Learn more about the Master of Public Health in Epidemiology.
About the Program
The Master of Public Health in Epidemiology is a professional degree program for students who desire to receive fundamental and applied training in the public health sciences with a focus on epidemiological study design, disease surveillance methods, bioethics of population-based research, and core biostatistical methods. This practice-oriented program prepares students to successfully work in public health and applied epidemiology agencies, including conducting disease surveillance within government public health agencies; directing community demonstration and clinical trials research; and evaluating and running screening programs and other preventative health services in the broad areas of public health practice and health policy. The program is grounded in the core MPH competencies and disciplines of public health with an emphasis on epidemiological techniques. It covers the application of epidemiological research methods with an emphasis on developing research and methodological skills and critically evaluating current epidemiological studies.
The Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics also offers a small research-intensive MS in Epidemiology, which is a research-oriented degree intended for students who desire to learn the advanced concepts and methods of epidemiology and apply those concepts to a unique population-based study through the completion of a master's-level thesis project.
Applicants to the MPH in Epidemiology can choose between our on-campus and online programs, both of which adhere to the same competency-based curriculum and content. Only the delivery formats differ, as described below:
- The on-campus format is designed for students who prefer live interaction with instructors and fellow students, access to campus activities, and the opportunity to choose local Philadelphia fieldwork placements with the assistance of our fieldwork coordinator. Students can enroll full-time or part-time. While some courses may be offered online or in hybrid formats, most of the coursework is delivered in person over a full 16-week academic term during evening hours.
- The online format is designed for working professionals interested in completing their degree remotely with courses that include both synchronous classes held via Zoom and asynchronous activities. Students can enroll full-time or part-time. A fieldwork coordinator works with students to find appropriate placement in their preferred geographic location.
Time Limit for Degree Completion: 4 years
Campus Location: Main for in-person instruction or Online
Full-Time/Part-Time Status: Students can complete the degree program through evening classes and online courses. Full-time students usually complete the program within two academic years. Part-time students usually take three to four years to complete their degree.
Interdisciplinary Study: Interdisciplinary MPH coursework, research and interactions with students and faculty in other departments are encouraged to give students as broad a perspective as possible to excel in the complex, diverse and dynamic state of public health. Through associations with the Center for Obesity Research and Education, Center for Women's Health, and others, students have access to over 100 faculty at Temple University and additional regional scholars who are actively involved in programs, research and teaching in public health. Further, as with other MPH degree programs offered by the College of Public Health, the MPH in Epidemiology can be undertaken as part of these dual MPH degree programs:
- DMD/MPH with Temple University's Kornberg School of Dentistry
- JD/MPH with Temple University's Beasley School of Law
- MD/MPH with the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University
- MHA/MPH with Temple University's Fox School of Business and Management
- MPP/MPH with Temple University's College of Liberal Arts
- MS Health Informatics/MPH within the Temple University College of Public Health
- MSW/MPH with the Temple University School of Social Work
For more information, visit https://www.temple.edu/academics/dual-degree-programs.
Affiliation(s): Locally, the program has long-standing research affiliations with The Food Trust, Fox Chase Cancer Center, Health Federation of Philadelphia, Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Public Health Management Corporation (PHMC), School District of Philadelphia, Temple University Health System, and numerous other community health agencies. These partnerships allow us to offer students a wide range of fieldwork opportunities to translate skills learned in the classroom to actual practice in the community.
Study Abroad: Short-term intensive study abroad courses are offered as part of the MPH program of study. These courses are offered during the Summer and are open to both undergraduate and graduate students.
Accreditation: The MPH is fully accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH). Achieving accreditation in 1985, Temple's MPH program is one of the longest established accredited MPH programs in the country.
Areas of Specialization: The MPH degree program is offered in six specialty fields of study:
- Applied Biostatistics (APBIO)
- Environmental Health (EH) – not currently offered
- Epidemiology (EPI)
- Health Policy and Management (HPM)
- Nutrition (NUTR)
- Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS)
Students in the MPH program may complete transcripted College of Public Health certificate programs by taking their 9 credits of electives in the relevant coursework. For questions about certificates, please contact the CPH Office of Admissions at email@example.com or 215-204-5200.
Job Prospects: Graduates with an MPH in Epidemiology have positions in a wide range of health-related settings, including state and local public health departments, community-based organizations, voluntary health agencies, health maintenance organizations, pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, clinics, schools and public health-related work sites. Graduates are employed as HIV/AIDS coordinators, infection control coordinators, project directors, program evaluation specialists, research directors, prevention specialists, environmental health specialists, protocol directors, senior health educators and consultants. Virtually all students are placed within three to six months of graduation.
