Show The Graduate Center Menu

Track Specific & Concentration Requirements

 
 

Track Specific & Concentration Requirements

The DPH program offers four specialization tracks and two concentrations.  All students must enroll in one of these tracks and students in any track may enroll in the Nutrition or Maternal, Child, Reproductive and Sexual Health (MCRSH) concentrations, provided they meet its entrance requirements.

Community, Society, and Health (CSH)

This track prepares researchers and public health practitioners to advance scientific understanding of the social determinants of health, health behaviors, the delivery of health services and development of sound health policies. CSH graduates will be able to lead, plan, manage, and evaluate community health interventions. The track draws on the methods and theories from multiple disciplines to prepare students to design and implement public health research studies.

The CSH Track prepares researchers and public health practitioners who can:

  • Advance scientific understanding of the social determinants of health, health behaviors, the delivery of health services and development of sound health policies.
  • Lead, plan, manage, and evaluate community health interventions.
  • Draw on the methods and theories from multiple disciplines to design and implement research studies on population health.
  • Formulate, analyze and advocate for policies that promote health and prevent disease.
  • Teach students and professionals about the social determinants of health, health behaviors, health interventions, health policy, and health disparities.

Curriculum:
The core curriculum in CSH includes courses on social dimensions of health theories and research methodology. Electives are chosen in consultation with the faculty advisor.

Requirements for all CSH Students:  
PUBH 810 Community Health Interventions: Theory and Methods
PUBH 811 Social and Behavioral Dimensions of Health: Theory and Methods
PUBH 816 (2012 and following cohorts only) Evaluation of Public Health Programs and Policies
   
+ 2012  and following cohorts: + Cohorts preceding 2012:
Three advanced research methods or track-specific practice courses, one of which must be from a Graduate Center program outside of Public Health (DPH courses that are cross-listed with another program can count toward this requirement). Five electives in research methods or public health practice, one of which must be from a Graduate Center program outside of Public Health (DPH courses that are cross-listed with another program can count toward this requirement),one leadership elective, Public Health or MPH courses on population or health problem specific issues; one elective course on social aspects of health in sociology, psychology, anthropology or related fields; and two research methods courses).

PUBH 811 Social and Behavioral Dimensions of Health: Theory and Methods (3 credits): This course prepares students to understand the impact of social structures and social environments on health and health behavior. Using an interdisciplinary approach, the course examines the contributions of sociology, anthropology, economics, psychology, history and political science to the study of health and health behavior.

• Required for all CSH students


PUBH 810 Community Health Interventions: Theory and Methods (3 credits): This course prepares students to lead research/intervention teams that plan, implement and evaluate community health interventions in community settings

  • Required for all CSH students
  • Prerequisite or co-requisite:  PUBH 811
  • At least two Master's level courses in program development or evaluation and at least one year of work experience in community health settings. These requirements can be waived with permission of instructor for students who bring other relevant experiences to the course.


PUBH 816 Evaluation of Public Health Programs and Policies (3 credits): Prepares students to design evaluations of public health programs and policies; uses systems approach to identify key constituencies and tasks in evaluation; students design an evaluation of an existing program or policy.

  • Required for the 2012 cohort following cohorts
  • For cohorts preceding 2012, this course can be used toward an elective requirement. Please check with your advisor.

Epidemiology (EPI)

The mission of the Epidemiology Track of the DPH Program is to train epidemiologists as researchers and public health practitioners with a set of core competencies making them capable of rigorously applying epidemiological and biostatistical methods to the wide array of public health challenges. This includes the ability to: authoritatively generate, contribute, and disseminate new knowledge to their fields through research; to be critical consumers of evidence generated by others in their field; and to become independent, lifelong learners in development and application of epidemiologic methods. This mission is achieved through teaching of epidemiologic methods and their applications to pressing public health problems, promotion of independent learning, and hands-on mentoring of rigorous, impactful and innovative epidemiologic research in the dissertation phase.

Curriculum:
The core curriculum in EPI includes coursework in epidemiologic methods and statistical methods. Electives are chosen in consultation with the faculty advisor.
 

