Degrees & Certificates

The Department of Health Promotion and Community Health Sciences offers two degrees, Master of Public Health (MPH) and Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) and a certificate program. To view the course descriptions, visit the TAMU Catalog website.  Additional recommendations for course electives can be found on the Featured Courses website.

In addition to these degrees, the Department of Health Promotion and Community Health Sciences also offers a Certificate in Health Coaching and a Global Health Certificate, offered to all graduate level students at Texas A&M University.

Master of Public Health (MPH)

  • The MPH degree teaches students how to analyze public health problems using social and behavioral sciences and how to develop, plan, and evaluate effective programs and policies to address these problems. A wide range of electives allows students to personalize their education within the 45 credit-hour program (approximately two years). Below is the degree sequence effective in the 2017-2018 academic year.

    First Fall Semester
    SOPH 601 (Core) - Thinking in Populations: The Public Health Mindset
    SOPH 602 (Core) - Investigation and Control: Acute Public Health Events                                                SOPH 603 (Core) - Assessment and Intervention: Wicked Problems in Public Health                              HPCH 603 - Social & Behavioral Determinants of Health                                         

    First Spring Semester
    SOPH 604 (Core) - Framing and Persuasion: Public Health in the Public Sphere                                              HPCH 605 - Research Methods                                                                                                                          HPCH 610 - Needs Assessment                                                                                                                          HPCH 611 - Program Planning  

    First Summer Semester
    Electives (1-2 Total)

    Second Fall Semester
    HPCH 613 - Program Evaluation
    HPCH 637 - Principles of Program Management
    Elective (1-2 with approval)                                                                                                                              

    Second Spring Semester
    SOPH 680 - Integrating Learning Experience (Capstone)
    HPCH 684 - Applied Practice Experience (Practicum)
    Elective (1-2 with approval)     

    Second Summer Semester
    HPCH 684 - Applied Practice Experience (Practicum)  

    • Doctor of Public Health (DrPH)

      The DrPH program has been developed to prepare students to plan, implement, and evaluate interventions designed to improve community and population health status and to conduct high-quality research addressing important public health issues. Building upon a social ecological framework, the program emphasizes capacity building as a health outcome, and recognizes a multi-determinants health perspective in framing interventions and research. The program requires a minimum of 54 credit-hours depending on prior education and offers two dissertation formats.

      Theoretical and Strategic Elements of Social & Behavioral Health (12 credits)
      Public Health History & Issues
      Theoretical Foundations
      Change Strategies & Interventions
      Program Evaluation

      Populations, Settings & Problems (15-18 credits)
      Courses providing advanced knowledge for the development and application of theory and strategies to specific populations, particular settings, or problems of interest.

      Research Methods, Data Management and Strategies (18-21 credits)
      Courses or demonstration of competencies must be approved by the student advisory committee but typically include familiarity with complex multivariate regression techniques, causal or hierarchical modeling, measurement, data management, qualitative methods, and research interpretation and integration.

      Dissertation (9 credits)

      Total 54 semester credit hrs*
      * This requires a minimum of required coursework with additional hours required depending upon the student’s background and particular field of study.

    • Health Coaching Certificate

      Health Coaching 

      The Affordable Care Act and the increasing need to prevent and treat chronic diseases through behavioral changes are creating new employment opportunities for those who have recognizable credentials (certification) in an increasingly recognized specialty (health coaching).

      The Department of Health Promotion and Community Health Sciences at the Texas A&M School of Public Health has been training health professionals in health behavior change techniques for almost twenty years. And now, we have a new program designed especially to train Health Coaches.

      Health coaches are a new and vital part of our evolving health care system. They work independently or with primary care providers and employers to help clients, patients and employees achieve health care goals. The benefits to using a health coach are substantial: they can tailor a health promotion program to a client; they can help primary care providers more efficiently and effectively deliver care; and they can help employers reduce health care costs and maintain a healthier workforce.

      Our program is unique in several ways:

      It is focused on the prevention and management of chronic disease — it is not an athletic training program.
      It contains graduate-level training on the etiology of common chronic diseases, so you can speak with confidence to health care providers and to clients.
      It is based on a rigorous up-to-date review of diet and lifestyle research.
      It requires mastery of current clinical guidelines for the prevention and treatment of common chronic diseases.
      It provides focused training and practice in techniques of motivational interviewing and other valuable behavior change techniques.

      The certificate program is open to all graduate students of Texas A&M and requires four courses (12 credits) — listed below:

      HPCH 603: Social and Behavioral Determinants of Health
      HPCH 607: Biology of Health and Common Diseases
      HPCH 640: Diet and Lifestyle Interventions for Obesity, Diabetes, and CVD
      HPCH 641: Coaching Health Behavior Change

      These courses are available online and accommodate varying schedules. Upon satisfactory completion of the four classes (you must earn an “A” or a “B” in each class), you will be awarded a Certificate in Health Coaching from the Department of Health Promotion and Community Health Sciences.

    • Global Health Certificate

      The Graduate Certificate in Global Health Program is an interdisciplinary certification that is available to all graduate students at Texas A&M University.  Its purpose is to teach public health professionals about global perspectives on public health, encourage students to consider careers in a variety of settings around the world, and to promote research and innovation in addressing the myriad public health problems seen around the world.  With a cross-disciplinary perspective, students are assured of receiving a broad understanding of global health challenges and opportunities.   Completed coursework may be applied to degree-seeking pathways depending on grade received.

      Objectives: At the end of the program, students will be able to:

        1. Describe health systems in a variety of countries around the world.
        2. Explain social & environmental impacts on health from a social ecological perspective.
        3. Explain the impact of various environmental contamination sources on health.
        4. Explain unique public health problems seen among refugee and displaced populations.
        5. Compare & contrast leading causes of morbidity & mortality among countries around the world.
        6. Apply new knowledge in a practice setting.

      Number of Semester Credit Hours Required: 12 classroom hours plus 3 hours of practicum for a total of 15 hours. Volunteer activities such as medical mission trips, etc., will not be counted unless students receive course credit for the experience and specific class objectives address global public health learning.

      Prefix and Number

      Required Courses



      PHPM 638
      PHPM 639
      HLTH 607

      Global Health Systems: Introduction to Global
      Global Health
      International Health



      HPCH 604

      Social Ecology & Health: A Global Perspective



      PHEO 612

      Global Environmental Health



      HPCH 625
      HPCH 607

      Health of Refugees and Displaced Populations

      Biological Basis of Health & Common Diseases



      HPCH 684
      SOPH 670

      Practicum for Non-SPH students