Applications Now Open!
Fall 2023: Oct. 1, 2022 - March 1, 2023

Acquire an advanced knowledge of the basic science of public health by earning your MPH in Epidemiology online from San Diego State University. You’ll learn how to study and identify the causes of disease and injury in population groups, lead life-saving research projects, and work towards building healthier communities across the globe.


About the program

San Diego State University’s Master of Public Health (MPH) in Epidemiology program is a fully-online research-oriented graduate program that’s designed to help you advance your career as a public health professional. You’ll learn how to conduct sophisticated research on disease and injury in diverse human populations, while also acquiring the skills you need to manage teams in a variety of public and private professional settings.

Estimated CostTotal Estimated Cost
$604 Total Cost/Unit
Completion Time Min. Completion Time
20 Months

This two-year online graduate program will help you identify health-related inequities in vulnerable communities and propose strategies to build coalitions and partnerships that will positively impact public health outcomes. You’ll acquire these skills through intensive virtual courses led by expert faculty from SDSU’s School of Public Health, many of whom are world-renowned experts in the field of public health. You’ll also get invaluable hands-on experience in the practice of public health through a field placement with a public health organization in your own community.

SDSU’s online MPH programs are all fully accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH).

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Is This Program Right for Me?

SDSU’s online MPH in Epidemiology is designed for career-driven public health professionals with at least three years of work experience who are unable to attend an in-person graduate program on a college campus.

The program will help prepare you to be public health practitioners, as well as for careers in teaching and research. Graduates are equipped with the advanced skills needed to become leaders in a variety of public health-related professional fields and settings, including:

  • State and Local Government
  • Federal Government Agencies, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
  • Nonprofit Organizations
  • Education
  • Scientific Research and Development
  • Hospitals, Clinics, and Healthcare Organizations
  • Data Analysis
  • Pharmaceutical Companies

This program is designed with today’s busy professionals in mind. The coursework is entirely online, which means that you can earn your degree while also navigating a busy work schedule, family obligations, and other responsibilities.

What Can I Learn?

SDSU’s online MPH in Epidemiology will provide you with advanced training that will help you identify the various biological, environmental, social, and behavioral risk factors for human disease. You’ll acquire the skills you need to study the causes, control, and prevention of disease in human populations, while also learning how to optimize health resource distribution networks, lead clinical trials, and conduct sophisticated epidemiologic research.

Learning Outcomes

Graduates of SDSU’s online MPH in Epidemiology program will learn how to:

  1. Identify the major categories of bias, and propose methods to evaluate and/or reduce their influence on the measures of major interest.
  2. Select appropriate study designs for population based epidemiologic research.
  3. Conduct original research: formulate a research question; prepare and carry out a proposal; present findings both orally and in written form.
  4. Understand principles of screening for disease and risk factors (including sensitivity, specificity, predictive values).
  5. Critically review scientific literature.

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The curriculum is broken up into 51 units. You’ll take two 3-unit courses every eight weeks. To finish the program, you’ll choose between completing a capstone project or constructing a manuscript as your culminating experience.

Essential to your success in the program is the supervised field practicum component. You’ll get invaluable hands-on experience working with a public health organization located in your own community. These field experiences take place in a variety of professional environments, which include, hospitals, managed care organizations, health care organizations, government agencies, community organizations, research institutions, advocacy and policy programs, and private institutions.

The field practicum is non-residential; you will not need to travel to SDSU to complete the requirement.

Field Practicum Objectives

  • Apply classroom knowledge to real world work experience by aligning internship work/duties with the SPH learning objectives and public health competencies.
  • Obtain hands-on experience in the design, development and/or implementation of a project(s) that aims to address a public health issue and results in tangible products.
  • Gain public health professional and interprofessional (IPE) development experience by working and collaborating with diverse populations and groups including community members, leaders and government officials across sectors and throughout the world.
  • Develop cultural competence and global leadership skills to meet evolving public health needs.

Time Commitments for Online Courses at Global Campus

Career Outcomes

Employment Numbers (2019)

Medical Scientist


Clinical Research Coordinator / Manager








Projected Growth (2019-2028)

Medical Scientist


Clinical Research Coordinator / Manager








Salary Range

Medical Scientist


Clinical Research Coordinator / Manager









Labor Analysis
Master’s in Epidemiology Graduate — Nationwide

Job Postings
Job Postings
Last 12 months

Projected Growth
Projected Growth
Over 10 years

Salary Range
Salary Range

Source: BLS & Burning Glass Technologies, 2020

Epidemiology is a fast-growing field that’s highly lucrative for those who have the experience and qualifications necessary for high-level leadership roles. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, most individuals who graduate from a master’s-level epidemiology program find employment in either health and medical research or data analysis and mathematics. In 2019, there were more than 34,000 job postings across the nation seeking individuals with an advanced knowledge of epidemiology. Those numbers are projected to grow by more than 9% over the next decade. In California, employment is projected to grow by nearly 30% over the next 10 years.

