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Concentration in Health Equity and Social Justice

Health Equity and Social Justice Concentration

The DrPH concentration in Health Equity and Social Justice is an interdepartmental concentration focused on understanding and addressing the multiple determinants of health, particularly among disadvantaged and marginalized groups in both high in­come, and low and middle income settings.

Through the concentration students learn about innovative epidemiological, social and behavioral tools to assess population health and influences upon it, and students acquire skills relevant to the design, implementation and evaluation of health programs designed to benefit the poor and marginalized groups, including the development and management of intersectoral partnerships.

This concentra­tion is well suited to those seeking leadership positions in agencies concerned with plan­ning and implementing projects designed to meet public health needs.

Concentration Co-directors

The DrPH Health Equity and Social Justice concentration co-directors are:

Please click their links to learn more about their research interests, departmental and center or institute affiliations, and contact information.

Concentration Competencies

1. Employ bioethics and human rights concepts relating to equity and social justice in analysis of public health programs and policies.
2. Advocate with and on behalf of disadvantaged and vulnerable individuals and communities to improve their health and wellbeing and build their capacity.
3. Conduct assessments of health equity in communities and systems to identify the behavioral, cultural, social, environmental and organizational determinants that promote or compromise health in disadvantaged groups.
4. Identify evidence-informed strategies, and measurable goals and objectives, to promote health equity and social justice.
5.  Implement effective, efficient and culturally sensitive strategies to improve health equity and social justice.

Concentration Curriculum

Students are expected to complete a minimum of 28 credits of concentration-specific courses. These courses broadly address pedagogy under the following categories:

  1. Concepts, philosophical bases and methodological issues in HESJ
  2. Design and implementation of interventions (programs, policies and practice) for addressing HESJ issues
  3. Research and evaluation methods applicable for HESJ
  4. Conceptual and philosophical basis electives for HESJ

*Courses taken to fulfill foundational requirements may not be applied to fulfill concentration requirements.

Course Requirements for the Health Equity and Social Justice Concentration (min. 28 credits)

I. Required Courses for DrPH Health Equity and Social Justice Concentration (7 credits):

  • 221.656.11 Conceptual and Evidential Foundations of Health Equity and Social Justice (4 credits)
  • 410.605.81 Fundamental Tools for Promoting Health Equity (3 credits)

II. Design and Implementation of Interventions for Health Equity and Social Justice: take 7 or more credits from the below courses.

Course # Title Credits
330.647.11 Childhood Victimization: An Overview of Public Health Efforts 1
330.610.11 Knowledge for Managing County and Local Mental Health, Substance Use, and Developmental Disability Authority 1
221.665.11 Early Childhood Intervention in Tribal Communities 2
221.625.11 Evaluation Plans for Primary Health Care Projects in Low and Middle Income Countries: Evaluating Adequacy of District Level Implementation 3
221.632.11 Introduction to Improving Quality in Public Health Practice 1
330.658.89 Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in International Humanitarian Settings 2
330.681.89 Mental Health and Psychosocial Support of Refugees after Resttlement in High Income Countries 2
188.694.81 Health of Vulnerable Worker Populations 3
380.681.01 Strategic Leadership Principles and Tools for Health System Transformation in Developing Countries 4
380.768.81 Selected Topics in Women's Health and Women's Health Policy 4
410.620.13 Program Planning for Health Behavior Change 3
410.620.81 Program Planning for Health Behavior Change 3
180.600.13 Special Topics in Health and Human Rights: Public Health Implication of Health as Human Right 2
410.668.01 Policy Intervention for Health Behavior Change 3
380.663.01 Gender-based Violence Research, Practice and Policy: Issues and Current Controversies 3
410.672.81 Introduction to Campaigning and Organizing for Public Health 3
380.623.81 Adolescent Health and Development 3
380.750.01 Migration and Health: Concepts, Rates and Relationship 3
221.688.81 Social and Behavioral Foundations of Primary Health Care 4
221.635.81 Advances in Community-Oriented Primary Health Care 3
380.765.81 Preventing Infant Mortality and Promoting the Health of Women, Infants and Children 3
380.761.81 Sexually Transmitted Infections in Public Health Practice 4
221.624.81 Urban Health in Developing Countries 3
380.725.01 The Social Context of Adolescent Health and Development 3
330.680.81 Promoting Mental Health and Preventing Mental Disorders in Low and Middle Income Countries 3
330.607.81 Prevention of Mental Disorders: Public Health Intervention 3

III. Research and Evaluation Methods for Health Equity and Social Justice: take 7 or more credits from the below courses.

Course # Title Credits
309.631.81 Population Health Informatics 3
313.790.81 Introduction to Economic Evaluation 3
221.645.81 Large-Scale Effectiveness Evaluations of Health Programs 3
308.603.81 Demographic Methods for Public Health 4
380.611.01 Fundamentals of Program Evaluation 4
380.604.81 Nutrition and Growth in Maternal and Child Health 2
380.711.01 Issues in Survey Research Design 3
380.651.01 Methods and Measures in Population Studies 4
340.666.81 Foundations of Social Epidemiology 3
330.626.89, 330.626.11 Estimating the Effects of Mental Health Interventions in Non- Experimental Settings 1
330.672.11 Evaluation of Mental Health Services System 1
221.620.11 Applying Summary Measures of Population Health to Improve Health System 4
221.620.81 Applying Summary Measures of Population Health to Improve Health System 4
221.722.81 Quality Assurance Management Methods for Developing Countries 4
330.621.11 Mixed Methods for Research in Public Health 2
330.657.81 Statistics for Psychosocial Research: Measurement 4
140.664.81 Causal Inference in Medicine and Public Health 1 4
340.638.11 Epidemiologic Methods for Planning and Evaluating Health Services 2
340.613.11 Design and Conduct of Clinical Trial 2
340.706.11 Methods and Applications of Cohort Studies 2
223.632.01 Methods for Planning and Implementing Evaluation of Large-Scale Health Programs in Low and Middle Income Countries 4
309.712.81 Assessing Health Status and Patient Outcomes 3
410.671.11 Introduction to Qualitative Research Methods 3
410.673.11 Introduction to Qualitative Data Analysis for Public Health 2
410.615.01 Research Design in Social and Behavioral Sciences 3
309.616.81 Introduction to Methods for Health Services Research and Evaluation 2



Applications of Innovative Methods in Health Equity Research 2

IV. Conceptual and Philosophical Basis for Health Equity and Social Justice Electives: take 7 or more credits in special electives from the below courses, or any of those listed above which are not already being used to fulfill other requirements. Special elective courses outside these options  will require advisor approval prior to registration.

Course# Title Credits
700.622.01 Bioethics, Human Rights, and Global Health 3
380.604.81 Life Course Perspectives on Health 4
318.623.01 Social Policy for Vulnerable Population in the United States 3
308.610.01 The Political Economy of Social Inequalities and Its Consequences for Health and Quality of Life 3
380.756.01 Poverty, Economic Development and Health 4
180.625.01 Environmental Justices: Concepts, Methods and Practice 3
410.864.01 Critical Issues in Health Disparities