Kyle W., Class of 2018

Master of
Public Health (MPH)

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Home » Programs » Master of Public Health (MPH)

Lead the Way to Improving the Health of Your Community

National University’s Master of Public Health (MPH) program prepares you for leadership positions in health promotion and disease prevention, community mental health, or public health care administration.

This program is offered online and can be completed in as few as 18 months. You will choose from three specializations depending on your area of focus, which include: Health Promotion, Community Mental Health, and Healthcare Administration. In the online MPH degree program, you will learn essential, effective ways to share your knowledge of preventive medicine and establish public health initiatives that make a measurable impact on community and global health. You will learn from diverse and doctoral-trained faculty and have access to internship and networking opportunities designed to prepare you for career success.

The National University Master of Public Health program is accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health. In June 2021, the CEPH Council found the NU MPH program compliant in all 35 of 35 criteria and granted a seven-year term of accreditation until July 1, 2028.

The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) accredits public and private schools, colleges, and universities in the U.S.

Course Details

Course Listing

Core Requirements

  • 8 courses; 33 quarter units

Course Name

Includes orientation to the Master of Public Health Program including history, philosophy, values, core functions and the critical importance of evidence in advancing public health knowledge. Introduction to the available options for attaining public health foundational competencies and competencies in their chosen MPH specialization. Can be taken concurrently with HCA 600: US Healthcare System. Grading is S/U only.

US healthcare system overview, including terminology, components of healthcare delivery systems, financing, personnel, regulation, delivery and consumers. Consideration of the effects of public policy on services.

PrerequisiteHCA 600

Analysis of global public health with emphasis on defining and evaluating preventive efforts to affect the quantitative, biological, economic, social, political, and behavioral determinants of health. Investigation of burden of disease, social justice and equitable health care. Emphasis on reproductive health, population dynamics, complex humanitarian emergencies, globalization and global cooperation.

An introduction to the use of statistical analysis in public health. Provides an understanding of the basic methods and underlying concepts of statistics that are used in public health decision-making. Among topics explored are descriptive statistics, probability, sampling, hypothesis testing and non-parametric statistics.

The theoretical basis of individual health behavior. Application of cognitive, psychosocial and environmental theories of health behavior and theories of self-directed and professionally facilitated health behavior change. Emphasis on Behavior Modification, Health Belief Model, Theory of Planned Behavior, Social Cognitive Theory, Stress and Coping, Social Support, and Transtheoretical Model.

PrerequisiteCOH 602, or ANA 630

The study of determinants and distribution of disease and disability in human populations. Empirical analysis of population data related to morbidity and mortality. Investigation of disease outbreaks, risk factors, health outcomes and causal relationships. Critical evaluation of public health literature and study design.

Fundamentals of research methods and statistical analysis of public health data. Includes principles of research investigation, research design, sampling, measurements, and the use of descriptive and inferential statistics for data analysis and hypothesis testing. Focuses on health survey design, sampling methodologies, questionnaire construction and administration, interviewing, and coding procedures.

Explores the roles health advocates assume and how individuals working in public health settings might participate in advocacy strategies to affect policy. Focuses on frameworks for conceptualizing and promoting the right to health as well as strategies to give consumers more power in making decisions, defining issues, designing programs, and developing policies.

Requirements for the Specialization in Community Mental Health

  • 7 courses; 31.5 quarter units

Course Name

US mental healthcare system overview, including terminology, components of healthcare delivery systems, financing, personnel, regulation, delivery and consumers. Focus on the availability, accessibility and acceptability of services to treat mental disorders in the US. Consideration of the effects of public policy on services for the treatment of mental disorders.

Special focus on individuals with severe and persistent mental conditions. Special consideration will be given to how the contemporary mental health system relates to and is experienced by disadvantaged individuals.

PrerequisiteCOH 602

Substance use disorders examined from the public health perspective. Prevention and treatment of substance use disorders to reduce deaths, disability and human suffering in communities.

Analysis of the evidence-based programs designed to prevent mental illness. Investigation of applications of evidence-based public health in planning and evaluating programs to prevent mental disorders. Analysis of existent programs, databases and professional literature. Design of mental health services and evaluation of the effectiveness of proposed mental health programs.

