Visit the Milken Institute School of Public Health website for additional information about academic programs and information about GWSPH. Graduate admissions information, including application requirements and deadlines, can be found on the GWSPH Graduate Admissions website.

The following requirements must be fulfilled for the degree: 48 credits, including 5 credits in foundational courses,18 credits in program-specific courses, at least 11 credits in elective courses, 3 credits in consulting, and at least 11 credits in dissertation research.

Admissions prerequisites
The courses listed below are required minimum prerequisite courses for admission consideration. Applicants lacking these courses or their equivalent at another institution will not be considered for admission.
BISC 1111
BISC 1112
Introductory Biology: Cells and Molecules
and Introductory Biology: The Biology of Organisms
MATH 1231Single-Variable Calculus I
MATH 1232Single-Variable Calculus II
PUBH 6003Principles and Practices of Epidemiology
Additional course requirements for admissions consideration
The courses listed below are additional preparatory course requirements. Applicants lacking these courses or their equivalents will be considered for conditional admission with the expectation that the courses will be completed within two semesters following matriculation in the program. Credit for these courses does not count toward the 48 credits required for the degree and grades earned are not reflected in the overall grade-point average.
MATH 2184Linear Algebra I
PUBH 6853Use of Statistical Packages for Data Management and Data Analysis
or STAT 2183 Intermediate Statistics Lab/Packages

Degree requirements

Foundational courses
PUBH 6080Pathways to Public Health 1
PUBH 6421Responsible Conduct of Research
PUBH 6247Epidemiologic Methods I: Design of Health Studies 1
PUBH 8099Doctoral Topics (PhD seminar: Cross Cutting Concepts in Public Health)
Program-specific courses
PUBH 6252Epidemiologic Methods II: Advanced Epidemiologic Methods 2
PUBH 6865Applied Categorical Data Analysis for Public Health Research
PUBH 6866Principles of Clinical Trials
PUBH 6868Quantitative Methods
PUBH 8419Measurement in Public Health and Health Services 2
PUBH 8877Generalized Linear Models in Biostatistics 2
At least 11 credits in graduate-level Public Health (PUBH) and/or Statistics (STAT) courses selected in consultation with the program director. Elective courses in other departments may be taken with the prior approval of the program director.
Consulting 3
PUBH 6869Principles of Biostatistical Consulting
PUBH 8283Doctoral Biostatistics Consulting Practicum 4
Dissertation research
PUBH 8435PhD Dissertation Proposal Development 4
PUBH 8999Dissertation Research (taken in units of 3 credits for a total of at least 9 credits)

1May be waived for students who matriculate with a prior public health degree from a Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH)-accredited institution.

2Basis for PhD general comprehensive examination.

3The program director may waive the consulting requirement based on written documentation of prior equivalent coursework or relevant work experience. Waived consulting credits may be substituted with additional elective credits or additional credits in PUBH 8999

4PUBH 8435 may be waived and replaced with additional dissertation research credits at the discretion of the program director.

Graduation Requirements

  1. Program options: Students may choose either curriculum Plan A or curriculum Plan B for the Doctor of Philosophy degree in the field of epidemiology.
  2. Graduate credit requirement: 72 graduate credits are required.
  3. Prerequisites: Review official program guide for minimum prerequisite requirements for admission.
  4. Comprehensive (General) exam
    1. A written comprehensive exam will be administered within 24 months from date of matriculation based on the course content of PUBH 6247 Epidemiologic Methods I: Design of Health StudiesPUBH 6252 Epidemiologic Methods II: Advanced Epidemiologic Methods, and PUBH 8419 Measurement in Public Health and Health Services. The exam is administered once per year in August. 
    2. An oral presentation of the proposal for dissertation is made to the students’ Dissertation Research Committee. The Committee will determine the student’s readiness to pursue and complete the proposed research.
  5. Dissertation: 12-21 credits of dissertation research are required. Students may register for up to 6 credits of PUBH 8999 Dissertation Research prior to completion of the proposal defense.
  6. Grade point requirements: An overall GPA of 3.0 (B average) is required.
  7. Time limit requirement: The degree must be completed in 7 years.
  8. Transfer credit policy: Up to 24 credits from an applicable master's program may be approved to be transferred to the doctoral program. Credits must have been earned from an accredited institution with a grade point average of B or better.