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Master of Science in Public Health (MSPH) in Health Systems

Student Timeline

Students can complete their degrees in 1.5 years. All requirements should be completed within 2 years.  

Students enrolled in the program take a common core of courses and have the opportunity to specialize, based on their interests and experience, by taking additional elective courses. The curriculum focuses on planning and managing health projects and programs at the community, district, national and global levels; the Academic Guide contains degree-specific information, competencies, learning objectives, and course requirements. A written comprehensive exam at the end of the first year of Program tests students on core competencies.

The required 4-month practicum experience is an important additional component of this degree program. Typical practicum experiences include working in health programs directly serving disadvantaged populations in low- and middle-income countries, working at an organization’s headquarters or regional office to provide technical support to field programs or to help improve management of an organization’s programs worldwide, and working on a research project related to health systems management. After the practicum, students complete a scholarly paper, called a capstone, usually related to their practicum experience, which integrates material from multiple courses applied to a specific topic of interest. The Program takes 18-24 months to complete.

Academic Terms 1 - 4

  • Intensive coursework
  • Comprehensive departmental examination at the end of the first academic year
  • Practicum proposal

Academic Terms 4 – 6 (minimum)

  • Practicum: field placement or School-based investigation and analysis of a significant issue related to health of underserved populations
  • Practicum update at the end of every term
  • Capstone essay reviewed and approved by two faculty readers. The capstone should provide tangible evidence of expertise on a specific applied topic of international health relevance.