Academics & Curriculum

The M.S. in Health and the Public Interest program is an in-person course of study that provides interdisciplinary training in the fields of public health, sociology, economics, biology, and communications.

The full-time program structure comprises a 1-year (summer, fall, spring, summer) 30-credit residential program of core courses and electives requiring advisor approval and a required capstone/internship project. Classes take place in the late afternoon or evening, making the program suitable for part-time enrollment.

Academic Requirements

Academic requirements for the M.S. in Health and the Public Interest program are:

  • Satisfactory completion of 9 core courses including a mentored capstone experience and seminar. 
  • Completion of 2-3 elective courses chosen by the student and approved by the Program Directors.
  • Maintain a 3.0 GPA
  • Successfully completion of a capstone project.

Educational Objectives

This program provides students with theoretical and methodological skills including:

  • Understanding and critiquing complex and interdisciplinary multi-method research relevant to public health
  • Understanding the evolution of governance, economic issues and other drivers of global health
  • Ability to draw on diverse theory and methods of social sciences and epidemiology
  • Ability to communicate with and design health, training, and social programs for healthcare professionals and the public
  • Advocacy and activism skills
  • Understanding of the sociocultural mechanisms of symptom construction without losing sight of physiological mechanisms
  • Basic understanding of physiology as it relates to specific health issues
  • Appreciation of the contribution of ethnic, national, occupational, and other cultural influences on healthcare
  • Written and oral communication skills, with an emphasis on the ability to communicate about complex theory and data across disciplines and with lay audiences
  • Hands-on familiarity with research skills and/or hands-on familiarity with community organizations, NGOs, or governmental agencies focusing on society and health