Learn to design effective, rigorous and ethical healthcare research projects.

Join an online Postgraduate Certificate in Research Methods for Health that will prepare you to carry out healthcare research.

You’ll develop the skills and confidence to design and undertake research in your own workplace, and be more competitive in securing external funding for research projects.

You’ll learn to:

  • critically appraise research evidence (including systematic reviewing)
  • develop a research question and justify an appropriate study design
  • select the most suitable statistical method for analysis
  • choose the right methods to generate, handle and analyse qualitative data
  • interpret your findings.

You’ll be supported by internationally experienced active researchers. Their work informs government and healthcare organisations. They’ll share their experience and expertise with you as you build your skills.

Who is this online PgCert for?

This distance-learning PgCert is designed to help healthcare professionals, policymakers and early-career researchers improve their research qualifications in their spare time. Studying part-time online, there’s no need to relocate or take a career break.

What you’ll study

You can choose to study for a:

  • Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits)
  • or start with one of the short courses that make up this PgCert (15 credits).

How you’ll study

Research Methods for Health is delivered flexibly, 100% online.

Online learning

Your teaching is delivered through MyAberdeen, our online Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). It holds all the materials, tools and support you’ll need in your studies. Take a look around MyAberdeen.

You can access your learning materials on computer, smartphone and laptop, 24 hours a day. You’ll find a range of resources at your fingertips, including:

Your tutors

This online PgCert is designed and led by our Institute of Applied Health Sciences. You’ll learn from a dedicated, interdisciplinary team of experienced researchers. Each course has its own specialised coordinator.

We actively encourage engagement with other students, so you’ll also learn from your peers across countries and disciplines.


This degree is assessed entirely online. We use several types of assessment, including multiple-choice quizzes, short online tests, essays, presentations and peer review.

Your support team

Our friendly team are here to answer any queries you have before, during and after your studies.

Where this will take you

Towards a PgDip and Masters

This PgCert underpins many of our online degrees. You can use it to continue on to our:

You can also use your PgCert as the first stage in gaining an MSc in Applied Health Sciences.


Your qualification will be recognised by healthcare employers and learning institutions around the world. Your PgCert will give you the skills to:

  • confidently carry out health research and lead improvements in your workplace
  • be more competitive in securing external funding for projects to improve health and reduce health inequalities.

You’ll also have broadened your network of professional contacts.

Free careers advice

We’ll help you explore your career potential and connect with job opportunities around the world.

You can access our free careers service while you study, and for up to five years after you graduate.

From interview training to CV clinics, we’re here with tailored, impartial and professional advice.

Fees and funding

The fee quoted above is based on you starting your studies with us in the 2021/22 academic year.

We have confirmed that our fees will rise by 5% for the next academic year (2022/23). The indicative fee above includes this 5% fee rise.

Pay as you go

Don’t worry, you do not have to pay the full PgCert fee upfront.

You can pay for your PgCert one term at a time. This gives you a flexible way to spread the cost.

Why study health research online with the University of Aberdeen?

Entry requirements


  • A 2:2 (lower-second) health-related honours degree
  • or be able to demonstrate evidence of equivalent experience in healthcare practice or research.

These are our minimum entry requirements. They are given as a guide and do not guarantee entry.

Postgraduate Certificate - 60 credits

You’ll work through four 15-credit courses to gain your PgCert.

You can start your studies in January or September and progress at a pace that suits you.


It takes a minimum of 9 months to complete the PgCert. To study part-time, we recommend you take no more than 30 credits per term. You’re welcome to take a study break between courses.

We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to change. Further information about potential changes can be viewed here.

NEW: Try our degree scheduler

Customise your degree

Postgraduate Certificate

60 credits


This indicative cost is based on 30 credits of study per term, starting in January 2022.

Apply for this programme

Start month
January or September

This indicative cost is based on 30 credits of study per term, starting in January 2022.

Apply via our Applicant Portal
Added to your wishlist