PrerequisiteCOH 606

Analysis of the epidemiological study of mental illness. Investigation of contemporary applications of epidemiology in investigating disease distribution and etiology. Emphasis on the use of epidemiological studies to plan mental health services, design prevention programs and to evaluate the effectiveness of mental health programs.

PrerequisiteCOH 604

Intimate partner violence, child neglect and abuse, assault, homicide, war and terrorism are explored from a public health perspective. Focus on risk factor reduction and prevention of deaths, disability and human suffering.

PrerequisiteCOH 604

Exploration of biological, psychological, behavioral and social aspects of health sexuality throughout the lifespan. Community level interventions to promote healthy sexuality.

Health Experience

  • 1 course; 3 quarter units

Course Name (Choose one of the following two courses)

Demonstrate attainment of public health foundational competencies and specialization competencies through applied practice experience in a global setting. Faculty-led short-term study abroad program. Exploration of the healthcare system and public health issues facing global communities. Tour location and experience the healthcare, economic, political, legal, and cultural environment of a host country. Development of thorough knowledge of global public health through combination of pre-departure study, service learning, on-site lectures and presentations by host country experts and healthcare leaders, post-tour analysis and reflection.

Recommended: Prior completion ofall core and specialization courses prior to enrolling in COH 693C

Demonstrate attainment of public health foundational competencies and mental health specialization through applied practice experience. Students may either work in a mental health agency planning, implementing and/or evaluating a health promotion program or provide a portfolio that demonstrates alignment of volunteer work with the competencies. Grading is H/S/U only.

Capstone Requirement

  • 1 course; 4.5 quarter units

Course Name

Recommended: Prior completion ofall core and specialization courses prior to enrolling in COH 694A

Two-month capstone project of original research related to the contemporary practice of public health promotion. Planning and completion of either a data-based analysis, an evaluation of a health promotion program or primary research related to public health promotion. Student project may require Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval. Student produces a high-quality written product. Grading is S/H/U only.

Requirements for the Specialization in Healthcare Administration

  • 7 courses; 31.5 quarter units

Course Name

PrerequisiteCOH 602

Healthcare organization theories and structure, including analyses of managerial functions, relationships, and operations for service delivery. Development of effective service delivery systems. Appreciation of external influences including community, financial institutions, socioeconomic environment, and regulatory agencies. Examination of professional roles, responsibilities, and accountability. Understanding of organizational mission, goals, objectives and priorities.

PrerequisiteANA 630

Effective data and information technology utilization to improve performance in healthcare organizations: including information systems, databases and analytical tools to structure, analyze and present information; legal and ethical issues affecting management of healthcare information.

PrerequisiteHCA 600 and HCA 620

Theoretical and practical frameworks to facilitate the continuous improvement of quality in healthcare organizations. Includes data collection, data planning and evaluation. Introduces multiple approaches, including strategy and outcome measurement. Team development, analytical statistics, and process knowledge are central themes, along with culture transformation.

Study of healthcare organization, training, motivation and direction of employees while maintaining high level productivity and morale. Includes selection, compensation, financial incentives, work standards, and leadership principles in healthcare organization.

PrerequisiteHCA 628

Application of healthcare accounting and finance theories to decisions in healthcare environments. Emphasis on management problems and policy issues regarding allocation of resources, payments systems, capital investments and budgeting.

PrerequisiteCOH 611

Strategic planning for healthcare organizations based on the analyses of secondary quantitative and qualitative data about technological, social, political, regulatory, and competitive aspects of the healthcare market. Marketing principles and tools for the development of a healthcare organization marketing plan.

PrerequisiteHCA 624

Concepts of leadership related to current healthcare organizations. Communications – including public relations – team building, negotiation, and conflict resolution considered. Strategic aspects such as vision, viewpoint, and mission included. Managing uncertainty emphasized.

