Undergraduate Courses in Public Health

Undergrads: PROTECT the health of populations

The COVID-19 pandemic put public health in the global spotlight and emphasizes the need for a strong and dynamic public health workforce. Pitt Public Health has a long history of preparing generations of leaders to meet the needs of our communities and we are excited to expand into undergraduate education. We now offer public health undergraduate elective courses. 

In addition to tackling infectious diseases like COVID-19, public health professionals are equipped to help mitigate current and prevent future global health challenges. The climate crisis, health equity, and the infodemic of misinformation are among many critical public health issues. 

While clinicians such as nurses or physicians focus on treating individuals, public health practitioners apply quantitative, social, and biological science tools – plus tools from almost every other field – to address the health needs of entire populations. To learn more, enroll in one or more of our newly created undergraduate courses taught by experts in public health. 


Covering the fundamental components of public health and incorporating active learning activities

Fall term courses (also offered in the spring)!

  • Introduction to Public Health is the foundation for your future in public health. It provides an overview of key public health concepts and applications. 
  • Public Health Biology introduces you to the biological basis of the most pressing global public health challenges of the 21st century.
  • Essentials of Health Equity explores the social and structural determinants of health and engages in a critical exploration of the intersectionality of health disparities. 

View the fall schedule...

Spring Term Courses

  • Biostatistics provides an overview of statistical methods used in public health practice and research and hands on training to apply methods using statistical software. 
  • Community-based Approaches in Public Health explores how community and cultures impact health and well-being, the importance of partnering engagement and intervention development.
  • Environmental Health Sciences covers fundamental concepts of environmental processes, exposures, agents, and disparities influencing disease progression. 
  • Epidemiology introduces the data-driven science of understanding the health of populations and the prevention and control of diseases. 
  • Health Policy and Management provides a framework for understanding the social, political, legal, and economic dimensions of the U.S. health and public health systems. 

Pitt Public Health COVID-19 News

Albert says without a ride, many in need have no shot at coronavirus vaccine

WASHINGTON POST - One of the biggest challenges for state and local officials has been getting vaccines to homebound older adults, said BCHS Chair Steven Albert. "This is an invisible population. They're not like long-term care residents in nursing homes. They are very elderly and frail and they live at home and are an afterthought, in some cases."  

Braund gives current overview of PA State Response to COVID-19

Wendy Braund, Pennsylvania's acting interim physician general led a conversation about the PA Department of Health resposne to COVID-19, addressing the current situation and containment and mitigation efforts. Braund painted a picture of COVID-19 across the nation in addition to the state itself. She talked about the demographics of the states data, additional virus strains, plus containment and mitgation efforts. Open for full recording.  

Roberts on whether the U.S. is entering a fourth wave of COVID-19

TIME - Public health experts are worried that the country is headed for a fourth major spike. There's good reason to think this one might be less disastrous than the previous three. HPM's Mark Roberts, director of the Public Health Dynamics Lab, points to the relatively small uptick in deaths as a sign that prioritizing high-risk people for vaccination may be resulting in fewer fatalities even as cases increase.   


Contact Mara Leff with questions or for more information. 

Meet a master's student


Rachel Poad, Bob Yee Scholarship Awardee 

Rachel Poad, Bob Yee Scholarship Awardee

Rachel Poad (IDM '21) was awarded a 2020 Bob Yee Public Health Scholarship. A native of Centreville, MD, Rachel is pursuing an MS in infectious diseases and microbiology. She studied biology at Wake Forest University and is interested in kitting, watching sports, and hanging out with friends.  (05/13/2021)

Claire McCreavy, Bob Yee Scholarship Awardee 

Claire McCreavy, Bob Yee Scholarship Awardee

Claire McCreavy (IDM '21) was awarded a 2020 Bob Yee Public Health Scholarship. A native of Lafayette Hill, PA, McCreavy is pursuing an MPH with a concentration in infectious disease management, intervention, and community practice (MPH-MIC). She studied public health/health promotion at West Chest... (05/13/2021)

Kristen Eggles, Bob Yee Public Health Scholarship Awardee 

Kristen Eggles, Bob Yee Public Health Scholarship Awardee

Kristen Eggles (IDM '21) was awarded a 2020 Bob Yee Public Health Scholarship. A native of Fort Hill, SC, Kristen is pursuing an MPH with a concentration in infectious disease pathogenesis, eradication, and laboratory practice (MPH-PEL). She studied biology at West Carolina University and is intere... (05/13/2021)
View more student profiles & news