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Occupational Health and Safety Management MSc

Boost your career prospects by studying for a three-year occupational health and safety management Master's degree alongside your current job.

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Do you want to boost your career prospects by studying for an occupational health and safety management Master's degree alongside your current job?

On this MSc Occupational Health and Safety Learning at Work Master's course, you can specialise and enhance your current knowledge, and develop a more strategic view of organisational management and behaviour.

Whether you want to progress your career as an Occupational Health and Safety Practitioner or specialise in managing safety in fields such as construction, nuclear, or oil and gas, this MSc Occupational Health and Safety Management Learning at Work Masters course gives you the skills, knowledge and confidence to fulfil your ambitions.

Because the course is work-based, you need to already be in a full-time, part-time or voluntary role. If you don't have an undergraduate degree, you could still do this postgraduate course if you have several years experience in a responsible position or you have high-level skills through experience that isn't reflected in your qualifications.

You can tailor the course to match your professional and personal aspirations and your employer's objectives. You'll be able to schedule your studies around your existing commitments, and to take advantage of flexibility in the submission deadlines for your work-based projects. As there are no residential requirements, you can study wherever is most convenient for you.

You'll get to put the skills you learn to work instantly in your job, contributing to the success of your company. When you complete the course, you'll improve your career prospects and have the skills and knowledge to perform more effectively in your job.

This course is a fixed 3-year course, which means the course will last for 3 years with no flexibility in extending or shortening the course. This course allows you to apply for a postgraduate loan if you are based in England. Should you wish greater flexibility and the opportunity to apply for Recognised Prior Learning, please take a look at our flexible MSc.


This course has been accredited by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH). On successful completion of the course students will meet the academic requirements for Certified membership. Certified membership is the gateway to Chartered status. 

On this course, you'll:

  • Study topics that match your personal and professional goals, as well as your employer's objectives
  • Develop your ability to analyse problems, research and propose solutions, and make sound professional judgements when faced with the organisational, financial and management aspects of a business
  • Take part in work-based learning (WBL) projects enabling you to gain new learning in the context of your role, which ensures that the knowledge you develop is relevant to your employer's business
  • Get an optional 1-day induction in Portsmouth at the start of the course 
  • Develop your learning plan with the University and your employer, so you can make an effective contribution to your workplace as you learn
  • Have full access to our student support services and community including study support, sports and recreation facilities, and the Students' Union
  • Tap in to our Library's electronic resources, which you can access from anywhere with a Web connection
  • Choose a Workplace Mentor to support your learning – someone at work who can offer advice, guidance, and moral support
  • Have support from an academic tutor specialising in your area of study and a University learning manager who oversees your programme
  • Use online tutorials and lectures to help you with study skills, including your analytical and writing skills

Contact us

Learning at Work team

+44 (0)23 9284 6260


Entry requirements​

Entry requirements

Qualifications or experience

  • A degree or equivalent. Other qualifications such as HNDs and Foundation degrees, supported by several years of relevant post-qualification experience in responsible posts, may also be acceptable.
  • Applicants are usually working at a professional level.
  • Appropriate experience and proven aptitude in health and safety, a certificated professional/vocational qualification or an undergraduate degree or equivalent. If you do not hold a level 6 qualification you may be required to present evidence of your ability to study at level 6.

English language requirements

  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Costs and funding

Tuition fees

Your tuition fee depends on if you have been awarded any Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and how many credits you need to study. To achieve a postgraduate Master's degree, you need to accumulate a total of 180 credits. Tuition fees may be subject to annual increase.

January 2024 start

  • 60 credits: £3,800
  • 90 credits: £5,700
  • 120 credits: £7,600
  • 150 credits: £9,500
  • 180 credits: £11,400

We'll apply an even yearly split to your course fee as listed in the schedule above. If you want us to consider an alternative schedule of payments, please contact us before the course start date.

Until RPL has been confirmed, you'll need to pay the full course fee.

If you're an armed forces student in receipt of funding, e.g. ELCAS, any documentation must show the correct start date and tuition fee. If not, we can't accept it and you'll have to pay the course fee yourself.

Tuition fees terms and conditions

Tuition fees estimate

We can give you an estimate of your tuition fees. To contact us:

Additional course costs

These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.

Additional costs

If you choose to study online modules you may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module. Most texts are available online through the library.

There's a fee before you start the course if we need to assess a Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) portfolio. If you're starting in September 2024 or January 2025, the fee is £1,125.

How you'll study

On this Occupational Health and Safety Management Master’s degree, you’ll work with our Learning at Work team and your employer to arrange a programme of study that reflects your existing experience, your personal and professional goals, and your current employment situation. This makes up your Learning Contract. 

