Health Economics MSc by Research


Course facts

  • Name: Health Economics
  • Qualification: MSc by Research
  • Duration: 1 year full-time, 2 years part-time.

The MSc in Health Economics by Research programme will provide a dedicated route for high calibre students who (may have a specific research aim in mind and) are ready to carry out independent research leading to PhD level study. Alternatively it would be appropriate for students who are seeking a stand-alone research based qualification suitable for a career in research with transferable skills for graduate employment.

It is also suitable for individuals seeking to gain a formal qualification while continuing to work full-time. We offer a fully flexible study programme for full-time or part-time study, on campus or by e-learning. Our aim is to help professionals working in the area of health economics accelerate their existing careers by exploring new options within pharmacoeconomics, healthcare policy or public health economics and expanding their existing set of skills.

Research topics

CHEME is involved in a wide range of health economics activities. This section relates to some key research topics, that you may be interested in completing a project on:


  • Cost effectiveness analysis of medicines, pharmacogenetics, pharmaceutical services
  • Pharmaceutical policy, medicines use
  • Methods of economic evaluation and health technology assessment

Public health economics

  • Valuing nature, public health and the circular economy
  • Behavioural economics, public health and health policy
  • Application of cost benefit analysis and social return on investment analysis in public health

For further information on our research activities please see our website

Some suggested projects by members of our research staff are listed below:


Health technology assessment

  • Measurement of resource use and cost – review and analysis of patient-reported and routinely collected data
  • Analysis of resource use datasets (medications, GP appointments, allied health, hospital appointments and admissions, Hospital Episode Statistics)
  • Review and analysis of methods of managing type 1 diabetes

Medication adherence

  • Impact of affordability on medication adherence
  • Methods to account for non-adherence in health economics analysis
  • Review and analysis of studies/trials which include a run-in period for assessing adherence

Pharmaceutical policy

  • Analysis of the approval, expenditure, cost-effectiveness, and confidential agreements relating to cancer drug treatments
  • Impact of incentives for drug development on cost-effectiveness

Public health economics:

Public health preventative strategies

  • Review and analysis of the multiplier effects  on the economy of  spending  on health and social care
  • Analysis of the impacts of increased investment in housing to population health, NHS resource use and social care expenditure
  • Review the challenges of applying methods of economic evaluation to pragmatic public health research, and defining best practice
  • Assess the role of behavioural economics in promoting positive health-related behaviour change across the population

Investing in early years

  • Modelling the long-term impacts of increased early years investment across the life course
  • Assess the impact of school-based interventions using social return on investment methods

Valuing nature in public health

  • Assess methods of valuing nature in health economics and economic evaluation
  • Review and analysis of the impact of blue and green spaces on physical and mental health

Directors/ Supervisors

Supervision is provided by experienced health economists within the Centre for Health Economics and Medicines Evaluation including CHEME’s directors:

Professor Dyfrig Hughes leads the pharmacoeconomics theme, supported by staff with skills in health technology assessment, economic modelling, budget impact analysis, choice modelling, pharmaceutical policy, and trial-based economic evaluations.

Professor Rhiannon Tudor Edwards leads the public health economics theme, supported by staff with skills in economic evaluation including cost benefit analysis and social return on investment analysis, realist and systematic reviewing, programme budgeting and marginal analysis, and policy evaluation.

The Centre for Health Economics and Medicines Evaluation

The Centre for Health Economics and Medicines Evaluation (CHEME) was founded in 2001 and has grown to become one of the highest rated centres in the UK. At the last Research Excellence Framework, CHEME’s research outputs were rated 3rd out of 94 institutions across the UK.

CHEME researchers produce world-leading research across a wide range of health economic activities, which can be broadly categorised to: (i) economic evaluation alongside clinical trials; (ii) pharmacoeconomics; and (iii) public health economics. The Centre also has very close links with national organisations, including the National Health Service in the UK and advises on national policies.


“The Master’s by Research in Health Economics has enabled me to develop my quantitative, theoretical and analytical skills in an exciting area of healthcare. Specifically, offering me invaluable training in the application of pharmacoeconomics and introducing me to the concepts behind decision-making. I particularly enjoyed the flexibility of studying a research degree, the community environment within CHEME and working around top influencers within the field.”


Course content is for guidance purposes only and may be subject to change.

Course Content


The MSc by Research requires the student to undertake a substantial piece of independent research at the cutting edge of health economics and medicines evaluation (180 credits). It is the normal expectation that the independent research should be of a publishable standard in a high quality peer reviewed journal.

In addition to the support of the research project’s supervisors and from fellow postgraduate research and professional researchers within the Centre for Health Economics and Medicines Evaluations, there will also be the opportunity to undertake taught modules at postgraduate level as well as attend workshops and courses provided for postgraduate research students by the University’s Academic Development Unit. Any additional taught modules and courses will not count as credits towards this or any other qualification but, if identified as being of developmental value by the student and the supervisory team, will provide the extra skills and knowledge needed to undertake postgraduate research.

