Master of Public Health (MPH)
Make a difference in the world. Discover the MPH program that's right for you.
The Master of Public Health (MPH) program at Drexel University's Dornsife School of Public Health – Philadelphia's top school of public health – prepares students to make an impact by addressing tough public health challenges in the United States and around the world.
Integrated and interdisciplinary from day one, Dornsife's five-quarter (18 months) curriculum offers students opportunities to specialize in a wide range of areas of public health, learn through extensive real-world practice experiences, and research engagement.
The Dornsife School of Public Health Master of Public Health curriculum gives students the skills needed to build exciting, rewarding careers. The program is grounded in the School’s expertise in urban health and how to use that knowledge to improve health in all types of communities.
- A network of 70-plus corporate, non-profit, and public sector partners offering students community-based, practice experiences.
- A broad range of opportunities to conduct research working with award-winning faculty.
- Solid training in the Council on Public Health core competencies for each major.
- An extensive selection of minors to allow students to explore several areas of public health.
Minors are open to all Drexel graduate students in all schools and colleges. The minors are designed to complement student’s training by providing basic knowledge in topics outside their primary discipline. In addition to the list below, additional minors are being developed.
Explore minors below:
The School of Public Health seeks students with intellectual and interpersonal competencies as well as those with potential for leadership. The school has set a high priority on establishing a student body that is representative of the nation's population. We strive to recruit and to admit applicants from underrepresented minority groups who can contribute to the richness of our student population and to that of the nation's public health professionals.
Admission and application requirements
The full-time program is structured on a quarter basis, with 56 total credit hours required for completion of the degree over five quarters.
Review degree requirements
All students will begin their studies in Public Health Foundations and Systems and Public Health Research Methods, two new multidisciplinary core courses which will be team-taught by faculty from each department. The courses are designed to run across the first two quarters and total 16 credits. This format ensures that course development is shaped by content/disciplinary experts and includes the breadth and depth of relevant skills that all MPH graduates will need regardless of their chosen discipline.
Sample Plan of Study
Students will take a minimum of five discipline-specific course in their major field of study over the five-quarter MPH program.
MPH Practical Experience
All MPH degree students must develop skills in basic public health concepts and demonstrate capacity to apply these concepts through a practical experience relevant to their area of specialization. “Practice” refers to implementing (doing) public health, rather than understanding (studying, researching) public health.
The practical experience is an applied, field-based requirement that gives students experience in the practice of public health (no credits) – requiring depth (120-240 hours in a field placement) and breadth (1 experience per month) – including participation in short-term volunteer opportunities and participation in on- or off-campus learning opportunities. The practical experience requirement can begin during the third quarter of year one and be completed during the summer or the second year of study.
Learn more about practical experience
Integrative Learning Experience
The integrative learning experience (ILE) is the culminating requirement for MPH students. Each department/major has their own specific requirements for the ILE, which requires students to take 4-6 credits in the final 2 quarters of the program and to produce a high quality written product that demonstrates mastery of core public health and discipline-specific competencies. The integrative learning experience can be coordinated with the field-based practical experience requirement.
Learn more about the integrative learning experience
These competencies set a baseline for core skills that MPH students should be competent in upon graduation.
MPH Core Competencies
- Apply epidemiological methods to the breadth of settings and situations in public health practice
- Select quantitative and qualitative data collection methods appropriate for a given public health context
- Analyze quantitative and qualitative data using biostatistics, informatics, computer-based programming and software, as appropriate
- Interpret results of data analysis for public health research, policy or practice
- Compare the organization, structure and function of health care, public health and regulatory systems across national and international settings
- Discuss the means by which structural bias, social inequities and racism undermine health and create challenges to achieving health equity at organizational, community and societal levels
- Assess population needs, assets and capacities that affect communities’ health
- Apply awareness of cultural values and practices to the design or implementation of public health policies or programs
- Design a population-based policy, program, project or intervention
- Explain basic principles and tools of budget and resource management
- Select methods to evaluate public health programs
- Discuss multiple dimensions of the policy-making process, including the roles of ethics and evidence
- Propose strategies to identify stakeholders and build coalitions and partnerships for influencing public health outcomes
- Advocate for political, social or economic policies and programs that will improve health in diverse populations
- Evaluate policies for their impact on public health and health equity
- Apply principles of leadership, governance and management, which include creating a vision, empowering others, fostering collaboration and guiding decision making
- Apply negotiation and mediation skills to address organizational or community challenges
- Select communication strategies for different audiences and sectors
- Communicate audience-appropriate public health content, both in writing and through oral presentation
- Describe the importance of cultural competence in communicating public health content
- Perform effectively on interprofessional teams
- Apply systems thinking tools to a public health issue