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Public Health

Academic Year: 2009 – 2010

The goal of the Public Health Department is to prepare graduates as competent public health practitioners. Public health is an essential function of modern society. It is, in the words of the Institute of Medicine, “What we as a society do collectively to assure the conditions in which people can be healthy.” Assuring the public’s health at the community level often means affecting policies and actions at the national, or even international, level. Public health professionals must deal with myriad issues: access to quality health care; prevention and control of disease; environmental protection; the health needs of special populations; data analysis and evaluation; policy planning and administration; and health promotion.

The department offers two options for graduate-level study in public health: a generalist MPH degree with a strong interdisciplinary foundation for practice in public health, and an MPH with a concentration in Environmental Health within which a student may generalize or may choose to emphasize preparation in risk assessment and emergency preparedness. The curriculum enables students to understand 1) the various factors that affect the health of a community, 2) the methods to identify and measure community health, and 3) the components that comprise public health services delivery systems (cost, planning, and administration). While the department’s required core courses provide the generalist background needed by all students, the concentration core in environmental health and elective courses allow students to concentrate on a particular aspect of public health. The MPH with a concentration in Environmental Health is an accredited curriculum through the National Environmental Health Science and Protection Accreditation Council (EHAC). The MPH with a concentration in Environmental Health may be completed on campus or may be taken entirely online.

THE MASTER’S DEGREE

Entrance Requirements
Applicants must submit an admission application and transcripts from previous college-level academic work to the UIS Office of Admissions. As a second part of the admissions process, applicants must submit to the department the following: 1) an essay outlining professional goals and identifying past academic work and/or employment related to these goals; 2) three completed recommendation forms from employers, professional peers, or educators; and 3) Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores in the general examination. Other aptitude tests — Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), Dental Aptitude Test (DAT), Law School Admission Test (LSAT), or the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) — can be submitted. Applicants with post-baccalaureate degrees are exempt from submitting GRE scores.

Applicants must have earned an overall GPA of 3.00 (4.00 point scale) for previous academic work, completed a 300-level or higher biostatistics or statistics course within the last three years and received a B or better grade, and completed a minimum of 30 semester hours in the natural sciences at the baccalaureate level or higher. Conditional admission is possible for those with public health or environmental health experience who are missing one or more of the conditions listed. To be fully admitted, conditionally admitted students must have a 3.00 GPA at the end of their first 12 semester hours of study and receive a B or better grade in MPH 503 Biostatistics for the Health Professional. Students who take TOEFL exams must score at least the graduate level established by the UIS Office of Admissions.

Advising
Advising in the Public Health Department provides an individual approach to the academic and professional development of each student. On admission, each student is assigned a temporary advisor to assist with academic planning. Thereafter, students may choose an advisor from department or associated faculty. Students prepare an educational plan before registering for courses in order to map out progress through the degree consistent with career and personal goals.

Grading
Students must maintain a B- or better average during their course of study. A maximum of eight hours of C grades is applicable to the degree, provided they are balanced by an equal number of A grade hours and an approved Student Petition is on file in the Office of Records and Registration. Courses taken on a CR/NC basis will not count toward the degree.

Major Requirements
The MPH degree requires that students complete 48 semester hours of course work, 24 hours of which are required core courses, including a four-hour internship. The student must declare either a generalist course of study or a specialization in environmental health and take 24 hours of concentration core or electives.

Required Core Courses (24 Hrs.)
MPH 506 Community Health Research 4 Hrs.
MPH 511 Foundations of Epidemiology 4 Hrs.
MPH 521 Environmental and Occupational Health 4 Hrs.
MPH 531 Public Health Policy and Administration 4 Hrs.
MPH 561 Community Health Education 4 Hrs.
MPH 581 Internship
or PAD 561 Graduate Public Service Internship Seminar
in Organization Environment in the Public Service 1 Hr.

Generalist MPH (total 48 hours)
Required core above (24 hours)
and at least one course from each of the following categories (20 hours) or may petition to specialize in one of the following certificate options : epidemiology, community health, or environmental health.

Risk Assessment
MPH 449 Environmental Toxicology 4 Hrs.
MPH 526 Risk Management and Communication 4 Hrs.
MPH 527 Environmental Risk Assessment 4 Hrs.
MPH 528 Risk Assessment: Air, Land, and Water 4 Hrs.
MPH 529 Risk Assessment Practicum 4 Hrs.

Advanced Epidemiology
MPH 512 Epidemiology of Infectious & Chronic Diseases 4 Hrs.
MPH 514 Analytical Epidemiology 4 Hrs.

Research Tools
MPH 508 Program Evaluation for Health Professionals 4 Hrs.
MPH 522 Analytical Tools for the Environmental Sciences 4 Hrs.
MPH 575 Economics for Policy Analysis 4 Hrs.
ENS 404 Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems 4 Hrs.
ENS 503 Advanced GIS Applications in Environmental Planning 4 Hrs.

