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I am keen to follow the MSc Clinical Dermatology course offered by the highly esteemed University of Hertfordshire. With few years of experience as a Dermatology Professional following my bachelor degree in Medicine and Surgery from the College of Medicine, University of Sulaimani, Iraq, I want to gain advanced level knowledge and skills in the field and specialise in Clinical Dermatology with a master degree. I have made this decision to brush up the rough edges I have in my academic accomplishments and professional performances. Study of the MSc Clinical Dermatology would sharpen my knowledge while boost up my career development. I find this course offered at University of Hertfordshire match my academic pursuance and career plan at optimum level.
At University of Hertfordshire, this course has an emphasis on developing practical competencies; good diagnostic skills, appropriate and timely management of common skin conditions. The programme allows flexibility to study related specialist content to broaden student’s clinical expertise which is invaluable in today’s competitive workplace
After my Bachelor’s degree in Medicine and Surgery, I took the opportunity to work as a dermatology intern doctor at Sulaimanyia teaching Center for dermatology and venereology. This experience gave the professional foundation to open my career and grow my interest in the area of dermatology. Consequently, I continuously developed myself professionally by undertaking different roles at clinics, hospitals and medical centres. In most recent role, I have been working as a dermatologist in the Specialist Centre for Dermatology in Kurdestan. In this role, I have practiced diagnosis and treatment of skin disease, performing aesthetic procedures including botox for facial wrinkles, filler injection for face and lips, threads for face lift and rejuvenation, laser treatments for different skin conditions and removal of skin lesion and pigments, PRP and mesotherapy injections and minor dermatological surgical procedures.
I can bring this transferrable practical knowledge and skills to enrich the MSc study and make my learning more meaningful and gain the maximum output from the study. This MSc has been designed to provide theoretical knowledge and practical skills in Dermatology – this will be of great benefit to me as I will have the chance to gain dermatology postgraduate level knowledge which I have always missed in my academic knowledge portfolio. The course would facilitate the opportunity learn Clinical Dermatology practised in the UK and other countries that are advanced in the area of dermatology. My knowledge and skills so far have been limited to my native country to local extent. This practice-led MSc study at University of Hertfordshire would give me a real chance to expand my horizon at broader level with global context of dermatology practice. Completion of a Quality Improvement Project at the end of the programme would provide me the opportunity to learn more about quality improvement methodology such as data collection, problem definition and diagnosis, generation and selection of potential changes and implementation and evaluation of those changes.
In this MSc, I will have the chance to gain higher level academic knowledge and professional skills in the area of the burden of skin disease, diagnostic techniques, skin histopathology, disorders of skin and mucous membranes, environmental and lifestyle factors, immunology and biology, cutaneous manifestations of systemic disease, inflammatory skin conditions, microbiology of the skin, pigmented skin diseases, skin cancer, surgical intervention, psychological impact of skin disease, patient education and optimal service delivery – a wide range of crucial areas that would allow me to get insights of dermatology. Some of my earlier study units at my Bachelor’s degree in Medicine and Surgery have similarities in learning to the above though at lower level. Nonetheless, those will complement this MSc learning and give me a strong base to build higher blocks of knowledge that this postgraduate course has to offer.
To add value to the achievements, I will also have a practical skills module throughout the course. This is supported by significant clinical research and assessment. There would be opportunities to visit a local Dermatology Unit to observe clinical practice in a NHS setting and experience a series of specialist clinic observations. This will facilitate to interact with significant real patient allowing learning hands-on knowledge as practised on the job situation. This would be great learning opportunity of my career life that I cannot afford to miss.
From the study, I will learn to develop methods of inquiry and skills required to research and advance dermatology practice using in-depth current and relevant evidence base; accomplish knowledge and understanding to foster the further development of critical, contemporary, evidence based and patient cantered practice in dermatology; acquire a systematic advanced knowledge and understanding of the application of specialist dermatology to practice in the context of multi-professional and inter-professional working in the contemporary healthcare setting.
Additionally, I will have gained ‘soft skills’ including decision making and problem solving skills, leadership and communication skills, information retrieval, critical analysis and application of evidence based practice, audit and research methods and an ability to support and influence service improvement amongst others. This programme offers excellent opportunities for continuing professional development for practicing health professionals.
On completion of the MSc, I will have better understanding of skin disorders, upskill in the diagnostic and management of dermatological disorders, plan and organise a literature review in a coherent and scientific manner on a specific topic in dermatology applied understanding of how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to create and interrupt knowledge in an appropriate clinical setting and above all ‘employability skills’ in international arena. With the advanced knowledge skills, I will have enhanced confidence to practice as competent health professional and conquer medical challenges related to dermatology in my objective to provide expert service in the treatment of patients.
The unique feature of the faculty is that each module of this MSc is led by a specialist module tutor. The teaching team are dedicated academics in their fields and specialist dermatology practitioners. Additionally, visiting lecturers from the industry bring in further practical experience enrich the learning experience of students at University of Hertfordshire.
The university has one of Europe's largest and most advanced Clinical Simulation Centres. The £16 million facility comprises a mock general ward, Intensive Care Unit, GP surgery, hospital and community pharmacy as well as state-of-the-art audio-visual equipment that enhance lectures and conferences in world leading teaching environment through the various specialists labs. The University's £30 million Health Sciences building offers a state-of-the-art environment for education and training. The facility includes a special simulation centre featuring ITU/ ward simulation area, simulated community / hospital pharmacy, simulated GP surgery, simulated counselling room, clinical skills lab, observation / seminar rooms, state-of-the-art audio manikins, state-of-the-art audio visual equipment, conference facilities.
The University of Hertfordshire outscores the Russell Group with graduate employment at 96.2%. The University of Hertfordshire is one of the top 100 universities in the world under 50 years old according to the Times Higher Education 100 under 50 rankings 2015. This great MSc qualification, indeed, will come with numerous significant benefits at this university and none other can match these in my research. University of Hertfordshire, undoubtedly, is top my list for my MSc Clinical Dermatology study overseas.