Requirements for all EPI students:  
PUBH 821 Epidemiologic Methods II: Study Design and Analysis
PUBH 822 Epidemiologic Methods III: Seminar in Epidemiologic Methods
PUBH 823 Epidemiologic Methods IV:Seminar in applications of epidemiologic methods to urban health
   
+ 2012  and following cohorts: +Cohorts preceding 2012:
Three advanced research methods or track-specific practice courses, one of which must be from a Graduate Center program outside of Public Health (DPH courses that are cross-listed with another program can count toward this requirement). Four electives, one of which must be from a Graduate Center program outside of Public Health (DPH courses that are cross-listed with another program can count toward this requirement), one leadership elective, two in statistical methods and one elective in a specific content area, 2 electives, GC or Public Health courses in statistics, one of which can be a course in a software package and one in population or health-issue specific; and one elective course on statistics in sociology, psychology, or other related fields.


PUBH 821 Epidemiologic Methods II: Study Design and Analysis (3 credits): Through lectures and problem-solving workshops, this course broadens the approach to epidemiologic methods, incorporating principles from Methods I into the design and conduct of studies and analysis of epidemiologic data. It consists of lectures and problem-solving workshops.

  • Required for all EPI students

  • Prerequisite: PUBH 820 or equivalent or permission of track coordinator

PUBH 822 Epidemiologic Methods III: Seminar in Epidemiologic Methods (3 credits): This seminar exposes students to emerging concepts and methods in epidemiologic research and provides students with an opportunity to consider how these strategies complement, and advance the more commonly used strategies in epidemiology.

  • Required for all EPI students

  • Prerequisite: PUBH 821

PUBH 823 Epidemiologic Methods IV: Seminar in applications of epidemiologic methods (3 credits): This seminar is intended to help students integrate the concepts and methods of epidemiologic research with specific inquiry directed at understanding, and improving the health of populations.  This seminar requires students to develop proposals for epidemiologic research, identify strategies for data analysis that incorporate the lessons learned in Methods courses I, II, and III and to examine the application of those strategies to existing research. This course helps "bring together" the epidemiology theory and methods that have been discussed throughout the rest of the curriculum to the particular exigencies of public health research. 

  • Required for all EPI students

  • Prerequisite: PUBH 822

Environmental and Occupational Health (EOH)

The EOH track trains doctoral-level researchers and teachers about Environmental and Occupational Health problems affecting populations. Students with environmental science, occupational health, industrial hygiene, environmental policy, environmental epidemiology, and other related backgrounds will focus on Environmental and Occupational Health regulation as well as planning and its impact on human health. The curriculum combines an understanding of how elements of the urban infrastructure – e.g., the built environment, commerce and productive activities, energy and communication systems, water, waste management and transport systems – interact with macrosocial trends (e.g., demographic, economic, and political processes) to affect environmental conditions (e.g., air, water, land and workplace) and human health. Coursework and research is aimed at furthering scientific understanding of the ways in which urbanization compromises the physical environment and human health as well as the ways in which it promotes health. Such topics as environmental sustainability, environmental justice, economic viability, and political participation will be examined.

The EOH track will produce graduates who can:

  • Advance the scientific understanding of the impact of environmental and occupational conditions on health and disease.

  • Plan, lead and manage studies to monitor and evaluate the effect of environmental and occupational health hazards in the environment.

  • Plan, direct, manage and evaluate environmental and occupational health programs.

  • Teach students and professionals about the impact of environmental and occupational hazards on the health of populations and about strategies for controlling such exposures.

Curriculum:
The core curriculum in EOH includes courses on the physical environment and research methodology.  Electives are chosen in consultation with the faculty advisor.
 

Requirements for all EOH students:  
PUBH 830 Emerging Issues in Environmental and Occupational Health
PUBH 831 Environmental and Occupational Health Risk Assessment, Management and Communication in Urban Settings
   
+ 2012 and following cohorts: + Cohorts preceding 2012:
Four advanced research methods or track-specific practice courses, one of which must be from a Graduate Center program outside of Public Health (DPH courses that are cross-listed with another program can count toward this requirement) and one must be a course focusing on the urban environment. Five electives: two in research methods in environmental or occupational health, one of which must be from a Graduate Center program outside of Public Health (DPH courses that are cross-listed with another program can count toward this requirement), one leadership elective, one course in statistics or instrumentation; one course in geographic information systems.


