The PhD in Health Economics and Policy meets the needs of those wishing to gain a deep and critical insight into health economics theory, research and practice and to develop or enhance research skills whilst fulfilling their existing responsibilities. The programme is offered part-time and combines innovative distance learning with face-to-face teaching at an annual autumn Academy held in Lancaster.
The programme is suitable for both UK-based and international students working in healthcare settings, pharmaceutical companies, international organisations, local and central government, consultancies, education or research.
This part-time, flexible doctorate runs over a minimum of four and a maximum of seven years. The programme begins with a compulsory five-day Induction Academy in Lancaster. Each of the subsequent academic years start with a compulsory three-day autumn Academy, while the rest of the course is delivered via e-learning. Attendance at the annual Academies is compulsory until students have been confirmed on the PhD programme.
Years 1 and 2 consist of taught modules delivered online that consolidate students’ knowledge of health economics and policy and develop their research skills. In Year 1 students take two specialist modules that cover the theory and practice of health economics and policy as well as a module on data analysis. Year 2 modules may include: Systematic Reviews, Research Philosophy, Research Design and Practical Research Ethics.
From Year 3 onwards, students undertake an independent research study, which will conclude with the submission of a thesis that makes an original contribution to knowledge. The research project will be supervised from the University but undertaken in students’ own location or workplace. Supervision meetings take place using video conferencing software such as Skype. During the annual autumn Academy students meet with supervisors face to face.
The Health Economics at Lancaster (HEAL) team has expertise in health economics, health policy and economic evaluation. This expertise is being complemented by the expertise existing in the Economics department at Lancaster University Management School (LUMS).
2:1 Hons degree (UK or equivalent) in economics, or other relevant discipline with a significant quantitative content such as statistics, pharmacy, medicine and management.
We may also consider non-standard applicants, please contact us for information.
If you have studied outside of the UK, we would advise you to check our list of international qualifications before submitting your application.
As part of your application you will also need to provide a 500 word research proposal. Guidance can be found on our writing a research proposal webpage.
English Language Requirements
We may ask you to provide a recognised English language qualification, dependent upon your nationality and where you have studied previously.
We normally require an IELTS (Academic) Test with an overall score of at least 6.5, and a minimum of 6.0 in each element of the test. We also consider other English language qualifications.
Contact: Admissions Team +44 (0) 1524 592032 or email email@example.com
Fees and Funding
Home fee: £4,030
International fee: £10,500
Scholarships and bursaries
At Lancaster, we believe that funding concerns should not stop any student with the talent to thrive.
We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries to help cover the cost of tuition fees and/or living expenses.
There may be extra costs related to your course for items such as books, stationery, printing, photocopying, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits. Following graduation, you may need to pay a subscription to a professional body for some chosen careers.
Specific additional costs for studying at Lancaster are listed below.
Lancaster is proud to be one of only a handful of UK universities to have a collegiate system. Every student belongs to a college, and all students pay a small College Membership Fee which supports the running of college events and activities.
For students starting in 2022 and 2023, the fee is £40 for undergraduates and research students and £15 for students on one-year courses. Fees for students starting in 2024 have not yet been set.
Computer equipment and internet access
To support your studies, you will also require access to a computer, along with reliable internet access. You will be able to access a range of software and services from a Windows, Mac, Chromebook or Linux device. For certain degree programmes, you may need a specific device, or we may provide you with a laptop and appropriate software - details of which will be available on relevant programme pages. A dedicated IT support helpdesk is available in the event of any problems.
The University provides limited financial support to assist students who do not have the required IT equipment or broadband support in place.
Application fees and tuition fee deposits
For most taught postgraduate applications there is a non-refundable application fee of £40. We cannot consider applications until this fee has been paid, as advised on our online secure payment system. There is no application fee for postgraduate research applications.
For some of our courses you will need to pay a deposit to accept your offer and secure your place. We will let you know in your offer letter if a deposit is required and you will be given a deadline date when this is due to be paid.
Take an innovative approach to distance learning combining interactive lectures, webinars and online collaboration, group work and self-directed study.
Work with world-leading academics to make an original contribution to your area of professional practice.
Benefit from an international peer group that could include research professionals, policy-makers, pharmacoeconomists and global health professionals.
Studying by blended learning
The PhD in Health Economics and Policy is offered part-time via blended learning. Teaching and research activities are carried out through a combination of face-to-face and online interaction, allowing you to undertake the majority of study from your own location whilst fulfilling your existing responsibilities. You will benefit from being part of a UK and internationally-based peer group working across a range of sectors.
Face-to-face interactions take place at an annual residential autumn Academy while taught modules are delivered via distance learning using our virtual learning environment and include discussion forums, collaborative digital spaces and video conferencing. All students have access to a hub space that facilitates interaction with their cohort and with students on related programmes, creating a virtual information space that’s also sociable. An academic tutor will support you during the taught phase and two supervisors provide you with support in the research phase.Blended Learning
The Division of Health Research
The Division of Health Research have been offering blended learning postgraduate programmes since 2010. We have many successful graduates and currently around 200 continuing students on a range of programmes who have benefited in progressing their careers from the high quality postgraduate education we provide.
As a research group with strong collaborative links with the Economics department, the work undertaken by HEAL aims to have an impact on people's well being and society as a whole.
We hold the Athena SWAN Silver Award, recognising our commitment to advancing the careers of women in higher education and research.
Our research illuminates the social determinants of inequalities in health to produce and exchange evidence to reduce these inequalities.
The information on this site relates primarily to 2022/2023 entry to the University and every effort has been taken to ensure the information is correct at the time of publication.
The University will use all reasonable effort to deliver the courses as described, but the University reserves the right to make changes to advertised courses. In exceptional circumstances that are beyond the University’s reasonable control (Force Majeure Events), we may need to amend the programmes and provision advertised. In this event, the University will take reasonable steps to minimise the disruption to your studies. If a course is withdrawn or if there are any fundamental changes to your course, we will give you reasonable notice and you will be entitled to request that you are considered for an alternative course or withdraw your application. You are advised to revisit our website for up-to-date course information before you submit your application.
More information on limits to the University’s liability can be found in our legal information.
Our Students’ Charter
We believe in the importance of a strong and productive partnership between our students and staff. In order to ensure your time at Lancaster is a positive experience we have worked with the Students’ Union to articulate this relationship and the standards to which the University and its students aspire. View our Charter and other policies.