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Brighton & Sussex Medical School

Healthcare Leadership and commissioning

BSMS > Postgraduate > Healthcare Leadership and Commissioning

Healthcare Leadership and Commissioning

Key facts

MSc, PGDip, PGCert

Full-time: 1 year

Part-time: 3 years

Eligible applicants: UK, EU, international

Location: University of Brighton Falmer campus, University of Sussex Falmer campus

Course Leaders: Breda Flaherty

General enquiries:

This course is validated by the University of Brighton and the University of Sussex.

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Further information about this course can be found in the Course Application Handbook.

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Information for interntational students can be found in the international postgraduate prospectus.


Key areas of study

  • Leadership and change management in clinical services
  • Commissioning for quality care
  • Quality, safety and service improvement in clinical services
  • Principles and practice of public health
  • Research methods and critical appraisal 

Course overview

This innovative course offers clinicians and managers the opportunity to look in depth at healthcare leadership and commissioning theory, policy and practice, combining academic research with an up-to-the minute take on current policy, structured practical projects and work-based investigations.

A distinct feature of this course is that students can combine leadership modules with specialist clinical, public health, educational, and research modules; this combination strengthens professional knowledge, and applies learning to practice. The course will challenge existing work habits and mindsets, and underpin your work performance with a strong theory and policy base.

Leadership and Commissioning group

"The MSc Leadership and Commissioning course helped me to make sense of many experiences I had in the workplace by grounding theories and ideas to practice and government policy. The course also provided a practical and flexible learning environment which allowed freedom to explore issues fully. The MSc has had a very positive impact on my career. The teaching and qualification are recognised and respected and students who make a commitment to the course will get a lot out of it."

Matthew White (MSc graduate), Head of Planning & Programme Management, NHS Coastal West Sussex CCG

Course structure

Modules are usually assessed via presentations, seminars, abstracts, posters or a 3,000 – 4,000 word written assignment.

PGCert (60 credits)

Leadership and Change Management in Clinical Services (20 credits)

Quality, Safety and Service Improvement in Clinical Services (20 credits)


One module from the core list or optional list (20 credits)

PGDip (120 credits)

PGCert modules


Commissioning for Quality Care (20 credits)

Principles and Practice of Public Health (20 credits)

Research Methods and Critical Appraisal (20 credits)


One module from the optional module list (20 credits) See below.

MSc (180 credits)

PGDip modules


One module from the optional module list (20 credits) See below.


Dissertation (60 credits)

Optional modules

Diabetes Practice in Primary Care (20 credits)

Understanding Dementia (20 credits)

Management of Long-Term Conditions in Children (20 credits)

Communication, Learning and Teaching in Health and Social Care (20 credits)

Career opportunities

This course is delivered by a multi-professional team based both within the university and in health and social care services, bringing clinicians, leaders and commissioners together from all parts of the health and care system.

It offers a rich and inter-connected learning environment to build cross-organisation links with leaders from other settings. The classroom environment is enriched with practical applied examples of workplace initiatives.

Entry requirements

The course is open to professionals with experience of, or interest in, leadership and commissioning. Applicants will either have a first degree or will be able to show a proven track record in leadership or commissioning.

International applicants who meet the above entry criteria and have IELTS (minimum score of 7.0, with no less than 6.5 in each section) are welcome to apply.

Fees and funding 

The fees listed below are the overall costs for full-time courses taken in the academic year 2018-19. Where courses are taken part-time over more than one academic year, fees are usually charged pro-rata for the modules taken during each academic year.  


UK / EU / Island students £7,840
International £14,580


UK £5,226
International £9,720


UK £2,613
International £4,860


All BSMS students on Masters courses accredited jointly by the University of Sussex and the University of Brighton are eligible to apply for University of Sussex postgraduate scholarships in 2018/19. 

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Apply here

Applications are made through the University of Brighton online portal.