Studying in autumn 2020 during coronavirus
Section navigation
Main Baner Image

Environmental Health MSc

Learn about the course below
January 2021
October 2021
September 2021 (EU/INT induction)
1 year full-time
2 years part-time
£9,200 (UK/EU) *
£14,000 (INT) *
Course leader
Adam Choonara

We’re planning to teach through a flexible combination of online and face to face learning for the first few months of the new academic year. If you’re thinking about starting with us in autumn 2020 or spring 2021, check back for more detail on arrangements for this course in July and August, and see our current plans for teaching and learning.

This course will now start in January 2021 as we've changed some of our teaching arrangements in response to the coronavirus outbreak. You'll get the same great learning experience with lots of support to do your best with this later start date.

This course is no longer accepting applications for 2020 entry. The next entry is 2021

Environmental health is the branch of public health concerned with how our living, working and leisure environments affect our health. It's a gripping subject to study and a fascinating field to work in. Whether you're helping improve the living conditions of society's poorest, or working with a company to improve health and safety for staff and customers, your work will have a huge, life-changing and often life-saving impact.

Why study MSc Environmental Health at Middlesex University?

Middlesex University is the largest and foremost provider of environmental health education in the UK. This course is highly work-focused, with a strong emphasis on practical laboratory work and real-life case studies and you'll be able to take advantage of our close links within the industry.

The course is centred on UK law and practice, but is designed to be flexible and provide education and training that will be valuable internationally. You will have access to a range of excellent facilities include a microbiology laboratory and pestology materials. You will be able to study specialist modules areas such as food safety, and health and safety which are particularly valued by both local authorities and the private sector.

Many of our teaching staff are chartered environmental health practitioners and under their expert guidance, previous students have done research into a wide variety of areas, including listeria in food, the effects of heavy smoking, skin lightening, water pollution and the attitudes of people living in high-rise buildings towards recycling.

Course highlights

  • The course is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, and you'll be eligible to apply for membership of the institute.
  • As a student of this course you'll receive a free electronic textbook for every module.

Find out more

Sign up now to receive more information about studying at Middlesex University London.

What will you study on the MSc Environmental Health?

This degree will cover the impact of different factors on public health, the spread and control of diseases, health protection measures, and human anatomy, physiology and toxicology. You will also explore inequality and deprivation, housing and health, and law and ethics. You will focus food safety including understand food-borne illnesses, methods of food storage and processing, legal requirements and food safety standards.

What will you gain?

As well as gaining an in-depth understanding of all five key areas of environmental health (food safety, housing, environmental protection, occupational health, and public health), you will also gain the knowledge to identify and assess health and safety risks. You will be competent in implementing measures to safeguard and improve health and safety in a variety of settings.

  • Modules

    • Public Health Leadership (15 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module takes a strategic view of public health and applies relevant policy and strategy to a range of settings. This module will provide you with theory, knowledge, skills and abilities to develop and implement strategies to improve population health and in particular explores how evidence based environmental health practice adds value to public health. It reviews how environmental health can better disseminate and promote its purposes as part of a wider public health agenda.

    • Pollution and Health Protection (15 Credits) - Compulsory

      The aim of this module is to provide you with the necessary knowledge and skills to enable you to assess, judge and determine the effects of pollution and disease-causing agents, the likely or recognised impact on humans and how this impact can be minimised through control strategies and methodologies.

    • Stressors and Vectors of Disease (15 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to interpret and analyse the range of stressors which impact act on the physical, social and human worlds and the mechanisms, points of impact and consequences for human health and well-being. It will develop your skills to critically evaluate potential and actual health outcomes, methodologies utilised in establishing causation and undertake detailed examination of the toxicological, epidemiological, and health demographics in the surveillance and prevention of communicable and non-communicable diseases. It will give you an opportunity to explore and critically appraise examples of vectors of disease, including microorganisms; their diversity  social, economic and public health significance; prevention and control.

    • Factors Affecting Risk and Strategic Risk Intervention (15 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to provide you with an overview, framework and functions of risk management in the context of cultural, legal and policy drivers and actor related factors influencing risk and strategic risk interventions, including organisational (structural and cultural positioning) and individual (resources and psychological constraints) to reveal tensions in both implementing and responding to risk.

