Peninsula Medical School

MSc Healthcare Management, Leadership and Innovation

Enhance your skills in the areas of management, leadership and innovation - required by a wide range of healthcare professionals and health service managers. MSc Healthcare Management, Leadership and Innovation is designed to be a highly flexible entry into management within the health and care service, whether your interests lie in leadership, quality improvement, innovation methodology, organisation development, patient safety, or education.

Pathways available

A part-time route is also available for this programme.

Key features

  • Benefit from flexible learning - there are a number of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) opportunities relating to this programme where a single module or specific days within a module may be taken independently. Please email to find out more.
  • Improve your leadership and management skills – this programme is designed to develop your knowledge and abilities as a leader, manager and innovative thinker, and is appropriate if you are a doctor, dentist, manager or a healthcare professional working in a care environment.
  • Equip yourself with the skills to plan and conduct a full masters dissertation.
  • Be supported by a blended learning approach with face-to-face sessions, access to interactive materials, electronic learning environment and tutorial support.
  • Choose whether to substitute the research-based dissertation project with a professional or quality improvement project that is directly relevant to the service area in which you work.
  • Select APEL (Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning) as an option for this programme. For example, if you have completed the Plymouth/Bristol Professional and Generic Skills programme, you may use this in place of the Leadership in healthcare: theory into practice module.
  •  Choose to study full-time – this is particularly suitable if you are undertaking an intercalated degree from medicine or dentistry. Taught modules will be delivered in the autumn and spring terms, and your MSc will be completed over the course of one year.
  • Join the programme if you're an intercalating medical student and have successfully completed your fourth year, or have already completed an undergraduate course.
  • A 20 credit module equates to 200 hours of study (including guided and independent study and assessments). The time commitment for each 20 credit module is expected to be around 8 to 12 hours per week. This is an indicative figure and may vary.

Course details

  • Year 1

  • You will study aspects of management, leadership and innovation in healthcare, relevant to professionals seeking to lead services and organisations into the future and explore the management and leadership theories pertinent to health and care practice. Gain practical experience of multi-disciplinary team working through problem identification and problem solving to encourage innovation and creativity in project design, development and knowledge transfer. You'll also be offered the choice of a traditional research-based dissertation or the option to undertake a work-related professional project or quality improvement project built on improvement science principles.

    Core modules

    Learners with be provided with a broad-based introduction to the field of health service leadership. Key leadership theories and trends will be explored along with how they relate to the real world. Concepts around quality, leadership to drive improvement and innovation will also be discussed. Finally, the importance of understanding and equipping ourselves in the context of leadership will be examined.
    Learners will acquire an increased understanding and knowledge of theories, tools and strategies for management in healthcare environments alongside an appreciation of their role within teams and complex systems. Learners will analyse, critique and reflect on real world scenarios to develop a confident and competent management approach to achieve personal and effectiveness in practice.
    Quality Improvement and Innovation (HML717)
    This module aims to provide the students with increased understanding and knowledge of tools and theories for quality improvement and innovation, to enable them to critically evaluate, synthesise and reflect on the applicability of these to past, current, and future healthcare challenges. Students will develop confidence and competence to lead and manage quality improvement and innovation individually and collaboratively.
    Research Methods in Healthcare (CLE721)
    This module aims to provide the students with increased understanding and knowledge of the research methods and statistics, to enable them to critically evaluate, synthesise and reflect on research evidence, to practice. Students will be introduced to a wide range of quantitative and qualitative methods, primary and secondary research methods, equipping them with a basic understanding of the underlying principles of quantitative and qualitative research.
    Research Design and Development (CLE731)
    This module provides an introduction to the research design, development and knowledge transfer process. You will be supported in generating a research idea and developing it into a coherent and achievable research proposal for a Masters dissertation.
    Research Project Dissertation (CLE732DL)
    This module is the dissertation associated with the Masters programmes and is designed to enable students to produce a project dissertation under supervision, and to demonstrate project design, development, evaluation and synthesis skills.

