Bioscience – Master of Health Science

Explore areas of interest that connect your bioscience discipline to health. You’ll investigate how health outcomes for individuals or populations can be improved.

Where you can study

Distance and online

International students

International students are not New Zealand citizens or residents.

Definition of New Zealand citizens and residents

Not open to international students

Specialise in Bioscience for your Master of Health Science at Massey

Make a difference to the health and wellbeing of New Zealanders and global citizens.

The Master of Health Sciences (Bioscience) offers you an opportunity to pursue research within a focused area of health sciences. It is suitable if you have successfully completed a bachelor’s degree with a bioscience focus and wish to take advanced studies in this area.

Further study

You may wish to consider studying for a doctorate degree once you have completed your master’s.

A Master of Health Science in Bioscience is a good fit if you:

  • want to be a researcher
  • care about the health outcomes of populations
  • are interested in intervention and prevention strategies for improving health.

Planning information

If you study full-time, you’ll take 120 credits per year or 60 credits per semester.

The Master of Health Science is a parts-based qualification. That means you must complete the first part, before moving to the second.

The Master of Health Science (Bioscience) offers the research pathway.

For progression from Part One to Part Two, you must achieve a minimum B grade in the Part One Core course, one of 168711 Health Research Design and Method or 179702 Advanced Research Methods.


Official regulations

To understand what you need to study and must complete to graduate read the official rules and regulations for this qualification.

You should read these together with all other relevant Statutes and Regulations of the University including the General Regulations for Postgraduate Degrees, Postgraduate Diplomas, and Postgraduate Certificates.

Returning students

For returning students, there may be changes to the majors and minors available and the courses you need to take. Go to the section called ‘Transitional Provisions’ in the Regulations to find out more.

In some cases the qualification or specialisation you enrolled in may no longer be taking new enrolments, so may not appear on these web pages. To find information on the regulations for these qualifications go to the Massey University Calendar.

Please contact us through the Get advice button on this page if you have any questions.

Courses you can enrol in

Course planning key

Courses that need to be completed before moving onto a course at the next level. For example, a lot of 200-level courses have 100-level prerequisite courses.
Courses that must be completed at the same time as another course are known as corequisite courses.
Some courses are restricted against each other because their content is similar. This means you can only choose one of the offered courses to study and credit to your qualification.

Compulsory course

Course code: 214781 Advanced Topics in Health Science 30 credits

Critical reviews, standards, advanced study and/or research in a selected area of health science.

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Subject courses

Research Pathway

Choose no more than 60 credits from
Course code: 117709 Biometrics for the Animal and Nutritional Sciences 15 credits

Study in applied statistics with emphasis on animal and nutritional sciences. Introduction to and extensive use of statistical packages, regression and multiple regressions analysis, analysis of variance of standard experimental designs, covariance analysis and general linear models

Restrictions: 151709

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Course code: 147704 Drugs and Society 30 credits

This course explores the historical relationship between drugs and society, identifying fundamental patterns in the development of current international approaches to drug control, treatment and rehabilitation, reviewing evidence both for and against these approaches, and illustrating their ramifications for treatment and rehabilitation programmes.

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Course code: 151704 Human Nutrition 15 credits

A selection of nutrition topics related to the human lifecycle and nutrients of concern.

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Course code: 151717 Selected Topics in Public Health Nutrition 15 credits

Public health nutrition is the promotion of good health through the prevention of nutrition-related illness in the population. This course will examine a selection of nutrition-related public health problems and describe how research-based evidence is used to develop effective promotion strategies.

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Course code: 168733 Physiology and Pathophysiology 30 credits

Translational and clinically relevant physiological and pathophysiological concepts as they apply to nursing practice are examined. Selected signs/symptoms are considered in terms of physiological processes at biochemical, cellular and functional levels. The emphasis is on normal physiological processes and their possible subsequent development to pathophysiological phenomena.

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Course code: 194732 Advanced Cell Physiology 30 credits

An advanced course on selected topics in cell physiology. The focus is on the processes involved in maintaining cell viability, the mechanisms involved in cell motility and trafficking, intracellular and intercellular signalling, the control of cell death and opportunities for therapeutic manipulations of these processes.

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Course code: 231727 Epidemiology and Biostatistics 30 credits

An exploration of the core principles and practice of epidemiology and biostatistics in assessing and responding to population health need. Students will learn the skills necessary to analyse and interpret data, disseminate information, and critically appraise quantitative literature. The focus of the course is on the application of epidemiology and biostatistics for policy development and decision-making across the health system.

