Doctoral Degrees

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

A PhD prepares you to do research in academia or industry. We offer the PhD in each of our seven departments.

Doctor of Philosophy in Behavioral and Community Health Sciences

The PhD in behavioral and community health sciences prepares students to conduct research and teach in the social and behavioral sciences areas of public health and in academic settings. The PhD is focused on training researchers in the behavioral and community health sciences to integrate state-of-the art theory, designs, and analysis approaches to examine current problems in public health.

Doctor of Philosophy in Biostatistics

The PhD in biostatistics is an academic degree program for students with a background in mathematics and a strong interest in biology and public health. The program emphasizes statistical theory and methods so that students are prepared to be effective statistical collaborators in interdisciplinary studies; lead the design and execution of studies; and develop biostatistics methodology.

Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental and Occupational Health

The PhD in environmental and occupational health provides a broad theoretical and practical education for individuals who desire positions in academic, industrial, or government laboratories in the multifaceted discipline of environmental health sciences. The program combines training in classical toxicological and environmental biophysics with the new and continually developing fields of cellular and molecular pathobiology of environmental disease. Training is geared toward an understanding of how relevant environmental exposures, laboratory based model systems, and gene-environment responses can be interpreted and applied to the study of disease etiology in exposed and potentially exposed human populations.

Doctor of Philosophy in Epidemiology

This program provides students with an advanced level of academic preparation to conduct research, teach, and mentor students. This includes concentrated training in epidemiological concepts and methodology and the completion of a research-based dissertation. Due to the wide range of ongoing faculty research within the department, students have the ability to select an area of emphasis on which to focus and to conduct research under the mentorship of an epidemiology faculty member. 

NOTE: We have closed applications to the DrPH program for fall 2020 while we review curriculum options. Please note that the Epidemiology PhD program can be adapted to have an applied focus. Through elective coursework, internship opportunities, and the dissertation, PhD candidates can obtain the essential skills required for public health practice.

Doctor of Philosophy in Health Services Research and Policy

The Health Services Research and Policy (HSRP) PhD program meets an ongoing need for public health researchers who focus on cost, access and quality of the health care system. Graduates will be prepared to conduct research on policy issues affecting the organization, financing, and delivery of health care and public health services.

Doctor of Philosophy in Human Genetics

The doctoral program in human genetics prepares students for careers leading genetics and genomics research in academia or industry. The flexible curriculum provides a broad background in the field while allowing customized emphasis on molecular genetics/genomics, statistical genetics and genetic epidemiology, or genetic counseling.

Typically four to ten doctoral students are admitted each year, including external applicants and internal applicants currently pursuing Master’s degrees within the department. In addition to core coursework and advanced classes in a chosen area of concentration, doctoral students pursue mentored research projects culminating in the production and defense of a dissertation.

Doctor of Philosophy in Infectious Diseases and Microbiology

The PhD program in the Department of Infectious Diseases and Microbiology prepares students for competitive research and teaching careers in academia, government agencies, and private industry. Our PhD students complete coursework that emphasizes the fundamentals of pathogen biology, immunology, cell biology, and molecular biology, which provides the necessary educational basis to conduct independent research mentored by our faculty.

Doctor of Public Health in Epidemiology

NOTE:  We have closed applications to the DrPH program for fall 2020 while we review curriculum options. Please note that the Epidemiology PhD program can be adapted to have an applied focus. Through elective coursework, internship opportunities, and the dissertation, PhD candidates can obtain the essential skills required for public health practice.


The DrPH is an advanced professional degree that prepares students to apply theory and research methods in management roles or while conducting applied research.