MSc Public Health and Health Systems

Denise Ng standing in front of a brick wall

Focusing on Health Informatics

Working in a pediatric clinic after graduating from her bachelor’s degree provided the inspiration for Denise Ng’s graduate research. While the clinic was transferring from paper to electronic records, she noticed a gap between the new software’s capabilities and the needs of the clinic.  Focusing on health informatics and health service research, her Master’s thesis explores the level of risk perceived by patients when they are asked to provide patient experience feedback via smart-phone technology. By analyzing patient attitudes towards information disclosure and mobile Health (mHealth) usability, Denise is working towards understanding the circumstances which are appropriate for smartphone-facilitated patient feedback.  

Experience beyond research

Denise's experience in the Master’s program at the Faculty of Health extends beyond research, exposing her to experiential learning as part of the course. She spent one term as a Research Assistant at the Conrad Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology Centre. There, she worked with the Jamii team, a group consisting of talented individuals in user experience design, programming and entrepreneurship. Jamii - meaning “community” in Swahili - is an online virtual incubator program for individuals who want to pursue entrepreneurship and the team aims to provide entrepreneurial teams with tools, learning materials and a network to launch their ventures.  Denise worked with the team by helping them develop an understanding of what the latest research has shown regarding online learning communities.  She also developed a research protocol to understand the needs of the entrepreneurs working with Jamii. 

Making technology accessible 

Denise attributes her rich Master’s experience to the opportunities available to her at the School of Public Health and Health Systems. In just under two years, Denise’s research, practical experience and connections have placed her in a unique position to accomplish her end goal;

“I'd like to work towards making technology be more accessible, efficient and useful for end-users, whether they are patients, healthcare providers or researchers”

Research Assistants / Teaching Assistants

Teaching Assistantships (TAs) and Research Assistantships (RAs) are available to students enrolled in research-based degree programs.

Any applicant that is accepted into the Master's program on a full-time basis will normally receive teaching/research funding for a minimum of three terms over the first year of the master's program. 

Applicants who are accepted full-time for the Doctoral program will normally receive funding for three terms of each of the first four years of the doctoral program. Teaching and research assistantships are 10 hours per week for 15 weeks per term.

Find out more about research and teaching assistantships

Compensation rates for research and teaching assistantships


University of Waterloo