Academics Overview

The Master of Public Health (MPH) Online program at USC offers a rigorous curriculum that attracts dedicated and ambitious professionals with a passion to serve in the public health arena. The program’s core coursework aims to develop your key public health competencies and skills through the use of cases and examples from industry — ranging from local to global.

Core Courses

Track Total: 16 Units

PM 501Foundations in Health Education and Promotion4 units
PM 508Health Service and Delivery in the U.S.4 units
PM 510Principles of Biostatistics4 units
PM 512Principles of Epidemiology4 units


As an MPH online student, you can tailor your studies by choosing a concentration:

Biostatistics and Epidemiology

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Community Health Promotion

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Global Health

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Health Services and Policy

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The MPH online program practicum combines field training with a leadership seminar and capstone course.

With the help of your practicum advisor, you’ll select a public health agency within your desired geographic location (domestic or international) — such as a health department, community-based organization or research center — and you’ll practice leveraging what you’ve learned in a guided, hands-on experience. Then, in the capstone course, you’ll write a research paper, often related to what you do for your field training, on the competencies you’ve built throughout the program.

For students already working in public health settings, you may have the opportunity to complete your practicum at your place of work. If you are interested in hosting a student for a practicum experience, please contact us at

Practicum Components

Practicum / Capstone Total: 6 units
*Practicum units are intended to be taken concurrently.

PM 596Practicum in Public Health1 unit
PM 564Public Health Leadership and Management4 units
PM 597Capstone in Public Health1 unit

Faculty-Led Trips

Students in the USC Master of Public Health Online program are encouraged to participate in our unique faculty-led international trips (usually two weeks). These opportunities offer hands-on public health experience in clinics, government organizations, non-governmental organizations, research institutes and in communities around the world. Students can earn course credit for the two-week faculty-led trip and, if desired, set up a practicum and extend their time in the country.

Through our expert faculty, opportunities have been made available to students to work in Costa Rica, Switzerland, India, Ghana, Honduras, Mozambique, Mexico, Chile, Taiwan, China, Singapore, Panama, Japan and more. As an example, our course in Geneva investigates the way health is organized and administered at the global level by integrating students directly into the World Health Assembly (WHA), the decision-making body of the World Health Organization, and exposing them to the inner workings of key global health organizations.



Global Health Governance & Diplomacy in Practice in Geneva at the World Health Assembly



Costa Rica

Health & Sustainable Development in Costa Rica

Project Description: The course explores how climate change, biodiversity loss, migration, sustainable development, and human rights relate to health among populations in Costa Rica. The group stays in three different locations in the country and visits local health clinics, a public health research institute, governmental public health agencies, NGOS, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, the national children’s hospital, a palm oil plantation, Ministry of Health, the Panama border, and indigenous communities.


The USC Master of Public Health Program provides students the opportunity to travel to Panama to work on public health projects for two weeks. Students may extend the trip to four weeks to complete their practicum requirements.