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Why Should You Choose Us?


Earning your MPH in Epidemiology from SDSU’s online program means that you don’t have to put your life on hold. The coursework is fully online and can be completed in just two years, making it ideal for career-driven public health professionals who want to gain practical experience and advanced knowledge of epidemiology without putting their current career on hold.

Expert Faculty

Your courses are taught by the same faculty and lecturers who teach on-campus courses with the School of Public Health. This faculty is made up of expert public health practitioners, many of whom come from a variety of professional settings such as the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency, Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), HMOs, hospitals, industry, managed care agencies, military services, and other academic institutions.

Practical Experience

You’ll get a chance to apply the skills you’ve learned in your online lessons through a supervised field experience with a public health organization in your own community. You’ll learn how to address real-world public health issues, gather data for research, and acquire the leadership skills you’ll need to treat diverse populations with cultural sensitivity.


In order to earn your MPH in Epidemiology from SDSU, you'll need to complete 51 units of courses, which include:

  • Core Courses — 15 Units
  • Epidemiology Concentration Courses — 21 Units
  • Prescribed Electives — up to 6 Units
  • Electives — 6 Units
  • Capstone Experience — 3 Units

Core Courses (15 Units)

PH 601: Epidemiology (3 Units)
PH 602: Biostatistics (3 Units)
PH 603: Behavioral and Social Science in Public Health (3 Units)
PH 604: Environmental Determinants of Human Health (3 Units)
PH 605: Health Services Administration (3 Units)

Epidemiology Concentration Courses (21 Units)

PH 620: SAS for Biostatistics I (3 Units)
PH 621: Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases (3 Units)
PH 622: Epidemiology of Chronic Diseases (3 Units)
PH 623: Epidemiological Methods (3 Units)
PH 627: Advanced Statistical Methods in Public Health (3 Units)
PH 629: SAS for Biostatistics II (3 Units)
PH 650R: Field Practice: Required Community Practice (3 Units) Cr/NC

Prescribed Electives (Up to 6 Units)

These courses will be offered in the online MPH in Epidemiology program; additional electives may be added at a later date.

PH 625: Control of Infectious Diseases (3 Units)
PH 649: Border and Global Public Health Surveillance (3 Units)


Electives (Up to 6 Units)

Up to 6 units selected (with approval of your graduate adviser) from any SDSU Global Campus online graduate level public health course.

PH 700F Seminar: Health Disparities
PH 728: Applied Data Analysis
PH 797: Research

Capstone Experience (3 Units)

PH 798: Special Study (3 Units) Cr/NC
Option 1 — Capstone Project
Option 2 — Manuscript


Only students admitted to this program may register for courses.

Click here for information about our drop policy.


Out-of-State Applicants
While we welcome out-of-state students, SDSU Global Campus currently cannot accept applications from students residing in some specific states. Please check back often, as this list of approved states does change. View the list of authorized states here.

Admission Requirements

Below is a list of general admission requirements for the Master of Public Health in Epidemiology program.

We understand that every student's academic journey is unique, and we encourage you to contact one of our Student Service Representatives to find out what you'll need to successfully apply to the program.

  • You should hold a bachelor’s or advanced degree from an accredited university. A specific major is not required for admission; in fact, our students come from a wide variety of backgrounds.
  • You should have satisfactorily completed an introductory statistics course prior to admission.
  • You should have an undergraduate GPA of at least 2.85 (overall, or in the last 60 semester or 90 quarter units) for admission to SDSU. International students should have a GPA of at least 3.0. The average GPA for students enrolling in the SPH is 3.3.
  • Be currently employed full-time, preferably in a public health-related position/organization (e.g. research organizations, public health departments, corporate wellness, health education). You should also have the ability to demonstrate a minimum of 3 years of full-time work experience, preferably in a public health-related position/organization.
  • You should be able to demonstrate English proficiency if you’re an international applicant.

