PhD in Epidemiology


The doctoral program in Epidemiology is intended to produce future academicians, highly qualified as independent investigators and teachers, and well-trained practitioners of epidemiology. The program includes coursework in epidemiology and biostatistics, and also requires the development and execution of an independent dissertation research project. The PhD program in Epidemiology includes a series of courses in epidemiologic methods and biostatistics, and electives.

Likely Careers

Academia, Research Institutes and organizations, HMOs; Local, State and National government.


Applicants must have completed prior graduate training to the master's (or research doctoral) degree level in a health-related field by the time of enrollment. (A clinical doctorate alone is inadequate.) Direct postdoctoral entry without required degree is not allowed.

The GRE has been permanently eliminated from admissions for all Department of Epidemiology graduate programs; goal statement demonstrating good understanding or Epidemiology and role of training in career; excellent references that speak to qualifications for training/career in epidemiology; Personal History Statement; Resume/CV; Transcripts. The program is competitive.

Application Deadline:  Dec. 1 for Autumn Quarter admissions


Upon satisfactory completion of the PhD in Epidemiology, graduates will be able to:

  • Meet the learning objectives for the MS in Epidemiology, General Track;
  • Formulate study questions that will advance scientific knowledge about a topic of public health importance;
  • Develop a research proposal that presents the study aims, scientific background, public health significance, and the detailed methods for carrying out the epidemiologic study;
  • Develop study procedures for the protection of rights of human subjects;
  • Apply regression, classical methods of analysis of categorical data, logistic regression, survival analysis and other appropriate statistical approaches to analyze epidemiologic data;
  • Make a clear oral presentation on the design and results of an epidemiologic study;
  • Write a clear description of the rationale, methods, results, and interpretation of an epidemiologic investigation that would be acceptable for publication in a scientific journal; 
  • Demonstrate expertise in a substantive area of disease etiology, disease prevention, or clinical epidemiology; and
  • Design and implement data collection, quality control and data management procedures for an epidemiological study.