Through a sequence of work-based learning projects, you’ll develop your ability to analyse a problem and deliver a professional solution, with support from a workplace mentor, academic tutors, online lectures and a suite of virtual learning tools hosted by the university. You don’t need to attend the campus if you don’t want to, but you will have an invitation to an induction day and to make use of student facilities here in Portsmouth. 

Your learning contract

Your study will include up to four elements:

  • Learning Management: You'll set out a plan to shape your learning, and prepare for the research reports you'll produce.
  • Recognition of Prior Learning. You can bring up to 120 credits of the 180 you need from your existing learning, such as a PgCert in a relevant subject, on-the-job training, or relevant experience in your career. Read more about earning RPL credit for your current qualifications and work experience, or contact us: learningatwork@port.ac.uk
  • Work-based learning (WBL) projects. Most of your new learning will be done through WBL projects, where you’ll practise new skills and develop your knowledge alongside your current role. These projects won't involve activities you do in your day-to-day job, as they need to involve new learning for you - but they will be relevant to your career, and your own professional development here can support the goals and objectives of your organisation.
  • Learning modules. You can also study in a more formally-structured manner by joining in with the university’s academic modules. Please contact learningatwork@port.ac.uk to discuss the choice of modules available.

Changes to course content

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry. If a module doesn't run, we'll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

Course duration

This course is a 3-year fixed course. You'll study the full 180 credits. You'll study the modules and work based project(s) alongside your day job. 


How you're taught will depend on which modules you take and the work-based learning projects you do.

Most of the course is delivered via our interactive virtual learning environment. With access to all the study material you’ll need, discussion forums, and the chance to connect with peers and lecturers via chat sessions, you’ll have plenty of academic support and heaps of resources.

Depending on the modules you study and your location, you may also be able to study on campus, experiencing face-to-face teaching methods.

How you're assessed

The way you're assessed will depend on which modules you take and the work-based learning projects you do.

Support while you study

Types of support

As well as support from faculty staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK).

ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • academic writing
  • note taking
  • time management
  • critical thinking
  • presentation skills
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques

If you have a disability or need extra support, the Additional Support and Disability Centre (ASDAC) will give you help, support and advice.

To help you juggle this course alongside your work and home life, you'll get extra support from:

  • a Workplace Mentor chosen by you – someone at work who can offer advice, guidance, and moral support
  • an Academic Tutor specialising in your area of study
  • a Learning Manager who oversees your programme


Before you apply for this course, please contact learningatwork@port.ac.uk to discuss the content of your programme of study. Read our information about the application process to find out more.

Ready to apply?

When you're ready to begin your application, choose your start date.

You can study this course starting in either September or January each year. To apply for the upcoming course, please follow the link below:

September 2024

September 2024 start

If you’re interested in applying for a later entry point to this Master’s, please email us on learningatwork@port.ac.uk and we'll contact you when your application period opens - that is, at the end of October for a January start course, or at the end of February for a course that begins in September. 

If you'd like to discuss this course with us, you can join one of our weekly online sessions with a Learning at Work admissions officer. Contact learningatwork@port.ac.uk for details on joining. 

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.

Information for international students

At Portsmouth, we welcome students from more than 150 countries across the globe. However, please note that this learning at work course is not eligible for a student visa. 

Learn more about our student visas

Recognition of work-based and distance learning courses

Our Learning at Work degrees at levels 6 and 7 are approved by the University under its powers to award degrees. They comply with the Office for Students (OFS) and Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) standards in the United Kingdom.

These qualifications are generally recognised internationally but as with distance learning type courses, each country will have its own regulations and rules on work based and distance learning education. You should check with the qualification recognition authority in the country you reside in or intend to use the degrees to secure employment, that the Learning at Work degrees are recognised by them before you commit to studying with us.

We also strongly recommend you check that your employer recognises the value of our work based/distance learning courses. Some countries, including Singapore, state the 'value of the qualification is subject to the employer'.

We are currently unable to offer our courses to applicants who are nationals of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE, Bahrain and Qatar.

If you're not a national citizen but are working or living in these countries, you can enrol onto our Learning at Work courses. You'll need to sign an Applicant Declaration Letter to confirm you understand that the University of Portsmouth won't accept any liability issues you may have with the recognition of your distance learning course, with your government or employer.

If you’re a national or foreign national in India or China, you can enrol onto our Learning at Work courses. You'll need to sign an Applicant Declaration Letter to confirm you understand that the University of Portsmouth won't accept any liability issues you may have with the recognition of your distance learning course, with your government or employer.

We're unable to accept enrolment from nationals or foreign nationals from Oman.