Doctor of Public Health in the Field of Health Policy

Program Director A. Markus


The doctor of public health (DrPH) health policy specialty field degree program focuses on understanding and learning to apply to complex and real world problems the policy framework of public health and health care. Particular emphasis is placed on areas affecting medically underserved and vulnerable populations. The specialty field allows candidates to work at the nexus of health policy, public health practice, and health services research.


The goal of the health policy specialty field is to create doctoral-level public health professionals who are uniquely equipped to provide real-world leadership at the national and state levels in all phases of public health, health care, and health policy development and implementation. The objectives of this specialty field are to:

  • Provide advanced training on cutting edge issues in health policy; and
  • Equip candidates with the research and analytic methods to conduct the types of advanced analyses that can make a real difference in health care and public health.

Program Policies and Procedures

For program policies and procedures, please refer to the Doctor of Public Health Handbook and other resources located on the program website

Visit the program website for additional program information.

The following requirements must be fulfilled: 48 credits, including 22 credits in required courses, 6 credits in field-specific courses, 7 to 10 credits in elective courses, 2 credits in professional leadership courses, 8 to 11 credits in dissertation preparation and dissertation, and successful completion of a comprehensive examination.

22 credits of required foundational and research methods courses
PUBH 8401Foundations in Public Health Leadership and Practice
PUBH 8402Leadership and Decision Making: Skills Based Approach
PUBH 8403Leadership in Public Health Policy and Practice
PUBH 8416Study Design & Evaluation Methods
PUBH 8417Qualitative Research Methods and Analysis
PUBH 8418Applied Statistical Analysis
PUBH 8419Measurement in Public Health and Health Services
PUBH 8420Advanced Analysis and Dissemination
6 credits of required specialty field courses
PUBH 8404Advanced Topics: Health Systems and Health Policy Research
PUBH 8405Advanced Topics: Health Economics Research
7 to 10 credits of specialty field courses
PUBH 6330Health Services and Law
PUBH 6325Federal Policymaking and Policy Advocacy
PUBH 6335Public Health and Law
PUBH 6360Advanced Maternal and Child Health Policy
PUBH 6362
PUBH 6376Primary Health Care Policy
2 credits of professional leadership courses (minimum of 2 must be Instructional Leadership)
PUBH 8413Research Leadership
PUBH 8415Instructional Leadership
8 to 11 credits of dissertation preparation and dissertation
PUBH 8422Advanced Health Care and Public Health Research Design
PUBH 8423Dissertation Research

Graduation Requirements

  1. Credits: Successful completion of 48 credits.
  2. Curriculum: Successful completion of the foundational, research methods, program-specific specialty field, and professional leadership courses.
  3. Comprehensive examination: Once the course of study is completed, students are required to pass the comprehensive exam to be officially admitted to the candidacy phase.
  4. Dissertation: PUBH 8422 Advanced Health Care and Public Health Research Design plus 6 to 9 credits in dissertation research credits are required. Once the proposal has been successfully defended and the dissertation research credit requirements has been met, the oral defense may be scheduled.
  5. Grade-point average: A minimum overall grade-point average of B (3.0).
  6. Time limit: The degree must be completed within seven years.

Note: no transfer credits are accepted.