Edward S. Peters, DMD, SM, ScD
Associate Professor and Program Director
The School of Public Health offers an educational program in Epidemiology leading to the PhD degree. The doctoral program is research-intensive, where students work closely with faculty members in developing skills necessary to be future leaders in epidemiologic research and teaching. The School of Public Health offers a rigorous doctoral training program in epidemiology that comprises both formal classroom instruction and guided research with faculty mentors trained at top schools of public health nationally and internationally. The size of our school encourages students to develop in-depth working relationships with their mentors.
Students complete at least 60 credits beyond the master’s degree (83 without). It is expected that at least half of these courses are from the epidemiology and biostatistics course offerings at the School of Public Health. The core curriculum includes a required suite of coursework in epidemiologic methods and theory. Additional coursework is available focusing on specific content areas as well as topics in biostatistics such as categorical analysis, survival analysis, and the design and analysis of clinical trials. PhD students will gain teaching experience through a formal teaching practicum. Students will also have the opportunity to take elective courses in the other core disciplines in the School of Public Health and School of Graduate Studies. Such classes might include genetics or molecular biology. Each student will be required to write and defend a dissertation that is publishable in the epidemiologic literature.
Admission is competitive. Applicants should have earned a master of public health degree or its equivalent with a strong background in epidemiology and statistics. Students entering with a master’s degree in epidemiology or a related field may transfer up to 18 hours of credit at the discretion of the program director and in accordance with the School of Graduate Studies policy. For transfer credit to count towards the 60 credit hours required for the PhD by a student who holds a master’s degree, it must be in excess of the master’s degree requirements and it must be course work normally taken by doctoral students. No transfer credit is permitted for coursework receiving a grade below B and transfer of the credit does not reduce the residency requirement.
Students should have a solid quantitative background, and while college algebra and calculus are not required for the epidemiology degree, they are highly recommended. A background in health or biological sciences is also desirable. Tuition waivers and a limited number of stipends are available for qualified full-time doctoral students.