Students interested in studying epidemiology can find programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. A master's degree in public health is the most common degree and concentration for students interested in becoming practicing epidemiologists.
Top 10 Public Health Schools
In 2015, U.S. News & World Report ranked the following schools as the public health schools. Listed schools offer programs in public health and/or epidemiology.
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Degrees Offered||Tuition (In-state, 2015-2016)|
|Johns Hopkins University||Baltimore, MD||4-year, Private||Bachelor's, Master's, Doctoral, Postgraduate certificate||$48,710 (undergraduate), $48,710 (graduate)|
|Harvard University||Cambridge, MA||4-year, Private||Master's, Doctoral||$41,832|
|University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill||Chapel Hill, NC||4-year, Public||Master's, Doctoral||$9,143|
|University of Michigan - Ann Arbor||Ann Arbor, MI||4-year, Public||Master's, Doctoral, Postgraduate certificate||$20,638|
|Columbia University||New York, NY||4-year, Private||Master's, Doctoral, Postgraduate certificate||$42,280|
|University of Washington||Seattle, WA||4-year, Public||Bachelor's, Master's, Doctoral||$11,839 (undergraduate), $15,207 (graduate)|
|Emory University||Atlanta, GA||4-year, Private||Master's, Doctoral||$38,800|
|University of Minnesota - Twin Cities||Minneapolis, MN||4-year, Public||Master's, Doctoral, Postgraduate certificate||$15,844|
|University of California - Berkeley||Berkeley, CA||4-year, Public||Bachelor's, Master's, Doctoral||$13,431 (undergraduate) $11,220 (graduate)|
|Boston University||Boston, MA||4-year, Private||Master's, Doctoral||$47,422|
Source: National Center for Education Statistics
School Selection Criteria
Students interested in epidemiology programs may want to consider the following when choosing a program:
- Students should look for schools that are accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health.
- When choosing between public health programs, students should seek programs that include extensive coursework in epidemiology.
- Students might select a school with a campus-based chapter of the American Public Health Association, which provides scholarships and networking opportunities and invites guest speakers to campus.
- Prospective students might look into professors' research specialties, as faculty members can provide research opportunities in subjects of interest to students. Common areas of epidemiology include environmental pollution, prenatal health, genetics, and pandemics.
Bachelor's Degrees in Public Health
Undergraduate programs in public health sciences include sequences in epidemiology and biostatistics. Some programs require a practicum or internship in which students work for an approved health organization prior to graduation.
Graduate Certificates in Field Epidemiology
Professionals within the public health sector wishing to work in epidemiology might consider graduate certificate programs in epidemiology and biostatistics, field epidemiology or public health. Programs can be completed part-time or entirely online in as little as one semester.
Master's Degrees in Epidemiology
Master's degree programs in epidemiology help medical professionals develop advanced levels of clinical investigation skills through coursework and research. Research topics may include cancer, obesity and HIV/AIDS. Programs may also require an internship, capstone project or thesis. Doctors may earn an M.P.H. in Epidemiology to specialize in clinical research or practice.
Doctoral Degrees in Epidemiology
An individual who is interested in becoming a clinical researcher or university professor may consider earning a doctorate in epidemiology. Completion of a program is contingent on passing a competency exam and writing a dissertation of original research. Coursework covers advanced topics in epidemiology and public health.
Aspiring epidemiologists can find relevant preparation programs at multiple degree levels. They can choose between schools based on their academic interests within the field and their future career goals.