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Course summary

The information provided on this page was correct at the time of publication (November 2022). For complete and up-to-date information about this course, please visit the relevant University of Oxford course page via The MSc in Surgical Science and Practice is aimed at surgeons and other clinicians carrying out technical procedures. It has been designed as a part-time course to be completed in two to four years by people working full-time. The modular nature of the course allows you to fit study around your work. The aim of the course is to give you a strong foundation in the most important non-clinical skills you will need to be effective and to lead others. It will prepare you for life as an independent specialist and focuses on skills and knowledge which are not fully represented or are omitted from graduate training curricula. The Masters programme has been designed to appeal to trainees and consultants in surgical disciplines as well as any medical discipline that involves technical skills. Successful applicants have included interventional radiologists, anaesthetists and physicians performing invasive procedures (cardiologists, gastroenterologists, etc). Students on the PGCert in Patient Safety attend some of the Masters Modules so the range of students on the programme often includes nurses, allied healthcare professionals and managers as well as doctors. This mix reflects the healthcare workplace and enriches classroom discussions during the taught module week. Some PGCert students whose work involves technical procedures (for example nurse practitioners, physicians assistants, cardiac perfusionists) have successfully applied to continue on to the Masters programme. This is subject to a further interview. For simplicity the descriptions below will use the term ‘surgeon’ to include not only surgeons but also others carrying out technical procedures. Surgeons work as part of multidisciplinary teams in complex organisations, and will need to adapt and develop new skills and roles throughout their professional lives. The MSc syllabus covers management skills, quality improvement, leadership, teamwork and patient safety, development and implementation of new technologies, as well as an introduction to the principles of medical education and clinical research methods. It also includes taught material on research skills. The knowledge gained during the course will stand you in good stead throughout your career. You will complete six modules which are taught by experts in their field:

  • Leadership and Management in Healthcare
  • Quality Improvement Science and Systems Analysis
  • Human Factors, Teamwork and Communication
  • Healthcare Innovation and Technology
  • Practice of Evidence-Based Health Care
  • Becoming a Clinical Educator
Each module includes a period of preparatory study and one week of full time, face-to-face teaching in Oxford, which is then followed by a period for assignment work. The modules can be studied in any order and each module normally takes place once a year giving you the opportunity to individualise your patterns of study. The taught weeks include seminar-style teaching, group work, class discussions, guest lectures, and interaction and feedback with tutors and lecturers. Where appropriate the taught week will include practical activities to develop skills. In the four weeks running up to each taught week you should expect to dedicate 4-6 hours per week to preparatory reading. In the six weeks following each taught week you should expect to dedicate 10-15 hours per week to researching and writing your module assignment. A virtual learning environment (VLE) provides support between modules. Assignments are submitted online and thus can be completed from anywhere in the world. This flexible programme is offered jointly by the Nuffield Department of Surgical Sciences and the Department for Continuing Education.

Entry requirements

For complete and up-to-date information about this course, please visit the relevant University of Oxford course page via

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

No fee information has been provided for this course

Additional fee information

For complete and up-to-date information about fees and funding for this course, please visit the relevant University of Oxford course page via
Surgical Science and Practice at University of Oxford - UCAS