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Traditional MPH

Master of Public Health Program Overview

The Master of Public Health program is a 2-year, 48-credit program. The first four semesters usually involve traditional coursework, while the last semester is devoted to a practice-based internship, which includes a special project. The internship rounds out the MPH by providing opportunities to apply many of the skills you’ve learned in the classroom to the real world of public health. Your special project is one undertaking that you complete during your internship. All students present their special projects – both orally and in written report form — during Public Health Day in the final semester of their programs. These presentations require consideration of your project in the larger context of public health as a cross-disciplinary field and in relation to the competencies expected of all MPH graduates. Faculty, students and preceptors attend Public Health Day presentations and engage in lively dialogue about the students’ projects.


MPH students are admitted into one of six concentration areas, from which the number and type of advanced specialty course credits are determined. The concentration areas are Biostatistics, Environmental Health, Epidemiology, Public Health Management and Policy, Public Health Practice, and Social and Behavioral Sciences.

Graduation Requirements

The major characteristics and graduation requirements of the 48-credit MPH curriculum are:

  • One course in each of the five core areas (15 credits)
  • Seminar in Contemporary Public Health Issues (1 credit)
  • Core Courses in an area of concentration (15-21 credits)
  • Elective courses relevant to the chosen concentration and individual career goals (up to 12 credits)
  • Public Health Internship (5-8 credits)
  • Major paper and presentation (credit assigned through the Seminar in Contemporary Public Health Issues)

MPH Coursework

All MPH students take five core public health courses. The core courses in Environmental Health, Epidemiology, Public Health Management and Policy, and Social and Behavioral Sciences are taken by all students. The core Biostatistics course varies across concentration areas. Students in the Biostatistics, Environmental Health, and Epidemiology concentrations must take PHC 6052, Introduction to Biostatistical Methods. All other MPH students must take PHC 6050 Statistical Methods for Health Science I. In addition, all students must take 1 credit of Seminar in Contemporary Public Health Issues and 5-8 credits of PHC6946, Public Health Internship.

Core Courses

See the Core Courses under the Courses & Curriculum tab for descriptions and sample syllabi for these courses.

PHC 6050—Statistical Methods for Health Science I (3)
PHC 6052—Introduction to Biostatistical Methods (3)
PHC 6001—Principles of Epidemiology in Public Health (3)
HSA 6114—Introduction to the U.S. Health Care System (3)
PHC 6313—Environmental Health Concepts in Public Health (3 or 2)

PHC 6410—Psychological, Behavioral, and Social Issues in Public Health (3)

Concentration Coursework

Each student is admitted to a specific public health concentration area for in-depth study. Each concentration has unique requirements that have been designed to prepare students to become public health professionals in their chosen area of interest. Please select a concentration below to review credit hours and course requirements. On the concentration page, be sure to select the 42-credit curriculum for that concentration.



Environmental Health

Health Management and Policy

Public Health Practice

Social and Behavioral Sciences


    The concepts presented via coursework are integrated and assimilated through an internship, which provides an opportunity for each student to apply his or her knowledge in a practice setting. A wide range of settings and opportunities may be suitable for an internship. Each internship is individually tailored to assure competence in general MPH and concentration-specific skills and to meet student goals, concentration criteria, and the needs of the agencies involved. The internship is usually completed in the student’s final term in the program, and always includes a special project that serves as the basis for a final oral and written report. The internship and the special project must be approved by the student’s faculty advisor.

    PHC 6946—Public Health Internship (5-8) Prereq: Permission of Instructor.
    Fieldwork at approved site. Focus on strengthening competence in general public health and specialty skills through practical experiences. Includes a special project which serves as the foundation for a major paper and presentation. (Register concurrently with PHC 6601 below.) S/U. Click here for a full syllabus

    Major Paper and Public Health Day Presentations

    Students are encouraged to engage in many activities during an internship. However, each student must conduct one special project which serves as the basis for a major paper and a presentation. These culminating activities of the MPH program – major paper and presentation — are intended to encourage students to understand their projects in the larger context of public health as a cross-disciplinary field, and to examine how the project helped to strengthen their competence in general public health and concentration-specific skills. Student presentations are scheduled on one or two Public Health Days near the end of fall, spring and summer semesters. Three faculty members, including the student’s faculty advisor, attend each presentation and are responsible for assessing whether the student has successfully demonstrated a broad-based knowledge of the field of public health and depth of knowledge and skill in his/her concentration area.

    PHC 6601 – Seminar in Contemporary Public Health Issues (1)
    Integration of public health topics, issues, and skills into a culminating experience for the MPH program. Required final paper and oral presentation or poster session (Register concurrently with PHC 6946.) Click here for full syllabus IPLH Click here for flyer

    For more information on the internship and special project click here.

    MPH Competencies

    All students in the MPH Program are expected to master a set of competencies during the course of their studies. The competencies that have been selected by the faculty of the College of Public Health and Health Professions are derived from the Ten Essential Public Health Services and they are consistent with recommendations of the Association of Schools of Public Health (

    Click here to review the competencies expected of all of our MPH graduates and the courses that contribute to them.

    Our core course learning objectives were adapted, with minor changes, from the competencies that serve as the basis of the public health credentialing examination. Beginning in August 2008, The National Board of Public Health Examiners will offer the first credentialing exam for graduates of accredited schools of public health. Those who pass the exam will be Certified in Public Health (CPH). This is an exciting new development in public health. Click here for up-to-date information about the exam.

    Our website contains a great deal of information about our programs. But, if you don’t find the information you need here, please contact us. We can be reached by email at or by phone at 1-866-62-UFMPH.