MPH Foundational Competencies

The Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) released its final version of new accreditation criteria for schools and programs of public health on October 30, 2016.

Students must demonstrate at least five of the following competencies through two student-generated products, produced in the Practicum setting for the Practicum setting.

*Note: You can select no more than one competency from the Evidenced-Based Approaches to Public Health section

Evidence-based Approaches to Public Health* 

1. Apply epidemiological methods to the breadth of settings and situations in public health practice 
2. Select quantitative and qualitative data collection methods appropriate for a given public health context 
3. Analyze quantitative and qualitative data using biostatistics, informatics, computer-based programming and software, as appropriate 
4. Interpret results of data analysis for public health research, policy or practice 

Public Health & Health Care Systems 

5. Compare the organization, structure and function of health care, public health and regulatory systems across national and international settings 
6. Discuss the means by which structural bias, social inequities and racism undermine health and create challenges to achieving health equity at organizational, community and societal levels

Planning & Management to Promote Health  

7. Assess population needs, assets and capacities that affect communities’ health 
8. Apply awareness of cultural values and practices to the design or implementation of public health policies or programs  
9. Design a population-based policy, program, project or intervention 
10. Explain basic principles and tools of budget and resource management 
11. Select methods to evaluate public health programs

Policy in Public Health

12. Discuss multiple dimensions of the policy-making process, including the roles of ethics and evidence 
13. Propose strategies to identify stakeholders and build coalitions and partnerships for influencing public health outcomes
14. Advocate for political, social or economic policies and programs that will improve health in diverse populations 
15. Evaluate policies for their impact on public health and health equity


16. Apply principles of leadership, governance and management, which include creating a vision, empowering others, fostering collaboration and guiding decision making 
17. Apply negotiation and mediation skills to address organizational or community challenges


18. Select communication strategies for different audiences and sectors 
19. Communicate audience-appropriate public health content, both in writing and through oral presentation 
20. Describe the importance of cultural competence in communicating public health content

Interprofessional Practice 

21. Perform effectively on interprofessional** teams 
**Interprofessional refers to engagement with professionals outside of public health (eg, architects, nurses), rather than to engagement with individuals from other public health disciplines (eg, biostatisticians, health promotion specialists)

Systems Thinking 

22. Apply systems thinking tools to a public health issue