Postgraduate study
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Health Humanities and Arts MScR

Awards: MScR

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

Programme website: Health Humanities and Arts

Who this programme is for

This full-time and part-time campus-based programme is designed for professionals and recent graduates in humanities, medical, health, social care and policy fields as well as staff in the voluntary sector and creative practitioners.

About our programme

The programme offers a unique perspective within the embryonic interdisciplinary field of health humanities.

You will have the opportunity to undertake a programme that brings arts and humanities knowledge and practices to bear upon health and wellbeing in relation to, for example:

  • patient empowerment
  • self-reflection in health professionals and policymakers
  • the impact upon bodily markers of health

You will explore how performing and fine arts, film, literature and other art forms offer creative and intellectually stimulating ways of (re)conceptualising and (re)presenting health, illness and disability, and are especially good at enriching knowledge of individual and community experiences of health and illness while also challenging structural issues in society.

Innovative, experiential and collaborative approaches will encourage ‘hands-on’ learning, acknowledging and encouraging the expression of personal experiences in the co-construction of Health Humanities and Arts knowledge.

Programme content

Primarily campus-based, you will be able to attend a limited number of online learning courses subject to availability.

The content of the programme will include:

  • a core course on Humanities and Arts-Informed Research Methods in the Social Sciences
  • a range of related existing courses within the School and University
  • a dissertation in which students will have scope to develop creative, humanities or arts-inflected research and collaborative approaches to matters of health and well-being

You will also form part of the University of Edinburgh’s new cutting-edge research Centre for Creative-Relational Inquiry, which brings together a dynamic interdisciplinary network of researchers and practitioners.

The programme team has a broad range of professional experience as both health practitioners and as leading researchers in the field of health.

This programme comprises 2 semesters of taught compulsory courses, optional courses and a dissertation.

Most courses are taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and tutorials. The content of seminars and tutorials varies but often consists of presentations, discussions and interactive sessions using action-based learning approaches.

Depending on staff availability, courses may also involve a range of more innovative teaching scenarios such as:

  • documenting with film
  • acting workshops
  • participating in online forums

Students will benefit from the diverse expertise and creative research methods of staff, informed by staff members’ varied disciplinary backgrounds and experiences of working in the field and with different cultures.

The programme is committed to pushing boundaries of ‘traditional’ learning, teaching and research. Imaginative approaches are actively encouraged.

(Revised 29 March 2024 to update programme structure description)

The programme will equip you with knowledge and understanding of:

  • theoretical understandings of health and well-being
  • approaches linking the creative and the artistic with health and well-being
  • debates about research and research evidence in the field of social science research
  • transferable interpersonal, conceptual and analytical skills, including critical thinking, self-evaluation and research

Graduates can use this programme’s training and experience to enhance their career in a related profession such as health care, social work, nursing or education.

Increasingly, employers are seeking masters qualifications from applicants for practitioner and management roles and graduates are well positioned for these opportunities.

A wide range of career opportunities and specialities are open to graduates of the MSc Health Humanities & Arts including:

  • health policy
  • health management
  • science and medical journalism
  • bioethics
  • medical sociology
  • medical anthropology
  • health advocacy
  • art history
  • heritage

These entry requirements are for the 2024/25 academic year and requirements for future academic years may differ. Entry requirements for the 2025/26 academic year will be published on 1 Oct 2024.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent.

If you do not meet the academic entry requirements, we may still consider your application if you have relevant work experience and submit a Personal Statement demonstrating a high level of motivation, and indicating why you wish to take this particular study route.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

Regardless of your nationality or country of residence, you must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic: total 7.0 with at least 6.5 in each component. We do not accept IELTS One Skill Retake to meet our English language requirements.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Home Edition): total 100 with at least 23 in each component. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • C1 Advanced (CAE) / C2 Proficiency (CPE): total 185 with at least 176 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with passes in all four components.
  • PTE Academic: total 70 with at least 62 in each component.

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, Trinity ISE or PTE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries (non-MESC).

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than five years old* at the beginning of your programme of study. (*Revised 05 March 2024 to extend degree validity to five years.)

Find out more about our language requirements:

Read our general information on tuition fees and studying costs:

UK government postgraduate loans

If you live in the UK, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan from one of the UK’s governments.

The type and amount of financial support you are eligible for will depend on:

  • your programme
  • the duration of your studies
  • your tuition fee status

Programmes studied on a part-time intermittent basis are not eligible.

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • The University of Edinburgh
  • School of Health in Social Science
  • Medical School, Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG

The School of Health in Social Science operates a gathered field approach to PGR applications - this means that all complete applications which satisfy our minimum entry requirements will be held until the nearest deadline and an admissions panel will meet to consider all applications received together after that date.

The application deadlines and dates for decision are listed in the table below. In order to ensure full consideration of your application, we ask that you submit your complete application including all supporting documentation by these dates.

More information about what will be considered a complete application and how to apply can be found on our School website:

Application deadlines Places awarded
1 13 November 2023 | mid-January 2024
2 22 April 2024 | mid-June 2024

Your reference can be submitted as part of the online application form, completed via the ‘Apply’ section above.

Your reference must be specific to your application, on headed paper, signed by the referee, and dated within the last 6 months. Your reference can be uploaded directly by your referee, or you can upload it yourself.

We must receive all the information before the deadline for your application to be considered.

If your online application is not complete by the application deadline it will be rejected. If this happens, you can submit another application for a later application deadline.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • The University of Edinburgh
  • School of Health in Social Science
  • Medical School, Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG