There are at least three institutions in Colorado which have graduate programs and coursework in the field of epidemiology. In this article, students can learn about these programs in greater detail by reading about the types of programs offered by each university, the required course curriculum and elective options, and the time frame for these programs, in addition to general information regarding admission standards.
Overview of Epidemiology Graduate Programs in Colorado
University of Colorado - Denver
The University of Colorado - Denver offers four different graduate programs specifically in epidemiology. The Master of Science (M.S.) degree in epidemiology is designed primarily for individuals who are interested in working in research upon graduation and requires that students in the program complete 38 credit hours. The Master of Public Health (MPH) in Epidemiology degree is designed to prepare students for careers as epidemiologists working in either governmental or private settings. This program focuses more broadly on concepts in public health, as reflected in the required core curriculum, and includes elective courses in epidemiology.
The school also offers a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) program in epidemiology which will prepare graduates of the program for advanced research positions as well as the ability to teach at the university level. To fulfill the requirements of this program, students must complete 38 credits of core courses in biostatistics, epidemiology, and research methods as well as additional coursework before completing a 30-credit doctoral dissertation. Finally, students also have the option of enrolling in the Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) program in epidemiology which is a more practically-focused, rather than research-oriented degree, that will prepare graduates of the program to be change makers in the field of public health. In this program, students can further specialize their study of epidemiology by focusing on a subfield like chronic disease prevention, health data, or injury prevention, to name a few options. This program requires the completion of 55 credit hours which are fulfilled through coursework, seminars, and a fieldwork practicum, as well as a shortened dissertation of only nine credits.
Colorado State University
Another option for students in Colorado is the Master of Public Health degree offered by Colorado State University, a program in which students can select an epidemiology concentration. This program requires that students complete a total of 42 credits, 17 of which are part of the required core curriculum, 12 of which are required epidemiology track courses, and nine of which are student-selected electives. Some elective courses that students in this program could take cover topics like field methods of investigating disease, linear models, cardiovascular epidemiology, and cancer prevention and control. Additionally, students must complete a practicum and a capstone project in order to fulfill the requirements for graduation.
Additionally, Colorado State University also offers an epidemiology track within their M.S. and Ph.D. programs in Environmental Health. In the M.S. program, students must complete 19 credits of epidemiology-related courses and then pursue either a thesis or non-thesis option. Students in the non-thesis track will conduct a group or independent study. The Ph.D. program requires the completion of 72 credits, which students can achieve by taking courses and completing a doctoral dissertation.
University of Northern Colorado
Finally, students in Colorado may be interested in the Master of Public Health program offered by the University of Northern Colorado. While this program does not offer an epidemiology-specific concentration, it is possible for students to take epidemiology-related coursework in this program. Additionally, the program offers three other concentrations - global health and community health education, community health education, and healthy aging - that students can pursue according to their interests. Generally, students can complete this program in a two-year time frame, though it is also possible for students to complete the coursework at a slower pace as long as they finish within five years. In addition to coursework, students must also complete a final project. Individuals who are especially interested in epidemiology may opt to complete their project in this field.
General Admission Standards for Epidemiology Graduate Programs in Colorado
When applying to a graduate program in epidemiology, students will first need to check whether or not they are eligible for the program, as some programs have various prerequisites for admission. Generally, programs will specify that students need to be adequately prepared for graduate-level coursework in epidemiology by having completed a science-related bachelor's degree or by having taken a number of sciences courses while an undergraduate student. Students interested in being admitted into a doctoral level program may also need to already possess an MPH or M.S. degree, however, this requirement varies by university and the type of program. In order to apply to a program, students will need to submit a complete application file. This file must generally include a completed application form, letters of recommendation, past transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended, a personal statement, and results from the GRE examination.
To summarize the information detailed above, there are a few options for students seeking graduate degrees in epidemiology. Because these degrees are varied in style, structure, and purpose, students will likely want to consider their post-graduation professionals goals when deciding on what type of program is right for them.