**Please note: ANA prerequisite is NOT required for students in the Specialization in Healthcare Administration

Health Experience

  • 1 Course; 3 quarter units

Course Name (Choose one of the following two courses)

Demonstrate attainment of public health foundational competencies and specialization competencies through applied practice experience in a global setting. Faculty-led short-term study abroad program. Exploration of the healthcare system and public health issues facing global communities. Tour location and experience the healthcare, economic, political, legal, and cultural environment of a host country. Development of thorough knowledge of global public health through combination of pre-departure study, service learning, on-site lectures and presentations by host country experts and healthcare leaders, post-tour analysis and reflection.

Recommended: Prior completion ofall core and specialization courses prior to enrolling in COH 693B

Demonstrate attainment of public health foundational competencies and healthcare administration specialization through applied practice experience. Students may either work in a healthcare agency applying leadership and management skills or provide a portfolio that demonstrates alignment of volunteer work with the competencies. Grading is H/S/U only.

Capstone Requirement

  • 1 course; 4.5 quarter units

Course Name

Recommended: Prior completion ofall core and specialization courses prior to enrolling in COH 694B

Two-month capstone project related to the contemporary practice of public health administration. Completion of a training manual, policy statement, business plan, or a program or protocol evaluation report. Student project may require Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval. Student produces a high-quality written product. Grading is S/H/U only.

Requirements for the Specialization in Health Promotion

  • 7 courses; 31.5 quarter units

Course Name

Biological foundations of public health issues including infectious and chronic diseases. Reproduction and development of disease pathogens and transmission, immune responses and constitution of the host. Anatomical, physiological and cellular foundations for understanding chronic diseases. Focuses on methods for the control and prevention of disease.

Analysis of the health impact of home, workplace, community and global environments. Examines scientific understanding of causes and control of the major environmental health problems. Includes environmental pollutants; physical, chemical, and biological agents of environmental contamination; vectors for dissemination; solid hazardous waste; susceptible populations; biomarkers; and emerging global environmental problems.

PrerequisiteCOH 604

Exploration of health status and issues in various communities. Application of the national agenda for health promotion and disease prevention in the United States. Emphasis on health disparities by socioeconomic status, ethnicity, gender, age, ability and literacy. Examination of diffusion of health innovations throughout communities.

Recommended PreparationCOH 604

Development of community-wide interventions to promote health and prevent disease. Systematic design by application of the principles of epidemiology, health behavior and Evidence-Based Public Health. Includes Community-Based Participatory Research and investigation of ethical issues in conducting community-based public health programs.

Fundamentals of evaluation methods applied to public health interventions. Effective use of measurement tools to evaluate achievement of program goals and objectives. Includes analysis of validity and reliability of measurement instruments. Emphasis on reach, effectiveness, acceptance, implementation and maintenance of community programs. Includes fundamentals of proposal development.

PrerequisiteCOH 605 and COH 609

Investigation and evaluation of strategies implemented to promote health in communities. Emphasis on community organization, coalition building, curriculum development, communication theory and technology, social marketing, mass media and ecological models. Critical analysis of interventions that implement each strategy through systematic analysis of public health literature.

PrerequisiteCOH 606

Application of information systems and technology to public health practice and research. Information technologies that support and improve the status of individual and community health. Development, deployment and maintenance of these systems. Effective use of data, information and knowledge tools to build manage, merge, retrieve and analyze public health data.

Health Experience

  • 1 course; 3 quarter units

Course Name (Choose one of the following two courses)

Demonstrate attainment of public health foundational competencies and specialization competencies through applied practice experience in a global setting. Faculty-led short-term study abroad program. Exploration of the healthcare system and public health issues facing global communities. Tour location and experience the healthcare, economic, political, legal, and cultural environment of a host country. Development of thorough knowledge of global public health through combination of pre-departure study, service learning, on-site lectures and presentations by host country experts and healthcare leaders, post-tour analysis and reflection.

Recommended: Prior completion ofall core and specialization courses prior to enrolling in COH 693B

Demonstrate attainment of public health foundational competencies and healthcare administration specialization through applied practice experience. Students may either work in a healthcare agency applying leadership and management skills or provide a portfolio that demonstrates alignment of volunteer work with the competencies. Grading is H/S/U only.

