Research course

History of Medicine

Open University · Department of History

Entry requirements

At least a 2:1 in a relevant degree plus: a masters degree, or equivalent evidence of ability to write and research at a high level, or a first class degree with a dissertation element.

Months of entry


Course content

The Department of History has expertise in the history of medicine in Britain, Ireland and Continental Europe from 1500 to 1900. Dr Deborah Brunton focuses on public health policies at the intersection between urban growth and medicine. Dr Silvia De Renzi works on medical knowledge and physicians’ authority in early modern Italy and on the history of legal medicine; she is also interested in comparing the developments of medical knowledge and provision in early modern Europe and Britain. Dr Ole Peter Grell explores the broader relationships between medicine and natural philosophy, health care and poor relief, and medicine and religion in early modern England and Europe.

We welcome applications in areas that correspond with current staff research interests. We look for detailed and well thought-out proposals, which set out specific research questions and outline the originality of your topic or approach. If you would like to discuss your ideas informally before submitting an application, please contact the department.

Potential supervisors

Fees and funding

Please see The Open University website for more information.

Qualification and course duration


part time
72 months
full time
36 months
distance learning
variable months


full time
15 months
distance learning
variable months
part time
24 months

Course contact details

Dr Silvia De Renzi
+44 (0)1908 653266