Master of Science in Veterinary Epidemiology


Program Description

This course aims to provide an understanding of the conceptual basis of epidemiology and training in essential methodological skills for the conduct of epidemiological studies in animal populations. This course draws on the combined strengths of the School and the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) in all aspects of animal health and production. It also presents an excellent opportunity to learn from epidemiologists and policymakers at the heart of government (in the UK Government Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and its executive agency, the Veterinary Laboratories Agency (VLA).

There is a shortage of trained veterinary epidemiologists and there are excellent career opportunities in a variety of organisations including Ministries of Agriculture & Food; Veterinary Investigation Laboratories; Animal Disease Research Institutes; Animal Health Trusts; Veterinary Faculties in Universities and International Organisations concerned with global health (DFID, FAO, WHO, OIE etc).


By the end of this course students will be able to: design and implement epidemiological studies and surveillance systems; analyse and interpret data from epidemiological studies; undertake risk analysis and apply this to animal health economics; apply epidemiological principles to disease control within animal and human populations; give pragmatic advice on animal health linked to welfare, production and public health; and communicate effectively on the health of animal and human populations to a range of audiences, including the general public, farmers, researchers, politicians and other key policymakers.

Term 1

All students take the compulsory modules and usually take the recommended modules. Compulsory: Extended Epidemiology; Epidemiological Aspects of Laboratory Investigation; Surveillance of Animal Health & Production; Statistics for EPH; Data Management for Epidemiological Studies; Communication Skills in Epidemiology.
Recommended: Public Health Lecture Series. Optional: Epidemiology in Context; Introduction to Computing.

Terms 2 and 3

Students take a total of six study modules, one from each timetable slot. Five modules are compulsory and are listed below.

C1: Animal Health Economics.

C2: Statistical Methods in Epidemiology.

D1: : Applied risk assessment and management.

D2: Epidemiology & Control of Communicable Diseases.

E1: Modelling & the Dynamics of Infectious Diseases; Genetic Epidemiology; Methods of Vector Control (recommended modules).

E2: Advanced Statistical Methods in Veterinary Epidemiology.

Project Report

Following the written exams in June students will have a period of about two months in which to complete a project on a topic in veterinary epidemiology.

Course Duration

Full-time for one calendar year or part-time over two calendar years.
Part-time students are expected to attend the School at least two days each week and should discuss this with the Course Director if offered a place.

Entrance Requirements

A recognized undergraduate degree in veterinary science, biological science, mathematics or statistics together with relevant post-graduation experience.

How to Apply for MSc Veterinary Epidemiology

Application forms and further information may be obtained from:
The Graduate School,
Royal Veterinary College,
Royal College Street,
London NW1 0UT.
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7468 5134
Fax: +44 (0) 20 7468 5060

Last updated May 2019

About the School

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