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UCL Global Health vs LSHTM Public Health vs Edinburgh Public Health

Hello,

I've been accepted to the following programmes:
- UCL: MSc Global Health and Development
- LSHTM: MSc Public Health
- Edinburgh: MPH Public Health

I am having a hard time deciding which one to go for!

A bit of my background: I did med school at the University of Hong Kong and have been a doctor in Hong Kong since 2020. I'm thinking of a career change since I realized I'm more into a macro perspective of policies and healthcare, than hands-on and frontline medical practice (and honestly really fed up with the extremely long working hours and stress as a doctor) so I'm hoping to do a master's degree in either public health or global health and see if this is what I want to pursue instead. And since my family lives in the UK, I am considering moving here after completing the programme.

My struggles:
- Global Health vs Public Health
The multidisciplinary approach in GH&D sounds really interesting to me. But I'm not sure if it's as practical (in terms of employability and skills development) as a public health degree which is more specialized.

- Schools and cities
All of them are prestigious schools but I kinda feel like LSHTM, though being very reputable in the field, is a less popular name than the other two schools outside of health science, considering the fact that I might end up in other careers eventually. I am also really torn between London and Edinburgh!

Any thoughts? Or personal experience to share? Thank you so much!
(edited 1 year ago)
Hi, I had the same doubts regarding UCL vs LSHTM. I did not consider Edinburgh but I heard that it is equally good. The multidisciplinary approach at IGH, UCL is great and I do think one can opt for modules with a quants emphasis. You can also look up other MSc programmes at IGH (Epidemiology etc.) which might be more in tune with your requirements.
Reply 2
Original post by anthro_int5
Hi, I had the same doubts regarding UCL vs LSHTM. I did not consider Edinburgh but I heard that it is equally good. The multidisciplinary approach at IGH, UCL is great and I do think one can opt for modules with a quants emphasis. You can also look up other MSc programmes at IGH (Epidemiology etc.) which might be more in tune with your requirements.


Thanks for the advise! After going through the content of different modules I think I am more inclined to choose UCL Global Health right now. Which school did you end up choosing?
Original post by santxmas
Thanks for the advise! After going through the content of different modules I think I am more inclined to choose UCL Global Health right now. Which school did you end up choosing?


I chose UCL for the same reasons you mentioned above :smile:
Hi,
I am currently studying my MSc Global Health at the University of Southampton.
I think the answer to which course you do really depends what route you want to go down.
I share a few modules with the MSc Public Health students, but the rest of their course tends to lean more into learning about how to produce and measure policies, such as in the UK, whereas my course focuses more on the measurement of global health trends, from (as you said) a multidisciplinary approach. I have found that the people on my course are from a variety of backgrounds: sociology, environmental science, nursing, medicine, while the public health students are often doing the masters as part of their job or to get into the field of public health specifically.
I think the MSc in Global Health leads to many opportunities, such as working for NGO's, charities, in healthcare, in statistical/research roles, but is perhaps not as specialist as the MSc in Public Health, which is what will be required if you want to enter that specific area.
I am loving my degree so far and have gotten the opportunity to reach out into areas I previously hadn't, it is so broad-ranging. I have done epidemiology, research methods including quant, qual and mixed, reproductive health, ageing, and measuring trends, as some examples.
I am not sure how the UCL course compares to this but I imagine it is somewhat similar, so if you are looking for something a bit different but interesting and allowing you to focus on lots of different areas I would thoroughly recommend it!
Hope this helps,

Abbie
University of Southampton, Postgraduate Ambassador
Reply 5
Hi,

I will try to help as much I can, since I am in similar dilemma. If your goal is to work for global health initiatives and NGOs, then I personally would LSHTM they might not very popular as you think but in the field of public/global heath they are one of the best universities. Almost 50% of WHO staff studied at LSHTM. If you however, planning pursue PhD in the future then I would go with UCL, their global health PhD programme is one the best in the UK. If however, you are concerned about the living cost in London then Edinburgh is the best option out the three, beside Edinburgh have a great global health academics such as Devi Sridhar in their faculty. I noted you also didn't want to do public health both Edinburgh and LSHTM have Masters in global health policies so talk with the admission and see if you are allowed to change your course if that what you are looking for.
Reply 6
Original post by anthro_int5
I chose UCL for the same reasons you mentioned above :smile:


That’s awesome! Do you mind sharing a bit more on your experience at UCL? What you like or not like about the programme, and the career prospects (this is one of my major concerns as well as I’m planning to move to the UK afterwards to stay with my family, and I’m interested to know what jobs graduates land). Thank you so much for helping out!
Reply 7
Original post by UoS PG students
Hi,
I am currently studying my MSc Global Health at the University of Southampton.
I think the answer to which course you do really depends what route you want to go down.
I share a few modules with the MSc Public Health students, but the rest of their course tends to lean more into learning about how to produce and measure policies, such as in the UK, whereas my course focuses more on the measurement of global health trends, from (as you said) a multidisciplinary approach. I have found that the people on my course are from a variety of backgrounds: sociology, environmental science, nursing, medicine, while the public health students are often doing the masters as part of their job or to get into the field of public health specifically.
I think the MSc in Global Health leads to many opportunities, such as working for NGO's, charities, in healthcare, in statistical/research roles, but is perhaps not as specialist as the MSc in Public Health, which is what will be required if you want to enter that specific area.
I am loving my degree so far and have gotten the opportunity to reach out into areas I previously hadn't, it is so broad-ranging. I have done epidemiology, research methods including quant, qual and mixed, reproductive health, ageing, and measuring trends, as some examples.
I am not sure how the UCL course compares to this but I imagine it is somewhat similar, so if you are looking for something a bit different but interesting and allowing you to focus on lots of different areas I would thoroughly recommend it!
Hope this helps,

Abbie
University of Southampton, Postgraduate Ambassador


Thanks for the in-depth reply! Really appreciated it. And I’m glad you are enjoying the programme. I think I’m more interested in health policy and promotion, and humanitarian jobs in general, so I guess global health probably suits my aspirations better. What are your plans after graduation if you don’t mind me asking?
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by santxmas
Thanks for the in-depth reply! Really appreciated it. And I’m glad you are enjoying the programme. I think I’m more interested in health policy and promotion, and humanitarian jobs in general, so I guess global health probably suits my aspirations better. What are your plans after graduation if you don’t mind me asking?

