2012 - 2013 Site Archive



Graduate Bulletin

Public Health, M.P.H.

Concentration: Epidemiology and Biostatistics


Admission Requirements and Deadlines

Application Deadline:


  • December 1 – International Application Deadline
  • January 5 – Domestic Application Deadline for Those Applying for an Assistantship
  • May 1 – Domestic Application Deadline


  • September 1 – International Application Deadline
  • October 15 – Domestic Application Deadline

APPLY ONLINE to this graduate program.

Letters of Reference:

Number Required: 3

From Whom: Letters of recommendation should be obtained from college/university faculty members familiar with academic competence. If the applicant has been out of school for a long time, please make sure letters are from professional colleagues and that they address academic abilities, such as writing and research. The official graduate reference form should be sent to referees along with a stamped envelope addressed to:

Joyce Hankins
Coordinator of Student Services

Temple University Department of Public Health

Ritter Hall Annex, 9th Floor
1301 Cecil B. Moore Avenue
Philadelphia, PA  19122

Coursework Required for Admission Consideration:

Applicants' files are reviewed for undergraduate coursework in Mathematics and/or Statistics, Social Science, and Writing.

Bachelor's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline:

A baccalaureate degree is required.

Statement of Goals:

The Statement of Goals should be approximately 500-1,000 words and must address the following items:

  • What are your interests in Public Health, and why are you planning to pursue an M.P.H.?
  • What are your future career goals, and what have you done either academically or professionally to guide your interest in Public Health?
  • What M.P.H. concentration are you applying to and why?
  • Are there any exceptional circumstances related to previous academic performance that you would like the Admissions Committee to know about?

Standardized Test Scores:

The GRE is required. While the program takes a portfolio approach to admissions, standardized tests provide important insight into quantitative and verbal abilities. Scores on the old GRE should be a minimum of 500 on both the verbal and quantitative sections; scores on the new GRE should be a minimum of 153 on the verbal section and 144 on the quantitative section.

Standardized tests considered in lieu of the GRE include DAT, GMAT, MCAT, OAT, and PCAT. The LSAT is also accepted, except for those applying to the Epidemiology and Biostatistics concentration.

Minimum TOEFL score needed to be accepted: 79 iBT or 550 PBT.



A resume or CV is required.

Transfer Credit:

Graduate credits from an M.P.H. program accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) may be transferred into the M.P.H. The credits must be equivalent to coursework offered at Temple, and the grade must be a "B" or better in order to transfer. The M.P.H. advisor 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.

Test Waivers:

Graduates with terminal degrees from U.S. medical schools, foreign trained physicians who have obtained licensure to practice in the United States, and those with Ph.D.s may have the GRE requirement waived.

Supporting Materials:

Send all required materials in support of your application to:

Joyce Hankins
Coordinator of Student Services

Temple University Department of Public Health

Ritter Hall Annex, 9th Floor
1301 Cecil B. Moore Avenue
Philadelphia, PA  19122

All inquiries regarding receipt of materials should also be directed to Ms. Hankins at jhankins@temple.edu or 215-204-7213.

Program Requirements

General Program Requirements:

Number of Didactic Credits Required Beyond the Baccalaureate: 45

Required Courses:

To ensure that all M.P.H. students acquire a common breadth of knowledge of basic public health content, the Department of Public Health requires:

Core Public Health Courses (18 s.h.):

Biostatistics — PBHL 5002:  Biostatistics

Environmental Health — PBHL 5103:  Environmental Health

Epidemiology — PBHL 5101:  Epidemiology

Health Services and Administration — HCM 5101:  Health Systems Organization and Development

Public Health Practice — PBHL 5001:  Historical and Bioethical Issues in Public Health

Social and Behavioral Sciences — PBHL 5102:  Theoretical Foundations of Health Behavior

Epidemiology and Biostatistics Concentration Courses:

