Diabetes (Distance Learning), M.Sc.

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  • English (take IELTS)
The programme in Diabetes, Cardiff University has been established to equip healthcare professionals with an interest in diabetes with a sound knowledge of the subject. The course aims to offer knowledge and expertise in the pathophysiology and clinical management of diabetes.
  • Overview
  • Programme outline
  • Key facts
  • Admission requirements
  • Fees and funding


The course is a development of the Diabetes Research Unit which has an international reputation for teaching and research in Diabetes. The programme seeks to encourage critical thinking and improve the understanding of diabetes and diabetes related topics. Students will be equipped not only with current factual knowledge but will also learn strategies which will be of lasting value in dealing with future advances in therapy and management strategy.

The Postgraduate Diploma in Diabetes is a part-time, on-line distance learning course based on the International Diabetes Foundation Curriculum. It is split into six modules over two years.

Candidates attend initial introductory lectures at the beginning of each year with the course then continuing online.

The majority of students are self funded, though some may obtain bursaries from supporting organisations.

The MSc in Diabetes, Cardiff University is designed specifically for Health Care Professionals who have completed the Diploma in Diabetes with Cardiff University and wish to pursue further studies in this field.

The part-time, distance learning MSc runs over a period of 12 months. The MSc will begin with an introductory section (approx. 12 weeks) where candidates will be able to develop their knowledge & skills in analysis methodologies, critical appraisal & scientific writing. In keeping with the diploma teaching design, the candidates will initially be in groups of 8-10 where learning will be facilitated by expert tutors.

After completing the 12 week introductory stage above, students will proceed to writing their Masters dissertation of up to 20,000 words over the remainder of the year (approx 40 weeks). This can be in the form of either (a) primary data analysis using an existing dataset that either the student or the supervisor has access to, or (b) a systematic literature review with appraisal of published evidence, leading to guideline development. Each student will have an individual supervisor who will provide guidance throughout the year. The student & supervisor will maintain regular contact either via the MSc website, or other means of communication as previously deemed appropriate by both, e.g. e-mail, teleconference, Skype etc. Students will be expected to present a 2 page outline of the project by week 8 of the introductory stage with final confirmation of project details with the supervisor by the end of week 6 of the dissertation phase. The final dissertation will be submitted for marking by the end of week 40 with regular progress updates to be provided at set intervals in the interim.

Successful completion of the complete programme above will result in the award of 60 Level 7 (Masters) credits and the degree of MSc in Diabetes from Cardiff University.


Facts and figures

Cardiff University is a member of the Russell Group, a group of 24 leading UK research intensive universities.

We are the 12th largest university in the UK in terms of student numbers with a total estimated income for 2013/14 of £460M.

Our student community

We have 26,269 students enrolled, representing over 100 countries.

  • 18,685 undergraduates
  • 7,584 postgraduates
  • 5,090 international students
  • 1,000 students volunteer in the local community each year
  • 170,000 alumni across the globe from more than 180 countries

Student numbers confirmed for 2012/13.

Research and innovation

We have a world-leading research community with a strong and broad research base:

  • our research contract awards have a total value of £500M
  • we have won five Queen's Anniversary Prizes
  • £20M has been invested in Cardiff University/Fusion IP spinouts
  • we are 8th in the UK for interactions with SMEs since 2008*
  • we rank 6th in the UK for estimated turnover (£43M) of all active graduate start-ups since 2008
  • our researchers include two Nobel Prize winners - Professor Sir Martin Evans and Professor Robert Huber.

*Encouraging a British Invention Revolution, Sir Andrew Witty, October 2013.

Graduate destinations

Our graduates are sought-after by employers - more so than most other major UK universities.

  • 94% of graduates enter employment or professional training/postgraduate study shortly after graduating
  • 78% obtain graduate level employment, placing the University 16th in the UK for this measure

Based on HESA Destination of Leavers in Higher Education survey.

Programme Structure

Module list:

  • Module 1 Principles of diabetes
  • Module 2 Diabetes care in practice lifestyle management
  • Module 3 Diabetes care in practice therapeutics
  • Module 4 Diabetes in special circumstances
  • Module 5 Diabetic complications pathophysiology
  • Module 6 Diabetic complications management

Other components of the course:

  • The introductory lectures and case discussion help to introduce the key concepts of the modules, allowing course organisers and students to discuss the role of the subsequent on-line learning.
  • Group activity is aimed at developing students skills in generating and evaluating guidelines for the care of people with diabetes. For each module students will work in small groups focussing on various aspects of the subject. The group will develop a document and each individual will evaluate the work with consideration of their own clinical care.
  • An on-line learning portfolio is used by students to record and reflect on the module as it progresses. Reflection is an important aspect of the course encouraging the clinicians to spend time considering how their practice compares to the themes being discussed in the module.
  • Real life case problems are available for students to consider and answer. Explanations to the case problems are given and students will be expected to discuss the concepts being tested. Engagement in case problems is highly motivational for students and is perceived as being valid for their clinical work.
  • Summative assessments of case problems will be presented to directly test the clinical reasoning and knowledge objectives of the module.
  • On-line, threaded discussion groups facilitate conversation between students and tutors are an integral part of the course to allow students to be assessed on their contribution to and comprehension of the course.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Start date
  • Study intensity Part-time
    • Intensity Flexible
    • Duration part-time 36 months
    • Part-time variant
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    • Time flexibility
      Fully structured
    • Attendance
      No Attendance
    • Teacher support
      Continuous support with feedback on request
    • Student interaction
      Online group works/assignments

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Academic Requirements

Suitable for medical practitioners who have clinical responsibility for people with diabetes. In particular, it is aimed at doctors who will be future leaders in the management of diabetes in both primary and secondary care.

Candidates should possess an initial degree in Medicine. Good English language skills are essential and it is a course requirement that students have access to a computer which is connected to the internet.

Tuition Fee Per Year

  • GBP 4800 International
  • GBP 3780 EU/EEA


Cardiff University has committed to invest a total of £500,000 in this high value competitive scholarship scheme to support Home and EU students who are planning to start an eligible full-time master programme in September 2014.

The Scholarships are each worth a minimum of £3,000 and will be awarded in the form of a tuition fee discount.

StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships Students can 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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