The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is designed to prepare public health professionals to make substantive contributions to public health inquiry and practice. Public health professionals are focused on health promotion, disease prevention, and programs aimed at specific problems that disproportionately affect minority and economically disadvantaged groups. The PhD is a research degree and is granted after the student has shown proficiency and distinctive achievement in a specific field, has demonstrated the ability to do original, independent investigation, and has presented these findings with a high degree of literary skill in a dissertation.
Doctoral Milestones are a set of target activities that PhD students work towards during their 4-5 years of training. Starting with the most basic levels of achievement in each category, students gain experience and skills in Research, Teaching and Professional Development to prepare them for their next steps after completing their PhD. This may be a post-doctoral fellowship, an academic position as an Assistant Professor, or an entry position in a research or corporate setting. Students who graduate from the USF College of Public Health doctoral program are better prepared for these next steps because they have built a consistent and impressive portfolio of Doctoral Milestones – and our program helps them achieve these skills right from their first day of the program!
Examples of Doctoral Milestones:
Research skills – Grant writing, manuscript preparation, authorship of published manuscripts, presentations at professional conferences, experience on research studies
Teaching skills – Teaching assistantships, Instructor of Record experience, extensive teaching preparation and skill-building programs
Professional development – Preparation of materials for post-graduate positions, such as professional CVs, teaching and research statements, research presentation materials, cover letters, interviewing skills
The College of Public Health PhD students are supported by fellowships, which include tuition waivers and health insurance, research assistantships and graduate teaching assistantships, for which they apply and are appointed.
Additional opportunities are available for graduate students to obtain funding for graduate education. These options can typically be classified into three areas:
For more information on these and other funding opportunities please visit the Office of Graduate Studies website.
On average, the doctoral program requires four to five years for completion following the Master’s or other advanced degree. The College of Public Health PhD program is delivered primarily on-campus. Students are required to be in or regularly commute to the Tampa for the duration of their program.
Below are concentrations in the College of Public Health in which a PhD can be earned.