Master of Public Health

Jill Sanderson, a student in EMDLacey Wright

The M.P.H. curriculum in Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases is designed to train students to understand the epidemiology of the major infectious agents, the diseases they cause, and the host response to those diseases.  The interaction of the agent (parasite, bacterium, or virus) with the host and the influence of the environment are studied.  The curriculum considers the role of immunological response, genetics, natural history of vectors, geographic distribution, and transmission and transport of agents. 

Emphasis is placed on the application of epidemiologic concepts to intervention in transmission cycles and disease progression.  Intervention may be accomplished through such measures as vaccination, antimicrobial therapy, vector control, or behavior modification.  The student is encouraged to obtain a solid laboratory foundation for diagnosis, for population-based serologic surveys, and for understanding the molecular basis of disease processes and intervention strategies.  Infectious disease problems and solutions in resource-poor countries are extensively considered.

MPH Competencies

Core Competencies

Upon completing the core curriculum of the MPH program, the student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate a knowledge base in the disciplines of biostatistics, chronic and infectious disease epidemiology, health systems, public policy, social and behavioral sciences, and environmental health.
  • Apply basic research skills to specific public health problems in both group and individual settings, including the ability to define problems; construct, articulate and test hypotheses; draw conclusions; and communicate findings to a variety of audiences.
  • Explain the interrelationships between a multitude of factors that can impact on a public health problem, including scientific, medical, environmental, cultural, social, behavioral, economic, political, and ethical factors.
  • Review, critique, and evaluate public health reports and research articles.
  • Apply public health concepts, principles, and methodologies obtained through formal course work to actual problems experienced in the community or work environment.
  • Critically evaluate programs, interventions, and outcomes that relate to public health practice.
  • Apply ethical standards and professional values as they relate to the practice of public health.
  • Demonstrate sensitivity to the social context within which public health professionals practice.

EMD Competencies

Upon obtaining an MPH degree in the Department of Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases, the student will be able to:
  • Define the scope and worldwide impact of infectious diseases.
  • Describe the processes that drive transmission and maintenance of infectious agents.
  • Describe the epidemiology of the major infectious diseases worldwide as well as risk exposures and behaviors as these relate to transmission.
  • Describe the host genetic and immunologic factors that affect transmission and disease progression.
  • Describe pathogen-related determinants that contribute to transmission and disease.
  • Explain the interrelationship between the environment and the emergence and maintenance of infectious diseases in populations.
  • Describe and critically evaluate approaches for the prevention and control of infectious diseases and define the key issues to their effective use.
  • Apply principles and concepts obtained through coursework to design and implement studies on the etiology, detection, prevention or control of infectious diseases in the laboratory and field.
  • Define the ethical challenges in infectious disease research.


PDF Version

Download the PDF version of the MPH requirements.

Yale Online Course Information

The M.P.H. degree requires a total of 20 course units. The M.P.H. in Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases requires the student to complete or acquire an exemption from the following courses. All “a” courses are offered in the fall term, and “b” courses are offered in the spring term. Full time students must carry a minimum of 4 course units each semester.

BIS 505a, Introduction to Statistical Thinking I1

BIS 505b, Introduction to Statistical Thinking II1

CDE 505a, Social and Behavioral Foundations of Health1
CDE/EMD 508a, Principles of Epidemiology I1
EPH 100a, Professional Skills Seminarn/a
EPH 515b, Introduction to Research and Professional Ethicsn/a

One of the following two:
EHS 510b, Introduction to Environmental Health1
EHS 503a, Introduction to Toxicology1
One of the following two:
HPM 510a, Introduction to Health Policy and Health Systems1
HPM 560b, Health Economics and US Health Policy1

To fulfill the Public Health Practice requirement, choose one of the following three:

EPH 542b, Practice-Based Community Health Research1
EPH 500b, Public Health Practicum1
EPH 520c, Summer Internship (Approval Required)n/a
EPH 520c, Summer Internship (required whether or not used to fulfill the Public Health Practice Requirement)n/a

EMD 512b, Immunology for Epidemiologists1
EMD 518a, Principles of Infectious Diseases I1

EMD 518b, Principles of Infectious Diseases II1
EMD 525a and b, Seminar in Epidemiology of Microbial Diseasesn/a
EPH 525, Thesis2

One of the following two
CDE 516b, Principles of Epidemiology II1
CDE 534b, Analytic Methods in Epidemiology1

Choose at least two additional EMD courses in collaboration with your advisor

Revised 7/14/21

EMD Electives 2014-2015



Hospital Epidemiology (EMD 530)


Investigation of Disease Outbreaks (EMD 536)Every other spring (offered 2016)

Quantitative Methods for Infectious Disease Epidemiology (EMD 538)


Introduction to Public Health Surveillance: Concepts and applications (EMD 539)


Global Aspects of Food and Nutrition (EMD 543)


Vaccines: Concepts in Biology (EMD 547b/MBIO 547)

Every other spring (offered 2016)

Observing Earth from Space (EMD 548/ARCG 762/F&ES 726/G&G 562)


Biology of Insect Disease Vectors (EMD 550)


Tackling the Big Three in Resource-limited Settings: Malaria, TB and HIV (EMD 567)
Advanced Topics in Tropical Parasitic Diseases (EMD 680)Fall

