Competencies and Learning Objectives


School of Public Health Foundational Learning Objectives


Foundational Learning Objectives Profession & Science of Public Health: Explain history, philosophy & values Identify the core functions & 10 essential services Explain role of quantitative & qualitative methods & sciences to describe & assess a population's health List major causes & trends of morbidity & mortality in the US or other relevant community Discuss the science of primary, secondary & tertiary prevention in population health Explain the critical importance of evidence in advancing public health knowledge Factors Related to Human Health: Explain effects of environmental factors on a population's health Explain biological & genetic factors that affect population health Explain behavioral & psychological factors that affect population health Explain the social, political & economic determinants of health & how they contribute to population health & health inequity Explain how globalization affects global burdens of disease Explain an ecological perspective on the connections among human health, animal health & ecosystem health (One Health)


Master of Public Health (MPH)

MPH (All Degrees)

Foundational Competencies Evidence-based Approaches to Public Health: FC1. Apply epidemiological methods to the breadth of settings & situations in public health practice FC2. Select quantitative & qualitative data collection methods appropriate for a given public health context FC3. Analyze quantitative & qualitative data using appropriate biostatistics, informatics, computer-based programming & software FC4. Interpret results of data analysis for public health research, policy or practice Public Health & Health Care Systems: FC5. Compare the organization, structure & function to health care public health & regulatory systems both national & international FC6. Discuss how structural bias, social inequities & racism undermine health & create challenges to achieving health equity at organizational, community & societal levels Planning & Management to Promote Health: FC7. Assess population needs, assets & capacities that affect communities' health FC8. Apply awareness of cultural values and practices to the design or implementation of public health policies or programs FC9. Design a population-based policy, program, project or intervention FC10. Explain basic principles & tools of budget & resource management FC11. Select methods to evaluate public health programs Policy in Public Health: FC12. Discuss multiple dimensions of the policy-making process, including the roles of ethics & evidence FC13. Propose strategies to identify stakeholders & build coalitions & partnerships for influencing public health outcomes FC14. Advocate for political, social or economic policies & programs that will improve health in diverse populations FC15. Evaluate policies for their impact on public health & health equity Leadership: FC16. Apply principles of leadership, governance & mgmt. including creating a vision, empowering others, fostering collaboration & guiding decision making FC17. Apply negotiation & mediation skills to address organizational or community challenges Communication: FC18. Select communication strategies for different audiences & sectors FC19. Communicate audience-appropriate public health context, through both written & oral presentation FC20. Describe the importance of cultural competence in communicating public health content Interprofessional Practice: FC21. Perform effectively on inter-professional teams Systems Thinking: FC22. Apply systems thinking tools to a public health issue


Describe public health issues in terms of person, place, and time from social, environmental, population, and individual perspectives. Identify and use sources of epidemiologic information and knowledge as a basis for sound research, decision-making, and data-driven public health practice. Construct suitable study designs. Interpret and communicate the results of analysis to ensure the effective application of epidemiologic methods. Always demonstrate strong ethics in the collection, maintenance, use, and dissemination of data used for public health practice.

Public Health Leadership

  1. Critique and integrate theories of leadership into personal philosophy of leadership
  2. Integrate principles of diversity and inclusivity into organizational goals.
  3.  Make policy recommendations at the organizational, local, state, or federal-level to improve population and community health. 
  4.  Demonstrate leadership’s role in identifying sources of risk and developing mitigation strategies in the implementation of a public health plan.
  5.  Apply quality and leadership concepts to address organizational practices.

Maternal & Child Health

Identify the unique lifecourse, biological, sociocultural, and behavioral assets and challenges of public health practice with women, children and families. Critique and evaluate existing public health interventions or policies for their appropriateness and implications for women, children and families. Describe the historical landmark policies that have influenced public health practice in maternal and child health. Develop an advocacy plan that engages a community in improving maternal and child health outcomes. Describe a maternal and child issue in terms of time, magnitude/severity, scope, dispersion/location, and co-occurrence/co-morbidity.


Master of Health Administration (MHA)


The Master of Health Administration program is designed to prepare students for effective organizational management based on competencies and evidence based practices needed to become exceptional managers and leaders. The program is also committed to the improvement of health services through health services research and community engagement within complex health-related organizations. The 60 semester credit hour program is designed for aspiring and committed professionals who are interested in careers in health services administration in such settings as hospitals; managed care organizations; medical group practices; ambulatory, long- term care, insurance and pharmaceutical companies; consulting firms; government agencies; for- profit and nonprofit sector organizations. Through an internship, student portfolio and a final integrative experience, students are asked to incorporate, synthesize, and apply their knowledge within both an operational and a community context. The result is an organizational perspective that encourages students to integrate knowledge from a range of management disciplines while emphasizing accountability for effective performance. By the conclusion of the MHA program, students will be able to demonstrate knowledge and skills in: Accountability Achievement Orientation Communication Skills Financial Skills Impact & Influence Information Technology Management Performance Measurement Process Management & Organizational Design Project Management Human Resources Management Change Leadership Strategic Orientation Organizational Awareness Analytical thinking Information Seeking Initiative Professionalism Self Confidence Team Leadership


Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

PhD Health Behavior & Research

Disseminate research findings in peer-reviewed venues Synthesize knowledge to identify gaps in the literature about important public health issues Use research methods to develop, test, and implement interventions designed to achieve social and behavioral change (note, must meet all competencies for MS HBR)

PhD Epidemiology

Synthesize findings from epidemiologic studies in order to effectively communicate information that addresses public health issues Demonstrate an ability to design an appropriate study to address a given public health issue Formulate study hypotheses based on evidence to generate original research initiatives (note, must meet all competencies for MS EPI)


Masters (MS)in Public Health Sciences

MS Biostatistics

Translate mathematical and statistical foundations to biostatistics Design and critically evaluate study protocols in the health sciences Design and apply comprehensive data management strategies for health-related studies Identify and apply suitable statistical methods for data analyses Effectively communicate statistical information to health practitioners and professionals

MS Health Behavior & Research

Conduct a systematic overview of the psychological, social, and cultural factors that promote population health Apply and interpret data relevant to health behavior research Communicate research findings to scientific audiences Demonstrate a core set of research skills for conducting health behavior research Use ethical principles to conduct research and professional practice

MS Epidemiology

Appropriately quantify risk and protective factors for various public health problems Identify categories of threats to validity and appropriate actions to minimize them Analyze the components and applications of causal inference adopted in the field of epidemiology Critically evaluate the quality and applicability of epidemiologic research Apply epidemiological methods and assumptions governing their use in research