Capstone Requirement

  • 1 course; 4.5 quarter units

Course Name

Recommended: Prior completion ofall core and specialization courses prior to enrolling in COH 694A

Two-month capstone project of original research related to the contemporary practice of public health promotion. Planning and completion of either a data-based analysis, an evaluation of a health promotion program or primary research related to public health promotion. Student project may require Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval. Student produces a high-quality written product. Grading is S/H/U only.

Degree and Course Requirements

To receive an MPH degree, students must complete at least 72 quarter units of graduate work, including the core MPH requirements and one area of specialization. A total of 13.5 quarter units of graduate credit may be granted for equivalent graduate work completed at another institution, as it applies to this degree and provided the units were not used in earning another advanced degree.

Refer to the section on graduate admission requirements for specific information regarding application and evaluation.

Pursue your master’s in public health degree at National University, and gain access to:

  • Four-Week Courses That Start Monthly. Focus on one subject at a time and truly master the material before moving on to the next. Keep the momentum going throughout the program, start any month you choose, and finish faster.
  • Three Career-Focused Specializations. Tailor your education to the area that best meets your career goals and helps you stand out in the health care job market. Specializations include Health Promotion, Health Administration, or Community Mental Health.
  • Prepare for CHES and MCHES Certifications. At the end of your program, you should be ready to sit for the CHES and MCHES exams, which provide certification as a health education specialist.
  • Data Analysis and Critical-Thinking Focus. Learn how to analyze and interpret health data, as well as evaluate the environmental factors that affect the health of a community. These are important skills in leadership positions.
  • Extensive Program Support. You will be assigned a faculty advisor at the onset of the program and begin with an orientation course that sets you up for success. You will also have access to the Public Health Student Organization and Public Health Opportunities, where you can apply for leadership positions, receive career advice, and network with students and alumni.
  • Diverse and Doctoral-Trained Faculty. Learn from diverse and doctoral-trained faculty. In addition to a dedicated faculty advisor, you will have easy access to all faculty members and the program director.
  • Strong MPH Alumni Network. Make connections with alumni who lead public health organizations, community organizations, local government organizations, health care administration, running clinics, and more.
  • Online or On-site Options. Choose whether you would prefer to attend classes completely online or on-site.

MPH – Specialization in Health Promotion

The specialization in Health Promotion is structured toward preparing MPH students for leadership positions in health promotion, health education, and health enhancement. The program emphasizes the planning, implementation, and evaluation of community-wide prevention programs. The pursuit of social justice and global health are overarching concepts throughout the MPH program.

Upon successful completion of this program, students should be able to:

  • Assess factors that influence, enhance, or impede health promotion
  • Explain factors that influence implementation of health promotion programs
  • Evaluate the implementation of health promotion programs
  • Integrate the results of health promotion evaluation into interventions and policies
  • Apply principles of financial management, information technology, human resource management, and community building to build or enhance health promotion programs
  • Provide advice and consultation on health promotion issues
  • Apply appropriate research principles and techniques to develop health promotion programs

MPH – Specialization in Health Administration

The Specialization in Healthcare Administration prepares MPH students for leadership positions in public and private health care. Health care management involves the organization, financing, and delivery of services to prevent and treat illness and disease.

Upon successful completion of this program, students should be able to:

  • Conduct financial analysis, explain financial and accounting information, and make long-term investment decisions for a health care organization
  • Apply health care management methods to health care organizations
  • Use administrative and health information technology to develop process and performance-improvement plans
  • Incorporate the principles of quality management for improving outcomes in health care organizations
  • Synthesize best practices in health care leadership

MPH – Specialization in Community Mental Health

The Specialization in Community Mental Health prepares students for leadership positions in planning, implementing, and evaluating community-wide prevention programs to enhance mental health.

