Graduate Students

The OSU College of Public Health offers four graduate degree programs, giving students a wide range of options based on their interests and career objectives. They are:

In addition, students with special interests may want to pursue more than one degree. Programs exist for combining your public health degree with a professional degree in fields such as medicine or law, or for seeking an additional graduate degree in another field, such as business or public administration.


The college offers several specializations plus the opportunity to pursue an interdisciplinary specialization in global health. These specializations are offered to students in the Master of Public Health, Master of Science, and Doctor of Philosophy degree programs.

Biomedical Informatics
Biomedical informatics is the interdisciplinary field that studies and pursues the effective uses of biomedical data, information, and knowledge for scientific inquiry, problem solving and decision making, motivated by efforts to improve human health.

Biostatistics is one of the primary fields in the science and practice of public health, relating statistical information to concrete health issues as they affect human populations. Biostatisticians often collaborate with public health and clinical professionals to research and analyze problems in a wide range of health sciences, providing the evidence needed to make critical clinical and policy decisions.

Clinical Translational Science
This specialization is intended for clinicians who would like additional training in the methods most applicable for research in applied clinical settings. It draws on the tools of biostatistics and epidemiology along with such important considerations as law and ethics. A combination of classes, seminars, and mentored individual study will help you develop your ability to function as an independent investigator.

Environmental Health Sciences
Environmental Health Sciences is focused on chemical, physical, and biological agents in the environment that affect human health. Its multidisciplinary scope spans the continuum from the agent source to contamination and human exposure that result in toxicity, infection, or other adverse human health impact. The profession examines both individual and population-level susceptibility factors and interventions that can prevent disease.

Epidemiology focuses on patterns of disease, disability, and injury and applies that information to the control of health problems. Epidemiologists quantify the exposure-disease relationship in humans and offer the possibility of altering that risk through intervention. Epidemiologic research provides the basis for significant public health decisions, such as those involving tobacco use or HIV/AIDS, well before individual disease mechanisms are understood.

Health Behavior and Health Promotion
The goal of Health Behavior and Health Promotion is to enable people to increase control over and improve their health. The field of health promotion seeks to develop the capacity of communities, organizations, and individuals to establish conditions in which people can be healthy. Practitioners work with organizations in the development of programs, policies, and environments which enable health.

Interdisciplinary Specialization in Global Health
In addition to majoring in one or more of the specializations listed and summarized above, students may add an interdisciplinary specialization in Global Health to their plan of study. This is a collaborative program involving the Health Sciences colleges and focuses beyond domestic to include international issues that affect health.

Veterinary Public Health
There is a great societal need for public health professionals who can address the problems of infectious diseases transmissible from animals to humans, food safety and food security, emergency response and preparedness, as well as animal health and biomedical research. The Colleges of Public Health and Veterinary Medicine collaborate to offer this specialization, certified by the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine.

Program for Experienced Professionals
Students in the MPH Program for Experienced Professionals (PEP) do not specialize, other than through their use of electives and their choices for the practicum and culminating experience. The specific PEP course requirements recognize the needs and interests of more experienced students, with emphasis on general preparation for positions of leadership in public health.

Combined BSPH/MPH Degree Program
The College of Public Health offers a combined BSPH/MPH program for undergraduate students with outstanding academic records to encourage the best students to pursue advanced degrees. This allows well-qualified undergraduates to start graduate study before completing their BSPH degree.

Dual Degree Programs and Combined Degree Programs
The increasing complexity of public health and health services delivery has led many students to consider combining their graduate degree in public health with study in another complementary area.  This works particularly well at Ohio State, where many of our graduate programs and professional programs enjoy strong national reputations. The College of Public Health partners with numerous departments and colleges at Ohio State to offer opportunities for students to pursue a dual degree or a combined degree.