Online Course - Public Health Principles in Disaster and Medical Humanitarian Response

(Last Updated on 24 January 2019)

More than 7,500 students from all continents have enrolled in the first eight cohorts offered since June 2014.

Registration for the 9th cohort opens until 15 March 2019. Upon registration, students are allowed to study the course until 15 April 2019 at their own pace. There is limited quota for enrolment on a first-come-first-served basis.

Course Overview
The "Public Health Principles in Disaster and Medical Humanitarian Response" online course was developed by CCOUC in an attempt to make lessons learnt from previous disasters available and comprehensible to key stakeholders in disaster risk mitigation and the civil society. Students enrolled in the course will gain insight and theoretical understanding of the public health issues related to disaster and be empowered personally and professionally to take necessary actions at the individual, community, and national levels to reduce the health risk posed by the increasing frequency and intensity of disaster. 

Course Features

Target Audience
The target audience for this course is individuals studying and working in health, policy, education and humanitarian sectors. Students may be civil servants, healthcare personnel, frontline disaster relief practitioners, and postgraduate students of closely-related disciplines. 

As part of CCOUC’s knowledge transfer endeavour, this course is offered free of charge. There is limited quota for enrolment on a first-come-first-served basis.

Course Structure and Delivery Format
The course is delivered through an online virtual learning space developed by the Technology-Assisted Lifelong Learning unit of the Department for Continuing Education of Oxford University. 

The course involves a total of 7 lessons, 4 short quizzes and one final assessment. Each lesson requires about one to three hours of study. All assessments are in the form of multiple-choice questions to be completed online with unlimited attempts. To progress through the course, students must obtain 80% or above in each short-quiz. Students enrolled in the course may access all learning materials and go through all learning activities online within a maximum period of seven months. Topics covered in the course are as follows:

Recommended Reading
Chan EYY, Public health humanitarian responses to natural disasters. London: Routledge; 2017.

Course Completion and Certification
Students who obtain 60% or above in the final assessment will be issued a printable certificate in recognition of completing the course.

To start studying the course now, please visit the course website at

Stay Connected
For units interested in promoting and recommending this course, please send an email to for further information. 

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