Are you ready to earn your public health degree?
The online Public Health degree (MPH) in health policy and administration is a graduate degree program designed specifically for health care professionals with at least three years’ experience who have chosen a career path in the management of health services organizations such as hospitals, nursing homes, physician group practices and/or public health departments, among others. Each course is tailored to the application of its subject matter to the delivery of health care services.
The curriculum is a unique combination of public health, business-style and health systems courses that will enable graduates to apply business principles and practices to the operation of a health services organization. Many of the courses are taught by health care managers and consultants who have worked in health care services.
Students in the Executive MPH have diverse backgrounds including public health, hospital administrators, physicians, pharmacists, dentists, nurses, therapists, social workers, nursing facility administrators, and consultants.
Admission is limited to twenty-five highly qualified students. Students begin in the Fall semester and graduate after completion of 42 credit hours in 14 courses in May of the next academic year (five semesters in total).
The Executive MPH format is designed to maximize the transfer of knowledge between the health care professionals in each cohort through the exchange of ideas among students.
Approximately one weekend per month (Saturday & Sunday) is required for class attendance. The remainder of the course work is completed online in a confidential and secure environment. This hybrid format enables students not only the convenience of completing coursework online but allows for monthly in-class sessions with face-to-face interaction and discussion among Executive MPH students and faculty.
Master of Public Health Requirements
- MPH students must complete 42 hours of coursework.
- Pass a capstone project and oral defense.
- Students must have an overall 3.0 GPA to graduate.
Executive Master of Public Health in Health Policy Administration: An MPH program designed for individuals who have completed an undergraduate degree and have up to at least three years of full-time work experience in a health care/service setting (See additional details below). The degree can be completed in 22 months using a rigorous, concentrated format that includes three classes each semester (two in the summer semester) that meet on Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Five weekends are required each semester. For information on this degree program, contact the Executive MPH coordinator in the Department of Public Health at 266-4911.
Application for admission to the MPH (Executive) program is made through the Graduate School of the university and through the Department of Public Health.
Applications are due July 15 for fall semester (admit once per year).
A complete application consists of the Graduate Studies Office application, the Department of Public Health application and essay, current resume, GRE scores or any other graduate school entrance test scores such as GMAT, MCAT or LSAT, transcripts and three letters of reference from persons qualified to assess the applicant’s readiness for graduate study. International applicants also must submit a TOEFL/IBT score.
Minimum GPA is 3.0 on the last 60 hours of coursework.
A minimum of three years of experience in a health care/service setting is required. The number of years of experience can be adjusted based on GPA. If the GPA is 3.25 then 2 years’ experience is required; if GPA is 3.5 then 1 year experience is required; if the GPA is 3.75 then no experience is required.
Minimum TOEFL/IBT score is 79 for international applicants.
Applications are evaluated by the department’s Graduate School Admissions Committee. Enrollment priority is given to Mississippi residents. Other factors in the decision for admission include the GPA, GRE scores, writing skills demonstrated in the essay, and the reference letters.
Research and Scholarly Integrity Education
All faculty holding Regular or Associate graduate faculty status, must complete CITI training modules required by the Graduate School and their departments. All graduate students must complete the CITI training modules required by the Graduate School and their departments the first semester they are enrolled in graduate school. The RSIE policy and training information are found on the Graduate School web page –www.usm.edu/graduate-school. Contact the Dean of the Graduate School if you have any questions regarding the policy of training information.
Masters in Public Health Core Requirements
Social and Behavioral Aspects of Health
Cases Studies in Health Services Administration
Requirements for Emphasis in Health Policy and Administration
Introduction to Health Systems
Healthcare Financial Management
Health Law and Ethics
Health Care Strategic Planning
Health Care Organizational Behavior and Human Resources
Health Care Marketing
Healthcare Financial Management II
Please note that the above information is meant to be a guide and is not official. For further information regarding courses for this degree, see the University Bulletin.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. All students must take the GRE or GMAT and have recent scores (less than 10 years old) sent to The University of Southern Mississippi. Please visit the GRE Web site at http://www.gre.org for more information. There is an option to take up to three courses as a non-degree student before being accepted into the program. If you choose this option, you must complete the entire application (including test scores, transcripts, letters of recommendation, resume, and statement of qualifications) and be accepted for admission before you will be allowed to enroll in additional courses.
The successful completion of 33 semester hours is required. This consists of 27 semester hours of required coursework and 6 semester hours of electives. A minimum of 18 semester hours must be completed at the 600 level.
