Public Health (MSP), M.Sc.

  • Application Deadline
  • 24 months
  • Tuition
    Tuition (Year)
    Tuition (Year)
  • English, Spanish
Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona ,
The general aim of the programme is for students to gain the necessary abilities in order to deal with health problems and their determinants from the point of view of the population, and restore people's health by means of collective actions and the provision of services to protect and promote health.
  • Overview
  • Programme outline
  • Key facts
  • Admission requirements
  • Fees and funding


The primary objective of the master's programme in Public Health is to enable students to understand health and disease processes and their determinants from the point of view of the population and to address health issues by means of collective interventions to promote, protect and restore health.

Barcelona's master's programme in Public Health was launched in 1989. Since 2006, it has been an interuniversity programme offered jointly by Pompeu Fabra University (UPF) and the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB). Today, it aspires to international excellence in the training of public health professionals.


The programme's overall objective is for students to acquire the necessary skills to tackle health issues and their determinants from the point of view of the population and to promote and restore people's health by means of collective actions and the provision of services to protect and promote health.

These general skills include the ability to carry out the following public health activities:
  • Identify the health needs of the population.
  • Develop health policies and social responses to maintain, protect and promote health.
  • Ensure the provision of healthcare services.
  • Acquire the basic knowledge required to conduct epidemiological and public health research.
Who is it for?

The master's programme in Public Health is aimed at professionals and holders of a university degree or diploma - especially in the life sciences (medicine, nursing, biology, veterinary medicine, etc.), environmental sciences, statistics, economics, sociology, chemistry or pharmacy, among others - seeking to obtain the necessary knowledge and training to work in any area of public health.

Programme Structure

Students may choose between two course types - professional and research -both of which entail the same course load (120 credits in two academic years). Although both course types share a set of core subjects, each one also includes specific subjects. Students moreover have the possibility of designing their own specialization track based on optional subjects and, thus, ultimately determine their own tailored course of study.

In the first year, students must take the core subjects, the compulsory subjects for their chosen specialization, and part of the specialization module (optional subjects for the programme). In the second year, they must complete their master's degree final project (thesis), the professional internship, two compulsory subjects and the remainder of the specialization module (optional subjects or credits from external programmes).


To earn the master's degree in Public Health, students must successfully complete a total of 120 credits: 76 credits' worth of theoretical subjects and 44 credit's worth of practical ones.

Theoretical subjects:
  • The programme includes two compulsory modules that are common to both tracks: M1. Core disciplines in public health (18 credits) and M2. Core methods in public health (24 credits). Each track also has an additional 12-credit compulsory module: M3. Professional or M4. Research. Finally, the programme contains a module consisting of optional subjects and seminars (M5. Specialization), from amongst which students must successfully complete at least 12 credits the first year and 10 credits the second.
Practical subjects:
  • These subjects are compulsory for all students on the programme and are offered at collaborating institutions in the field of public health.They include two types of activities: an internship (M6. Practicum, 14 credits) and a research paper, which must be presented and publicly defended and which will be assessed by a panel of experts (M7. Master's degree final project, 30 credits).

The internship lasts two and a half months and is worth 14 credits. It is carried out at the main public health centres and services of the local health system. It is compulsory for all students, regardless of their chosen track, and it is unpaid.

Master's Degree Final Project

The generic objective of the master's degree final project is the completion of a thesis, which accounts for a significant portion of the programme's curricular course load (30 credits and 750 hours of study). The main objective is the acquisition of practical experience with the methods of study in the field of public health.

The master's programme in Public Health collaborates with the most important public health institutions in the area to allow students to carry out their projects in a suitable environment. These institutions include, among others, the Catalan Ministry of Health, the Barcelona Public Health Agency (ASPB), the Catalan Institute of Oncology (ICO), the Catalan Agency for Health Technology and Research Assessment (AATRM), the Catalan Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL), the Catalan Healthcare and Social Services Consortium (CSC), the Catalan Institute of Health Studies (IES), the Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute (IMIM), the Jordi Gol Institute for Primary Care Research (IDIAP Jordi Gol), and the Barcelona Centre for International Health Research (CRESIB). The institutions undertake to host students for eight months, on a part-time basis, and to provide them with the necessary resources and a tutor to supervise them.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Full-time duration 24 months
  • Study intensity Full-time
  • Credits
    120 ECTS
  • Languages
    • Partially taught in English
    • Partially taught in Spanish
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus
  • Partnership
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In order to be admitted to the master's degree in Master in Public Health candidates must submit the following documents:
  • Official undergraduate degree/diploma (or a bachelor's degree, a degree in engineering or architecture, diplomas, technical engineering and technical architecture diplomas, or, for foreign qualifications, the equivalent qualification awarded by an accredited higher education institution) and the academic transcriptof the accredited official training in accordance with UPF's regulations governing the assessment of academic transcripts weighted according to the average grade at the university of origin. Degrees in any academic field of study will be accepted.
  • Curriculum Vitae in Spanish, Catalan or English.
  • A letter of motivation in Spanish, English or Catalan stating the candidate's interest in following the master's programme (600 to 800 words).
  • Proof of English language (level B2)
  • Proof of Spanish language (level B2) (for those whose language is not Spanish)

In case you would like to be exempted from accrediting any language because you are a native speaker or you have studied in that language, it is necessary for you to upload a brief letter justifying the reasons why you request to be exempted from this requirement.

  • Two letters of recommendation (one of which must be academic).
    In order to optimise the treatment and security of the recommendation letters, the candidate will have to request those via the online application system, where he/she will need to indicate the e-mail adress of the person/the persons he/she wishes to be recommended by. That person will receive an e-mail indicating that the candidate wishes a recommenation letter from him/her. The letter will be uploaded by the referee in the online application system. Non-institutional addresses such as *yahoo, *gmail, *hotmail, etc... will not be accepted.
  • Identity Card or Passport.

Tuition Fee Per Year

  • EUR 4092 International
  • EUR 3301 EU/EEA

Students UE: € 3,301.8 | Non UE students: € 4,092 € (1 academic year)


Scholarships and grants

Pompeu Fabra University offers two grants covering part of the programme's tuition fee.

Students may also apply for grants offered directly by the collaborating institutions, among which special attention should be called to the Barcelona Public Health Agency and the Catalan Healthcare and Social Services Consortium. These grants cover between 50% and 100% of the price of the tuition fee and require students to carry out their master's degree final project at the awarding institution.

As a new feature, the programme is also accepting applications for the Manel Nebot grant, which covers the full tuition fee for the master's programme.

For information on other available financial aid for master's programmes, see

StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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