Licensure/Certification: Students who complete an MPH at Temple University are eligible to sit for the Certified in Public Health (CPH) exam offered by the National Board of Public Health Examiners and the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES®) exam offered by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc. (NCHEC). For more information about credentialing in public health, visit https://www.nchec.org/.
Non-Matriculated Student Policy: Non-matriculated students are required to speak with an advisor before registering for classes and to obtain the permission of the professor, whether the coursework is taken in the on-campus or online format. If accepted to the program, a maximum of three courses (9 credits) may be applied toward the degree program. Exceptions to this policy relate to formal certificate programs. For more information, contact Natasha Benoit, Senior Academic Advisor, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Financing Opportunities: The Graduate School awards fellowships on a competitive basis only to students with outstanding academic records who are admitted to Temple University for the Fall term. Applicants who wish to be considered for fellowships must apply no later than January 26 for consideration for the Fall term. The Admissions Committee of the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics nominates outstanding students for these awards, but the Graduate Board's Fellowship Committee makes all award decisions.
Limited Teaching and Research Assistantships are available in the College of Public Health. The Graduate School website details the types of graduate student support. Assistantships are awarded on a term or annual basis. Students whose Fall applications are complete prior to or at the application deadline are reviewed for eligibility for Teaching Assistant (TA) positions. TAs can work 5 to 20 hours per week in any combination of teaching assignments made by the department and must meet the English Language Proficiency standards set by the University and the College. Students who hold Teaching or Research Assistantships are not permitted to hold other employment without the written prior approval of their advisor, the Director of Graduate Programs, and the Graduate School. To be considered for a Teaching or Research Assistantship, complete an application form that is sent to students upon admission to the MPH program. The completed application must be returned to email@example.com to be considered.
The College of Public Health has a limited number of scholarship opportunities available for MPH students, as shown at https://cph.temple.edu/admissions/scholarships. Students may also be eligible for financial support through the Office of Student Financial Services.
Admission Requirements and Deadlines
Fall: March 1
All applicants to the MPH program must apply via the Centralized Application Service for Public Health (SOPHAS). The system can be accessed at https://sophas.liaisoncas.com/.
Applicants should check their application status on the SOPHAS portal often and inquire directly of SOPHAS about receipt of materials. For other questions, please contact the CPH Office of Admissions at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-204-5200.
Letters of Reference:
Number Required: 3
From Whom: Letters of recommendation, which are completed electronically through the SOPHAS system, should be obtained from college/university faculty members familiar with academic competence. If the applicant has been out of school for more than 5 years, ensure that letters are provided by professional colleagues who can discuss your relevant academic skills, including critical thinking, research and writing.
Coursework Required for Admission Consideration: Applicants' files are reviewed for undergraduate coursework in mathematics and/or statistics, social sciences and writing.
Bachelor's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline: All applicants must present credentials that are the equivalent of an accredited baccalaureate degree. The minimum acceptable undergraduate GPA is 3.0. No prerequisites must be met to apply to the MPH program at Temple University, but applicants with a GPA of 3.25 or greater in mathematics/statistics courses and strong grades in writing are preferred.
A WES evaluation is required for applicants who completed their bachelor's degree outside of the United States. This can be requested at https://www.wes.org/ and submitted through SOPHAS.
Statement of Goals: Write a well-considered 500- to 1,000-word statement of purpose that articulates your interests in public health and our program in particular. Craft your statement to specifically address the following questions:
- Why are you pursuing the MPH in Epidemiology, and what are your particular areas of interest in public health?
- How does the MPH in Epidemiology best fit your public health interests?
- What are your career goals, and how will this degree help you to achieve these goals?
- What are your plans in the first few years after graduation?
Standardized Test Scores:
GRE: Optional. While the program takes a portfolio approach to admissions, standardized tests provide important insight into quantitative and verbal abilities. If submitted, scores above the 50th percentile on both the verbal and quantitative sections of the test are desired. Official GRE scores should be sent to SOPHAS using code 0151. If GRE scores are not submitted, it is recommended that the applicant’s GPA is 3.25 or greater in mathematics and statistics courses. This provides important information on the applicant's quantitative abilities required for the program. Applications that do not include GRE scores and do not meet the mathematics/statistics GPA must provide some evidence of quantitative abilities either through prior experiences, the personal statement and/or letters of recommendation.
Standardized tests considered in lieu of the GRE include DAT, GMAT, MCAT, OAT and PCAT. The LSAT, which is also considered for some MPH specialties, is not accepted when applying for Applied Biostatistics or Epidemiology.
