MSc/PGDip/PGCert Health Informatics (UCL/UoM Joint Award) / Course details

Year of entry: 2020

Course description

This programme focuses on how information and information technology are used in the organisation and delivery of healthcare.

Our MSc in Health Informatics (jointly awarded by UCL and The University of Manchester) offers an innovative and exciting training in a uniquely challenging and important field.

Our blended learning MSc will equip you with the skills to work in this exciting field by providing:

  • a unique combination of personal learning, theoretical challenge and practical application;
  •  blended approach which combines face-to-face contact and distance learning, harnessing the advantages of both across two campus;
  • flexible study allowing you to complete the programme full-time in one year, or flexibly over up to five years;
  • engagement with leading thinkers in the field across the UK and internationally;
  • participation in a thriving network of academics, clinicians and informatics professionals.

Our programme is suitable for health professionals currently in work or graduate students.

UCL and The University of Manchester are uniquely placed to provide the health informatics training required for a modern health service.

You will have access to the largest UK health informatics faculty in UK, including researchers who develop and apply solutions in a range of healthcare settings.

Both institutions sit in two of the largest regional health economies in the UK, hosting the greatest concentration of NHS global digital exemplar programmes. Six professors and 13 senior academics contribute to the programme, alongside NHS and industry professionals.


The programme aims to:

  • provide you with the skills to manage healthcare systems;
  • provide you with an understanding of the healthcare system, from treatment of individuals to the wider population;
  • emphasise the importance of informatics in patient driven healthcare;
  • embed key health informatics principles, concepts and skills in students' working practices;
  • combine leadership and transferable skills with technical skills training.

Special features

The programme is delivered via blended learning, which combines online learning and short - 3 day - sessions on campus either at UCL or The University of Manchester.

Though designed to suit students in full- time work, it is also offered to students who register as full-time and complete all elements of the programme in a single academic year.

The programme will encourage intellectual curiosity, creativity, and critical thinking. It will teach transferable skills for lifelong learning and cultivate reflective practice. The content reflects the changing needs of healthcare.

We see learning and teaching as collaborative 'knowledge construction', which recognises the contribution of all stakeholders (academic staff, service users and carers, and students).

This is demonstrated in the programme through contributions made by these stakeholders, providing case-studies, examples, invited seminars and participation in group work.

We will promote translational thinking so that informatics knowledge, know-how, skills and understanding are applied to new health challenges to ensure that informatics is embedded as an enabler of change.

The structure of the programme ensures that you will share this knowledge with each other and learn to work in teams.

Teaching and learning

Programme delivery

This programme is mostly delivered online with 3 day problem-based face-to-face workshops on campus hosted either at The University of Manchester or UCL.

Coursework and assessment

You will use a number of assessed and non-assessed activities to develop key skills and expand your knowledge base. There is a mix of assessment: written assignments, exam, group work and other activities such as moderated discussion boards.

Course content for year 1

A ll units are available for full-time students in Year 1. Full-time students will be required to take the four core modules and four optional modules, as outlined below.

The first year of the programme for part-time students consists of four core modules:

  • Essentials of Informatics for Healthcare Systems;
  • Health Information Systems;
  • Standards and Interoperability;
  • Principles of Health Data Analytics.

Course content for year 2

Part-time students would then be required to take four modules from the following six:

  • Usable Health Systems Design;
  • Citizen Driven Informatics;
  • Decision Support Systems;
  • Patient Safety and Clinical Risk;
  • Learning Health Systems;
  • Modern Information Engineering.

The second year modules have been organised into themes from those that explore more technical topics health informatics (Modern Information Engineering), those that are more focussed on understanding organisations (Patient Safety and Clinical Risk).

At no point are choices restricted to a single theme.


Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: