  • An introduction to software development in health and social care 
  • Introduction to data types and data structures in health and social care