MPH Public Health Policy Administration

The Public Health Policy and Administration (PHPA) track is nationally distinct in its inter-sectoral, systems-level, and justice focused curriculum. Emphasizing the social, political, and economic determinants of health, students in the PHPA track gain foundational understanding of social and policy theories, and their relevance to public health practice and policymaking in various contexts. The PHPA track also uniquely trains students in both quantitative, econometric policy analysis as well as qualitative research methods, with application to real-world public health policy problems. Students graduate with well-rounded knowledge and a solid set of skills in research-driven policy analysis, advocacy, and administration, applicable in a variety of health-related settings in public and private settings.

PHPA graduates can work for state and local health departments, nonprofits, policy think tanks, advocacy organizations, or with elected officials to analyze, develop, and implement health-related policies at the city, state, or national level, among other opportunities.

Public Health Policy and Administration Track (28 credits)

In addition to the common MPH core classes

Required Courses (15 credits)

PH 700: Structures of Inequality and Population Health (3 credits)
PH 776: Applied Qualitative Methods for Public Health Policy and Administration (3 credits)
PH 777: Survey of Quantitative Research and Methods for Public Health Policy and Administration (3 credits)
PH 779: Public Health Policymaking and Policy Analysis (3 credits)
PH 781: Public Health Administration (3 credits)

Fundamental Methods “S” Elective – choose one (3 credits)

PH 728: Program Evaluation in Public Health (3 credits)
ECON 450: Health Economics (3 credits)
PUB ADM 630: Budgeting and Finance in the Public Sector (3 credits)


Content Elective- choose at least one (3 credits minimum)

PH 719: Social Justice in Public Health (3 credits)
PH 725: Theories and Models of Health Behavior (3 credits)
PH 774: Crime Policies and Public Health (3 credits)
PH 784: Social Policy as Health Policy (3 credits)
PH 786: The Science and Policy of Sustainable Diets (3 credits)
BUS ADM 757: Managed Care and Integrated Health Networks (3 credits)
BUSMGMT 725: Governance and Executive Leadership of Nonprofit Organizations (3 credits)
ED POL 611: Community Policies and Urban Minority Youths (3 credits)
ED POL 630: Race and Public Policy in Urban America (3 credits)
GEOG 564: Urban Environmental Change and Social Justice (3 credits)
POL SCI 464: Sex, Gender, and the Law (3 credits)
URB STD 965 Municipal Management (3 credits)

Other classes as approved by advisor

Methods Elective – Choose at least one (3 credits minimum)

PH 711: Intermediate Biostatistics (3 credits)
PH 726: Community Assessment (3 credits)
PH 728: Program Evaluation in Public Health (3 credits)
PH 736: Advanced Qualitative Methods (3 credits)             
BUSMGMT 721: Fundraising and Development for Nonprofit Organizations (3 credits)
CIV ENG 492: Environmental Impact Assessment (3 credits)
ED POL 602: Proposal Writing and Fundraising Skills for Community-Based Organizations (3 credits)
ED POL 711: Community Organizing: Collective Action for Social Change (3 credits)
NONPROF 791: Nonprofit Advocacy and Public Policy (3 credits)
PUB ADM 630: Budgeting and Finance in the Public Sector (3 credits)
PUB ADM 730: Budgeting for Public Sector Professionals (3 credits)
PUB ADM 769: Analyzing and Evaluating Public Policies and Programs (3 credits)
SOCIOL 752: Fundamentals of Survey Methodology (3 credits)
URBPLAN 791: Intro to Urban GIS for planning (3 credits)

Other classes as approved by advisor

Faculty expertise in: Public Health Policy and Administration addressing a broad range of areas, including chronic disease prevention; maternal and child health; environmentally sustainable diets; residential segregation; health inequities; structural violence; tobacco prevention and control; public health law; policy analysis; policy communication; among others.

Public Health Policy and Administration track competencies

  1. Distinguish public health policy and administration from health care policy and administration, andarticulate the importance of health in all policies.
  2. Examine how public policy and established socio-economic structures influence population health and health disparities.
  3. Develop strategies for leveraging policy to promote population health, health equity, and social and environmental justice.
  4. Integrate ethical principles into public health policy, practice, research and administration by ensuring respect for diverse values, beliefs, and cultures and the dignity of individuals and communities.
  5. Demonstrate effective oral and written communication skills to present, explain and advocate for public health policies and programs.
  6. Describe the policy-making process and identify the actors, structures and forces that influence and shape the public health policy process.
  7. Conduct policy analysis in public health policy and administration, identifying and assessing policy options, outcomes, and potential contributions to population health and health disparities.
  8. Apply appropriate methods to gather and analyze a robust basis of evidence to inform and evaluate public health policy, practice and administration.
  9. Assess and translate available evidence into public health policy and administrative planning, development and implementation to promote population health and health equity.
  10. Describe the organizational structures and administration of public health and health care systems.
  11. Describe best-practice leadership and management principles as they relate to public health practice.

Information Sessions

Information sessions are held regularly. You can find upcoming dates and RSVP for a session here.

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Credits and Courses

All students enrolled in the MPH program take a common set of core classes designed to give basic skills and knowledge of public health concepts. The core curriculum consists of at least 20 credit hours, including at least three credits Field Experience and a two-credit capstone seminar. In addition to the common core, students complete the required coursework in one of five specialization tracks: Biostatistics, Community and Behavioral Health Promotion, Environmental Health Sciences, Epidemiology, or Public Health Policy and Administration. The MPH degree varies from 42-48 credits depending on the track. Students must maintain a cumulative G.P.A. of 3.0 or better in order to progress through the program.

Please note: All courses subject to change. Please consult the Graduate School Bulletin for the most up-to-date information.

MPH Required Common Core Courses (at least 20 credits)

PH 702: Introduction to Biostatistics (3 credits)
PH 703: Environmental Health Sciences (3 credits)
PH 704: Principles and Methods of Epidemiology (3 credits)
PH 705: Public Health Policy and Administration (3 credits)
PH 706: Perspectives in Community and Behavioral Health (3 credits)
PH 790: Field Experience in Public Health (at least 3 credits)
PH 800: Capstone in Public Health (2 credits)

To be considered for admission, applicants must complete the required online application via the School of Public Health Application System (SOPHAS).