Prerequisite Core Knowledge

Candidates for the DrPH program are presumed to have a mastery of the foundational knowledge required of Masters of Public Health graduates.  As such, the courses described below are considered those content areas considered fundamental for any public health practitioner and their successful completion the starting point for any advanced degree.  

Principles of Biostatistics: This course will introduce you to the basic principles and techniques of statistical analysis of medical and public health data.  By the end of this course you should be able to develop a testable research hypothesis, summarize and describe your data, select appropriate statistical methods, conduct basic statistical analysis using the SPSS statistical program, understand the computer output, and interpret the results.  There are no prerequisites for this course.  Special emphasis will be made for you to acquire the analytic and assessment skills that have been described as core competencies for public health professionals.

Principles of Epidemiology:  The purpose of this course is to introduce students to basic concepts of epidemiology and their application to clinical medicine and public health practice. Concepts of causation and causal inference, populations, public available databases, types of epidemiologic study design, measures of disease frequency and association, assessment and control of confounding and other biases, effect measure modification, qualities of a diagnostic test are major topic that are covered in this class.

Health Care Organizations:  Budgeting and Management:  This course will provide an introduction to the main disciplines in management theory and practice, with a strong emphasis on health care organizations.  The course will focus on instructing you to think broadly and systematically in a managerial manner.  The course provides students with a set of managerial concepts and tools.  Application of these tools will be described in the context of current examples and applicable cases.

Occupational and Environmental Health:  The course examines the direct and indirect human effects of environmental stressors in the community, workplace and home, both domestically and internationally. Current approaches for assessing, preventing and controlling environmental stressors are discussed including health risk assessment, governmental regulations, policies, programs and guidelines.  Socioeconomic and biologic factors that affect susceptibility and vulnerability to environmental hazards are discussed in relation to issues of environmental justice and equity on both the national as well as global level.

Health Care:  Policies, Programs and Politics:   This course is designed to be an overview of theory, organization, policies, politics and practices that have shaped the substance and process of health care services in the United States, and particularly those within the broad public health sphere.  By studying patterns and themes that have emerged in US health care services delivery, and learning about the various factors that have shaped the configuration of the system, students will be in a better position to both understand the past and obtain some perspectives for anticipating changes in the future, and to have a public health perspective on the way in which health care services are structured and delivered to the public.

Changing Health Behaviors: Healthy People and Communities:  This course takes an ecological approach to health. The determinants of individual health can range from individual actions to broad social and environmental conditions. While interventions can be directed at the individual or to the population as a whole an objective of public health practice is often to encourage people to adopt behaviors that will improve their health status. This course provides an overview of the scientific basis for understanding human health behavior and strategies available for trying to change it. Special focus is put on the role, theory and practice of health communication, as a core element of public health interventions and programs.  Students will be introduced to a range of theories, evidence-based strategies, and resources critical to effective public health practice.