What will I learn?

Program goal

The mission of the International Program in Addiction Studies leading to a Master of Science in Addiction Studies degree is to offer students cross-cultural exposure to the critical prevention, treatment, research and policy issues facing the field. Through a collaboration arrangement including VCU, King’s College London and the University of Adelaide in Australia, students complete a program of study using distance-learning technologies to obtain the degree. The program is designed to prepare students for local, national and international policy positions, prevention/treatment program management and other leadership positions in the addictions field. This program will speed the dissemination of the latest international addictions-related knowledge, especially to remote locations around the world, and help students compare international perspectives and translate this knowledge into more effective prevention and treatment practices and evidence-based policies within their own countries.

Students in the program will:

Demonstrate a detailed knowledge of the field of addiction science (including comparative international policies and practices) to prepare them for leadership roles in a variety of settings (including addiction research, policy and treatment venues).

Be able to synthesize and apply addiction-related knowledge, including comparative international perspectives and approaches, to address key issues related to the advancement of addiction science.

Develop the ability to design, implement and interpret experimental approaches which address key questions in addiction science.

Communicate both core knowledge of addiction as well as experimental design, result and interpretation in a variety of formats.

Student learning outcomes

Integrated knowledge of addiction science: The student will demonstrate an appropriate level of knowledge of the current elements of addiction science as related to disciplinary specialization and a more detailed understanding of the individual area of scholarship, including an appropriate familiarity with the research literature and the ability to evaluate and critique publication.

Problem-solving skills: Students will demonstrate an appropriate level of skill in the identification and selection of meaningful problems to be addressed in addiction research and practice, including the ability to defend said identifications and to design and develop appropriate methods to solve said problems as measured by rubric.

Research design: Students will demonstrate the achievement of an appropriate level of competence in the ability to appraise, develop and implement research studies.

Written communication skills: The candidate will use effective written communication skills to present information related to addiction causes, interventions, treatments and policies using appropriate vocabulary, figures, tables and citations.

Which department am I in?

School of Medicine

Study options

Full Time (Minimum 36 graduate credit hours)

Tuition fees
US$24,949.00 per year

*Price shown is for indicative purposes, please check with institution

Start date

20 August 2019


School of Medicine

McGlothlin Medical Education Center (MMEC), 1201 E Marshall Street,

4th Floor, Suite 4-100,



23298, United States

Entry requirements

For international students

In addition to the general admission requirements of the VCU Graduate School, applicants must:

  • Have qualified in a related discipline for an honors degree (level 2A or 1) or a bachelor’s degree from a recognized tertiary institution in the U.S. Any applicant who does not meet this criterion should have (in addition to an honors or bachelor’s degree) significant professional work experience and approval of the program committee.
  • Have a high level of proficiency in English, demonstrated by completion of a university qualification studied in the English language, or by meeting one of the following English language requirements: an IELTS score of 7.0, a TOEFL score of 600 (paper-based) or 260 (computer-based), or minimum grade C in GCSE English

Find your nearest IELTS test centre and test dates

There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.


About this uni

Virginia Commonwealth University is a top 100 research university and No. 1 public postgraduate arts school in the US.

  • VCU is one of the top 3 research universities in Virginia
  • 21% growth in sponsored awards in a 10-year period
  • 1,600 international students from 108 countries
  • 173-acre campus in downtown Richmond