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International and Development Economics & Public Health (MA/MPH)

In recognition of the increasing relationship between international development and public health issues, the Yale School of Public Health (YSPH) and the International and Development Economics Program (IDE) in the Department of Economics offer a joint degree program in public health and international development. This program is especially oriented to individuals who plan careers in international health and economic development.

The joint degree program normally requires two and one half years of study. Successful candidates are awarded the Master of Public Health (MPH) degree and the Master of Arts (MA) degree at the conclusion of the two and one half year period. A joint degree student will pay tuition to YSPH for three semesters and to the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences for two semesters.

A joint degree is more than simply a list of courses taken at both Schools. 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 separate program. The Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) in International and Development Economics and the Dean of Student Affairs at YSPH will consult regularly to review the progress of students in the joint program.


The normal pattern for joint degree candidates is to spend the entire first year almost exclusively in one program and the entire second year almost exclusively in the other. In the fifth semester, students will be formally enrolled and paying tuition to YSPH, but will take a combination of international development and public health courses during that term. The two schools have made accommodations in order to make possible the completion of the joint courses of study in five semesters without burdening students with extraordinary course loads in any term.

Course planning for joint degree candidates should be carried out in consultation with the appropriate educational officers at YSPH and the Graduate School, 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
  • 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.

The IDE Component

Joint degree candidates must complete all of the normal requirements for the IDE program as stated in the program guide. They are only required to complete eight courses.
The IDE required courses are:

  • Econ 545 - Economic Analysis - Micro
  • Econ 546 - Growth and Macroeconomics
  • Econ 558 – Econometrics
  • Econ 559 – Development Econometrics
  • Econ 732 – Advanced Economic Development

Graduate School academic regulations and degree requirements apply to the courses completed to meet IDE requirements. This includes the quality requirement: a minimum of an average grade of High Pass in addition to at least one term grade of Honors.

Tuition and Financial Aid

Joint degree candidates will owe three terms of full-time tuition to YSPH and two terms of full-time tuition to the Graduate School. Students requesting financial aid during a particular semester must make arrangements with the school charging tuition during that semester. Tuition, fees, and financial aid policies may differ between the two schools. The Graduate School does not provide financial assistance to students in the IDE program. Students should consult the financial aid officers in each school for a description of their respective policies.