Health and Wellbeing MA

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What is special about this course?

The MA Health and Wellbeing is designed to meet the career development needs of health and social care professionals in the UK.

The course will increase your awareness of the social, technological, economic, political and environmental changes taking place within health and social care, whether in the public, private or voluntary sectors, enabling you to take your career to the next stage.

You will study core modules in the development of local, national and international health and social care policy, the influence of sociology, psychology and ethics on our understanding of health and wellbeing, the issues of health and social care provision in remote and rural areas as well as gaining skills in research methods.

You will study part time through fully-supported online learning, with lectures, tutorials and other materials accessible via the university’s virtual learning environment (VLE).  You will receive regular support from your tutors and peers via online discussions, telephone and email; whichever suits you best.

Special features

  • The course is delivered online which means you can fit your studies around your work and personal commitments wherever you are in the world
  • The course content contributes to the development of the core dimensions in the NHS Knowledge and Skills Framework (KSF): communication; personal and people development; health, safety and security; service improvement; quality; and equality and diversity
  • You will also have the opportunity to study modules in more specialised areas, such as child and adolescent mental health, diabetes, informatics in health and social care, patient safety in health and social care environments and lean quality improvement methodology
  • Students are encouraged to undertake research in relation to their specific interest or in relation to their employment for the dissertation module
  • Students can complete the university’s Skills and Employability Award and gain recognition (not academic credit) for a range of activities you take part in addition to your studies to help you stand out from the crowd and demonstrate the skills you have, prepare for a real interview and impress prospective employers

Entry requirements

  • 2:1 honours degree, or equivalent OR 
  • Postgraduate diploma award or a professional qualification recognised as being equivalent to an honours degree
  • Applicants with a 2:2 honours degree or below, an ordinary degree or DipHE in a relevant subject, plus relevant professional experience may also be considered through successful completion of the admissions essay
  • Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and/or Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) may also be considered
  • All students should be in employment and/or engaged in voluntary activities


*Funding support notice*

Postgraduate Loans (SAAS) (Scottish domiciled and EU students)

Loans for tuition fees are available from SAAS for eligible Scotland domiciled and EU students, and loans for living costs for eligible Scottish students.

Access routes


Core modules are:

  • Policy into practice
  • Individual and social influences on health
  • You will also choose one option module from those listed in the PgDip 


If you wish to progress to the MA, the core modules are:

  • Challenges and practice solutions in remote and rural areas
  • Qualitative inquiry
  • You will also choose one option module from those listed below

Alternatively, if you do not wish to continue to masters level you can study the first core module (Challenges and practice solutions in remote and rural areas) and two options from the list below.

Option modules include:

  • Advanced diabetes
  • Child and adolescent mental health
  • Developing communities
  • Disability and society
  • Enabling self-management: developing practice
  • Enabling self-management: leading change
  • Ethics in health and wellbeing
  • Informatics in health and social care
  • Introduction to patient safety in integrated health and social care environment
  • Introduction to Lean quality improvement in health and social care
  • Personality disorder: enhancing knowledge, developing skills and improving practice
  • Supporting self-management in mental health: enhancing knowledge, developing skills and improving practice


To achieve the award of MA Health and Wellbeing you must complete a research dissertation.

How will I study my course?

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update

As your course was designed to be fully online and has run successfully for many years in this way, we can confirm that there will be no change to how the course will be delivered next year. You will study through supported online learning using the university's virtual learning environment. You will also have an online induction at the start of the course and will be able to meet your fellow students, lecturers and personal academic tutor through video conferencing.
  • You will study through supported online learning using the university's virtual learning environment (VLE)
  • Part-time (structured) – 60 credits in an academic year
  • Part-time (unstructured) – less than 60 credits in an academic year
  • We also strongly recommend that you attend a one and a half day face-to-face induction at the university's postgraduate induction weekend at the beginning of September
  • Assessment is varied and includes online multiple choice questions, reflective portfolio, discussion board contributions, essays and reports, case study analysis, collaborative project, electronic and poster presentations, critique of a journal paper, research proposal and dissertation

    How long will my course last?

    • Part-time (structured) (MA): 3 years @ 20-30 hours per week
    • Part-time (unstructured) (MA): 6 years @ 10-15 hours per week

    The number of hours per week indicates the total number of hours you should dedicate to the course, which includes time spent in discussion with tutors and your own time spent on individual study and research.

    Where can I study my course?

    • Lews Castle College UHI - You can study this fully online programme from anywhere in the world. You will be enrolled and supported by staff at Lews Castle College.

