University of Sydney Handbooks - 2016 Archive

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Health Communication

(Students apply through the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences)

Graduate Certificate in Health Communication

Graduate Diploma in Health Communication

Master of Health Communication


  Graduate Certificate in Health Communication Graduate Diploma in Health Communication Master of Health Communication
Course code  GCHECOMM1000 GNHECOMM1000 MAHECOMM1000
CRICOS code  063950K 063949C 063948D
Degree Abbreviation  GradCertHC GradDipHC MHC
Credit points required to complete  24 36 48
Time to complete part-time  1 - 2 years 1.5 - 3 years 2 - 4 years


The Master of Health Communication delivers core media skills to help students to become effective communicators across health and medicine, public affairs, public relations, community relations and journalism. Our unique Health Communication program is the most comprehensive and specialised course of its kind in Australia, combining the expertise of the University of Sydney’s Department of Media and Communications with the public health resources of the School of Public Health. With a cross-disciplinary and collaborative approach to both media and health disciplines, our program incorporates media relations, organisational communication, and health communication approaches.

Health communication is one of the largest industry workforces in public relations and media, acting as a bridge between medical bodies, public health authorities and the wider public through the media.

The 1.5 year program (full-time) provides media skills for professional communicators in public and corporate health communications, healthcare public affairs, public relations, community relations, healthcare promotions and health journalism. It also offers a solid, evidence-based education in international health, community-oriented health practice, obesity and other disease prevention strategies, and health promotion. Designed to meet the needs of those already working in, or wishing to enter, the private and public health sectors, as well as non-government and community organisations, our program is flexible. For example, the Graduate Diploma (1 year full-time) and Graduate Certificate (6 months full-time) courses provide shorter avenues to update and extend one’s professional skills, or to explore new career directions.

Course outcomes

Our degrees will equip students with knowledge, understanding and expertise across media and health disciplines, incorporating a cross-disciplinary, collaborative approach. Units of study provide training in campaign development, advocacy, humanitarian and emergency health issues, bioethics, and an understanding of health cultures, policy and promotion. Featuring a well-regarded internship program, students will have the chance to attain high-level skills from work experience while fostering professional contacts and networks prior to completion. Units of study available in the degree include: News Writing; Dealing with the Media; Health Communication, International Health Promotion; and Organisational Communication.

Further enquiries

Dr Olaf Werder
Phone: +61 2 9114 1219