The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is granted in recognition of high
attainment in a specified field of knowledge. It is a research degree and is
not conferred solely upon the earning of credit or the completion of courses.
It 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. This degree requires a minimum of 55 credits
The mission of the programs of study for the Doctor of Philosophy degree
is to prepare public health professionals to make substantive contributions to
public health inquiry and practice.
Students should acquire the skills to create
and disseminate knowledge, and also to lead, collaborate with and teach others
in various public health academic, research and field settings. Therefore, the
foundation of a strong PhD program in public health includes:
- Capable, ethical and scholarly faculty to mentor
students in their area of interest,
- The potential for financial assistance/funding of
doctoral student research and teaching,
- Availability of courses in students area of interest, Students
who have the academic and professional potential to achieve the doctoral
- Students who are ethical, scholarly representatives of
the profession and the school,
- The availability of meaningful professional development
- Opportunities for students to participate in
- Competencies are met by successfully completing a
doctoral committee approved plan of academic study and research, and
documented professional and other scholarly experiences.
A Doctor of Philosophy graduate will be able to:
Scientific Knowledge and Theory
- Critically evaluate and use scientific theories and
frameworks relevant to public health.
- Synthesize knowledge from a
broad range of disciplines in public health.
- Critically analyze research literature.
- Develop testable hypotheses for independent research.
- Design and carry out original research that contributes
to the knowledge base in public health.
- Demonstrate mastery of methods of data collection and
- Apply a set of ethical standards in the conduct and
dissemination of research.
- Work as an effective research team member.
- Prepare scholarly publications and deliver oral
- Be cognizant of appropriate funding sources for
- Develop grant writing
- Demonstrate ability to teach a university level course
using current pedagogical techniques.
- Demonstrate communication skills that facilitate
learning by others in formal and informal settings.
Below are disciplines in the College of Public Health in which a PhD can be earned. Under each discipline, you will find a list of concentrations that a student can choose from:
Community and Family
Health Policy and