Policy, Administration, and Management
MPH 408 ECCE: Addiction 4 Hrs.
MPH 419 Environmental Law 4 Hrs.
MPH 428 Laboratory Science in Public Health 2 Hrs.
MPH 438 ECCE: Monsters, Medicine, & Myths 4 Hrs.
MPH 450 ECCE: Chemicals and the Citizen 4 Hrs.
MPH 471 ECCE: Emerging Diseases 3 or 4 Hrs.
MPH 484 Policy of Ambient and Indoor Air Quality 4 Hrs.
MPH 486 Solid and Hazardous Waste Policy 4 Hrs.
MPH 535 Public Health in the Political Arena 4 Hrs.
MPH 536 Contemporary Issues in Public Health 2 or 4 Hrs.
ENS 485 Environmental Policies: Water Quality 4 Hrs.

Additional elective (4 hours) taken inside or outside concentration

MPH with concentration in Environmental Health (total 48 hours)
Required core above (24 hours)
and
Required Environmental Health concentration core (8 hours)
MPH 449 Environmental Toxicology 3 or 4 Hrs.
MPH 527 Environmental Risk Assessment 4 Hrs.
and
EH concentration electives

Students may generalize by sampling from several categories listed below (12 hours) or may petition to specialize in one of the following certificate options: Risk Assessment or Emergency Preparedness and Homeland Security

Risk Assessment
MPH 526 Risk Management and Communication 4 Hrs.
MPH 528 Risk Assessment: Air, Land, and Water 4 Hrs.
MPH 529 Risk Assessment Practicum 4 Hrs.

Research Tools
MPH 508 Program Evaluation for Health Professionals 4 Hrs.
MPH 514 Analytical Epidemiology 4 Hrs.
MPH 522 Analytical Tools for Environmental Sciences 4 Hrs.
MPH 575 Economics for Policy Analysis 4 Hrs.
ENS 404 Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems 4 Hrs.
ENS 503 Advanced GIS Applications in Environmental Planning 4 Hrs.

Policy, Administration, and Management
MPH 419 Environmental Law 4 Hrs.
MPH 428 Laboratory Science in Public Health 2 Hrs.
MPH 471 ECCE: Emerging Diseases 3 or 4 Hrs.
MPH 478 ECCE: Crisis in Environmental Health 4 Hrs.
MPH 484 Policy of Ambient and Indoor Air Quality 4 Hrs.
MPH 486 Solid and Hazardous Wastes Policy 4 Hrs.
MPH 536 Contemporary Issues in Public Health 2 or 4 Hrs.
ENS 485 Environmental Policies: Water Quality 4 Hrs.

Additional elective (4 hours) taken inside or outside concentration

Closure Exercise
The closure experience is a comprehensive written examination based on a case study with questions designed to test students’ ability to integrate the knowledge and skills that they have gained from the core curriculum. A student must complete all core courses prior to taking the comprehensive exam, but may take the exam concurrently with electives during the last semester of study. The student must successfully complete the exam within one year after completing course work for the degree. Students who do not complete the examination during their final semester of study must enroll in MPH 583 (zero credit hours, one billable hour) until they pass the exam. Details about the procedure are provided in the MPH Student Handbook.

Internship
All students in the MPH curriculum must take 4 hours of internship (MPH 581) under the guidance of their academic advisor. Details about the internship are provided in the MPH Student Handbook. Students may petition to substitute 4 hours of Graduate Public Service Internship (PAD 561) for MPH 581.

MPH PROFESSIONAL OPTION

The MPH professional option provides an opportunity for physicians and others with earned doctorates and at least one year of health-related experience to earn an MPH degree at UIS. The option requires completion of the 24 hours of core courses including the internship and 12 hours of general electives (36 hours total). Other applicants may be eligible for admission to this option and will be considered by the admissions committee on a case-by-case basis. Included are 1) those currently enrolled in a physician residency-training program, 2) those who are in the process of completing a doctoral-level health-related degree and who have at least one year of health-related experience, and 3) those who have an earned master’s degree in a health field and who have at least three years of health-related experience. Interested applicants should contact the Public Health Department for information about the application process.

JOINT MPA AND MPH OPTION

UIS’ Departments of Public Health and Public Administration have an articulation agreement that allows interested students to obtain a master’s degree with a joint degree (MPA/MPH) in Public Health and Public Administration. The MPA/MPH joint degree may be completed on campus or may be taken entirely online. Contact either department for details.

GRADUATE CERTIFICATES

The Public Health Department offers five graduate certificates for specialized study in public health. These certificates, some of which are available online, may be taken by either degree or non-degree seeking students interested in advanced preparation in:

* Community Health
* Emergency Preparedness and Homeland Security
* Environmental Health
* Epidemiology
* Risk Assessment

Please see the Graduate Certificates section of this Guide for additional information.


DEGREES:

Master of Public Health

FACULTY

Kathy DeBarr, Mark Edgar, Shahram Heshmat, Sharron LaFollette, James Veselenak
Emeritus Faculty: Remi Imeokparia, Michael Quam
Associated Emeritus Faculty: William Martz
Adjunct Faculty: Jennifer Davis. Greg Michaud, Ken Runkel
Online Coordinator: Lenore Killam

CONTACT INFO:

Phone: 217/206-6250
Email: nrach1@uis.edu
Website: www.uis.edu/publichealth/

Leadership lived

University of Illinois Springfield
One University Plaza
Springfield, Illinois 62703-5407
217-206-6600

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