Nov 30, 2022  
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog

Public Health, M.S.P.H.

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  • Behavioral Health
  • Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Epidemiology
  • Genetic Counseling*
  • Genomics
  • Global Communicable Disease
  • Health Promotion and Behavior
  • Maternal and Child Health
  • Occupational Exposure Science 

*applicants to the MSPH who wish to pursue the Genetic Counseling Concentration should apply prior to December 15 to be aligned with the admissions timeine provided by the Association of Genetic Counseling Program Directors)


The base of knowledge for public health comes from a variety of disciplines, ranging from social sciences to biological sciences and business, brought together by a commitment to improve the public’s health. Thus, the field of public health is broad and is open to students from diverse academic disciplines including Health Sciences, Education, Engineering, Business, Communications, Mathematics, Social Sciences, and Natural Sciences. Graduates are prepared for interdisciplinary focused public health professional careers as administrators, managers, educators, researchers, and direct service providers.


The College is accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health. The concentration in Genetic Counseling in the M.S.P.H. degree is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Genetic Counseling.

Admission Information

Must meet University Admission and English Proficiency requirements, as well as requirements for admission to the major, listed below.  

  • Official Transcripts (Sent ONLY to SOPHAS)
  • A thorough statement of purpose and objectives indicating the applicant’s interest on obtaining a degree in public health, and how they hope to contribute to the field.
  • Both SOPHAS and USF applications and fees are required for USF’s College of Public Health Graduate Programs.
  1. Complete a SOPHAS application at and submit all required application materials to SOPHAS.  All application materials must be submitted only to SOPHAS.
  2. Complete and submit the USF graduate application and fee at  Do not upload or submit any application materials directly to USF.
  3. Allow two to four weeks for SOPHAS to verify the application.  Make sure to follow up with SOPHAS regularly to meet all of their requirements to verify your application.
  4. Monitor the email that you provided in SOPHAS for application decisions and other communications.
  • Resume or curriculum vitae
  • At least two formal Letters of Recommendation

Curriculum Requirements

Total Minimum Hours: 42 credit hours

  • Core Requirements - 9 Credit hours
  • Concentrations Requirements - 6 Credit hours minimum (varies)
  • Electives - 18 Credit hours minimum
  • Additional electives, if required - 1 Credit hour minimum (varies by concentration)
  • Thesis - 6 Credit hours minimum

Students must complete the Major core requirements and then the requirements as specified for the Concentration.  Concentration hour requirements vary, so in some instances, students will graduate with more than the 42-hour minimum required for the major.  The minimum hours required for the major and concentration must be satisfied for degree completion.

Concentration Requirements - 6 hours minimum (varies)

Students select from the following Concentrations:

Behavioral Health (6 Concentration Credit Hours)

Environmental and Occupational Health (6 Concentration Credit Hours)

Epidemiology (15 Concentration Credit Hours)

Genetic Counseling (8 Concentration Credit Hours)

Genomics (6 Concentration Credit Hours)

Global Communicable Disease (9 Concentration Credit Hours)

Health Promotion and Behavior (6 Concentration Credit Hours)

Maternal and Child Health (6 Concentration Credit Hours)

Occupational Exposure Science (8 Concentration Credit Hours)

Electives - 18 hours minimum

All students must complete a minimum of eighteen credit hours of graduate electives.  Students in the following concentrations must complete additional elective hours as noted:

5 additional hours - Behavioral Health
3 additional hours - Environmental and Occupational Health
1 additional hours - Genetic Counseling*
3 additional hours - Genomics
4 additional hours - Health Promotion and Behavior
5 additional hours - Maternal and Child Health
4 additional hours - Occupational Exposure Science

All elective hours must be approved by faculty mentor.

*To qualify for the ABGC national certification exam after graduation to earn the Certified Genetic Counselor credential, students in the Genetic Counseling MSPH concentration are required to take specific elective courses as approved by the Genetic Counseling Program Leadership.

Thesis (6 Credit Hours)

Comprehensive Exam

A written comprehensive exam is required. At the discretion of the faculty mentor, students may be allowed to take an oral comprehensive exam, such as the thesis proposal defense, in lieu of the written comprehensive exam.  

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