PBHL 5201:  Epidemiological Research Methods I

PBHL 5203:  Public Health Surveillance Methods

PBHL 8001:  Research Design in Public Health

At least one of the following concentration electives:

PBHL 5202:  Epidemiological Research Methods II

PBHL 5205:  Chronic Disease Epidemiology

PBHL 5209:  Occupational and Environmental Health Epidemiology

PBHL 8206:  Infectious Disease Epidemiology

M.P.H. Fieldwork Practice Experience (6 s.h.):

PBHL 9289:  MPH Fieldwork I

PBHL 9389:  MPH Fieldwork II

Students may choose from elective courses to fulfill the remaining coursework requirement for an M.P.H. in Epidemiology and Biostatistics.

Internship: An internship or other practicum experience may be selected as part of a student's M.P.H. fieldwork.

Language Examination: No language examination is required.

Culminating Events:

Fieldwork Practicum:

M.P.H. fieldwork requires a student 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 or under the supervision of a faculty preceptor. The M.P.H. fieldwork experience serves as the culminating event as required by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH), the accrediting body of all U.S. schools of public health, for completion of the Master of Public Health degree. In addition, this culminating 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. The four options for M.P.H. fieldwork include:

  1. Systematic review of the literature
  2. Primary collection of data or secondary analysis of data (under the direct supervision of a Temple University faculty preceptor)
  3. Analysis of a policy or professional practice issue
  4. Practice-based culminating experience report

For the culminating experience to fulfill the requirements of PBHL 9289 and PBHL 9389, M.P.H. students in the Epidemiology and Biostatistics concentration are expected to complete a fieldwork experience, which enables them to:

  • Identify key sources of data for epidemiological purposes.
  • Identify the principles and limitations of public health screening programs.
  • Describe a public health problem in terms of magnitude, person, time, and place.
  • Explain the importance of epidemiology for informing scientific, ethical, economic, and political discussion of health issues.
  • Comprehend basic ethical and legal principles pertaining to the collection, maintenance, use, and dissemination of epidemiologic data.
  • Apply basic epidemiologic concepts, definitions, and study designs to public health practice and research.
  • Calculate basic epidemiology measures.
  • Communicate epidemiologic information to lay and professional audiences.
  • Draw appropriate inferences from epidemiologic data.
  • Evaluate the strengths and limitations of epidemiologic reports.

A final paper is the required deliverable for the M.P.H. fieldwork requirement. Students must also demonstrate their proficiency (and the application of theory and principles) in the paper and demonstrate mastery of the required competencies during the oral defense. The evaluation of the M.P.H. fieldwork practicum experience, therefore, is integrated into the culminating experience requirement.


Program Contact Information:


Department Information:

Dept. of Public Health
Ritter Hall Annex, 9th Floor (004-09)
1301 Cecil B. Moore Avenue

Philadelphia, PA  19122


Department Contacts:


Joyce Hankins

M.P.H. Program Director:

Moriah Hall

717-232-6400 x247


Dr. Alice Hausman

About the Program

The vision of the Department of Public Health is to excel as a regional and national leader by fostering interdisciplinary collaboration among researchers, educators, community practitioners, and private sector leaders. The goal is to address community health needs in a global community to eliminate health disparities and increase the quality and years of healthy life.

The mission of the Department of Public Health is to promote and protect public health through quality education, research, and service. Emphasis is on disease prevention and treatment, empowerment, and collective as well as individual responsibility for health and health care. Collaborative partnerships contribute to meeting local, state, national, and global public health needs through conducting research, training a diverse workforce, and promoting excellence in practice.