Upon successful completion of this program, students should be able to:

  • Assess the social, political, and environmental context of mental health in relation to public health practice
  • Create evidence-based programs to prevent or reduce mental health disorders in community settings
  • Design an evaluation plan to assess the effectiveness of a community mental health program
  • Identify factors that promote or influence the occurrence, persistence, or severity of mental and behavioral disorders
  • Apply appropriate research principles and techniques to mental health
  • Construct an advocacy plan to improve culturally sensitive mental health policies in communities

The Master of Public Health program can be completed online or on-site through video lectures, audio recordings, readings, or interactive presentations. You will also complete assignments, quizzes, and exams online. You may also choose to attend classes on-site, depending on the format that works best for your schedule.

Through threaded discussion boards, you can reach out to professors and classmates whenever you have a question, thoughts, or opinions you would like to discuss. Faculty are also available for one-on-one virtual meetings to go over the coursework, answer any questions you may have, or to offer general mentorship or guidance. All grades are posted online as well through the course gradebook, so you can keep track of your progress and find out your grades on assignments and quizzes as soon as they are posted.

At the end of the program, a faculty advisor will help plan out an internship program and comprehensive capstone experience in which you work on a project with a company for three months, applying your learnings from the program. Both your internship and capstone are excellent resume builders that can give you the competitive edge to advance in your career.

A Master of Public Health degree opens doors in a variety of industries, including health care, social assistance, educational services, professional, scientific, and technical services, public administration, finance and insurance, manufacturing, other services (except public administration) and retail trade. Employers in this field are looking for skills in communications, management, research, leadership, planning, coordinating, operations, writing and Microsoft Office proficiency.

Graduates with a master’s degree in public health may pursue the following careers*:

  • Biostatistician
  • Health Researcher
  • Epidemiologists
  • Nurse Epidemiologists
  • Infection Preventionists
  • Behavioral Health Medical Directors
  • Program Managers
  • Health Educators
  • Public Health Specialists
  • Public Health Epidemiologists
  • Directors of Health Economics and Outcomes Research
  • Healthcare Data Analysts
  • Registered Nurse Supervisors
  • Research Associates
  • Research Scientists
  • Public Health Program Managers
  • Healthcare Specialist
  • Infectious Disease Physician
  • Clinical Research Coordinator
  • Nutritionist
  • Health Services Administrator
  • Clinical Trial Administrator
  • Medical Writer

Our students share a common desire to advance community and global health and are motivated by helping people and their community. In fact, many of our NU alumni have gone on to lead public health organizations, community organizations, local government organizations, health care administration, and clinics.

*SOURCE: Emsi Labor Analyst- Report. Emsi research company homepage at https://www.economicmodeling.com/company/ (Report viewed: May, 2022). DISCLAIMER: The data provided is for informational purposes only. Emsi data and analysis utilizes government sources to provide insights on industries, demographics, employers, in-demand skills, and more to align academic programs with labor market opportunities. Cited projections may not reflect local or short-term economic or job conditions and do not guarantee actual job growth. Current and prospective students should use this data with other available economic data to inform their educational decisions.

Program Learning Outcomes

As a graduate of National University’s Master of Public Health program, you will learn the following skill sets:

  • Analyze and interpret health data
  • Describe the distribution and determinants of disease, disabilities, and death in human populations
  • Evaluate the environmental factors that affect the health of a community
  • Analyze the planning, organization, administration, and policies of healthcare organizations
  • Apply the concepts and methods of social justice and social and behavioral sciences relevant to the identification and solution of public health problems

Hear From Our Faculty

Watch our video to see Dr. Tyler Smith explain how the MPH program prepares NU students to make a difference in hospitals and other healthcare organizations.

“A student that comes to our program wants to make a difference in health and healthcare.”

– Tyler C Smith, MS, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Community Health, College of Professional Studies

Admissions

Enrolling in a university is a big decision. That’s why our dedicated admissions team is here to guide you through the admissions process and help you find the right program for you and your career goals.

To that end, we’ve simplified and streamlined our application process, so you can get enrolled in your program right away. Because we accept and review applications year round, you can begin class as soon as next month, depending on your program and location of choice.

Learn more about undergraduate, graduate, military, and international student admissions, plus admissions information for transfer students. You can also learn more about our tuition rates and financial aid opportunities.

To speak with our admissions team, call (855) 355-6288 or request information and an advisor will contact you shortly. If you’re ready to apply, simply start your application today

4 WEEK COURSES
Our course structure is built to make earning your degree accessible and achievable, one month at a time, so you can start sooner and finish faster.

