Master's Programme in Implementation, Transformative Learning and Sustainability

Academic year 2022/2023

Photo for Master's Programme in Implementation, Transformative Learning and Sustainability 2022/2023

The Master's Programme in Implementation, Transformative Learning and Sustainability (ITS) supports an understanding of how to implement sustainability actions in global health contexts without exporting socio-ecological vulnerabilities to other sectors, societal intersections and future generations. The programme draws on principles of co-design where stakeholders contribute real-world knowledge, in order to minimize the risk of failure due to blind spots, designer bias, or the misinterpretation of context.

Why this programme?

The ITS programme aims to provide theoretical, empirical and practical knowledge to enable the design of learning processes that support the implementation of sustainability actions and projects in complex (wicked) global health contexts. The programme also encourages students to contribute to the body of knowledge in the field of learning for sustainable development and global health and critically reflect on this knowledge production in different research and development contexts.

Whilst reading the programme, students can expect to:

  • gain a general understanding of the subject area learning for sustainable development and global health;
  • acquire an in-depth knowledge of implementation science, transformation, governance, and the design of collaborative learning processes, including insights into contemporary research and development practice;
  • develop a capacity to apply critical systems thinking within economic, social/cultural and ecological sustainability domains, taking manifest complexity and goal conflicts into account;
  • study with course participants from different parts of the world. 
Students with a master's degree in implementation, transformative learning and sustainability will be eligible for PhD studies in "learning for sustainable development" and "global health". The programme also qualifies students for PhD studies in several other transdisciplinary subject areas, such as environmental communication, human ecology and gender studies.

Student profile
You have a strong interest in sustainable development. You are interested in the health of humans, animals and the environment and want to contribute to a sustainable future characterised by social justice. Frustrated by too little actual action, you want to tackle sustainability challenges through the implementation of change processes that address health for all. Your social skills are good, and you can communicate in well written and spoken English. You can critically reflect on problems and are creative enough to develop innovative ideas and present them. A future PhD education is a possibility you might have considered, but working right after graduation is also something you are considering.


The programme leads to a Master of Medical Science (120 credits) with Learning for Sustainable Development and Global Health as the main field of study.


The Master's Programme in Implementation, Transformative Learning and Sustainability (ITS) is run over 4 half year semester blocks, and begins with an obligatory on campus introductory week. During the first semester you will gain a basic conceptual understanding of sustainability, global health, social learning, implementation and wicked problems. The last part of the semester deals with implementation challenges in contexts characterised by conflicts of interest, power asymmetries and inequities.

In semester 2 you will be trained to design and facilitate transformative learning for implementation mediated by way of various tools, approaches, and methods. During the second part of this semester, you will learn about the crucial elements in institutional governance design to enable implementation and transformative learning.

The second year of the programme is geared towards supporting your independent research projectproject and begins with an obligatory on campus week. Semester 3 includes a two-month internship within a relevant organisation, followed up by a course in research methods. During the last semester you will undertake your independent research project.

Progression within the Master's programme consists of specialization in learning for sustainable development and global health, leading to PhD studies and/or working life eligibility.

Courses within the programme

Semester 1
Introduction to Sustainable Development, 7.5 credits
Introduction to Implementation Science, 7.5 credits
Power, Equity and Transformation, 15 credits

Semester 2
Implementation Methods and Design, 15 credits
Governance for Sustainability, 15 credits

Semester 3
Internship in Learning for Sustainable Development and Global Health, 15 credits
Research Methods, 15 credits

Semester 4
Master's Thesis in Implementation Science, Transformational Learning and Sustainability, 30 credits

Learning experience

The teaching consists of lectures, seminars, and assignments carried out individually and in groups. The students present their knowledge continuously during the education through oral presentations, discussions and writing of scientific papers. The design of the master's programme draws on pedagogical principles, which includes active student participation and close contact and co-creation of knowledge with the surrounding society.

The teaching draws on collaborative learning and student-activating pedagogy, where the student's previous experience of research perspectives and education are considered central. You will also be involved in co-creating assignments, examination and undertaking peer review. The language of instruction will be in English.


The Master's Programme in Implementation Science, Transformative Learning and Sustainability (ITS) prepares students to be change agents within qualified professions at the intersection between health and sustainability, international organisations, government administration, aid organisations, consultancy and the education sector. Students will also acquire knowledge to implement projects and programs that address complex (wicked) sustainability problems. Once you complete you might also want to continue with PhD studies.

Career support
During your time as a student, UU Careers offers support and guidance. You have the opportunity to take part in a variety of activities and events that will prepare you for your future career. Learn more about UU Careers.


Below you will find the details about eligibility requirements, selection criteria, and tuition fees. For information on how to apply and what documents you need to submit, check the application guide. For this programme, besides the general supporting documents, you also need to submit one or two programme-specific documents: 1. an Application Summary Sheet; 2. document(s) and/or letter(s) of recommendation certifying your previous experience (if applicable).

Master's Programme in Implementation, Transformative Learning and Sustainability

120 credits

Autumn 2022, 100%, Distance learning

Location: Flexible

Application deadline: 17 January 2022

Application code: UU-M3557 Application

Language of instruction: English

Academic requirements
A Bachelor's degree, equivalent to a Swedish Kandidatexamen, from an internationally recognised university, with 90 credits in technical-natural science, social science-humanities or medical-pharmaceutical fields.

Language requirements
Proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary course English 6. This requirement can be met either by achieving the required score on an internationally recognised test, or by previous upper secondary or university studies in some countries. Detailed instructions on how to provide evidence of your English proficiency are available at

Selection: Students are selected based on a total appraisal of:

  • the quantity and quality of previous university studies with emphasis on grades in relevant fields,
  • a statement of purpose describing your interest in the programme
  • a summary in English (maximum one page) of a research project, or similar, performed during the Bachelor's studies; and
  • relevant work experience.
Tuition fee-paying students and non-paying students are admitted on the same grounds but in different selection groups.


If you are not a citizen of a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) country, or Switzerland, you are required to pay application and tuition fees. Fees cover application and tuition only and do not cover accommodation, academic literature or the general cost of living. Read more about fees.

Application fee: SEK 900

Tuition fee, first semester: SEK 72,500

Tuition fee, total: SEK 290,000

Contact and further resources

Is this programme right for you?


Neil Powell, Masters Programme Coordinator


For admissions-related or general information, please contact our applicant support team:

Department of Womens's and Children's Health

MTC-house, Dag Hammarskjölds väg 14 B

Uppsala University Hospital, SE-751 85 Uppsala, Sweden

Programme start and registration

Registration to the first course Introduction to Sustainable Development (3BO005) and the Master's Programme in Implementation, Transformative Learning and Sustainability (ITS):  
The students will self-register via Ladok during the registration period: 2022-08-01 - 2022-08-28.
If you're an admitted student but not able to register, please send an email including your full name and birth date (year-month-day) to, no later than August 14th. Subject line: Registration to Introduction to Sustainable Development. The registration will then be carried out by the course administration.
For more information regarding the course- and programme start, please see the Programme page in Studium (learning platform).

Last modified: 2022-05-13