    • Management of Workplace Safety (15 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to thoroughly appraise and evaluate the theoretical and practical aspects of identifying, managing and controlling occupational health and safety risks.

    • Interventions in Environmental Health (15 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aim to display mastery in the professional practice of environmental health through exploring the application of knowledge and skills in the development of innovative solutions to complex environmental health problems taking account of the social, psychological and physiological context in which they present themselves. It will give you the opportunity to explore available interventions across all areas of environmental health, including food safety, health and safety, housing and environmental protection, to ensure a holistic approach to professional practice.

    • Food Safety (15 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to explore and critique the theoretical and practical aspects of identifying, managing and controlling food safety risks. Also, it will thoroughly appraise the factors that determine food safety provision including legal requirements, management responsibilities, systems, and control options. The module will further develop your skills to determine and evaluate the appropriateness of legal and managerial approaches in light of current best practice, and the influence of external factors.

    • Practical Food Inspection (10 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to develop a detailed knowledge of the composition and properties of foodstuffs and the relationship with safety, fitness, and quality within an overarching public health framework.

    • Housing and Health (15 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module explores the relationship between housing, health and safety and ways in which housing, health and social care organisations can work more effectively together to deliver better health outcomes. The housing and health needs of a range of social and geographical communities will be considered with a view to developing effective, integrated, evidence-based strategies and interventions with a specific focus on the role of environmental health practitioners.

    • Research Methodology and Dissertation (60 Credits) - Compulsory

      This module aims to provide you with the analytic, scientific, organisational and management skills to conduct, write and report an MSc research project. Such skills are supported by knowledge of experimental design, quantitative and qualitative analytical techniques, presentation skills and interactive computing skills.

You can find more information about this course in the programme specification. Optional modules are usually available at levels 5 and 6, although optional modules are not offered on every course. Where optional modules are available, you will be asked to make your choice during the previous academic year. If we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, or there are staffing changes which affect the teaching, it may not be offered. If an optional module will not run, we will advise you after the module selection period when numbers are confirmed, or at the earliest time that the programme team make the decision not to run the module, and help you choose an alternative module.

How will the MSc Environmental Health be taught?

You will attend practical classes, including laboratory sessions, as well as lectures, workshops, seminars and IT sessions. Lectures will set out principles and topics, provide technical knowledge and identify links between theory and practice, as well as guiding your independent reading and study. Seminars provide an opportunity for discussion, research, practical exercises and examination of case studies, while in workshops you’ll learn how to use equipment and carry out practical inspections, audits and assessments. You will work on group and individual projects, case study analyses – some of which you’ll present to your fellow students - and laboratory experiments, as well as undertaking food examinations and visiting retailers and markets for the food safety modules.


As well as written and oral exams and your research project and dissertation, you will be assessed through practical food examinations, tests, presentations – including group presentations - essays, work portfolios, case study analyses, laboratory reports and other written assignments, including an article for publication. For your dissertation, you'll design, conduct, evaluate and present the results of your own independent research project into an area of your choosing. You will present your findings through a 12,000 word thesis and a presentation to your tutors and fellow students.

You will receive regular feedback on your work, including your assessed coursework.

  1. UK & EU
  2. International
  3. How to apply
  1. UK & EU
  2. International
  3. Additional costs
  4. Scholarships and bursaries

How can the MSc Environmental Health support your career?

The work of an environmental health practitioner is incredibly wide-ranging, covering anything from dealing with outbreaks of food poisoning or TB, to ensuring the health and welfare of farmed livestock. It is a rewarding, varied, challenging and satisfying career. Traditionally, our graduates have gone on to be public health practitioners with local authorities. This rewarding role gives you the chance to work on different sites and in different settings, and draws not only on your science background but your ability to be a good communicator and listener.

Equally, you might be interested in developing you career into research, consultancy, education or training. There are also a growing number of international opportunities which you might wish to consider.

The variety of roles available means that you will be able to work in a wide range of sectors such as:

  • The Environment Agency
  • Public Health England
  • The Food Standards Agency
  • The Health and Safety Executive
  • NHS

There are also opportunities within local authorities, housing associations, or in sectors ranging from travel to retail or waste management.

Other courses

Occupational Health and Safety and Environmental Management MSc/PGDip

Start: January 2021, October 2021, September 2021 (EU/INT induction)

Duration: 1 year full-time, 2 years part-time

Code: PGB92A

Back to top