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The MSPH-to-PhD program is designed for students with a bachelor’s degree who want to pursue a doctoral degree and a career in research.

Academic pathway

Students complete a total of 72 credits of MSPH and PhD course work in three years. The curriculum focuses initially on core competencies in public health and health behavior and then focuses on research courses, practica and a dissertation.

Requirements for the MSPH
  • Fifty public-health course credits
  • A research practicum culminating in a publishable manuscript
  • Pass the master’s level comprehensive examination
Requirements for the PhD
  • Additional doctoral-level course credits
  • Two doctoral-level practica
  • Pass written and oral doctoral comprehensive examinations
  • Dissertation – original research on a contemporary public health problem relevant to health behavior (Recent Dissertations List )
Relevant for the first year MPH Quick guide (2018)
Relevant throughout the course of study Doctoral Program Quick Guide Doctoral Program Handbook

Enrollment in the MSPH-to-PhD program

Students in this program enroll only in fall and only as full-time students.

For more information

To compare the Health Behavior PhD with other degrees at the Gillings School, check out the Gillings Program Search (GPS).


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