Public Health

MPH in Public Health

Master of Public Health (MPH)

Healthy living, chronic disease, health system performance and costs, access to health care, environmental threats, health disparities – these are some of the pressing public health concerns facing Maine and the nation. Through our nationally-recognized academic and research programs, the Muskie School of Public Service is dedicated to improving health and health systems.

The Master of Public Health (MPH) degree is an accredited program that prepares students with the practical knowledge and skills to address today’s complex population health and health services needs. Multi-disciplinary in nature, the MPH program delivers a broad population health and health systems perspective. The program offers hands-on field experience opportunities in a wide variety of public health and healthcare organizations in Maine and beyond including state and local health departments, community-based organizations, primary care and multi-specialty physician practices, hospitals, and health and health-related agencies. Graduates work in the public and private sectors to apply evidence-based practices and state-of-the-art knowledge and skills to improve population health.

The MPH program offers many opportunities for experiential learning.  Through paid graduate and research assistantships with nationally recognized faculty and staff, many students engage in projects addressing public health, health service, and health policy problems critical to improving public health and health systems.  Faculty and alumni offer strong connections with the practice community, creating opportunities for field placements, capstone projects, and career networking.


For More Information

For more information about the Public Health program, please contact Erika Ziller, erika.ziller@maine.edu.

The Master of Public Health (MPH) is a generalist curriculum that provides a foundation of knowledge and the opportunity to develop core skills for effective performance in public health fields, including management and leadership positions. Coursework includes both individual and team assignments, and is designed to build program competencies and to integrate learning across the curriculum. Oral and written communication skills are developed throughout the curriculum, along with competencies in informed decision-making (e.g. epidemiology, biostatistics), and leadership and management. The MPH is a 45 credit hour degree. The Graduate Program in Public Health was accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health in 2016, for the period 2013 through 2021.

Students have 30 credit hours of Required Core Courses. In addition, students must take an additional 15 elective credit hours of which at least 12 credits must be courses with the MPH designation. The remaining three credits may include a course from the MPH program or other programs.

Required Core Courses – 30 credits:

  • MPH 525 American Health System
  • MPH 535 Introduction to Epidemiologic Research
  • MPH 545 Applied Biostatistical Analysis
  • MPH 555 Environmental Health
  • MPH 565 Social and Behavioral Health
  • MPH 575 Health Program Planning and Management
  • MPH 580 Health Literacy and Communication (online)
  • MPH 650 Public Health Research and Evaluation
  • MPH 660 Health Policy (Prerequisite: MPH 525 American Health Systems or permission of instructor)
  • MPH 698 Field Experience
  • MPH 699 Capstone

MPH Elective Courses
Students are required to select 15 elective credits. Elective credits may be drawn from the elective list below.  Students must select a  minimum of 12 credit hours that carry the MPH prefix.

MPH Electives:

  • MPH 500 Introduction to Public Health
  • MPH 539 Topics in Public Health I
  • MPH 625 Leadership & Professional Development
  • MPH 630 Health Planning and Marketing
  • MPH 635 Health Law and Ethics
  • MPH 639 Topics in Public Health 
  • MPH 640 Healthcare Finance
  • MPH 655 Public Health Practice
  • MPH 665 Health Economics
  • MPH 665 Health Economics
  • MPH 670 Quality Improvement
  • MPH 675 Health Information Management
  • MPH 676 Data Management and Analysis (Online)
  • MPH 677 Regression Models in Health Sciences
  • MPH 678 Information Visualization (Online) (Prerequisite: MPH 676 Data Management and Analysis or permission of the instructor)
  • MPH 681 Seminar in Public Health – Behavioral Health
  • MPH 682 Seminar in Public Health – Long-Term Care, Aging & Disability Policy
  • MPH 683 Patient Safety (Online)
  • MPH 684 Bioethics, Medicine & Law (2 credits)
  • MPH 690 Public Health Policy for Children and Families

 Pre-approved elective courses from other programs:

