Master of Public Health - Social & Behavioral Sciences


Health Promotion is the process of applying social and behavioral science principles to education and environmental change that empowers individuals and groups to take control of and improve their own health. MPH Specialists combine knowledge of social and behavioral sciences to create and carry out successful public health interventions to promote population health. The goal of this option is to educate practitioners who have a broad foundation of the fundamental principles of public heath with a focus on program planning, implementation and evaluation.

 The Social & Behavioral Sciences program of the MPH program prepares graduates to:

  • Find, understand and apply relevant public health literature
  • Design and implement programs that improve public health by fostering change in individual behaviors, environmental conditions and social policy
  • Evaluate public health programs through data collection and analysis
  • Engage individuals and communities in discussion and decision making to clarify shared public health goals

The 6-credit MPH practicum provides students focusing on social and behavioral sciences with applied experience in health promotion and disease prevention. Examples include collaborations in planning, implementing and evaluating public health campaigns at federal agencies, state and local health departments, hospital settings, community health centers, social service agencies and non profit public health organizations

 For more information, please contact: Leland Ackerson, ScD, MPH.

 Curriculum Plan

Course NumberCourse NameCredits
Core Public Health Courses (1)
PUBH.5010Social & Behavioral Determinants of Health (2)3
PUBH.5021Public Health Policy3
PUBH.5061Environmental Health3
PUBH.5070Leadership & Management in Public Health3
PUBH.5750Epidemiology & Biostatistics3
Social & Behavioral Sciences Specialization Courses (3)
PUBH.5130Assessment & Planning in Health Programming3
PUBH.6850Applied Public Health Research & Practice3
PUBH.6860Program Development & Implementation3
PUBH.6871Health Communication & Technology3
PUBH.6910Advanced Program Evaluation3
Public Health Practice Courses (4)
PUBH.6660MPH Practicum3
PUBH.6670Integrated Practical Learning3
Electives (5)
(1)Core Public Health Courses are typically offered every spring/fall semester. Courses are usually offered face-to-face, but are occasionally offered in online format.
(2)PUBH.5010 is a prerequisite for all upper level Social & Behavioral Sciences Specialization Courses and should be taken in the first semester of the program.
(3) Social & Behavioral Sciences Specialization Courses are typically offered once every other year ina face-to-face format.
(4) Practicum courses are meant to be taken sequentially. A student typically takes PUBH.6660 in the next-to-last semester of the program and takes PUBH.6670 in the last semester before graduation.
(5) Students must take 6 credits of electives in Public Health or a field relevant to their academic program. These courses are typically selected in collaboration with an academic or graduate program coordinator. 

NOTE: This program can accompany both Part-time & Full-Time plans of study. The program can begin in the fall or spring semester.