Online Master of Public Health Courses

Purdue University’s online public health classes are designed to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of public health functions, challenges, and processes, as well as the skills to create and implement effective programs.

The program benefits from the University’s status as a major center of research: Since 2014, the public health faculty and the College of Health and Human Sciences have received 113 grants totaling over $126 million, with $6 to $8 million of that directly impacting MPH research. Students in the online MPH program will have access to this cutting-edge research in the rigorous science-based curriculum.

The curriculum includes a practicum consisting of a 320-hour work experience to ensure that students can apply knowledge in a real-world setting tailored to each individual’s professional area of interest.

The program consists of 14 courses, totaling 42 credit hours. It can be completed in two years (not including the time for the practicum and culminating experience).

Core Master of Public Health Courses

HK 57601 – Theoretical Foundations of Health Behavior (3 credit hours)

Coursework examines the theoretical foundations of health behavior. Students explore the development of a conceptual framework for understanding and facilitating behavior enhancement, elimination and/or maintenance in health promotion and education. Topics include current theories regarding health-related behaviors.

HSCI 547 – Fundamentals of Epidemiology (3 credit hours)

This course is an introduction to epidemiology, the study of the patterns, causes, and impact of disease in populations. Epidemiology comprises an important part of public health and medical surveillance and research, and is a key tool for health policy development. This course will discuss the basic principles and methods of epidemiology, including measurements of disease occurrence and association, study designs, and determination of causality. Contemporary examples will be used to illustrate the application of these concepts.

HK 510 – Introduction to Quantitative Methods of Public Health (3 credit hours)

The main goals of this course are to acquaint students with the basic concepts and methods of statistics, their applications and their interpretation as used in public health. Students will learn basic terminology and its meaning, how to calculate various statistical measures and indices, how to quantify health relationships and how to compute and interpret inferential statistical techniques. Students will also acquire the ability to utilize the statistical software packages of Excel and SPSS as tools to facilitate the processing, editing, storing, displaying, analysis and interpretation of health research-related data.

HSCI 575 – Introduction to Environmental Health (3 credit hours)

This course presents an introduction to chemical, physical and biological factors in the environment that affect community health. Students examine health issues, scientific understanding of causes, and approaches to the control of major environmental health problems in industrialized and developed countries.

CSR 687 – Public Health Administration (3 credit hours)

An introduction to the principals of management as applied to public health organizations, particularly local health departments. Topics include the organization of the U.S. public health system, legal and ethical obligations of public health administrators, the public health workforce and human resource issues, public health budgeting and finance, and leadership in the public health agency. The course is designed to introduce master's level students in public health to the management skills necessary to successfully implement a public health program.

HK 675 – Design and Analysis of Public Health Interventions (3 credit hours)

This course addresses professional competencies in design, implementation, evaluation and diffusion of health interventions in community settings. Program planning paradigms, determinants of health behavior and behavior change strategies serve as a basis for analyzing health interventions.

Family and Community Health Concentration Courses

COM 676 – Health Communication (3 credit hours)

The healthcare environment is increasingly complex, and poses many challenges for communication professionals seeking to improve communication with key health industry stakeholders, including patients, providers, payers, government agencies, and others.

CSR 590 – International Health (3 credit hours)

This course is an introduction to public health priorities from an international perspective, illustrating the interdependent nature of health promotion and disease prevention issues across diverse regions and populations. Coursework examines population health determinants, contrasting industrialized and developing countries and how these influence health goals established by public health institutions, such as the World Health Organization, philanthropic foundations and governmental agencies.

HK 590 - Public Health Program and Policy Evaluation (3 credit hours)

This 3-credit course provides an overview of the methods required to evaluate the effectiveness of public health intervention or prevention programs and policies. The course introduces a range of quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods research designs and the application and tailoring of these designs to evaluations.

HDFS 590 – Families and Health (3 credit hours)

Family ties and family processes in the promotion of individual health and management of disease across the life course are covered. Course topics include: health promotion and disease prevention, disease management, health care, and caregiving in the family context.

NUTR 590 – World Food Problems (3 credit hours)

The goal of this course is to educate advanced graduate students on the multidisciplinary challenges that exist in meeting the food and nutrition needs of a growing world population. The course aims to instill an appreciation of the importance of economics, food production and technology, trade, culture, communication, political processes and institutions, demography and related factors in determining adequate food availability and health globally. The end point for this multi-disciplinary perspective is nutritional adequacy, and much of the focus will be on factors that can prevent or limit malnutrition.

Experiential Courses

HHS 592 – Public Health Practicum (3 credit hours)

Students integrate public health theory and practice in a professional setting. The practicum allows students to apply concepts from core and concentration courses, conduct projects and interact with a range of professionals in the designated setting.

HHS 600 – Culminating Experience (3 credit hours)
MPH students will show mastery of the public health competencies through a culminating project in their final course. This experiential learning includes training on the formation of competitive grants for non-profit organizations aligned with the student’s interest area. The student will select a topic and partner with a local agency to craft a grant that addresses a need for that particular agency. The student will receive one-on-one support from a faculty mentor and produce both a written and oral presentation at the end of the course.

Elective Courses (choose one)

CSR 590 - Human Sexuality and Sexual Health (3 credit hours)

This course is designed to provide students with an introduction of the major theories and principles guiding human sexuality as well as recent developments in sexuality health research; develop their understanding of methodological and assessment issues in the study of sexuality; and familiarize them with the extent to which sexuality research and principles inform public health efforts promoting sexual health.

COM 65500, Health Advocacy

This course considers how federal, state, and local policy influence health status and health improvement. Through this course, students gain an understanding of the role of health communication campaigns in health advocacy efforts. To engage their understanding, students will apply an advocacy campaign model to address a relevant health issue.

HHS XXX* - Global Health Security and Disaster Management

This course is a contemporary examination of the growing threat and potential public health consequences of disasters and role of climate change. Additionally, we review the variety of public health and environmental health disasters, their consequences and the role of public health agencies health care systems and practitioners in preparedness, response and recovery from a local, national and global perspective. The course is designed to develop proficiency in analyzing and evaluating the public health response to disasters, the linkage to emergency management frameworks and identifying solutions and methods for improvement.

*Official course number will be assigned upon approval from the Graduate School.

Learn more about the online public health classes in this program: Complete the form or call us at 877-497-5851 to speak to an admissions adviser.