Applicants who earned their baccalaureate degree from an institution where the language of instruction was other than English, with the exception of those who subsequently earned a master’s degree at a U.S. institution, must report scores for a standardized test of English that meet these minimums:
- TOEFL iBT: 79 (send officially to SOPHAS using the SOPHAS-specific TOEFL code 5688)
- IELTS Academic: 6.5
- PTE Academic: 53
- Duolingo: 110
Test Waivers: Graduates with a terminal degree from a U.S. medical school, foreign-trained physicians who have obtained licensure to practice in the United States, and those with a PhD may have the GRE requirement waived. Applicants who have a minimum GPA of 3.25 on undergraduate mathematics or statistics courses may request that their GRE scores be waived from consideration in their application portfolio. To request a waiver or if you have other questions, please contact the CPH Office of Admissions at email@example.com or 215-204-5200.
Resume: Current resume or CV required.
Laptop: Beginning in Fall 2020, all incoming students in the College of Public Health are required to have a laptop. Academic programs in the college are technology intensive. They incorporate statistical and database analyses; utilize specialized tools for athletic training, kinesiology and physical therapy; stream audio and video for communication sciences; facilitate online interactive counseling for social work; and foster clinical experiences and online assessments. The laptop requirement enables the College of Public Health to improve opportunities for active learning and provide greater access to specialized software and required tools in and out of the classroom, better preparing students for the workforce. Learn more about device specifications and suggested vendors. Students can use excess financial aid (i.e., funds that are reimbursed after all tuition and fees are paid) to meet student needs, including the purchase of a laptop. Scholarships may also provide funding.
Transfer Credit: Graduate credits from an MPH program accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) may be transferred into the MPH. The credits must be equivalent to coursework offered at Temple, and the grade must be a "B" or better in order to transfer. The MPH program director approves the transfer of credits based on a review of course materials provided by the student. The maximum number of credits a student may transfer is 9.
Clearances: The MPH program requires students to complete fieldwork education. In the MPH program, it is the fieldwork site that determines the clearances, such as criminal background check and FBI fingerprinting, needed by a student. The results of these clearances determine whether a student may be onboarded at a respective site.
General Program Requirements:
Number of Credits Required Beyond the Baccalaureate: 42
|College Core Course|
|HRPR 5001||Current and Emerging Issues in Public Health and Health Professions||0|
|Public Health Core Courses|
|ENVH 5004||Environmental Health||1.5|
|EPBI 5006||Biostatistics and Applied Analysis of Health||4.5|
|EPBI 5201||Epidemiological Research Methods I||3|
|HPM 5006||Political and Economic Aspects of Health||3|
|SBS 5001||Fundamentals of Public Health||3|
|SBS 5002||Program Planning, Theory, and Practice||3|
|EPBI 8012||Multivariable Biostatistics||3|
|EPBI 8202||Epidemiological Research Methods II||3|
|EPBI 8205||Chronic Disease Epidemiology||3|
|or EPBI 8206||Infectious Disease Epidemiology|
|Select one from the following:|
|Mental Health Epidemiology|
|Seminar in Current Issues in Public Health 1|
|Reproductive and Perinatal Epidemiology|
|Epidemiology of HIV/AIDS|
|Select two from the following:|
|Mental Health Epidemiology|
|Seminar in Current Issues in Public Health 1|
|Reproductive and Perinatal Epidemiology|
|Epidemiology of HIV/AIDS|
|Fundamentals of Geographical Information Systems|
|GIS for Health Data Analysis|
|MPH Fieldwork Experience|
|EPBI 9289||MPH Fieldwork I||3|
|EPBI 9389||MPH Fieldwork II||3|
|Total Credit Hours||42|
Courses not taken to fulfill the Epidemiology elective above may be selected to fulfill one or both of these general electives.
Other electives may be selected with approval.
Minimum Grade to be Earned for All Required Courses: B-
Students are required to synthesize and integrate the knowledge acquired in coursework and other learning experiences and to apply theory and principles in a situation that approximates some aspect of professional practice through an internship or practicum experience with a public health agency, health services organization, or under the supervision of a faculty preceptor. The MPH fieldwork experience serves as the applied practice experience as required by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH), the accrediting body for schools and programs of public health, for completion of the Master of Public Health degree. In addition, this applied practice experience provides the student with the opportunity to develop expertise in a topic area and to contribute original and independent observations to a body of knowledge.
Part-time fieldwork experiences are available for students who work full-time.
For the applied practice experience to fulfill the requirements of EPBI 9289 and EPBI 9389, MPH in Epidemiology students are expected to complete a fieldwork experience. The required deliverable for the MPH fieldwork requirement is a final evaluative paper. Students must demonstrate their proficiency and the application of theory and principles in the paper.
Program Web Address:
Dept. of Epidemiology and Biostatistics
Ritter Hall Annex, 9th Floor (004-09)
1301 Cecil B. Moore Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19122-6005
Submission Address for Application Materials:
CPH Office of Admissions
Graduate Program Director:
Aimee J. Palumbo, PhD, MPH
Resa M. Jones, MPH, PhD