Taught course

Veterinary Epidemiology (online distance learning)

University of Edinburgh · College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine

Entry requirements

A veterinary degree or a degree in a natural (biological or physical) science, with an excellent or very good classification (equivalent to first or upper second class honours in the UK). Relevant work experience may be considered.

Months of entry


Course content

This programme provides scientific knowledge of the fundamental biological processes (e.g. behaviour, physiology, immunology, ecology) and environmental and farming management practices (e.g. husbandry, nutrition, livestock trade) driving disease transmission, persistence, prevalence and spread in livestock production systems. This enables in-depth understanding of complex environmental patterns of disease, which facilitates prediction of disease risk and control. The multidisciplinary systems approach used provides you with the skills to understand the roles of animal health professionals in tackling the grand challenges of food security, climate change and disease control.

By the end of the programme you will not only have a detailed understanding of the biology driving disease persistence and prevalence, but also how the biology scales up from individuals to populations. You will understand how this interacts with agricultural management practices to determine the efficacy of disease control strategies and livestock production (i.e. interdisciplinary systems thinking and communication). Furthermore, the systems approach offers a way to frame disease challenges and problem solve disease risk at a range of scales (e.g. from veterinarians tackling specific on farm disease challenges to the consequences of climate change on disease risk).

The partnership of the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies and Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) creates the greatest concentration of research power in veterinary and agricultural sciences in the UK. This new distance learning course draws on this wealth of experience and research activity.

The programme is taught by active researchers presenting their own research, which is placed in to context with global grand challenges. As such, you will be exposed to and taught research skills.

Information for international students

If English is not your first language, you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your spoken and written English: IELTS Academic: total 6.5 (at least 6.0 in each module); TOEFL-iBT: total 92 (at least 20 in each module).

Qualification and course duration


distance learning
72 months


distance learning
48 months


distance learning
24 months

Course contact details

Angela Harding
+44 (0)131 650 7363