Online Masters in Public Health Programs

Below are descriptions of the top online masters in public health programs offered. Use the links next to each college to request free information from that university about the degrees it offers that interest you. If you're considering enrolling in a masters in public health program, we recommend that you request information from at least 4 different colleges as there are significant differences between tuition, degree requirements, etc. which can best be explained by the colleges themselves.

Walden University – The online Master of Public Health Program at Walden is a practice oriented degree that includes courses in biostatistics, epidemiology, environmental health, healthcare policy, health administration, and behavioral sciences.

Kaplan University – The online Master in Public Health degrees at Kaplan University prepare students for healthcare careers in government, non profits, and private organizations. Kaplan offers numerous concentrations within their online Masters in Public Health programs such as; health program development, epidemiology, health education and health promotion.

Grand Canyon University – For student with a busy schedule or they want to quickly achieve career goals, GCU offers an online MS of Public Health program that accomplishes just that. Assignments can be complete is an environment of your choosing.

Benedictine University – The online Master in Public Health programs at Benedictine University prepare students to help combat poverty, inequities, disease and epidemics. In addition to its general MPH degree.

Boston University – With an MS in Health Communication from Boston University, students can enter high level positions and begin to apply their education to their careers. Our career oriented assignments engages students with knowledge and skills they will need.

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The Field of Public Health

Public health is a growing field, both academically and socially. It encompasses a broad range of career possibilities that includes teaching, global health management, child and maternal health, and infectious disease control, just to name a few. Public health professionals have specialized knowledge and skills to combat the many challenges that our communities and planet must face.

As a public health professional, you already know this. You likely have a bachelor's degree in public health or a related degree in nursing or sociology. But now it's time to enhance your credentials with a graduate degree. A Master's in Public Health is the logical next step in your career path. If you want to move ahead, qualify for higher-paying jobs, and are considering earning a doctoral degree, a graduate-level education is often a necessary prerequisite. Are you currently employed as a:

  • Dietician?Outreach worker?
  • Research Assistant?
  • Public Health Nurse?
  • Social Worker?

These careers typically require a bachelor’s degree in public health. With a master’s degree, you’ll also qualify to work as a:

  • Epidemiologist
  • Health Policy Practitioner
  • Occupational Health Specialist
  • Health Care Administrator
  • Public Health Consultant

A master’s degree in public health will prepare graduates for leadership roles and research careers in academia, government and international organizations, the health care industry, and many other for-profit and non-profit institutions. Your options expand with additional education. The short-term investment of time, money, and effort is definitely worth it. Keep reading and we’ll explain how graduate study can improve your career progression and most importantly, your earning potential. Our hope is that you find our site informative and helpful in leading you on your way to becoming a highly respected, public health professional.

Expand Your Education

There are several different types of graduate-level public health degrees available. Depending on your career goals, you can pursue one of the degrees listed below. Public health programs tend to emphasize either practice-oriented training, or administrative skill-building. If you want to work directly with patients and community leaders, an MPH or MSPH may be the best path for you to follow. If you’re leaning more towards an administrative role such as a health care administrator or program director, researching the MHA or MHSA programs may prove helpful in preparing you to assume those types of positions.

Still not sure? These program descriptions will give you an idea of what to expect once admitted:

Practice-Based Programs

  • MPH - Master of Public Health: An MPH is designed for students seeking specialization in one area of public health such an environmental health, clinical research, or health policy. Topics covered include:
    • Environmental health sciences
    • Healthcare systems and financing
    • Social and behavioral aspect of health
    • Law and ethical issues in public health
  • MSPH - Master of Science in Public Health: An MSPH degree programs offer an alternative to the MPH degree for students desiring more specialized training. Topics covered include:
    • Fundamentals of epidemiology
    • Rural public health systems
    • Industrial hygiene
    • Ergonomics

Administrative Programs

  • MHA - Master of Health Administration: An MHA is geared towards students interested in senior management positions in health services. Topics covered include:
    • Financial management
    • Human resource management
    • Research and program evaluation
    • Managing and analyzing health care information
  • MHSA - Master of Health Services Administration: An MHSA focuses on the financing, organization, marketing, and management of health care institutions. Topics covered include:
    • Healthcare management information systems
    • Health care leadership and management
    • Public health research methods
    • Strategic planning and marketing

How to Choose a Public Health School

It’s important that you find a school that aligns with your academic, social, and financial parameters. Not all schools offer what you need so the research process is critical to finding that perfect match. There are many important factors to consider such as whether a school offers financial aid, credit transfer assistance, and the area of specialty you wish to pursue. Public health is a diverse field but some of the employers do require that job applicants have had specific coursework and field experiences to be considered for a position. That said, make sure your school of interest offers the necessary training and resources to meet those requirements and advance your career. Other important considerations include:

  • Does the school offer distance learning courses?
  • What percentage of students have accepted positions within six months of graduation?
  • Are there accelerated programs for students already practicing in the field?
  • Does the school offer career counseling for its graduates?

Time to Maximize Your Success

A Master’s in Public Health increases your marketability. For one, you’ll qualify for a wider range of job titles. What’s more, you can apply those skills more effectively to create safer and healthier lives, and isn’t that why you initially chose this path? Lastly, and perhaps most enticingly, you’ll earn more money! The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a mean annual wage of $94,500 in 2015 for medical and health services managers. Industries with even higher wages in this occupation include:

  • Offices of Physicians: $91,820
  • General Medical and Surgical Hospitals: $99,570
  • Medical and Diagnostic Laboratories: $102,000
  • Medical Equipment and Supplies Manufacturing: $134,460
  • Scientific Research and Development Services: $138,420

Your success in this field is dependent upon your drive and hard work, but also your credentials. Look at it this way. With a master’s degree, you’ll learn how to design and evaluate programs, improve the management of disease outbreaks, and maintain awareness of advances in medicine and medical research. These duties require extensive training but the pay-off is worth it. Faster than average job growth coupled with near six-figure salaries means that obtaining your master’s degree in public health is a big step towards a long-term, financially rewarding career.

Additional Public Health Resources

There are many useful sites that offer a variety of information for public health students and professionals. By staying on top of developments in your field, you'll be better equipped to address issues on the job and in the communities you work. The sites listed below link you to relevant data, research, and articles.

Why Wait?

Going back to school for an advanced degree is a big commitment of your time, money, and energy. But the many rewards include financial, professional, and personal gain. The sense of achievement along with increased pay will make it all worthwhile.

Online degree program make it possible for working parents, recent college graduates, career changers, and many other prospective students to move ahead without jeopardizing work and other responsibilities. Many schools now offer online graduate programs in public health. Now that you're armed with facts about your chosen degree, it's time to find a school that fits your needs.

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