School of Population and Global Health
Protecting and improving health
Population (or public) health is the art and science of protecting and improving the health of communities, using an evidence-based approach through research, advocacy and health promotion. It plays an important role in health and wellbeing, as well as improving the social and environmental conditions and behaviours that affect us.
At The University of Western Australia, the School of Population and Global Health is a leading research, teaching and service organisation whose work influences health policies and practices.
With a commitment to achieving excellence in teaching and research training, our courses are flexible and industry relevant, giving students the knowledge and skills to address pressing and emerging health issues.
The School is guided by an Advisory Board that includes high profile and influential members from both government and non-government organisations and provides high level external review and advice on the relevance and direction of major teaching, research, research translation and community engagement programs for the School.
Population Health is all around us: the water we drink, the air we breathe, the food we eat, the immunisations we receive and the environment in which we live. Professor Colleen Fisher, Head of School
- Undergraduate minors in Public Health
Studying an Undergraduate minor in Public Health helps to future-proof your health-workforce skillset. You gain the skills needed to adapt to the changing health job market.
The health workforce is a top growing industry, projected at 15% growth by NPILF*. Learn about global health issues, challenges, and the efforts to tackle them from a multidisciplinary perspective.
Professional Engagement & Practice in Health
Develop the transferable skills including organisational behaviour, management practices, workplace communication skills and more, to enhance your future success in a professional setting.
*NPILF Australian Government National Priorities and Industry Linkage Fund for graduate job readiness.
- Undergraduate major in Public Health
- Studying an Undergraduate major in Public Health allows you to examine the patterns of health and disease in society, and apply medical research and evidence-based medicine to populations to improve the health of the community.
- Graduate Certificates
Graduate Certificates comprise 4 units and can be credited towards a 1.5 year Master of Public Health or 2 year Master of Public Health.
Graduate Certificate in Population Health Studies
This 6 month course allows you maximum flexibility to select units of interest.
Graduate Certificate in Communicable Diseases Epidemiology
This 6 month course includes coursework units relevant to careers in responding to infectious diseases from a public health perspective.
Graduate Certificate in Environment and Health
This 6 month course includes coursework units relevant to careers in environment and health.
- Honours and Masters by Coursework Research Projects
As a world-class research university, UWA offers research opportunities of the highest calibre. You will work closely with an expert supervisor on a specific research topic to produce a manuscript of significant academic scholarship.
Your initial research training can include completion of an Honours or a postgraduate coursework Master of Public Health (MPH) with a 24-point dissertation.
This can lead to enrolment in a Master of Philosophy (MPhil) or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD). As an Honours or 24-point MPH dissertation research student with us, you will develop, under supervision, a paper for publication in an academic journal - this is the first step in your research career!
Find out more about research projects available in 2023 here.
- Master of Public Health
The 1.5 year Master of Public Health is ideal for domestic students and can include a dissertation or practicum.
The 2 year Master of Public Health is ideal for international students and can include a dissertation and practicum. It provides graduates with a suitable background and generalist qualification for a career in Public Health.
Both Master of Public Health courses have been assessed for accreditation by the Agency for Public Health Accreditation (APHEA).
- Higher Degrees by Research
- Find out more about research opportunities here.
- Seasonal School
The School has reputation for teaching excellence and a strong evidence-based approach to epidemiology, health services research, health program evaluation and health promotion. Our Seasonal School offers s range of out-of-semester units for course credit or professional development at several points throughout the year. These are flexible, convenient education opportunities for a broad audience.
View more about our Seasonal School.
- Scholarly Activity
Public health coursework options for the UWA Doctor of Medicine program
The following coursework units are core units within the Master of Public Health (MPH). They cover essential public health knowledge and skills which are integral to a successful career in medicine. Many current MPH students are practicing doctors looking to broaden their knowledge in public health, who view the MPH as a pathway to a more comprehensive understanding of public health and career progression opportunities.
Students choosing the MPH coursework option will complete the mandatory units PUBH4403 Epidemiology 1 and PUBH5749 Foundations of Public Health plus choose either:
All units are available online and should be taken in the following sequence:
Year 3, Semester 1 – PUBH5749 Foundations of Public Health
Year 3, Semester 2 – PUBH4403 Epidemiology 1
Year 4, Semester 1 – PUBH5754 Health Promotion OR PUBH4401 Biostatistics 1
Scholarly Activity Students can credit these units towards a Master of Public Health, if they enrol in the MPH within 5 years of completing these units.
- Tsuha Global Fellows Program
The Tsuha Global Fellows Program at UWA Perth, seeks to support the next generation of leaders from low- and middle-income countries (as defined by the World Bank).
The Program will provide successful applicants with targeted educational, mentorship and networking opportunities. Read more about the program description and application here
Hear from our students
Name and country/mob?
My name is Joseph Bin Omar and I belong to the Bard and Nimanburr peoples in Broome.
Why did you decide to study public health?
I’ve always had a keen interest in health, whether that was typically as an active kid with sport and nutrition or more so, being curious in wanting to understand why my people were disproportionately represented in health outcomes compared to the wider Australian population. Growing up, unfortunately I would say I encountered many challenges as an Aboriginal boy from Broome. Disadvantaged health status of Aboriginal people being a leading factor. I used this experience and gap in my life as a reason why and motivation to learn more in the areas of public health, and that’s how I’ve wound up where I am. I want to be able to help impact health across the communities, stretching that public health domain and to be able to apply cultural learnings into public health systems.
