Graduate Academic Programs

Dual Degree Programs

Public Health Administration Major(MPH)- Health Behavior Major PhD

 Description of Program

This is a dual degree program that awards the M.P.H. in Public Health Administration and the Ph.D. in Health Behavior. The M.P.H. in Public Health Administration prepares students to assume leadership roles in the public and private sectors and to effectively create and implement policies and manage programs that promote the public’s health with the opportunity to focus on rural populations. Coursework is completed in health policy, finance and budgeting, program evaluation, leadership, legal issues, and resource acquisition and management. The Ph.D. in Health Behavior is a highly regarded, nationally recognized program with a strong history of preparing graduates to conduct scholarly inquiry in a broad spectrum of areas emphasizing health promotion and prevention of health problems. Research and creative activities include both basic and applied work in program planning and development; health policy management, evaluation of the program effectiveness; and examination of lifestyle and health behavior in relation to nutrition, exercise, stress, alcohol, tobacco and other drug abuse, individual development and family health, communicable disease, human sexuality, aging, and related areas.

Degree Requirements

*Both MPH/PhD degrees will be conferred together at the end of PhD completion.

Courses required for this degree are prescribed by an advisory committee for each individual student. Degree requirements include:

  • A minimum of 100 graduate-level credits beyond the bachelor’s degree are required.
  • A minimum 3.0 GPA is required for graduation.
  • A minimum grade of C is required in each course used to satisfy the major, minor, and elective requirements of the course prescription.
  • A minimum grade of B is required in each course used to satisfy the research skills requirement of the course prescription.

Requirements for the MPH in Public Health Administration

MPH Degree Core (20 credits)

Public Health Foundations Requirement (0 credits)
All students must complete the Public Health Foundations online course no later than the end of their first semester of graduate study. Complete details and registration information for this course can be found at the following website:


Integrated Public Health Core (12 credits)
Complete each of the following courses.

  • SPH-X 601 Assessment and Public Health (3 cr.)
  • SPH-X 650 Evidence-Based Approaches to Public Health (3 cr.)
  • SPH-X 660 Population Health Determinates (3 cr.)
  • SPH-X 685 Public Health Policy and Politics (3 cr.)

Professional Development and Practical Experiences (8 credits)
Complete each of the following courses.

  • SPH-X 610 Professional Development Seminar 1 (2 cr.)
  • SPH-X 611 Professional Development Seminar 2 (2 cr.)
  • SPH-X 696 Professional Practice Experience in Public Health (4 cr.)

Public Health Administration Concentration (12 credits)

Required Concentration Courses (12 credits)
Complete each of the following courses.

  • SPH-H 661 Legal Issues in Public Health (3 cr.)
  • SPH-P 680 Public Health Economics (3 cr.)
  • SPH-X 561 Finance and Budgeting (3 cr.)
  • SPH-H 662 Acquiring and Managing External Funds (3 cr.)


Requirements for the Ph.D. in Health Behavior

All Ph.D. in Health Behavior degree students in the School of Public Health-Bloomington are required to complete the following requirement:

  • SPH-E 651, Epidemiology (3 cr.), or its equivalent.

Common Course Prescription Components

The elements of the course prescription for all Ph.D. degree students in the School of Public Health are arranged as follows:

  • Research Skills(9 credits minimum). A minimum of 9 credits of coursework providing required skills to conduct research, such as advanced courses in biostatistics. These credits count toward the total credits for the degree. Courses counted in this area require a minimum grade of B.
  • Major Area of Study(30 credits minimum). A minimum of 30 credits in the major area of study. These courses must be taken within the School of Public Health-Bloomington. Courses transferred from previous graduate work outside the School of Public Health-Bloomington, if within the major area of study, can be used to fulfill the major areas of study requirement, contingent upon the committee’s approval.
  • Minor Area of Study(9 credits minimum). A minimum of 9 credits of coursework in a designated area outside the major area of study.
  • Electives(0 to 6 credits). Elective credits may range between 0 and 6.
  • Dissertation(20 credits)

Special Opportunities

Students have the opportunity to develop skills by participating in research activities independently or in collaboration with faculty members and other graduate students. Through funded associate instructor (AI) appointments, most doctoral students also acquire essential skills and experience in teaching various health topics in different settings. Students are strongly encouraged to publish research results in professional journals and via presentations at national conferences.


Most graduates pursue careers in higher education as professors and researchers while some complete postdoctoral fellowships. Others pursue research or executive careers in governmental agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state and local health departments and nonprofit health agencies.


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