PUBH 830 Emerging Issues in Environmental and Occupational Health (3 credits): This course examines the impact of macro-level trends – such as corporate globalization, immigration patterns, and technological development – on the urban physical environment. It focuses on the relationship between the urban infrastructure (e.g., housing, transportation, sewage and waste disposal) and environmental media (e.g., air quality, water quality and land use). This course also examines the impact of macro-level trends on occupational health and safety conditions, focusing on such issues as outsourcing of manufacturing jobs to developing nations, the rise in the service and informal economies, immigrant labor, de-unionization, the new working class and the loss of the safety net. It examines the effectiveness of current policies in addressing these problems. Through focused readings and in-depth examination of case studies, students develop the tools for analyzing how macro-social trends affect the urban physical environment, workplaces and health. Teams of students then analyze an environmental and occupational issue, illustrate how it affects urban communities, and develop solutions to reduce Environmental and Occupational Health burdens.

  • Required for all EOH students

PUBH 831 Environmental and Occupational Health Risk Assessment, Management and Communication in Urban Settings (3 credits): This course examines the development and use of Environmental and Occupational Health risk assessment and its policy implications as applied to urban settings. Approaches to assessing, communicating about and managing urban Environmental and Occupational Health risks are critically analyzed within their political, economic, social and cultural contexts. Risk assessment and risk management procedures are evaluated in light of several themes including public participation, sustainable development, environmental justice, and natural and technological hazards. Students conduct risk assessments on real world Environmental and Occupational Health problems, develop effective written and verbal approaches to communicating the results of risk assessments, and critically review case studies in which Environmental and Occupational Health risk assessments have been used in setting public policy.

  • Required for all  EOH students

Health Policy and Management (HPM)

The HPM track prepares students for careers in research, teaching, policy analysis and organizational analysis in the broad fields of health services, health policy, and health management. Students will select a concentration in either Health Policy or Health Management. Students who choose Health Policy as a concentration will develop a nuanced understanding of how a range of mechanisms, systematically associated with policy, influence population health.  Students who choose Health Management as a concentration will incorporate organizational theory and analysis in understanding how organizational structures, networks, and behavior influence health of populations.

The HPM track will prepare graduates who can: 

  • Contribute to new knowledge about the mechanisms that influence the delivery of health services and public health programs and the development of health policy.
  • Develop and manage initiatives to strengthen the functioning of health systems, health care organizations and public health agencies and programs.
  • Develop, advocate for and implement health care and public health policies.
  • Analyze the impact of health and non-health policies on population health.
  • Teach students and professionals about the social determinants of health, health interventions, health policy, health management and health disparities.

Curriculum:
The core curriculum in HPM includes coursework in management and methods. Electives are chosen in consultation with the faculty advisor.
 

Requirements for all HPM students:  
PUBH 840 Seminar in Health Policy and Management
PUBH 841 Quantitative Methods in Health Services Research
   
+2012 and following cohorts: + Cohorts preceding 2012:
Four advanced research methods or track-specific practice courses, one of which must be from a Graduate Center program outside of Public Health (DPH courses that are cross-listed with another program can count toward this requirement) and one must be a Health Economics course. Five electives: one of which must be from a Graduate Center program outside of Public Health (DPH courses that are cross-listed with another program can count toward this requirement), one leadership elective, one course in policy or management (economics, sociology, and political science); two research methods courses (one in economics or finance; one in research design, data analysis, econometric analysis, quantitative decision analysis, policy analysis, management, or practice).


PUBH 840 Seminar in Health Policy and Management (3 credits): The objective of the course is to understand patterns in the organization, financing, and delivery of health care, and their relationship to population-based health outcomes, through an integrated exploration of research from the various disciplines informing the health policy and management fields. With an emphasis on the development of critical thinking skills, students are introduced to multidisciplinary models from the social sciences as conceptual sources for health policy and management research. The course adapts a transdisciplinary approach to the examination of important topics in urban public health management and policy, such as the relationship between health systems and the urban-based health economy, and the interface between managerial functions and health policy analysis in addressing health status and outcomes disparities.

