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Master of Public Health (MPH) - Public Health Practice


Diverse people living and thriving in healthy communities.


To promote equity, health, and well-being through excellence in the education of public health practice leaders, scientific investigation of public health issues, and community engagement in an organized effort to identify, assess, prevent, and mitigate community health challenges.



Social Justice



Cultural Humility

Jennifer Meyer in front of a water fountain

CEPH Accredited Master'sPublic Health & MPH Degree

Public health seeks to understand and address the relationships between determinants of health and health outcomes. Our graduate program prepares public health practitioners to assess the needs of populations; plan, implement and evaluate programs to address those needs; and otherwise assure conditions that protect and promote the health of populations. The Master of Public Health (MPH) in Public Health Practice Program, within the Division of Population Health Sciences (DPHS), is designed to meet the challenges of the diverse and complex field of public health, with a particular focus on the needs of Alaska and the Circumpolar North. Students with backgrounds in the natural sciences, social sciences, business, health professions, human services, education, and law have successfully entered the field of public health at the graduate level.

Students may pursue their careers with minimal disruption while working on the MPH degree, because all required courses are offered via distance format. 

The MPH degree requires core courses in health education, environmental and occupational health, health management and policy, biostatistics, and epidemiology. It also includes coursework in research methods, program evaluation, circumpolar health issues, and management of public health emergencies and disasters, as well as the opportunity to create an individualized emphasis as the foundation for the required Applied Practice Experience (APE) and Integrated Learning Experience (ILE).



UAA students studying outdoorsTypes of Students Who Will Benefit from an MPH Degree

There is no one preferred background in order to become a student in the MPH program because the field is so interdisciplinary. Students with a background in the natural sciences, social sciences, business, health care, education, or law will feel at home in this MPH program. Typically, MPH programs have two types of students: students who have recently obtained their baccalaureate degree, and mid-career students who have already built careers as health care providers, health educators, lawyers, administrators, and public health professionals in both the public and private sectors.

Mid-career students can continue their professional pursuits with minimal disruption while working toward the MPH degree because all of the courses are taught via distance education and/or meet on condensed class schedules. The focus on current public health practices in core areas of public health provides mid-career professionals with advanced tools to improve the health of the community in concrete ways. Moreover, an MPH degree is often essential to career advancement, a position in management, or a desired career change for mid-career professionals.

For entry-level students, the MPH is an excellent degree with which to launch a new career in public health or expand an emerging career. The field of public health offers extraordinary career possibilities in both the public and private sectors in occupational safety and health, environmental protection, food safety, health education, health planning and analysis, a variety of management positions, and much more. Finally, the MPH degree is a desirable gateway degree for additional education at the doctoral level.


Course Schedule


  • HS A605: Public Health & Society
  • HS A610: Environmental & Occupational Health
  • HS A625: Biostatistics for Health Professionals
  • HS A629: Public Health Research Tools & Methods
  • HS A630: Public Health Emergencies & Disasters


  • HS A615: Health Services Administration
  • HS A624: Circumpolar Health Issues
  • HS A626: Principles of Epidemiology
  • HS A628: Program Evaluation


What is the MSW/MPH Dual Degree Program?

The MSW/MPH dual degree program provides academic training in order to maximize the impact of both public health and social work practices. This dual degree develops expertise at the nexus of public health and social work. The goal of this program is to train leaders who have the skills and competencies to address many of the social and public health problems facing the state of Alaska, this nation, and the world.