|On average, the doctoral program requires three to five years for completion following the Master’s or other advanced degree. The program is research-oriented, and centers around a major research project. The PhD dissertation should involve innovative research and demonstrate a sophisticated command of epidemiologic skills.
Requirements are specified by the Department within parameters prescribed by the Graduate School. The Graduate School requires four semesters of residence credit; at least two of the four required semesters must be earned in continuous registration of no fewer than six credit hours. Residence credit earned on work for a master’s degree at UNC-CH is applicable as residence credit for a doctoral degree. At least six semester hours of credit must be earned for dissertation (EPID 994).
Students who do not hold a prior master’s degree will be required to complete the MSPH (Master of Science of Public Health) as part of the requirements toward the PhD. (The MSPH requirements are comparable to the MPH requirements.) This may add one to two years to the program.
A minor is not a requirement of the doctoral program, but is sometimes considered desirable. If a minor is selected, fifteen credit hours are devoted to the minor program. Courses for the minor are approved in advance by both the major and minor departments. The minor department defines the role, if any, of the minor advisor on the doctoral committee and his/her participation in the preliminary doctoral examinations. Detailed information is provided in the Graduate School Handbook.