Restrictions: 231730 and 231731

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Course code: 231732 Physical Activity Promotion 15 credits

This course draws on the disciplines of epidemiology, health promotion, policy analysis and exercise science to develop public health competencies specific to physical activity promotion at a population level, including knowledge of the relationship between physical activity and health, and skills in population-based physical activity assessment, determinants analysis and intervention design and evaluation.

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Course code: 231733 Big Public Health Issues 15 credits

This course critically examines the big public health issues globally using an analytical framework and case study approach that considers burden of disease, epidemiology, determinant analysis, health and other system responses and evidence of intervention effectiveness. Issues and case studies covered include major infectious diseases, obesity, smoking, alcohol consumption, injury prevention and mental health.

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Course code: 250703 Health Communication 15 credits

This course examines the primary factors that influence the effective communication and adoption of positive health behaviours by individuals and communities. Students will review: micro and macro-level theories of health communication; audience engagement and persuasion; the impact of evolving public attitudes to health knowledge; innovative methods for health communication.

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Course code: 252701 Sleep and Circadian Science for Health Practitioners 30 credits

An examination of sleep and circadian science in relation to health and healthcare, including healthy sleep, sleep disorders and sleep in those with medical conditions.

Restrictions: 252702

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Part Two

Research Pathway

Choose between 60 and 120 credits from
Course code: 250810 Thesis 90 credits

A supervised and guided independent study resulting in a published work.

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Course code: 250811 Thesis 90 Credits Part I 45 credits

A supervised and guided independent study resulting in a published work.

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Course code: 250812 Thesis 90 Credits Part II 45 credits

A supervised and guided independent study resulting in a published work.

Corequisites: 250811

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Course code: 250813 Thesis 120 credits

A supervised and guided independent study resulting in a published work.

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Course code: 250814 Thesis 120 Credits Part I 60 credits

A supervised and guided independent study resulting in a published work.

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Course code: 250815 Thesis 120 Credits Part II 60 credits

A supervised and guided independent study resulting in a published work.

Corequisites: 250814

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Course code: 250817 Research Report 60 credits

Candidates are required to conduct a piece of independent research under supervision and to produce a report of the research for examination.

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Entry requirements

Admission to Massey

All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.

Specific requirements

To enter the Master of Health Science (Bioscience) you will have been awarded or qualified for:

  • a relevant health-related bachelor’s degree with a minimum B- grade average over the 200/300 level courses, or
  • a relevant health-related bachelor’s degree and extensive professional experience, or
  • a Postgraduate Diploma in a relevant health-related discipline, or
  • a Bachelor of Health Science (Honours) degree.

If you have a postgraduate diploma in a relevant health-related discipline or a Bachelor of Health Science (Honours) from Massey University as outlined above, you may apply for credit towards Part One of the qualification.

You must provide copies of all official academic transcripts for studies taken at all universities other than Massey University.

English language requirements

To study this qualification you must meet Massey University's English language standards.

English language skills

If you need help with your English language skills before you start university, see our English for Academic Purposes (EAP) courses.

Fees and scholarships

Fees, student loans and free fees scheme

Your tuition fees may be different depending on the courses you choose. Your exact fees will show once you have chosen your courses.

There will also be some compulsory non-tuition fees and for some courses, there may also be charges for things such as study resources, software, trips and contact workshops.

Already know which courses you're going to choose?

You can view fees for the courses that make up your qualification on the course details pages.

Student loans (StudyLink) and Fees Free scheme

You may be eligible for a student loan to help towards paying your fees.

The New Zealand Government offers fees-free tertiary study for eligible domestic students. Find out more about the scheme and your eligibility on the Fees Free website. To use the site's eligibility checking tool, you will need your National Student Number.

Current and returning Massey students can find their National Student Number in the student portal.

Fees disclaimer

This information is for estimation purposes only. Actual fees payable will be finalised on confirmation of enrolment. Unless otherwise stated, all fees shown are quoted in New Zealand dollars and include Goods and Services Tax, if any. Before relying on any information on these pages you should also read the University's Disclaimer Notice.

Careers and job opportunities

Once you have graduated from the qualification, you have the opportunity to be a researcher and be
part of a research group.

Related study options