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European and Russian Studies & Public Health (MA/MPH)

There is a growing appreciation that promoting health on a global scale will require close collaboration between international affairs and world area specialists and public health professionals. In order to achieve significant progress in global health, new forms of international cooperation must be developed. Increased global mobility and trade have also increased the potential transfer of health related risks such as infectious and food borne diseases. Health related issues such as the marketing and trade of harmful goods or the pricing of pharmaceuticals--set new challenges for international agreements, sovereignty and global accountability. Increasingly, health is seen as an issue of foreign relations, international law, trade negotiations and security. Many health problems can no longer be contained through action of individual nation states and call for a redefinition of national interest. Prime examples are found in the extreme health inequalities between developed and developing nations and the destabilizing spread of HIV/AIDS.

Consequently, the European and Russian Studies (E&RS) graduate program within the European Studies Council and the Yale MacMillan Center and the Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences jointly with the Yale School of Public Health (YSPH) offer a joint degree program for students who plan careers where international public health issues promise to be significant. The joint degree combines the E&RS two-year Master of Arts degree (MA) with the YSPH two-year Master of Public Health degree (MPH). The joint degree program normally requires three years of full­ time study, and the MA and the MPH are awarded simultaneously at the conclusion of the three­ year period.

A joint degree is more than simply a list of courses taken in both programs. It is an integrated educational program which is designed to achieve a combination of the two programs in a way that is complementary to both while protecting the integrity of each.


The standard pattern of joint degree candidates is to spend the first year primarily in one program and the second year primarily in the other. In the third year students register for one semester in each program, although they may integrate courses from both programs each semester as long as they fulfill the requirements of both programs by the end of their third year. For the YSPH/E&RS joint degree, the strong preference is for students to spend the first year in the E&RS program.

The two programs have made accommodations in order to make possible the completion of the joint courses of study in three years within the normal course requirements on a three-semester per program basis. Barring unusual circumstances, joint degree students must fulfill the requirements of both programs before receiving either degree. All courses must be allocated to one degree or the other and not be double counted in both.

Course planning for joint degree candidates should be carried out in consultation with the appropriate educational officers at the E&RS Program and the Yale School of Public Health, and must satisfy the following general requirements.

The Public Health Component

Joint degree candidates must complete all of the core MPH courses as described in the School of Public Health Bulletin. All MPH students must complete the following core courses:

  • EPH 100a – Professional Skills Series (no credit)
  • EPH 505a - Biostatistics in Public Health (not required for BIS)
  • EPH 507a - Social Justice and Health Equity
  • EPH 508a - Foundations of Epidemiology and Public Health
  • EPH 510a - Health Policy and Health Care Systems
  • EPH 513b - Major Health Threats: Determinants and Solutions

Students must also complete all departmental requirements, an internship/ public health practice experience and the thesis/ capstone course. Students in any of the YSPH academic departments are eligible for the joint degree program.

The following exceptions to the standard YSPH curriculum apply to joint degree students:

The total number of YSPH course units required for the joint degree is reduced from 20 to 15. The MPH thesis counts as two course units. (If a student obtains an exemption for a required course, an elective must be substituted; an exemption does not reduce the total number of required course units below 15.) The YSPH Committee on Academic Progress reviews each student’s progress toward the YSPH component of the joint degree.

Tuition and Financial Assistance

Joint degree candidates will owe three terms of full-time tuition to YSPH and three terms of full-time tuition to the E&RS Program (MacMillan Center/Graduate School). Tuition is paid to the school where the student is in residence. Students requesting financial aid during a particular semester must make arrangements with the school charging tuition that semester. Tuition, fee, and financial aid policies may differ between the two schools. Financial aid applications will be judged by each school according to its own policy. Students should consult the financial aid officers in each school for a description of their respective policies.