  • Required for all HPM students


PUBH 841 Quantitative Methods in Health Services Research (3 credits): This course focuses on quantitative reasoning skills in health services research within the context of the principles of the scientific method and the logic of the research process. The logic and methodologies of problem formulation, development of hypotheses and objectives, multidisciplinary research design, sampling, operationalization and measurement are reviewed in connection with selected analytic strategies, such as cross-section/time-series design, multilevel analysis, cost effectiveness analysis, and health impact assessment. Methodological connections between practice-based performance assessment for management and population-based health outcomes assessment for policy are addressed.

  • Required for all HPM students

  • Prerequisite: PUBH 840

Concentration in Nutrition:

Nutrition

The Nutrition Concentration is open to students in any specialization track who have prior training in nutrition, food sciences or food policy.  Students can learn more about the requirements and expectations of the concentration by consulting Professor Arlene Spark, coordinator of the concentration or their track coordinator.  Students in the concentration are expected to complete four courses that meet both track and concentration requirements, i.e., no extra credits are required. PUBH 814 Food Politics and Policies or its equivalent; SOC 828 Food, Culture and Society or its equivalent; an advanced three credit epidemiology course relevant to nutrition (e.g., Nutritional Epidemiology; Chronic Disease Epidemiology, Life Course Epidemiology) and one three credit elective in research methods relevant to public health nutrition. 

PUBH 814 Food Politics and Policies (3 credits): This is a policy course that examines the effects of the food industry and government on diet-related disease, and on health promotion and disease prevention. Most readings have a strong political content. Central themes include: government action versus individual liberty, the contradictions of government support and opposition to certain policies, the role of litigation, and the importance of institutions (e.g., bureaucracy, Congress, the media).

SOC 828 Food, Culture and Society (3 credits): This course explores major issues in foodways, focusing on preparation and consumption, through readings and discussions as well as through the development of a culturally-informed public health nutrition initiative and fieldwork exploring a specific cultural food tradition. Theoretical frameworks include the food voice, cultural studies, political economy, and symbolic interactionism. Materials are drawn from across the social sciences and applied to public health.

Concentration in Maternal, Child, Reproductive and Sexual Health (MCRSH):

MCRSH

MCRSH is a key to the long-term health of individuals, families, communities and societies.  Reproductive and sexual health problems -- such as unintended pregnancies, maternal death, STDs, gender-related violence and others -- are still the leading cause of illness and death for women of childbearing age worldwide.  Although infant and childhood mortality is declining overall, some regions of the developing world still face significant burdens. The MCRSH concentration is designed to provide students with a theoretical understanding of the social- and historical- context that shapes maternal, child, reproductive and sexual behaviors and health outcomes across the life-span; and with practical experience in research, programs and/or policies to reduce disparities and promote health. Students in the MCRSH concentration will take three MCRSH specific courses: two required courses (PUBH 870 and PUBH 871) and one elective (9 credits total). The MCRSH specific courses will replace the elective requirements of the Community, Society and Health track; students in the Epidemiology, Environmental and Occupational Health, and Health Policy and Management tracks could also seek a concentration in MCRSH if they take these three required courses, in addition to their track specific elective requirements.  The MCRSH concentration within the DPH will require that 30 of the 60 credits be focused on MCRSH, providing a solid foundation in this area.

PUBH 870 Maternal, Child, Reproductive and Sexual Health in Context (3 credits): A critical overview of public health issues, approaches and concerns in the area of Maternal, Child, Reproductive and Sexual Health. Topics will include the medicalization of maternity care and infancy/childhood; the consequences of 'risk' as a dominant ideology for Maternal, Child, Reproductive and Sexual Health care; issues in reproductive justice, with particular attention to race and class, and the historic and contemporary influence of eugenics in public health; the history of midwifery and global trends in midwifery care; the role of public health interventions in infant care; sexual health and gender identity.

PUBH 871 Maternal, Child, Reproductive and Sexual Health: A Life Course Perspective  (3 credits):  Provides a theoretical framework as to how life course exposures affect vulnerability to disease, with an emphasis on the roles of maternal, child, reproductive and sexual health. This course also considers how intra- and inter-generational influences may be relevant to disparities in health. Readings will address empirical patterns, prevailing theories and controversies regarding life course influences, as well as addressing interventions or policies that may be applied to improve population health.

Prerequisite: PUBH 820