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School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts

Public Health Graduate Curriculum

Our curriculum has a strong base of coursework, including courses in the five core areas of public health (environmental health, social and behavioral health, health services research, epidemiology, and statistics) in three emphasis areas; prevention sciences, environmental health, health services/health policy.

A sample course of study is:

Prevention Sciences and Population Health


Fall Semester

Spring Semester


First Year


PH 201: Foundations of Public Health

Soc 210: Statistics 1: Regression Analysis


PH 203: Research methods in Public Health

PH 204: Environmental Health


PH 202: Epidemiology

Elective Course


PH 208: Professional seminar

PH 208: Professional Seminar


Second Year - Elective Courses


PH 207: Health Behavior

PH 205: Health Services Research and Policy


Soc 211: Statistics 2: Categorical Regression

PH 222 Program Design & Evaluation


PH 221: Social Epidemiology & Health Disparities

PH 233: Prevention of chronic and infectious diseases


PH 208: Professional seminar

PH 206: Health Communication




Students will be actively engaged in research from the start of their graduate training through the end of their doctoral work. This research emphasizes close work with a faculty mentor, with increasing independence over the years of training. The major milestones students achieve through their course of study include:




Second Year Research Thesis

Research skills in Public Health are best acquired through classroom instruction and participation in research. The Second Year Research Thesis will be conducted with your major advisor.

End of second year of study

Qualifying exam

The Qualifying Exam in Public Health consists of proposing, completing, and orally defending a substantial research paper.

End of third year of study

Dissertation proposal

The Dissertation Proposal reviews the relevant literature and defines the area of inquiry of the proposed Dissertation, provides a clear statement of actionable research aims, questions, and/or hypotheses that will be addressed in the Dissertation, and outlines the methodological and analytic approach that will enable the proposed research to address these aims, questions, and/or hypotheses.

During fourth year of study


The Doctoral Dissertation is the culmination of the Ph.D., in which the Doctoral Candidate demonstrates the capability to conduct research independently that makes an original contribution to knowledge of a quality that can be published in a reputable scientific journal.

Fourth or fifth year of study


Updated 2021