    Optional modules

    This module complements the modules in management and leadership in healthcare and comprises an in-depth study of organisations in the 21st century with a focus on health and care. Critical study of the structures, values and cultures of organisations will be incorporated along with theory from established and contemporary OD literature. Diagnostic and consultancy models will be studied with a view to critical application in practice.
    Contemporary Issues in Clinical Education (CLE713)
    This module will explore current issues, drivers and challenges in undergraduate, postgraduate and continuing clinical education, and will draw widely on contemporary educational research and scholarship. You will be encouraged to reflect on your role as a clinical educator, and to investigate the impact of culture and policy on your practice.
    Technology Enhanced Teaching and Learning (CLE722DL)
    This is a completely online module and provides students with a broad overview of educational technologies and their associated pedagogical affordances. Participants will learn about a comprehensive range of educational technologies and will also critique their relevance to practice. Students are expected to engage with the online content and keep a reflective journal on the development process for the duration of the module.
    Primary and Public Healthcare: Global Health (GH712) 
    This module will offer insights to the impact of the environment, culture, perceptions, health education and preventative health strategies to form the foundations of health and a functioning health care system.
    Health in Humanitarian Emergencies (GH715) 
    This module explores the management models of healthcare provision in response to humanitarian emergencies, resulting from both natural and human-induced crises. By evaluating the history of the humanitarian movement and factors affecting the current delivery of national and international aid programmes, this modules aims to review potential strategies for implementing sustainable healthcare programmes in LMICs.
    Patient Safety (HML716)
    This module will enable students to critically review and analyse the current theories and evidence base in the field of patient safety. It will facilitate their application to the participant’s own workplace, allow the participant to develop skills in conducting incident investigations and to critically assess evidence-based strategies to improve patient safety and quality care within healthcare.

Every postgraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the programme aims, the programme structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest programme structure and may be subject to change:

PgCert MSc in Healthcare Management Leadership and Innovation programme specification_7467

The modules shown for this course or programme are those being studied by current students, or expected new modules. Modules are subject to change depending on year of entry.

Entry requirements

You will normally have a first degree BA/BSc (Hons) at 2:2 or above in a relevant subject e.g. (clinical or non-clinical) leadership, management, innovation or related topics.
Entrants who have acquired experience through work or other means that enables staff responsible for admissions to be confident of the candidate’s ability to succeed in the programme may also be considered, in line with QAA guidance. 
If your first language is not English you will be required to provide evidence of competence in English language:
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score of 6.5 or above with no less than 5.5 in each category (speaking, listening, reading, & writing) will be required. Students with a first degree from the UK may still be required to take IELTS.
  • Please view entry requirements for international students for more information.
We welcome applicants with international qualifications. To view other accepted qualifications please refer to our tariff glossary. 

Fees, costs and funding

A full MSc represents 180 credits. 
Student 2023-24 2024-25
Home £9,900 £11,000
International £18,300 £19,800
Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances. 

Find out more about your eligibility for a postgraduate loan

You may now be eligible for a government loan of over £11,000 to help towards the cost of your masters degree.
Find out about funding your postgraduate studies with this helpful list of sources.

How to apply

Make sure you meet the entry requirements for this programme.
Before you apply
Make sure you have all your supporting documents. Documents required usually include:
  • Evidence of qualifications (degree certificates or transcripts), with translations if not in English, to show that you meet, or expect to meet the entry requirements
  • Evidence of English language proficiency, if English is not your first language
  • Personal statement of approximately 250-400 words about the reasons for your interest in this course and outlining what you expect to achieve by completing this programme.
  • Two academic/professional references, confirming your suitability for the course 
  • Two passport photographs
  • Curriculum Vitae or résumé, including details of relevant professional/voluntary experience, professional registration/s and visa status for overseas workers
  • Proof of sponsorship, if applicable
When to apply
Applications for postgraduate programmes of study can usually be made throughout the year. When applying for a taught postgraduate programme, please check for any submission deadlines with the Medicine and Dentistry Admissions team (contact details below). For full-time programmes, you may be invited for interview.
Check the closing date and apply as early as possible as our programmes are popular.
Submitting an application
Once you are happy that you have all of the information required you can apply using our online postgraduate application form (the blue 'Apply now' icon on this page).
Once you have registered and logged in, please enter the ‘course code’ which can be found above into the search bar to begin your application.
Additional guidance information can also be downloaded on how to fill in the postgraduate application form.
Admissions policy
More information and advice for applicants can be referenced in our online admissions policy for taught programmes. Prospective students are advised to read the policy before making an application to the University.
What happens after I apply?
If you would like any further information, please contact the Admissions and Course Enquiries team:
You will normally receive a decision on your application within four weeks of us receiving your application. You may be asked to provide additional information, to take part in an interview (which in the case of overseas students may be by telephone or video conference) or you will be sent a decision by letter or email.
The University aims to make the application procedure as simple and efficient as possible. Our Admissions and Course Information team is on hand to offer help and can put you in touch with the appropriate faculty if you wish to discuss any programme in detail. The Doctoral College is also available to answer any queries on our postgraduate research degrees.
If you have a disability and would like further information about the support provided by the University of Plymouth, please visit our Additional support for students with an impairment, health condition or disability website.
Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office

Alumni case study: Dr Elizabeth Reilly

Dr Reilly returned to Plymouth to study a PGCert in Healthcare Management, Leadership and Innovation after our beautiful coastline lured her back to the region.
“Studying this course has given me greater confidence to take on more managerial roles as part of my Consultant Rheumatologist post in the future. It will allow me to manage the team more effectively, and with greater knowledge of the wider hospital management teams and systems supporting our clinical practice. Plymouth prepared me for the challenges that I face.”