    Start date

    • September
    • January


    Fees payable for this online postgraduate course depend on your assessed fee status:

    2020-21Scottish (SC) and EU (EU)*Rest of UK (RUKO ) and EU (EUO**) International (INTO)**
    Per module (20 credits) £560 £650 £980
    Postgraduate certificate (3 modules, 60 credits) £1,680 £1,950 £2,940
    Postgraduate diploma (6 modules, 120 credits) £3,360 £3,900 £5,880
    Masters degree (6 modules + dissertation) £5,000 £5,850 £8,820
    2019-20Scottish (SC) and EU (EU)*Rest of UK (RUKO ) and EU (EUO**) International (INTO)**
    Per module (20 credits) £560 £650 £960
    Postgraduate certificate (3 modules, 60 credits) £1,680 £1,950 £2,880
    Postgraduate diploma (6 modules, 120 credits) £3,360 £3,900 £5,760
    Masters degree (60 modules + dissertation) £5,000 £5,850 £8,640

    *EU students with a term-time address in Scotland.

    ** EU or international students studying from their own country.

    Fees are payable in advance each academic year unless otherwise agreed.

    This course is not open to international students requiring Student Route visa sponsorship to study in the UK


    From 2017, eligible Scotland domiciled students studying full time for any taught postgraduate course up to full Masters level can access loans up to 10,000 from the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS). This comprises a tuition fee loan up to £5,500 and a non-income assessed living cost loan of £4,500. EU students studying full time can apply for a tuition fee loan up to £5500.

    Part-time students undertaking any taught postgraduate course over two years up to Masters level who meet the residency eligibility can apply for a for a tuition fee loan up to £2,750 per year.

    Full details can be found on the SAAS website. Applications for loans open in April.

    Students from the rest of the UK who meet the eligibility requirements may be able to apply for a loan from the Student Loan Company

    External scholarships and financial support may be available. Contact Lews Castle College UHI for more information.

    Additional Costs

    • Travel and accommodation costs for the induction weekend
    • Dissertation printing costs (approx. £100.00)

    What can I do on completion of my course?

    Once you have completed your MA Health and Wellbeing course, NHS staff currently on bands 5 and 6 of the NHS Career Framework Ladder can progress to bands 7 and 8.

    Completion of this course will also lead to enhanced employment opportunities.

    Can I progress into further study?

    Progression to PhD study may be possible.

    Is there more information available online?

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    What our students, graduates and staff say

    The MA Health and Wellbeing course is a well thought out programme for anyone working within health provision, and the ability to tailor it to your own speciality is invaluable. This course will give you the skills and knowledge to provide evidence-based health care. The ability to study online, with the support of the university's tutors, makes the course flexible enough to study alongside work and family commitments at a pace that is achievable.

    Susan Macaulay, graduate, MA Health and Wellbeing.

    The MA Health and Wellbeing course is an exceptionally well laid out programme. It is ideal for anyone working within health and social care as all the topics are contemporary and relevant. The programme has allowed me the flexibility to study while working full time and continue with family commitments. I have gained skills and knowledge that have opened doors and are invaluable to me in my role within health education. The university tutors are approachable and fully engage with students at every step of the learning journey – they provide a truly supportive and collaborative learning environment. My next step is the dissertation and I look forward to the challenge!

    Mandy Hobbs, student, MA Health and Wellbeing.


    Reflecting back several months after finishing my Masters I find myself missing studying. I have no regrets at all. Completing the MA Health & Well-being at the University of Highlands and Islands (UHI) has only ever been positive for me. Completing a Masters has provided me with so much more than the qualification; it was something I very much wanted to achieve and I am especially proud of the achievement. The discipline to complete this Masters has actually enriched all parts of my life.

    My independence and confidence have allowed me to be much more confident in my own ability and not requiring approval or constant feedback. If I don’t know something, I now have the skills to know how to find out. My writing ability has significantly improved and I am proud of the academic work I can now produce. From the time management and organising myself prospectively I am delighted with my ability to use time effectively especially with a young family. As a busy working mum studying online allowed me to have “my thing” that fitted round family and work needs. One of the most important things I think I have witnessed is my curiosity and ability to learn and it is almost the more you learn the more you realise you don’t know but you are provided with advanced skills developing the ability to think and this totally has facilitated my ability to analyse, synthesise, conceptualise to develop an argument to think and write critically. One of the strengths of the MA Health & Wellbeing is the detailed feedback from lecturers that allows you as a student to develop and progress.

    Ruth Barclay-Paterson, graduate, MA Health and Wellbeing.

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    Thank you for your interest in studying Health and Wellbeing MA with us.

    If you are ready to apply, please start your application below by selecting when you would like to start your course. This will take you to the UCAS website or our online application system.

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