  • GEO 608 Geographic Information System Applications I
  • GEO 618 Georgraphic Information Systems Applications II
  • PPM 545 Grant Writing and Development

Applicant Qualifications

  • GPA - 3.0 in undergraduate units, or if the applicant has 12 or more graduate units, the GPA will be based on graduate units.
  • Bachelor’s Degree - Applicants must hold a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent from an accredited college or university and provide evidence of academic achievement including a GPA of 3.0 in undergraduate units, or if the applicant has 12 or more graduate units, the GPA will be based on graduate units.
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae (CV) - Applicants must submit a resume or CV that outlines professional, volunteer, and community experience.
  • Statement of Purpose – Applicants must submit a brief personal statement (maximum 500 words) describing why they want a degree in public health and why they are interested in this program. Applicants are encouraged to describe their motivation and any emerging career aspirations.
  • Test scores - GRE scores are required for all applicants who have received, or will be receiving an undergraduate degree within 12 months of their application.
  • Other - The Muskie MPH program is particularly interested in applicants who have a GPA of 3.2 or higher, applicants with international life experience, and those with paid or unpaid experience working in public health or health care delivery. 

Application Procedures and Required Materials

Application Deadline: Rolling Admission. Applications are reviewed on a monthly basis. Applications must be completed at least two months in advance of the semester in which a student wishes to matriculate.

Applicants are required to provide the following materials:

  • Application: Online Application
  • Application fee: $65.00 paid through the online application.
  • Transcripts: Official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended, excluding the seven campuses of the University of Maine System (UMS transcripts are accessible to USM). A transcript is official when sent directly from the institution.
    • International College transcripts: In addition to an official copy of the transcript, an official evaluation of college-level transcripts from a NACES (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services) approved transcript analysis agency is required
  • Resume: Submit a resume or CV that outlines professional, volunteer, and community experience.
  • Essay: Applicants must submit a brief personal statement (maximum 500 words) describing why they want a degree in public health and why they are interested in this program. Applicants are encouraged to describe their motivation and any emerging career aspirations.
  • Letters of Recommendation (3): Recommendations should be from individuals who are qualified, through direct experience with your academic or professional work, to comment on your ability to undertake graduate study and your chosen profession.
  • Standardized test scores: GRE scores. Waived for students who have completed a bachelor's degree twelve months before the application date.
  • TOEFL or IELTS: Students whose first language is not English are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and submit official scores as part of the application process. See additional information below regarding test scores. 

International Applicants

In addition to the standard application materials, international students must also provide the following materials:

  • College transcript evaluation: official course-by-course evaluation of college-level transcripts from a NACES (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services) approved transcript analysis agency
  • Declaration of Finances form accompanied by the appropriate financial documentation
  • International students whose first language is not English are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and submit official scores as part of the application process. Only applicants with TOEFL scores of 79 or higher on the internet-based test 550 or higher on the paper-based test, or 213 or higher on the computer-based test; or IELTS scores of 6.5 or higher will be considered for admission to a graduate program.

Applicants whose first language is not English

Students whose first language is not English are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and submit official scores as part of the application process. Only applicants with TOEFL scores of 79 or higher on the internet-based test, 550 or higher on the paper-based test, or 213 or higher on the computer-based test; or IELTS scores of 6.5 or higher will be considered for admission to a graduate program.

Where to send transcripts and application materials

Official transcripts and other supporting documents can be sent to:

Application Processing Center
University of Maine System
P.O. Box 412
Bangor, ME 04402-0412 

Colleges and universities that participate in electronic submission of transcripts can send official transcripts to edocs@maine.edu. Resumes, essays, and other documents can also be sent to edocs@maine.edu

For a transcript or recommendation to be considered official, it must be sent by the institution or the person writing the recommendation.

