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Differences Between the MPH and MS Degrees

Degree Focus

MPH: Students learn the full spectrum of public health but also specialize in a specific area. They enhance their research skills, but also gain experience through hands-on work in the public health field.

MS: Students focus on enhancing research skills and knowledge to work on research related to the chosen field. Much of the knowledge gained is theoretical and specific to the student’s research interests.

Total Course Units for Degree

MPH: 20


  • 15 for Biostatistics
  • 10 for Chronic Disease Epidemiology
  • 14 for Health Informatics
  • 10 for Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases
Length of Degree

MPH: 2 years


  • 2 years for Biostatistics and Health Informatics
  • 1 year for Chronic Disease Epidemiology and Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases
Annual Tuition (2020-21)

MPH: $47,840

MS: $44,500


MPH: (All programs allow full or part-time enrollment)

  • Biostatistics
  • Chronic Disease Epidemiology
  • Environmental Health Sciences
  • Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases
  • Health Policy
  • Health Care Management
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences
Students in any of these departments may add a secondary focus through the:
  • Climate Change and Health Concentration
  • Global Health Concentration
  • Public Health Modeling Concentration
  • Regulatory Affairs Track
  • US Health and Justice Concentration

MS: (With the exception of Health Informatics, the programs allow full or part-time enrollment)

  • Biostatistics (students choose Biostatistics Standard Pathway or Implementation and Prevention Science Methods Pathway)
  • Chronic Disease Epidemiology
  • Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases (students choose Quantitative or Clinical specialization)
  • Health Informatics