Studies in Evolutionary Medicine (EMD 695b)


revised 7/24/14

Recent Internships

Visual EpidemiologyCentral Asia RegionIndia
Hacettepe UniversityMedicine - Section of Infectious DiseaseTurkey
Emerging Ifections ProgramHPV-IMPACTUS
Everglades National ParkArbovirus Surveillance ProjectUS
CT Emerging InfectionsN/AUS
University of LiverpoolInstitute of Integrative BiologyUnited Kingdom
Otsuka SAGeneva OfficeSwitzerland
Nurses’ Health Study 3Harvard School of Public HealthUS
Instituto Nactional de Salud Publica (INSP)MorelosMexico
Yale School of Public HealthAksoy Lab and Kenya Agricultural Research Institute- Trypanosomiasis Research CenterKenya
Makerere UniversityPharmacyUganda
United Nations Office on Drugs and CrimeDrug Prevention, Treatment and HIV/AIDS support unitIran
Yale School of Public HealthYale Emerging Infections ProgramUS
University of GhanaNoguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, Department of ParasitologyGhana
National Institutes of Health Fogarty International CenterDivision of International Epidemiology and Population StudiesUS
Yale School of Public HealthEMDUS
Hope for African ChildrenResearchUganda
RuralHealthCare IndiaN/AIndia
Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz)Brazilian Ministry of HealthBrazil
Yale School of Public HealthYale Emerging Infections ProgramUS
Yale UniversityGalvani LabUS
The Haitian Group for the Study of Kaposi’s Sarcoma and Opportunistic Infections (GHESKIO)HIV/AIDS ResearchHaiti
Cheerful Hearts FoundationPublic Health EducationGhana
Leeway Inc.US
Yale School of Public HealthEMDUS
Centro de Pesquisas Gonçalo Muniz - Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (Fiocruz)LPBM (Laboratory of Pathology and Molecular Biology)Brazil
University of St Andrews; National Health Service (NHS) of Scotland, FifeSchool of Medicine; Governmental Health DepartmentScotland
Environmental Health Center, Cluj (EHC)Romania
Yale New Haven Health SystemCenter for Healthcare (CHS) & Center for Emergency Preparedness & DisasterUS
Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz)/Brazilian Ministry of HealthMolecular Biology and PathologyBrazil
Yale School of Public HealthEmerging Infections ProgramUS
New York City Department of Health and Mental HygieneBureau of Communicable DiseasesUS
New Haven Health DepartmentHIV PreventionUS
Yale UniversityPediatrics, Yale School of medicineUS
Economic Development InitiativesTanzania
UN Food and Agriculture OrganizationAnimal Health ServiceItaly
World VisionPeru
United Nations Development ProgrammeHIV/AIDS & Gender PolicyUS
Yale Emerging Infections ProgramUS
Department of Public HealthVector-borne Disease Control ProgrammeBhutan
Yale School of Public Health Emerging Infections ProgramFoodCOREUS

Recent thesis topics:

  • Epidemiology of Malaria in Kintampo North District, Ghana: An Evaluation of Behavior, Nutritional Status, Hookworm Co-infection, and Antibody Responses
  • Determinants of Early Infant Feeding Practices of HIV-Positive and HIV-Negative Mothers in Pretoria, South Africa
  • Resilience and its Mediating Effect on the Relationship Between Life Stress and Health-related Quality of Life in Older Adult People Living with HIV/AIDS
  • Human Behavioral and Ecological Risk Factors for Development of Lyme Disease on Block Island, Rhode Island
  • The Epidemiology of Tuberculosis in Nunavut
  • Characterization of Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus Isolates from Swine Workers in Romania
  • Examination of Influenza Incidence by Area-Based Socioeconomic Indicators in Connecticut, 2006-2012
  • The Role of Antibiotics in Microbial Interactions of COPD
  • Incidence of Salmonella and Neighborhood Poverty Level in Connecticut, 2000-2011
  • Use of the State Immunization System to Assess Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness Among Children 6-35 Months of Age in New Haven County, CT, 2003-2012
  • A Descriptive Cross-sectional Pilot Study, Employing the Community CAREWare Database, to Identify Predictors of Engagement in Care at the Yale New Haven Hospital Nathan Smith Clinic
  • Hypersensitivity Reactions to Ixodes Scapularis Bites and Protection Against Tick-Borne Infection
  • Economic Coping Mechanisms in Response to Household Health Shocks in Kagera, Tanzania: 1991-2004
  • A Predictive Model of Avian Influenza Outbreaks among Poultry in Egypt
  • Factors Associated to Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health: A Parental Perspective from Calca, Peru
  • Addressing the Silicosis, TB and HIV Epidemic Among Gold Mineworkers in South Africa: The Way Forward
  • Differences Among Patients with Recurrent vs. Incident-only Clostridum difficile Infection: A Case-Control Study of Treatment Effectiveness at Yale New Haven Hospital, 2010-2011
  • Evaluation of the National Malaria Surveillance System of Bhutan, 2006-2012
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Samples of Positions at Graduation: 2013, 2012, 2011
  • County of Marin, CDC/CSTE Applied Epidemiology Fellow, San Francisco, CA
  • Harvard AIDS Initiative, Research Analyst, Cambridge, MA
  • John Snow, Immunization Information System Associate, Boston, MA
  • CREA, Project Associate, New Dehli, India
  • Alameda County Department of Public Health, Cal-EIS Fellow, Oakland, CA
  • Health Services Advisory Group, Healthcare Analyst, Phoenix, AZ
  • Population Reference Bureau, Policy Analyst, Washington, DC
  • GlobalData, Epidemiologist, New York, NY
  • Ochsner Clinic Foundation, Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, New York, NY
  • Communicable Diseases of Singapore Government, Assistant Director, Singapore
  • Humana, Analyst, Louisville, KY