Hi,
You're welcome, I hope it helped!
I'm really not sure about my postgrad plans but at the moment I'm focusing my job search on statistical and research roles as these are areas I have enjoyed the most. I would be interested in working for a research-based company, collecting and surveying data I think!

Abbie
University of Southampton, Postgraduate Ambassador
Reply 9
Original post by UoS PG students
Hi,
You're welcome, I hope it helped!
I'm really not sure about my postgrad plans but at the moment I'm focusing my job search on statistical and research roles as these are areas I have enjoyed the most. I would be interested in working for a research-based company, collecting and surveying data I think!

Abbie
University of Southampton, Postgraduate Ambassador


That’s awesome! I hope you land your dream job :smile:
Reply 10
Original post by Life007
Hi,

I will try to help as much I can, since I am in similar dilemma. If your goal is to work for global health initiatives and NGOs, then I personally would LSHTM they might not very popular as you think but in the field of public/global heath they are one of the best universities. Almost 50% of WHO staff studied at LSHTM. If you however, planning pursue PhD in the future then I would go with UCL, their global health PhD programme is one the best in the UK. If however, you are concerned about the living cost in London then Edinburgh is the best option out the three, beside Edinburgh have a great global health academics such as Devi Sridhar in their faculty. I noted you also didn't want to do public health both Edinburgh and LSHTM have Masters in global health policies so talk with the admission and see if you are allowed to change your course if that what you are looking for.

Unfortunately it’s not possible to change my course now. I guess I’m aiming for humanitarian jobs in NGOs, maybe with a focus on health advocacy or human rights issues, so I’m not sure if all the research-based courses are necessary, and whether a global health degree would be more ‘all-rounded’ for these jobs with more emphasis on political science etc. But you’re right that a degree from LSHTM would certainly prepare me better with more specialized jobs at big organization. I don’t think I would pursue a PhD afterwards.
So what did you choose in the end?
Original post by santxmas
That’s awesome! I hope you land your dream job :smile:


Thank you!
Hope it all works out for you, too! :smile:

Abbie
University of Southampton, Postgraduate Ambassador
Reply 12
Original post by santxmas
Hello,

I've been accepted to the following programmes:
- UCL: MSc Global Health and Development
- LSHTM: MSc Public Health
- Edinburgh: MPH Public Health

I am having a hard time deciding which one to go for!

A bit of my background: I did med school at the University of Hong Kong and have been a doctor in Hong Kong since 2020. I'm thinking of a career change since I realized I'm more into a macro perspective of policies and healthcare, than hands-on and frontline medical practice (and honestly really fed up with the extremely long working hours and stress as a doctor) so I'm hoping to do a master's degree in either public health or global health and see if this is what I want to pursue instead. And since my family lives in the UK, I am considering moving here after completing the programme.

My struggles:
- Global Health vs Public Health
The multidisciplinary approach in GH&D sounds really interesting to me. But I'm not sure if it's as practical (in terms of employability and skills development) as a public health degree which is more specialized.

- Schools and cities
All of them are prestigious schools but I kinda feel like LSHTM, though being very reputable in the field, is a less popular name than the other two schools outside of health science, considering the fact that I might end up in other careers eventually. I am also really torn between London and Edinburgh!

Any thoughts? Or personal experience to share? Thank you so much!

Congratulations! How long did it take to hear back from UCL for the MSc in Global Health and Development? Also, when did you apply?
Reply 13
Original post by BrunoTree
Congratulations! How long did it take to hear back from UCL for the MSc in Global Health and Development? Also, when did you apply?

I remember submitting my application on New Year’s Eve and got the offer after a month. Did you apply as well?
Reply 14
Original post by santxmas
I remember submitting my application on New Year’s Eve and got the offer after a month. Did you apply as well?

Yes, I did. I am still waiting to hear back. Your references were in by New Year’s Eve also?
Reply 15
Original post by santxmas
Unfortunately it’s not possible to change my course now. I guess I’m aiming for humanitarian jobs in NGOs, maybe with a focus on health advocacy or human rights issues, so I’m not sure if all the research-based courses are necessary, and whether a global health degree would be more ‘all-rounded’ for these jobs with more emphasis on political science etc. But you’re right that a degree from LSHTM would certainly prepare me better with more specialized jobs at big organization. I don’t think I would pursue a PhD afterwards.
So what did you choose in the end?

Honestly it took me two months to make a decision, for context I got an offer to study MPH at Glasgow uni, Edinburgh uni and Imperial college of London (with Global health stream). I declined my offer for Imperial today even tho that where I wanted to go initially. However, London is very expensive city, on top of the expensive of posgraduate courses plus the cost the living there, I decide its not worth it, especially given that I am a Scottish student and both Glasgow & Edinburgh uni are near where I live and I won't need to move out or stress about finding a decent accomdation in London. so I decided to go with Edinburgh university. Let me how it goes for you and If you decide to go to Edinburgh we can help each other.

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