Why did you choose to study at UWA?
Thanks to the School of Indigenous Studies (SIS) and the outreach programs provided to Indigenous high school kids, I was able to attend a few camps at a young age to gauge exposure into university life, UWA and what was potentially possible. I felt from this experience with SIS, the connections/contacts made with staff and other students throughout my schooling made me comfortable in wanting to study at UWA given the support centre for Indigenous students.
How do you want to make an impact on the world, your community, or next generation?
I want to impact the world through the small things in life, by having genuine and honest conversations and taking the time to ensure another person can be heard. I hope one day I become someone others feel inspired and empowered by, and I want to always be a positive representative of my community back home but also be someone the next generation can connect with and learn from.
Cardiovascular Disease EpidemiologyPrevention and long term health, Cardiovascular
Cardiovascular research in the School of Population and Global Health aims to prevent cardiovascular disease and improve treatment and survival for those affected by mapping patterns of disease, uncovering factors increasing risk of disease and testing ways to improve health of those with cardiovascular disease in the community.Read more
Global and Environmental Health
Discovering ways to improve global and environmental health.Read more
Improving health and social outcomes through evidence-based best practice for vulnerable and disadvantaged populations.Read more
Our Population and Global Health research sets the foundation for high-impact initiatives, solving the challenges of the modern world.
Emeritus Professor D’Arcy Holman
D’Arcy Holman is an Emeritus Professor at The University of Western Australia and formerly held the University’s foundation Chair in Public Health.Read more about DArcy Holman
Adjunct Professor Jane Heyworth
Adjunct Professor Jane Heyworth is an environmental epidemiologist, member of the Global Environment Health and Research Group, and Deputy Head of School of Population and Global Health at The University of Western Australia.Read more about Jane Heyworth
Dr Siobhan Hickling
Dr Siobhan Hickling is a research dietitian and epidemiologist, member of the Cardiovascular Research Group, and undergraduate coordinator for Population Health in UWA’s School of Population and Global Health.Read more about Siobhan Hickling
Dr Kevin Murray
Dr Kevin Murray is an applied biostatistician and Graduate Research Coordinator for the School of Population and Global Health at UWA.Read more about Kevin Murray
Professor David Preen
David Preen is the Chair in Public Health at the School of Population and Global Health, and Professor of Public Health at The University of Western Australia.Read more about David Preen
Dr Lee Nedkoff
Dr Lee Nedkoff is a Research Fellow and Cardiovascular Epidemiologist in the School of Population and Global Health at UWA.Read more about Lee Nedkoff
Professor Colleen Fisher
Colleen Fisher is a professor at The University of Western Australia and Head of the School of Population and Global Health. Her research expertise is in the area of family and domestic violence.Read more about Colleen Fisher
Dr Ian Li
Dr Ian Li is an economist based at the School of Population and Global Health at The University of Western Australia. He teaches health economics at undergraduate and postgraduate levels, and researches health economics and labour markets.Read more about Ian Li
Associate Professor Hayley Christian
Associate Professor Hayley Christian is a Senior Research Fellow and leads the PLAYCE (Play Spaces and Environments for Children’s Physical Activity) program of research at UWA’s School of Population and Global Health.Read more about Hayley Christian
Dr Julie Saunders
Dr Julie Saunders is a senior lecturer and Director of Public Health Postgraduate Coursework Studies in the School of Population and Global Health at UWA.Read more about Julie Saunders
Associate Professor Tom Briffa
Centre for Health Services Research Director Tom Briffa is a world-leading researcher into the prevention of cardiovascular disease.Read more about Tom Briffa
Professor Emerita Professor Vera Morgan
Professor Emerita Vera Morgan is Head of the Neuropsychiatric Epidemiology Research Unit in The University of Western Australia School of Population and Global HealthRead more about Vera Morgan
Associate Professor Justin Denny
Dr Justin Denny is an Associate Professor of Global Health at UWA, maintaining his appointments as the Kathryn Robertson Professor of Global Health, an endowed faculty position at Oregon Health and Sciences University (OHSU).Read more about Justin Denny
UWA Adjunct and Clinical Title Holders
Adjunct appointments provide a mechanism for The University of Western Australia to recognise suitably qualified and experienced individuals who make a significant contribution to the academic activities of their Schools.
There are two categories of adjunct – those who are actively engaged in clinical practice (Clinical titles) and those who are non-clinical (Adjunct titles). For any queries, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Grant delivers next generation for history-making Raine Study
Funding from Channel 7 Telethon Trust will enable the Raine Study to begin the next phase of its world-first research program.Read more
World-first review exposes threats to global water supply and sanitation
The University of Western Australia has contributed to a global review of water and sanitation provision in high-income countries and found that nations such as Australia and the UK are not immune from the human rights issues that threaten water supply and sanitation in poorer countries.Read more
Urgent treatment options needed to tackle methamphetamine use in prisons
A study led by The University of Western Australia has found traditional opioid interventions are no longer appropriate for most prisoners due to be released.Read more
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