Application Instructions

To apply for the online Master of Public Health program, you’ll need to complete the following steps:

  1. Complete a SOPHAS Application, which includes:
    • Personal Statement (approximately 1500 word limit) should address all of the following items:
      • Describe those experiences that have shaped your interest in public health. Comment on your current orientation or preferences in the public health field.
      • Describe the one academic experience that has meant the most to you in your educational career.
      • Outline your professional goals, both immediate and long term.
      • Discuss why you are interested in attending the School of Public Health at San Diego State University, the strengths you bring with you, and those areas in which you would like to increase your expertise and personal growth.
    • Proof of English Proficiency
      • If your medium of instruction was in a language other than English, you’ll need to demonstrate English proficiency by submitting one of the following test scores (taken within the past two years):
        • TOEFL — scores should be submitted to Code 5688 SOPHAS, Massachusetts. The minimum acceptable scores for the TOEFL are 80 iBT, 550 PBT
        • IELTS — scores should be uploaded in the “Applicant Uploaded Documents” section of the SOPHAS application. The minimum acceptable scores for the IELTS is 6.5
        • PTE — scores should be uploaded in the “Applicant Uploaded Documents” section of the SOPHAS application. The minimum acceptable scores for the PTE is 58
        • Duolingo English Test — scores should be uploaded in the “Applicant Uploaded Documents” section of the SOPHAS application. The minimum acceptable scores for the Duolingo test is 105
    • Official Transcripts
      • One copy of official transcripts (sent directly by the institutions) from all colleges and universities you have attended should be sent to SOPHAS. SOPHAS only accepts electronic transcripts from Credentials Solutions, Parchment, and National Student Clearinghouse. If your school does not offer any of these services, your transcript should be sent by mail, to the following address:

        SOPHAS Transcript Processing Center
        PO Box 9111
        Watertown, MA 02471
      • If you’ve completed international coursework, you should submit a Course-by-Course evaluation report from the World Education Services (WES) instead of submitting your official transcripts. SOPHAS will not accept official transcripts for international coursework; only the evaluation report will be accepted.
    • Letters of Recommendation
      • Three letters of recommendation are required. Two should be academic references, from professors who have taught you in class. The third letter can be another academic reference or a professional reference (employer, volunteer work, etc.). Letters of recommendation should be submitted to SOPHAS directly. Please see the SOPHAS application instructions for details.
    • Résumé/CV
  2. Complete an SDSU Application
    • Apply to the University through Cal State Apply
    • Submit Official Documents, which include:
      • Official transcripts sent in sealed envelopes (issued by the school) from all postsecondary schools attended. Do not send transcripts before submitting the Cal State Apply application as this may result in processing delays.
      • If you have international coursework, you should have your school send one record of all academic coursework and proof of degree, both in the original-language. For each original-language document you should also send a certified literal English translation, which can come directly from the school itself or from a professional, certified translator. The translation should contain all information shown on the original-language documents and in the same format.
      • Official documents should be mailed to:

        Graduate Admissions
        San Diego State University
        5500 Campanile Drive
        San Diego, CA 92182-8225
      • Electronic transcripts are acceptable. Please ensure that you indicate this preference when making your request. If you are required to provide an email address to send the secure online document to SDSU, please use
    • Submit Official Test Scores, which include:
      • English Proficiency
        • All graduate and post-baccalaureate applicants (regardless of citizenship status) applying to SDSU from an international institution where the medium of instruction was not English, should submit passing TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE as proof of English proficiency.

After submitting the online Cal State Apply application, you will receive an email from San Diego State University that includes your SDSUid, which is needed to log into my.SDSU. You can use my.SDSU to check your application status, update your contact information, access your financial aid, and more. Please check back frequently to make sure all of the required materials have been received — you’re responsible for ensuring that all supporting materials are submitted by the deadline.

For a more detailed description of the application process and admission requirements, please visit the Admission Requirements and Instructions page on the SDSU School of Public Health website.

Financial Aid

This program is approved for financial aid. To begin the financial aid process, visit SDSU’s Financial Aid webpage. There, you'll be able to access the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

If you have any questions regarding the financial aid process, please call the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships on weekdays from 10 am–3 pm at (619) 594-6323.

We encourage you to apply for financial aid as soon as possible.

Program Cost

  Unit Cost Program Unit Range* Cost
Tuition $543 51 $27,693
Associated Students $19 51 $969
Technology $21 51 $1,071
Student Engagement $21 51 $1,071
Total Estimated Costs $604   $30,804

* Everyone is unique. Your admissions advisor will work with you to determine the right path that suits your needs.


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Contact Information


2023 Spring2023 Summer2022 Fall2023 Winter
P H 0602.01 Biostatistics
Statistical reasoning applied to public health; probability, hypothesis testing, regression and correlation, analysis of variance, measurement theory and modeling.

Format: Online

Course Date(s)