Public Health Programme

Public Health research and practice is at the heart of tackling many of the current threats to health. If you wish to become an agent of change in health status for individuals or communities, or a public health leader and/or are aiming to progress to senior roles at either operational, policy or commissioning in your organisation, our Public Health programme will help you develop skills and competences you need to enhance your career prospects.

Next start date

07 January 2019




10 courses offered on a modular basis. Each course runs for eight weeks.

How to apply

Complete our online application form

Fees per course

US$ 200
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Programme overview

Our Public Health MPH, PG Dip, and Certificate are programmes that address the determinants of health and the health concerns that affect our society the most: 

  •  the epidemiological transition
  • non-communicable and communicable diseases
  • rapid international and intercontinental spread of diseases
  • massive population movements and gatherings
  • the lifestyle-related ill health
  • diseases and illnesses closely related to poverty
  • inadequate access to and utilisation of preventive health care
  • emergent and re-emergent diseases of epidemic potential
  • diseases of nutrition
  • pollution-related illnesses
  • preventable diseases
  • conflict-related ill health, water and sanitation
  • occupational and maternal health
  • neonatal, child, adolescent and youth health
  • the health issues of ageing.

They also address issues of health system performance and health service delivery.

Target students

Our Pubic Health programme is for:

  • graduates of health and biomedical sciences who wish to specialize in public health
  • social sciences
  • health advocates and those from other relevant disciplines interested in working in the health sector
  • employees of NGOs, embassies, and/or health organizations, who wish to add public health skills to their list of core competencies or to advance their academic career.


Entry requirements

You must have completed a Bachelors degree with an honours (at least 2nd Class Lower) in a subject associated with or of relevance to Public Health from a recognised institution. 

You will also be required to pass our online Graduate Admission Test. 

Current or past experience of working in a public health, health promotion role or a health NGO is an advantage. The course is also open to recent graduates with Bachelors degree intending to pursue academic careers to PhD in future.

Nationalities represented
Average years work experience
Average age of our students

Why study with us

You will have an opportunity to study and consult with an international staff made up of leading academics, practitioners and researchers in Public Health from 22 countries.

VUU’s Public Health class also consists of a diverse, international and friendly group of  professionals who, together, make a rich social and professional network that allows exchange of broad experiences, knowledge, and practices for you to engage in future for consultancies, career and job opportunities.

Designed with busy people in mind, the programme is delivered 100% online giving you the opportunity to study at the convenience of your home, office or smartphone, saving you the trouble of travelling to the lecture room or even leaving your home country. 

The modular nature of the programme and the favourable teaching hours allow you to attend only those courses that you can afford in a year, thus offering you the opportunity to learn while you earn and fitting your studies around your work, family and life commitments, without taking a career break.

Our application process is free of charge. Our fees payment schedule is flexible, allowing you to pay in modular instalments.

International students can even pay in local currency. We have five intakes a year (January, March, May, August and October), thus allowing you to join at your earliest convenience. We also have opportunities for scholarships and bursaries, as well as partnerships for internship and mentoring with leaders in the relevant industry of interest. In addition, you can obtain a Postgraduate Certificate within 12 months.

We have five intakes per year

Programme structure

The programme consists of 10 courses offered on a modular basis over a 20-month period followed by six months to finalise the dissertation or research paper. Each course runs for eight weeks.

This course identifies and introduces the students to the key issues of current concern in public health, at global, regional and local levels. This enables the students to relate with current research and debate in Public Health.

This course equips the students with the mathematical analytical skills required to investigate the occurrence, prevalence and distribution of key health events like disease or mortality.

This course looks at the structure of health systems, how they are managed, and how they perform in order to deliver their key goals of equity and universal health coverage. It equips the students with deep understanding of policies and the policy-making process, as well as management theory as it is applied to health. 

This course introduces the students to the determinants of health and different approaches to health care delivery aimed at attaining universal health coverage. It shows the students the role of individuals and communities in the prevention of illness and maintenance of their own health.

This course equips the students with communication and social marketing skills necessary to empower individuals and communities to take charge of their own health. It starts from a broader view of health promotion, looking at the three spheres of health promotion but lays emphasis on the communication sphere as being key to promoting health.  

This course introduces the students to the science of scarcity and equips them with the understanding of the rationale behind different approaches to allocation of resources by governments. It takes them through different approaches to health financing and concerns about equity in contribution to and access to health care.

This course takes the students through the links between health, the environment and development. It shows how the environment affects both health and development, and how development efforts can affect both health and the environment. In particular, it looks at how people’s occupations and quest for development can affect their health.

This course exposes the students to the key issue of population management. It looks at the population growth and control theories, methods of population projection and the implications of unfettered population growth. Reproductive health issues, being at the heart of population management, are handled with a view to equip the students with competences to reduce maternal mortality, manage fertility, reduce adolescent pregnancies, and understand the changes in reproductive capability with aging.

This course equips the students with the philosophical understanding of the scientific inquiry process, research traditions and paradigms, as well as an understanding of the quantitative, qualitative and mixed research methods. It equips the students with practical skills in study design, data collection, data analysis and presentation, as well as scientific writing for dissemination. 

This course equips the students with an understanding of the ethical standpoints behind resource allocation and use, as well as the moral reasons for using resources for their intended purposes. It takes them through an understanding of the different forms of corruption and how to develop their high moral ground and health leaders.

Certificate students do not do research: These research outputs give the students an opportunity to wrap up their course by studying an issue of their own interest in the community or one that affects their organisation, and to apply the technical investigative and writing skills acquired during  the course. MSc students have to defend the dissertation orally online before a panel of experts.  Diploma students do not defend their research papers.

Mr. Francis Kamulegeya Country Senior Partner, PWC

We need to pioneer new approaches to educating students and training workers in the fields that will matter in a technology-enabled job market.

Up to 50% scholarship available 

How programme is delivered

Courses are delivered via the Moodle e-learning platform, which is user-friendly and does not require extensive computer knowledge. Content is uploaded for the student to read at his/her pace. 

Common spaces are provided for students to interact amongst themselves or do group work under the supervision of the tutors. Lectures are conducted online using the user-friendly Zoom software used internationally by other great universities. 

Our free online library gives access to close to 50 million resources in over 300 publisher databases.  


The tutors and students on the programme are engaged in research projects focusing on: 

  • human resources for health
  • health services management
  • refugee health
  • quality and safety of health care
  • palliative care
  • maternal, neonatal and child health
  • health financing.

VUU has equipped me with the knowledge and skills to be an all around manager in the field of health

Dr. Leonard Were

MD Manager, Public Health

Meet your head of programme

Dr. Albino Kalolo

Dr. Albino Kalolo holds a degree in medicine (MD) from the University of Dar es salaam, Tanzania. He completed a Masters of Science (MSc) in Public Health from Maastricht University in the Netherlands before undertaking a PhD in Public health from University of Heidelberg in Germany. 
He teaches Health economics and epidemiology and Biostatics modules of the MPH program of the Virtual University of Uganda. His research focuses on maternal and child health, Adolescent health, HIV/AIDS, Non-communicable diseases, Health financing reforms and implementation science. He applies mixed methods approaches in conducting research in the specific subject areas and preferably using participatory methodologies in collecting data. His specific interest in research methodologies helps him to combine qualitative and quantitative approaches in data collection and analysis. He also works as a lecturer at St. Francis University college of Health and Allied Sciences, Tanzania

Memberships and recognitions