Understanding public health principles is increasingly important for physicians today. The Public Health Medicine MD/MPH dual degree program gives medical students an opportunity to earn a public health degree and increase their knowledge of population-based science. Rather than focus on one particular area of public health, this degree program is a generalist program meant to complement a medical education.

Students enrolled Fall 2018 or later

The School of Public Health has revised its curriculum across programs and divisions to meet the new guidelines issued by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH). Students who enroll in Fall 2018 or later will meet the following revised curriculum:

The basic curriculum courses are offered online and on-campus:

  • PubH 6414 Biostatistical Literacy (3 cr)    Develop ability to read/interpret statistical results in primary literature. Minimal calculation. No formal training in any statistical programming software.
    Biostatistical Literacy will cover the fundamental concepts of study design, descriptive statistics, hypothesis testing, confidence intervals, odds ratios, relative risks, adjusted models in multiple linear, logistic and Poisson regression, and survival analysis. The focus will be when to use a given method and how to interpret the results, not the actual computation or computer programming to obtain results from raw data.
    and a 1 cr statistical programming course**)
  •  OR
  • PubH 6450 Biostatistics I (4 cr)  Descriptive statistics. Gaussian probability models, point/interval estimation for means/proportions. Hypothesis testing, including t, chi-square, and nonparametric tests. Simple regression/correlation. ANOVA. Health science applications using output from statistical packages.
  • PubH 6320 Fundamentals of Epidemiology (3 cr)  This course provides an understanding of basic methods and tools used by epidemiologists to study the health of populations.
  • OR
  • PubH 6341 Epidemiologic Methods I (3cr)  Introduction to epidemiologic concepts and methods: (1) Study design (randomized trials and observational studies); (2) Measures of exposure-disease association; (3) Casual inference and bias; (4) Confounding and effect modification.
  • PubH 6250 Foundations of Public Health (2 cr)  In this course we will examine values, contexts, principles, and frameworks of public health. We will provide an introduction to public health, consider the history of public health, social/political determinants, impact of health disparities on race, class and gender, moral and legal foundations, public health structures, historical trauma and cultural competence, health and human rights, advocacy and health equity, communication and financing, and the future of public health in the 21st century.  Grounded in theory and concepts, we will incorporate core competencies and skills for public health professionals and will focus on developing problem solving and decision-making skills through critical analysis, reflection, case studies, readings, and paper assignments.
  • PubH 6020 Fundamentals of Social and Behavioral Science (2 cr)  Four major approaches to public health problems: psychosocial, economic, community, policy. Theory, implementation. Small groups practice skills.
  • PubH 6102 Issues in Environmental & Occupational Health (2 cr) Current issues, principles, and methods of environmental/occupational health practice.
  • PubH 6741 Ethics in Pub Hlth: Professional Practice & Policy (1 cr)  Introduction to ethical issues in public health practice/policy. Ethical analysis, recognizing/analyzing moral issues
  • PubH 6751 Principles of Management in Health Services (2 cr)  Understanding of and improvement in the competencies of managers in organizations, particularly as applied to health services and public health organizations.

** If you take PubH 6414, you will also need to take a programming course. The options are:

• PubH 6107 Excel and Access in PH Settings (1 cr)
• PubH 6325 Data Processing PC-SAS (1 cr)
• PubH 6420 Intro to SAS Programming (1 cr)
• PubH 6470 SAS Procedures and Data Analysis (3 cr)
• PubH 6617 Practical Methods for Secondary Data Analysis (3 cr)
• PubH 6755 Planning and Budgeting in Public Health (2 cr)
• PubH 6813 Managing Electronic Health Information (2 cr)
• PubH 7200 Fundamentals Exploring and Visualizing Data in R (1 cr)
• PubH 7461 Exploring and Visualizing Data in R (2 cr)


  • PubH 6724  The Health Care System and Public Health (3 cr)  Overview of health care delivery, finance systems within public health context. Components of health care system: financing, role of employers/public programs, health care delivery system, managed care. Collaborative interventions between managed care, public health.

As a student in the Public Health Medicine (PHM) you can choose your graduate elective courses based on your career goals and areas of interests in public health.

There are many electives courses available on maternal and child health; health care systems; leadership and management and global health.


The Applied Practice Experience is a hands-on opportunity to implement your public health knowledge and skills in a real-world setting with the goal of demonstrating attainment of at least 5 public health competencies by producing two products.

PHM students have completed their applied practice experience at the:

  • Minnesota Department of Health
  • Powderhorn Phillips Cultural Wellness Center
  • United Family Medicine
  • Hennepin County Human Services and Public Health Department
  • No Time For Poverty

1 cr = 40 hours of an applied practice experience.


The integrated learning experience is a highly quality written paper that demonstrated your proficiency with the written word and is appropriate for your educational and professional objectives. The paper must address at least 3 public health competencies.

The integrated learning paper will be completed in PubH 6210 Seminar: Public Health Medicine (1 cr).

2018-2019 MD/MPH Curriculum Information (PDF)

2018–2019 Dual and Executive Programs in Public Health Practice Student Guidebook (PDF)

2018–2019 SPH-wide Guidebook (PDF)

Students enrolled prior to Fall 2018

Students who enrolled prior to Fall 2018 should follow the requirements that were in place at the time. Please refer to curriculum information in the student guidebook according to the year of your enrollment.

SPH Student Guidebooks Archive

Contact if you have any questions.

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