The Public Health concentration in Epidemiology and Biostatistics is a terminal, professional degree for those students who desire to receive fundamental training in the public health sciences, epidemiological study design, disease surveillance, and core biostatistical methods. The practice-oriented M.P.H. in Epidemiology and Biostatistics prepares students to successfully work in public health and applied epidemiology, including disease surveillance in government public health agencies, community and clinical trials, and evaluation of screening programs and other preventative health services in the broad areas of public health practice and health policy. Conversely, the M.S. in Epidemiology currently offered by the Department of Public Health is a research degree intended for those students who desire to learn the advanced concepts and methods of epidemiology. It includes the application of biostatistics to epidemiological research, with a strong emphasis on developing research and methodological skills, including designing and critically evaluating epidemiologic studies.

Time Limit for Degree Completion: 4 years

Campus Location:


The full M.P.H. program is currently available only at Main Campus. Some required and elective courses in the M.P.H. program are offered on satellite campuses and through online courses.

Full-Time/Part-Time Status:

Students are able to complete the degree program through classes offered after 4:30 p.m. 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.

Department Information:

Dept. of Public Health
Ritter Hall Annex, 9th Floor (004-09)
1301 Cecil B. Moore Avenue

Philadelphia, PA  19122


Interdisciplinary Study:

Interdisciplinary coursework, research, and interactions 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 Studies, Center for Preparedness Research, Education and Practice (C-PREP), 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.

The Department of Public Health offers four dual degree programs: D.O./M.P.H. with the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, D.P.M./M.P.H. with the Temple University School of Podiatric Medicine, M.S.W./M.P.H. with the Temple University School of Social Work, and M.D./M.P.H. with the Temple University School of Medicine.


The M.P.H. program has research affiliations with national and international associations such as the Association of Teachers of Preventive Medicine (ATPM), Economic Cycle Research Institute (ECRI), and United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Locally, the program has long-standing research affiliations with The Ford Trust, Fox Chase Cancer Center, Health Federation of Philadelphia, Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Public Health Management Corporation (PHMC), School District of Philadelphia, and numerous other community health agencies.

Study Abroad:

Courses studying health care delivery in Senegal and Costa Rica have been offered as part of the M.P.H. program of study. These courses are offered during the Summer and are open to both undergraduate and graduate students.


While M.P.H. programs are not ranked by the accrediting body, U.S. News & World Report ranked Temple's M.P.H. program in the top 20 graduate programs in community health, based on average reputation scores.


The M.P.H. is fully accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH). Achieving accreditation in 1985, Temple's M.P.H. program is one of the longest established accredited M.P.H. programs in community health in the country.

Areas of Specialization:

The Department of Public Health has four transcripted concentrations in the M.P.H. degree program:  Environmental Health (EH), Epidemiology and Biostatistics (EBS), Global Health (GH), and Social and Behavioral Science (SBS).

Job Placement:

Program graduates 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, hospitals, clinics, schools, and work sites. Graduates are employed as HIV/AIDS coordinators, infection control coordinators, project directors, evaluation specialists, marketing specialists, research directors, prevention specialists, environmental health specialists, senior health educators, and adjunct faculty and consultants. Virtually all students are placed within 3 to 6 months of graduation.


Students who complete an M.P.H. at Temple University are eligible to sit for the Certification in Public Health (CPH) exam and the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) exam.

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. If accepted to the program, a maximum of three courses may be applied toward the degree program. Exceptions to this policy relate to formal certificate programs.

Financing Opportunities

The Graduate School awards fellowships on a competitive basis. Applicants who wish to be considered for fellowships must apply by January 26 or earlier for consideration for the Fall semester. Fellowships are awarded only to students with outstanding academic records who are admitted to Temple University for the Fall semester. The Department Admissions Committee nominates outstanding students for these awards, but the Graduate Board Fellowship Committee makes all award decisions.

Teaching and Research Assistantships are available in Public Health. The Graduate School website details levels of support, benefits, and the terms and conditions of these types of graduate student support on its Financial Assistance page. Assistantships are awarded on a semester 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 are required to work 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 available by request at publichealth@temple.edu. The completed application must be returned to the Chair of the Department in which you wish to be considered.

Updated 12.11.12