Many of our students enroll full time while working, but the program is a big commitment. The courses are more demanding than undergraduate-level courses.
You can complete this degree in an executive formatted program, in which some classes would be on campus and other courses would be completed online. However, we also offer this degree fully online, in which all courses could be completed online.
Yes. Many of our students are not yet in the field, but are looking to gain knowledge and skills to become more marketable in a new career path.
Yes. This program is in executive format, which means you can complete some of your degree requirements by participating in online courses. Other courses will be completed through a combination of online interaction with other students and the instructor, and weekend, in-person class meetings. However, it is not possible to complete the entire program without visiting the Southern Miss Gulf Coast campus.
As rigorous as courses offered in an on-campus delivery format, the MSHCD online courses use the Internet for course delivery, offering the convenience and flexibility of accessing class from any location where you can connect to the Web.
Executive format is designed for professionals who want to be leaders in today’s training and development world by training students in the use of the latest tools and methodologies. This format is structured to accommodate the lifestyle demands of a professional. The program includes the full course load of a traditional graduate degree program. However, some classes are scheduled in a flexible format of online delivery, while other classes combine online interaction with in-person, weekend meetings.
Yes. We accept up to 6 semester hours of graduate credit from other accredited institutions. However, a total sum of no more than 9 semester hours of transfer work and non-degree work may be applied toward a degree.
No. Students must earn 33 semester hours in graduate coursework.
The Executive Format Program is designed for students to enroll in 12 hours during the fall and spring semesters and 9 hours in the summer to complete the program in 12 months. You may, however, take fewer classes.
How quickly you complete the degree program depends on many factors. If you start in the fall semester, you can complete the program in 12 months. This is the shortest completion time possible and requires enrolling in four courses during the fall and spring semesters and three courses in the summer. However, if you take one or two courses per semester, it will take you two years or longer.
The Financial Aid Office determines individual eligibility. Contact Financial Aid for more information http://www.usm.edu/financialaid/.
Please visit our programs page here: https://online.usm.edu/programs/
The minimum standards for regular admission include:
- An applicant must hold a baccalaureate degree from an institution approved by a recognized accrediting agency.
- The applicant must be eligible to re-enter in good standing the last college or university attended.
- An applicant must present evidence, by official transcript, of a grade point average of at least 2.75 (figured on an A equals 4.0 scale) for the last two years of undergraduate study.
- An applicant must have at least three (3) letters of recommendation from persons qualified to assess the applicant’s readiness for graduate study.
- An applicant must submit test scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT).
- Applicant must submit proof of immunization for two MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella) vaccinations.
- An applicant whose native language is not English must achieve a TOEFL score of 575 or more.
In exceptional cases, students may be admitted conditionally. In such instance, students must earn a 3.0 on the first (9) semester hours of coursework in order to qualify for regular admission. The department chair and college dean must approve the recommendation of conditional admission.
Southern Miss Graduate Studies
118 College Dr. #10066
Hattiesburg, MS 39406-0001
Submit the following to the Office of Graduate Studies via the online Graduate School Admissions portal:
- Completed application form
- Application fee
- Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended
- Official report of GRE test scores
- Immunization Record
- Three letters of recommendation
- Current resume
- Statement of Qualifications, Goals, and Career Objectives
- This statement is an important part of the application portfolio. Applicants should use the title, “Statement of Qualifications, Goals, and Career Objectives,” with name and the degree you are applying for in the upper right hand corner. The statement should address the following: reasons this graduate program was chosen, how the applicant plans to relate the specialty area to his or her education and experience, expected career benefits from this program, and any other matters that should be taken into consideration. Maximum of three pages, double-spaced.
Submit the following to the Workplace Learning and Performance Institute:
The University of Southern Mississippi
Jack and Patti Phillips Workplace Learning and Performance Institute
730 East Beach Blvd.
Long Beach, MS 39560
- Three letters of recommendation
- Current resume
- Statement of Qualifications, Goals, and Career Objectives
This statement is an important part of the application portfolio. Applicants should use the title, “Statement of Qualifications, Goals, and Career Objectives,” with name and the degree you are applying for in the upper right corner. The statement should address the following: reasons this graduate program was chosen, how the applicant plans to relate the specialty area to his or her education and experience, expected career benefits from this program, and any other matters that should be taken into consideration. Maximum of three pages double-spaced.