Public Health Majors Study in the US


Analysis of Public Health Majors Studying in the United States

Public health is an important issue in the current world, and its development is closely related to human health. Therefore, both China and the United States have very good development prospects. The function of public health is similar to preventive medicine, from the research before the outbreak of the disease to the attributes and spread of the epidemic, to the control and management of the disease, and finally from the root cause of the disease to the upper-level management policy and analysis to prevent the disease, the outbreak. It is precisely because of this that it has an important position in preventing or preventing the outbreak of diseases and the threats that spread to humans. 

In the United States, this science has been recognized for a long time, and there are many applicants.


Public Health Majors Education in the US


Table of Content

1. Introduction to the American public health profession


2. Employment prospects for public health professionals in the United States


3. U.S. public health professional application requirements and recommendations


4. Analysis of Key Public Health Institutions in the United States




Introduction to American Public Health

Public health is an important issue in the current world, and its development is closely related to human health. Therefore, both China and the United States have good development prospects. 

The function of public health is similar to preventive medicine, from the research before the outbreak of the disease to the attributes and spread of the epidemic, to the control and management, and finally from the root cause of the disease to the upper-level management policy and analysis to prevent the outbreak of the disease. . It is precisely because of this that public health plays an important role in preventing or stopping the outbreak of diseases and the threats that spread to humans. Since Johns Hopkins University first established the School of Public Health in 1916, American universities have increasingly conducted research in the field of public health. In recent years, the United States has exposed a series of problems in food safety, and people are paying more and more attention to the field of public health. 

After the inauguration of US President Barack Obama, he has always promised to increase investment in the public health system. Currently, public health has become a popular major in American universities.


Research direction

In the United States, not all universities have schools of public health and related majors, especially schools that independently open schools of public health. 

Currently, there are a total of 40 accredited schools of public health accredited by the American Public Health Association, including 12 private schools and 28 public schools, such as Emory University, Boston University, Harvard University, Columbia University, Yale University, Ohio State University, etc. Wait.


Since many of the predecessors of the American School of Public Health were developed from the medical school, there are still many Public Health set up under the medical school. 

For example, the Public Health of the University of California does not have a professional ranking or It was set up as an independent department, but a major under Keck School of Medicine. Schools like this include Cornell, Brown, Tufts, U of Miami, U Penn and so on.


Professional breakdown

1. Biostatistics

It is a hot subject in recent years. In addition to medical students, many science students in mathematics and statistics have also applied. 

The prospects of this major in the United States are very good. It can be said that the employment range is wide. This professional talent is required by pharmaceutical companies, government health departments, and universities. It is highly technical and can rarely be replaced by other professionals. 

The average annual income after graduation is also higher. Other health professions are higher. 

Applicants for health statistics do not necessarily need a medical background, but often schools will require certain advanced mathematics and statistics courses at the undergraduate or graduate level.


2. Epidemiology

There is a great overlap with the Department of Health Statistics, and both require proficiency in the use of statistical software and principles. 

However, they pay more attention to the disease itself. After graduation, most of them are engaged in related work in various levels of health departments, such as AIDS prevention and treatment, heart disease Prevention and control projects, etc. 

The medical background of the applicant is more important when applying. Most of the admitted students come from majors in public health, clinical, pharmacy, nursing, and basic medicine. For international students, they are more interested in medical background.


3. Community and Health Education

It is the most important of all public health majors for English ability, so its GRE and IBT requirements are also the highest, because most of the work carried out after graduation is based on the community and emphasizes the ability to communicate with the crowd. 

Its scope of work is also relatively wide, infiltrating almost all types of work at all levels of health services.

 If applicants want to apply for this direction, oral English skills and previous practical public health-related work experience are particularly important.

4. Health Policies and Administration

It is the subject that most favors management and political science in all majors of public health, and some courses even come from MBA and law majors. Graduates mostly play health policy makers or legal aid groups in different departments, and many also work in health insurance and other health-related product industries. This major is more important to the applicant’s writing ability and work or internship experience. It is relatively difficult for international students to apply for this major than statistics and epidemiology, because the applicant needs to understand the US government structure and legal norms.




5. Environmental and Occupational Health

This is a popular subject all over the world, as well as in the United States. Environmental and occupational hygiene in the United States runs through the sanitation regulations and management of water quality, air, soil, infrastructure construction, and manufacturing industries.

 Human and material resources. It can be said that this major is the direction that many American students are also committed to applying, and applicants do not need to emphasize medical background. 

It has fierce competition and bright prospects, and it does not have a high language threshold for international students.


Degree settings and differences

In the U.S. Public Health College, there are a wide variety of degrees for students to study, most of the more common degrees MPH (Master of Public Health), MSPH (Master of Science Public Health), PHD, MHA (Master of Healthcare Administration), MS ( Master Science).


Common degree

MS: An ordinary master's degree, not as professional as MPH, and not as popular as MPH.


MPH: Cultivate students' practical working ability.


MSPH: Favor basic principles, cultivate students' scientific research ability, and can further study PHD degree.


The MHA degree emphasizes the ability of students as managers, such as human resource management, marketing planning, etc. It is the closest MBA among all majors.


The PHD major is a scientific research talent cultivated for universities, research institutions, and government departments. Generally, scholarships are very abundant, and there are greater opportunities to stay in the United States after graduation.


Employment prospects for public health professionals in the U.S.

In today's society, people are paying more and more attention to health issues, and the status of public health has therefore become more and more important.

