I. According to the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) requirements, all BSPH degree students must be grounded in foundational public health knowledge. Grounding in foundational public health knowledge is measured by the student’s achievement of the learning objectives listed below or higher-level versions of the same objectives.

  1. Explain public health history, philosophy, and values
  2. Identify the core functions of public health and the 10 Essential Services
  3. Explain the role of quantitative and qualitative methods and sciences in describing and assessing a population’s health
  4. List major causes and trends of morbidity and mortality in the US or other communities relevant to the school or program
  5. Discuss the science of primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention in population health, including health promotion, screening, etc.
  6. Explain the critical importance of evidence in advancing public health knowledge
  7. Explain the effects of environmental factors on a population’s health
  8. Explain biological and genetic factors that affect a population’s health
  9. Explain behavioral and psychological factors that affect a population’s health
  10. Explain the social, political, and economic determinants of health and how they contribute to population health and health inequities
  11. Explain how globalization affects global burdens of disease
  12. Explain an ecological perspective on the connections among human health, animal health, and ecosystem health (e.g., One Health)

II. In addition to the CEPH learning objectives, graduating students in professional master’s degrees must demonstrate their ability to perform foundational competencies. These CEPH competencies are informed by the traditional public health core knowledge areas (biostatistics, epidemiology, social and behavioral sciences, health services administration, and environmental health sciences), cross-cutting, and emerging public health areas.

Evidence-based Approaches to Public Health
  1. Apply epidemiological methods to 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 systemic 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, implementation, or critique of public health policies or programs

9. Design a population-based policy, program, project, or intervention

10. Explain the basic principles and tools of budget and resource management

11. Select methods to evaluate public programs

Policy in Public Health

12. Discuss 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 leadership and/or management principles to address a relevant issue

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. Integrate perspectives from other sectors and/or professions to promote and advance population health

Systems Thinking

22. Apply a systems-thinking tool to visually represent a public health issue in a format other than the standard narrative

III. In addition to the CEPH learning objectives, graduating DrPH students must demonstrate their ability to perform the foundational competencies outlined below.

Data & Analysis
  1. Explain qualitative, quantitative, mixed methods and policy analysis research and evaluation methods to address health issues at multiple (individual, group, organization, community, and population) levels
  2. Design a qualitative, quantitative, mixed methods, policy analysis or evaluation project to address a public health issue
  3. Explain the use and limitations of surveillance systems and national surveys in assessing, monitoring, and evaluating policies and programs that address a population’s health
Leadership, Management & Governance

4. Propose strategies for health improvement and elimination of health inequities by organizing stakeholders, including researchers, practitioners, community leaders, and other partners

5. Communicate public health science to diverse stakeholders, including individuals at all levels of health literacy, for purposes of influencing behavior and policies

6. Integrate knowledge, approaches, methods, values, and potential contributions from multiple professions, sectors, and systems in addressing public health problems

7. Create a strategic plan

8. Facilitate shared decision-making through negotiation and consensus-building methods

9. Create organizational change strategies

10. Propose strategies to promote inclusion and equity within public health programs, policies, and systems

11. Assess one’s own strengths and weaknesses in leadership capacities, including cultural proficiency

12. Propose human, fiscal, and other resources to achieve a strategic goal

13. Cultivate new resources and revenue streams to achieve a strategic goal

Policy & Programs

14. Design a system-level intervention to address a public health issue

15. Integrate knowledge of cultural values and practices in the design of public health policies and programs

16. Integrate scientific information, legal and regulatory approaches, ethical frameworks and varied stakeholder interests in policy development and analysis

17. Propose interprofessional and/or intersectoral team approaches to improving public health

Education & Workforce Development

18. Assess an audience’s knowledge and learning needs

19. Deliver training or educational experiences that promote learning in academic, organizational, or community settings

20. Use best practice modalities in pedagogical practices