Our flexible course allows students to have the flexibility to customise their curriculum, pursue the areas that most interest them and fit their background, experience and needs.

We offer 1 year full-time or 2 years part-time

  • Summer school
  • Research methods module*
  • Introduction to Health Economics module*
  • Residential short course in Public health economics or Pharmacoeconomics
  • Research project ¤ Substantive research & thesis up to 50,000 words

*Available as eLearning course, Optional

Entry Requirements

Given the high expectations, applicants must have a minimum degree class of 2:1 or above / equivalent in a relevant subject. International students must also have IELTS of 7.0 or above.

International Students

For information and further detailed guidance on entry requirements for International Students, including the minimum English Language entry requirement, please visit the Entry Requirements by Country pages on the International Education Centre section of our website.

Ask the IEC for assistance...

If you want advice or a general chat about what’s available contact the International Education Centre on +44 (0) 1248 382028 or email


Application advice

Applications for research degrees differ substantially from applications for taught courses such as Masters degrees. Although the application form is the same, the way in which you approach your application can make all the difference.

Applying for a self-funded or externally-funded Research Degree

As with all of our courses, you can apply to fund yourself through a PhD/Mphil at Bangor, or you may already have sourced external funding (e.g. from your employer or government), and we warmly welcome all expressions of interest in so doing. However, rather than simply filling in an application form, there are a few steps that you can take in order that your application stands a greater chance of being successful.

All PhD/Mphil students require supervision from at least one academic member of staff at the University, and if you are considering a PhD/Mphil, you will already have a good idea of the specific area or theme that you want to research. In order to ascertain that we hold sufficient expertise in your chosen topic to provide supervision, you should first look at our staff pages. This will provide you with a breakdown of each staff member’s area of academic focus.

Once you have found a member of staff whose research interests broadly accord with your own, you should contact them directly with a concise research ‘brief’ that outlines your proposal and ask whether s/he would consider supervising your project. If the academic expresses his/her interest, you may then further discuss your ideas and develop a full PhD/Mphil research proposal.

At this stage, you should formally apply online for the PhD/Mphil programme. You should fill the form out thoroughly, including academic references, your research proposal and the name of the academic member of staff under whose supervision you intend the research to be conducted.

Your research proposal

A good research proposal is essential if you are applying for a PhD or MPhil. The proposal should include:

  1. Overview – give a brief abstract of the subject area you wish to research and include information on the key theoretical, policy or empirical debates that will be addressed.
  2. Planning – you need to demonstrate that you are aware of the research timescales and have a plan in place to conduct your work. You need to demonstrate that the research is manageable in the given time period.
  3. Literature references – you need to show that your planned area of research has not been studied before. Provide references to key articles and texts relevant to your area of study.
  4. Methodology – you need to show that you are aware of the methodological tools available and have identified which ones would be suitable for your research.

More advice about preparing a research proposal

Applying for funded PhD studentships advertised by Bangor University

Funded PhD studentship opportunities arise frequently throughout the year, and are advertised as specific opportunities for which you must formally apply. The application process for funded PhD studentships may differ according to the academic School in which the studentship opportunity is held, so please check the relevant School’s homepage and follow the application advice therein. If you are unsure of any part of the application process, please contact the individual School for advice, or e-mail

Online applications can now be made by prospective applicants for all postgraduate taught programmes and postgraduate research programmes at the University (with the exception of the PGCE, Diploma in Occupational Therapy and DClinPsy).

Home/EU students

Apply Online here...

Apply online

  • Please read through the Guidance Notes before you begin the online application form
  • Apply online yourself through our online application system.

Home/EU students with admissions queries please contact...

Postgraduate Admissions:, telephone: +44 (0)1248 383717 or write to:

Postgraduate Admissions Office.
Academic Registry
Bangor University
Gwynedd UK
LL57 2DG

International students

  • Agents: if you are an agent applying on behalf of the student, then you can Apply here.  For further guidance click here

International students with admissions queries please contact...

International Education Office: or write to

International Education Centre
Bangor University
LL57 2DG

Telephone: +44 (0) 1248 382028

When do I Apply?

The University will accept applications throughout the year. We would generally advise that you submit your application in enough time for you to make any funding and/or accommodation arrangements, and for documents such as transcripts and references to be obtained if not submitted with the application.This will also give you more time to meet any conditions we may potentially attach to an offer (e.g. in the case of overseas students, taking an IELTS or TOEFL test to meet the English Language requirement).

Careers and Employability

The MSc equips students with research skills relevant to employment in:

  • Academia / University sector
  • National Health Service and other government organisations
  • Private sector such as consultancy and the pharmaceutical industry

Or further opportunities for further study:

  • Pathway to MPhil (+1 yr) or PhD (+2 yrs) full-time

Further information

Contact us

Contact Professor Rhiannon Tudor Edwards, 01248 383712 or Ann Lawton, 01248 382153.

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