Full-time MPH Students
Year 1, Fall Semester - 9 credits:

  • MPH 525 American Health System
  • MPH 545 Applied Biostatistical Analysis
  • MPH 575 Health Program Planning and Management

Year 1, Spring Semester - 12 credits:

  • MPH 535 Introduction to Epidemiologic Research
  • MPH 565 Social and Behavioral Health
  • MPH 660 Health Policy (prerequisite MPH 525 American Health Systems or permission of instructor)
  • Elective 1 (3 credits)

Year 1, Summer - 6 credits:

  • MPH 698 Field Experience
  • Elective 2 (3 credits)

Year 2, Fall Semester - 9 credits:

  • MPH 555 Environmental Health
  • MPH 650 Applied Research and Evaluation
  • Elective 3 (3 credits)

Year 2, Spring Semester - 9 credits:

  • MPH 699 Capstone
  • Elective 4 (3 credits)
  • Elective 5 (3 credits)

 

Part-time MPH Students
Year 1, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 525 American Health System
  • MPH 545 Applied Biostatistical Analysis

Year 1, Spring Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 535 Introduction to Epidemiologic Research 
  • MPH 565 Social and Behavioral Health

Year 2, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 555 Environmental Health
  • MPH 575 Health Program Planning and Management

Year 2, Spring Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 660 Health Policy (prerequisite MPH 525 American Health Systems or permission of instructor)
  • MPH Elective 1 (3 credits)

Year 2, Summer Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 698 Field Experience
  • Elective 2 (3 credits) 

Year 3, Fall Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 650 Applied Research and Evaluation 
  • MPH Elective 3 (3 credits)

Year 3, Spring Semester - 6 credits:

  • MPH 699 Capstone
  • MPH Elective 4 (3 credits)

Year 4, Fall Semester - 3 credits:

  • Elective 454 (3 credits)

Graduates of the Muskie School are working in diverse roles in the health services and public health fields in Maine and throughout the country. Our students and graduates have more than 40 different job titles, from Chief Executive Officer to Director of Research. They are health leaders, informing policy and practice, managing health and public health organizations, working to improve our population’s health. Whether you want to advance within your current career or begin a new career path, the MPH program will prepare you with the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed.

 

Graduate Program in Public Health

Mission: The mission of the Graduate Program in Public Health is to bridge the cultures of public health and health care delivery systems to build integrated, high functioning health and public health systems, engaging individuals, communities and providers in the development and management of a more effective and sustainable health infrastructure. To prepare students with the knowledge and skills to improve population health, we deliver a competency-based education, engaging faculty and students with external partners, to foster experiential learning, to conduct and translate research, and to contribute to public service.

Our program aligns with the mission of the Muskie School of Public Service and the University of Southern Maine as vitally engaged with the economic and social well-being of our region and state by promoting and supporting student success, community engagement, and sustainability. 


Why Study Public Health at USM?

From our competency-based curriculum to our nationally recognized faculty, there are many reasons to study Public Health at the Muskie School.  Learn more


Public Health Faculty

Students in the Muskie School Graduate Program in Public Health benefit from the knowledge and experience of the program's nationally recognized core, adjunct, and practice faculty.  Learn more


Career Options

Graduates of the Muskie School are working in diverse roles in the health services and public health fields in Maine and throughout the country. Our students and graduates have more than 40 different job titles from Chief Executive Officer to Director of Research.  Learn more


Employers, Partner Organizations, and Field Placements

The Public Health program offers hands-on field experience opportunities in a wide variety of public health and healthcare organizations in Maine and beyond. Our program alumni also offer a vast network throughout hospitals, state and local health departments, primary care and multi-specialty physician practices, and nonprofit health and health-related organizations.  Learn more


Program Competencies

Competencies describe activities or behaviors students should be able to demonstrate upon completion of a learning experience. Compentencies of the Public Health program include elements of communication, leadership, health policy and management, public health science, research, and theory, and informed decision-making.  Learn more


MPH Advisory Committee

The MPH Advisory Committee provides diverse perspectives, advice, and input to the Graduate Program in Public Health on its direction, priorities, and opportunities.  Learn more