Why Choose National University

  • Four-Week Courses
  • 75+ Degree Programs
  • Online or On-Site
  • Year-Round Enrollment
  • Military Friendly

We’re proud to be a veteran-founded, San Diego-based nonprofit. Since 1971, our mission has been to provide accessible, achievable higher education to adult learners. Today, we educate students from across the U.S. and around the globe, with over 185,000 alumni worldwide.

“The National University MPH program has given me the opportunity to grow professionally and academically by providing a flexible learning experience.”

– Marisol Delgado, MPH 2022

“The MPH program at National University provided me exactly what I was looking for – an opportunity to acquire the knowledge and skills I needed as I developed a lens to look through as I navigated my career. The lens of public health and the good of others remains a focal point in every business or social problem. Whether it’s my full-time job, part-time work, or volunteerism – National University has helped me build the kind of person I need to be to tackle the issues around us.”

– Ryan Zieno, MPH 2020

FLEXIBLE SCHEDULE
We know your life may not happen on a 9-5 schedule, so we offer courses online or on-site at locations across California.

Frequently Asked Questions

This accelerated program at National University allows students to take one class per month, whereas typically full-time students may take approximately two and a half years to complete the 43-credit-hour, 17-course MPH degree program.

You must complete a college-level introductory statistics course, such as BST322 or MTH210, and earn a baccalaureate degree with a 2.85 cumulative GPA from a regionally accredited institution.

Yes. An MPH can open the door to job opportunities and have excellent earning potential. Most importantly, making a difference in the field and in the entire community is worthwhile endeavor and rewarding experience.

Online courses are ideal if you want to pursue an advanced degree without sacrificing your current job. National University is a leader in online education and you will be receiving a rigorous education through innovative online learning tools.

Yes, it’s a diverse field that offers a broad range of career opportunities in public or private hospitals, government, NGOs, and other healthcare units. NU’s MPH program is designed to help you stan out with prospective employers throughout the healthcare industry.

You have the potential to make an impact in the lives of many by promoting health, preventing disease, and empowering individuals to take their illness or disability into their own hands. Most leadership positions require a master’s degree for consideration.

Introducing the
Opportunity Scholarship

In honor of our students, and in celebration of our 50th anniversary, National University is investing $30 million in new student scholarships. To learn more about the Opportunity Scholarship, how you can apply, and how much you can save, inquire today.

Program Disclosure

Successful completion and attainment of National University degrees do not lead to automatic or immediate licensure, employment, or certification in any state/country. The University cannot guarantee that any professional organization or business will accept a graduate’s application to sit for any certification, licensure, or related exam for the purpose of professional certification.

Program availability varies by state. Many disciplines, professions, and jobs require disclosure of an individual’s criminal history, and a variety of states require background checks to apply to, or be eligible for, certain certificates, registrations, and licenses. Existence of a criminal history may also subject an individual to denial of an initial application for a certificate, registration, or license and/or result in the revocation or suspension of an existing certificate, registration, or license. Requirements can vary by state, occupation, and/or licensing authority.

NU graduates will be subject to additional requirements in a program, certification/licensure, employment, and state-by-state basis that can include one or more of the following items: internships, practicum experience, additional coursework, exams, tests, drug testing, earning an additional degree, and/or other training/education requirements.

All prospective students are advised to review employment, certification, and/or licensure requirements in their state, and to contact the certification/licensing body of the state and/or country where they intend to obtain certification/licensure to verify that these courses/programs qualify in that state/country, prior to enrolling. Prospective students are also advised to regularly review the state’s/country’s policies and procedures relating to certification/licensure, as those policies are subject to change.

*Positions may require additional experience, training, and other factors beyond successfully completing this degree program. Depending on where you reside, many positions may also require state licensure, and it is the responsibility of the student to ensure that all licensure requirements are met. We encourage you to also review program-specific requirements. Any data provided on this page is for informational purposes only and does not guarantee that completion of any degree program will achieve the underlying occupation or commensurate salary.

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