 Both at home and abroad, public health is an industry with great development potential. Students of related majors can obtain a relatively broad employment space after graduation, mainly in public health departments, including relevant government departments, disease control centers, community health institutions, quarantine institutions, hospitals, consulting departments, and international health organizations as experts or Management.


The range of employment options for public health graduates is quite wide. There is room for survival from medical institutions, to government agencies, and to scientific research institutions.


1. Hospital

Public health graduates can work in the preventive health department, medical record statistics department, and information statistics department of some large general hospitals. 

They can also work as researchers or management in the scientific research department and education department of the hospital. 

The specific work involved includes medical project development, management and supervision, etc.


2. Research institutions

Public health-related scientific research units and institutions, such as the CDC, medical supervision institutes, scientific research units, etc. Depending on the specific professional direction, the available industries are also slightly different. 

If you are in toxicology, environmental sanitation or food hygiene, you can go to a biotechnology company related to medicine and food safety.

If you are studying statistics and epidemics, chronic diseases, and maternal and child health, you can go to scientific research units and medical units.


3. Medical Press

In publishing houses and magazines related to the medical and health industry, he is engaged in the editing of medical publications to promote medical knowledge and improve the health of residents.


4. Civil servants

National civil servants or local civil servants. For example, the Ministry of Health, the Population and Family Planning Commission, and the Food and Drug Administration are three options for public health students.


5. Medical insurance company

Talents who know statistics and population disease prevention can work in medical insurance companies. Especially when doing medical insurance evaluation and approval, there is a relatively large demand for talents.


U.S. public health professional application requirements and recommendations

Language test: Some schools do not accept IELTS scores, so it is recommended to prepare for TOEFL. Public health majors have higher requirements for TOEFL, generally within the range of 90-95. 

TOP20 schools of public health generally require an IBT score of 100 or more. In addition, there are also minimum requirements for individual parts, especially oral English, generally not less than 20 .


Infographics on Public Health Majors Study in the US

GRE test: at least 300. It is best to pass 320 or more, if 100 is the target before, then it needs to be 310 or more.

Professional background: Since most majors in public health are closely related to medicine, for international students, if they have a certain medical background, they will greatly increase the chance of being admitted. 

If there is no medical degree, applicants can actively participate in domestic public health projects, such as disease publicity and education topics, which can make up for the lack of background to a certain extent.

Difficulty of application

 Generally, students who choose public health majors, in addition to students majoring in public health, clinical, pharmacy, nursing, basic medicine, nutrition, biology, chemistry, etc., can choose to apply, in fact, for statistics, mathematics and other majors. It is also a good choice for applicants. 

Especially for biostatistics and epidemiology, it is necessary to use statistical principles and software to study diseases, so applicants do not necessarily need a medical background, but often schools will require certain advanced mathematics and statistics courses at the undergraduate or graduate level.

 These two directions are often the directions that Chinese students particularly prefer, thus increasing the intensity of competition.


An Analysis of Key Public Health Colleges

1. Johns Hopkins University

The Johns Hopkins University (The Johns Hopkins University) is a world-leading private university located in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. Hopkins University is world-renowned for its outstanding achievements in medicine, public health, economics research, international relations, literature, art and many applied scientific research fields. Among the school’s alumni, 37 have won the Nobel Prize.


The professional branches set up by the School of Public Health are more detailed. Even though there is already a branch of epidemiology, the school still has another direction that combines microbiological technology with immunology.

 JHU’s School of Public Health includes traditional departments of public health, such as: Biostatistics, Environmental Health Sciences, Epidemiology, Health, Behavior and Society, Health Policy and Management, International Health, Mental Health, Population, Family and Reproductive Health. 

In addition, JHU's School of Public Health has two special branches: Department: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology.


2. Harvard University

Harvard University (Harvard University), located in Cambridge, Boston, Massachusetts, is a world-renowned private research university and a member of the famous Ivy League. 

There are 8 presidents of the United States of America, 157 Nobel Prize winners, 18 Fields Medal winners, and 14 Turing Prize winners. 

They have worked or studied here and have a high academic status and a wide range of Its influence is recognized as one of the top higher education institutions in the world today.


The MPH of Harvard University is set under the School of Public Health. The core courses include biostatistics, epidemiology, environmental health, health service management, social and behavioral science, public health practice norms and internships.

Specific directions include clinical utility, health care management and policy, global health, health and social behavior, law and public health, occupational and environmental health, quantitative methods, etc. 

The entire project is highly interdisciplinary, focusing on cultivating students' ability to solve practical problems and related skills in the field of public health.


3. University of Washington

The University of Washington is located in Seattle, USA, and is one of the world's top universities. Since its establishment, the school has created numerous major inventions that benefit all mankind, and cultivated countless political elites, business giants, and scientific giants. 

Invented a human vaccine for the benefit of all mankind, piloted a spacecraft to explore the moon, mapped human genes to reveal the mystery of life, invented kidney dialysis, presided over the design of a lunar orbiting spacecraft, presided over the design of the Columbia space shuttle, and led the design of the world’s largest The B-47 and B-52 heavy bombers that dropped the atomic bombs of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan have trained 11 astronauts.


The college currently has five departments: Biostatistics, Epidemiology, Global Health, Health Services, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences. 

There are also interdisciplinary studies in five areas: Health Administration, Maternal and Child Health, Nutritional Sciences, Pathobiology, and Public Health Genetics.

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