Council on Education for Public Health
Graduate program director
Lisa S. Anderson, M.P.H.
Director of educational programs
Anna P. Rose
Graduate programs coordinator
(804) 828- 9785
Program website: epidemiology.vcu.edu/education/mph
Refer to the program search function of the online VCU Bulletins for a complete listing of all programs, concentrations and related curricular options.
Medicine, Doctor of (M.D.)/Public Health, Master of (M.P.H.) [combined]
Pharmacy, Doctor of (Pharm.D.)/Public Health, Master of (M.P.H.) [combined]
Public Health, Master of (M.P.H.)/Social Work, Master of (M.S.W.) [combined]
Apply online at graduate.admissions.vcu.edu.
Public Health, Master of (M.P.H.)
Jan 1 (strongly recommended)
In addition to the general admission requirements of the VCU Graduate School, to be considered for admission, applicants must meet the following requirements:
Students must also submit the following materials with their applications:
The VCU Graduate Bulletin website documents the official admission and academic rules and regulations that govern graduate education for all graduate programs at the university. These policies are established by the graduate faculty of the university through their elected representatives to the University Graduate Council.
It is the responsibility of all graduate students, both on- and off-campus, to be familiar with the VCU Graduate Bulletin as well as the Graduate School website and academic regulations in individual school and department publications and on program websites. However, in all cases, the official policies and procedures of the University Graduate Council, as published on the VCU Graduate Bulletin and Graduate School websites, take precedence over individual program policies and guidelines.
General academic regulations for
all graduate students in all graduate programs at VCU
The mission of the VCU M.P.H. program is to engage students in an experiential and learner-centered environment, collaborate with public health partners in Central Virginia to promote health equity and community wellness and foster lifelong inquiry and discovery in interdisciplinary, translational research that improves human health.
The overall goal of the M.P.H. program is to educate students to become well-grounded in the essential knowledge, skills and attitudes of public health and demonstrate their ability to apply these essentials through course work, internships and the M.P.H. capstone project. This program is designed to provide students with the skills required to advance to positions as public health practitioners in a broad spectrum of positions and settings and who can perform the following:
The structure of the program provides a framework for the progressive development of a mastery of the current state of the subject matter of public health and an ability to synthesize and apply this information to the identification of key areas of practice and research in public health. Students will develop educational competencies outlined by the M.P.H. program. These competencies cover the foundational knowledge necessary for a public health practitioner to both communicate the core of public health knowledge and express the design, results and interpretation of various public health interventions, evaluations, and data collection and analysis efforts to a variety of potential audiences.
The M.P.H. program trains students to develop the following educational competencies, selected from the Association of Schools of Public Health’s “Master’s Degree in Public Health Core Competency Model,” August 2006.
The Master of Public Health program prepares students committed to public health careers in the public, private or nonprofit sectors. Public health works to prevent health problems in populations before these problems occur. The M.P.H. program provides a rigorous curriculum to help students develop the analytic and critical reasoning skills to improve population health. The program boasts experiential learning, a highly interactive environment, accessible and approachable faculty and student involvement in important projects.
In addition to general VCU Graduate School graduation requirements, a minimum of 45 credit hours of formal course work is required, including
The M.P.H. program can be individualized to meet the varied needs and interests of students. The program offers many electives, allowing students to tailor the program to meet educational objectives, and it is flexible enough to accommodate students who enter the program with various backgrounds and experiences.
|BIOS 547 Applied Data Analysis in Public Health I||3|
|EPID 571 Principles of Epidemiology||3|
|EPID 604 Principles of Environmental Health||3|
|HCPR 601 Introduction to Health Policy||3|
|SBHD 605 Introduction to Social and Behavioral Health||3|
|BIOS 548 Applied Data Analysis in Public Health II||3|
|EPID 547 Applied Data Analysis Lab I||1.5|
|EPID 548 Applied Data Analysis Lab II||1.5|
|EPID 580 Public Health Ethics||1|
|EPID 593 MPH Practicum||2|
|Students take a minimum of 15 credit hours of elective course work selected according to the area(s) of interest in public health. These may include the following courses:|
|BIOS 571 Clinical Trials||3|
|EPID 600 Introduction to Public Health||3|
|EPID 601 Contemporary Issues and Controversies in Public Health||3|
|EPID 603 Public Health Policy and Politics||3|
|EPID 620 Cancer Epidemiology||3|
|EPID 622 Maternal and Child Health||3|
|EPID 624 Chronic Disease Epidemiology||3|
|EPID 646 Epidemiology of Psychiatric and Substance Use Disorders||3|
|EPID 648 Behavioral Epidemiology||3|
|SBHD 608 Health Communication||3|
|SBHD 632 Health Disparities and Social Justice||3|
|SBHD 636 Community-based Participatory Research||3|
|Integrative program requirements||6|
|EPID 693 Public Health Internship||3|
|EPID 694 MPH Capstone Project||3|
|Total graduate credit hours required (minimum)||45|
Public health internship: The public health internship is a supervised experience designed to expose M.P.H. students to a real-world public health practice setting, such as a governmental public health agency or nonprofit organization, requiring them to integrate classroom knowledge and skills in practical applications in a professional environment. Each student intern works with a practice site supervisor who assigns tasks, instructs the student in new skills and evaluates the student’s progress. Students work a minimum of 180 hours in a professional public health organization.
Capstone project: The culminating work in the M.P.H. program is the capstone project. The project is a practical experience that allows the student to apply what has been learned in the didactic components of the curriculum to a focused project. The goal is to enhance the student’s academic experience through the application of public health concepts and skills in a supervised experience. Students are required to synthesize the literature; analyze, assess or evaluate quantitative or qualitative data; and in general apply theory and integrate knowledge gained and principles in situations that approximate some aspects of professional practice. With this mentored experience, students are able to both broaden their skills and hone their proficiency in a specific area of public health. The major product of this culminating experience is expected to vary depending on the educational goals of the student, but could include one of the following:
At a minimum, the capstone experience will require the integration of multiple major competencies used by a public health professional. In fulfilling the capstone requirement, each candidate must: (a) submit a formal written paper of sufficient depth and rigor and (b) satisfactorily complete a poster presentation of the project chosen as the basis for the written paper at an appropriate venue (e.g., research forum, refereed conference, etc.) approved by the M.P.H. program director.
Non-didactic program requirements
In addition to course work, students are required to complete the following noncurricular requirements for the M.P.H. degree:
A graduate student admitted to a program or concentration requiring a final research project, work of art, thesis or dissertation, must qualify for continuing master’s or doctoral status according to the degree candidacy requirements of the student’s graduate program. Admission to degree candidacy, if applicable, is a formal statement by the graduate student’s faculty regarding the student’s academic achievements and the student’s readiness to proceed to the final research phase of the degree program.
Graduate students and program directors should refer to the following degree candidacy policy as published in the VCU Graduate Bulletin for complete information and instructions.
Degree candidacy requirements
As graduate students approach the end of their academic programs and the final semester of matriculation, they must make formal application to graduate. No degrees will be conferred until the application to graduate has been finalized.
Graduate students and program directors should refer to the following graduation requirements as published in the Graduate Bulletin for a complete list of instructions and a graduation checklist.
The M.P.H. program student handbook is available upon request.
School of Medicine graduate program policies
The School of Medicine provides policies applicable to all programs administratively housed in the school. Information on master’s programs is available in the Graduate Bulletin at pubapps.vcu.edu/Bulletins/about/?uid=10046&iid=30113.