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On this page, you will find the description, instructor(s) of record, unit value, and most recent syllabus for each course. NOTE: Syllabi are restricted to the berkeley.edu domain. To view syllabi, current students must log in with a CalNet ID. Prospective students without a CalNet ID may use this page to view course descriptions. For information about applying to the program, refer to Online Program Admissions Requirements

Required Public Health Core and Breadth Courses

Your first-year class schedule is fixed and fulfills the required quantitative core and public health breadth courses. This foundational curriculum introduces subjects across public health, the first step toward understanding what courses you will choose in your next 4 semesters.

Through instruction, you will develop the skills necessary to carry out simple statistical analyses and interpret statistical results, with a focus on the role of probability and statistics in public health. The course is designed to be interactive and to provide opportunities to learn to “speak” statistics.

Term(s) Offered: Fall Full Term and Spring Full Term

Instructor: Emily Place, PhD, MPH (FA); TBD (SP)

Units: 4

Syllabus

R proficiency level: 0 – None

You will learn about health policy and management and health care delivery systems, primarily from a United States perspective. Discover how health policy and management apply concepts from economics, organizational behavior, and political science to the structure, financing, and regulation of public health and the health care delivery systems.

Term(s) Offered: Summer 1

Instructor(s): Timothy Tyler Brown, PhD; Meghana Ghadli, MD, MPH, FACP

Units: 3

Syllabus

Explore environmental agents and factors that contribute to disease in developed and developing countries: i.e. furniture flame retardants, combustion of biomass fuels, or the design of buildings and communities. You will receive an overview of core concepts and their applications in exposure assessment, toxicology, epidemiology, and risk assessment.

Term(s) Offered: Fall Full Term and Spring Full Term

Instructor(s): Amod Kumar Pokhrel, PhD (FA); Jay Graham, PhD, MBA, MPH (SP)

Units: 2

Syllabus

With a focus on major social, cultural, and bio-behavioral determinants of health as they relate to behavioral interventions and policies, you will explore key concepts and important approaches in health and social behavior; assignments will culminate in a final group project involving a community health issue.

Term(s) Offered: Fall Full Term and Spring Full Term

Instructor(s): Evan Vandommenlen-Gonzalez, PhD, MPH (FA); Kira Jeter, MPH (SP)

Units: 3

Syllabus

Intended as a first-class in epidemiology, you will study the principles and methods of epidemiology, including descriptive and analytic approaches to assessing the distributions of health, disease, and injury in populations. The emphasis is on developing an understanding of concepts, rather than quantitative methods, although calculations are involved.

Term(s) Offered: Fall Full Term and Spring Full Term

Instructor(s): John M Colford Jr., MD, PhD, MPH (FA); Andrew Mertens, PhD, MA, MS (FA); Sandra McCoy, PhD, MPH (SP)

Units: 3

Syllabus

This multidisciplinary course draws from current topics and emerging competencies in public health professions to guide you in the tools and practices that lead to better solutions. The topics are delivered by discipline experts with whom you will engage in hands-on workshops, lectures, and gatherings during a week-long campus visit.

Term(s) Offered: Summer 1

Instructor(s): Jodi Halpern, MD, PhD; Amy Slater, JD

Units: 3

Syllabus

Epidemiology & Biostatistics Courses

This introductory course will serve as the gateway for students into the world of applied IS. It has been designed keeping in mind students looking to gain a preliminary understanding of the principles and practice of IS. The module will provide a broad overview of the theoretical and evidence-based models and frameworks used in the field as well as the barriers and challenges faced by implementation scientists in the real-world application of evidence-based practices, programs and policies.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 1

Instructor(s): Stefano Bertozzi, MD, PhD

Units: 1

Syllabus

This course provides hands-on experience for students to apply their learnings from “PH225AIntroduction to Applied Implementation Science” to global policy contexts. It has been designed to provide practical exposure to the world of IS, by employing the models and frameworks discussed in the introductory module to diverse public health programs around the world.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 2

Instructor(s): Stefano Bertozzi, MD, PhD

Prerequisite(s): PHW225A or Demonstrate substantial prior experience in the field of implementation science research and/or practice

Units: 1

Syllabus

This interdisciplinary regulatory science course brings together participants working in regulatory agencies, public health, law, medicine, business, and policy to gain an understanding of the most prominent product regulation issues in the US and abroad. Innovation is needed to address the 21st century’s evolving regulatory landscape, in the context of new technologies, new understanding of diseases, and a sharpened lens on safety. This new exciting area of science requires a new generation of trained regulatory experts and professionals in academic, government, industry, and public health sectors. Building regulatory capacity is important for the US as well as for the rest of the world. Aiming to address this demand for increased training, the course provides the information needed to understand the most important health practice and product regulation issues in the US and abroad from the perspective of current regulatory standards, their standards for evidence, and the role of innovation in regulatory science. The course features networking opportunities with experts from regulatory agencies, biotech, and the pharmaceutical industry. These guest lecturers will discuss the ongoing need for interaction between government, academia, industry, and the public.

Term(s) Offered: Fall 2

Instructor(s): Veronica Miller, PhD

Units: 3

Syllabus

This course provides a rigorous conceptual treatment of probability and statistics and a tour of linear and logistic regression as viewed through that lens. The focus is on understanding via computer simulation and diagrams rather than on algebraic manipulations. As such, this course will help students clarify the assumptions necessary to say a given statistical method is “valid” and how to precisely define such a notion of validity. Knowledge of R (tidyverse) and high school mathematics is required at the level of 142.

Term(s) Offered: Spring Full Term

Instructor(s): Alejandro Schuler, PhD

Units: 4

Syllabus (draft for the residential course)

R proficiency level: 2 – Developing

You will further your exploration of principles and methods of epidemiology, including descriptive and analytic approaches to assessing the distribution of health, disease, and injury in populations and factors that influence those distributions. The emphasis is on concepts, rather than quantitative methods, but some basic calculations will be involved.

Term(s) Offered: Fall Full Term

Instructor(s): John M Colford Jr., MD, PhD, MPH; Andrew N Mertens, PhD, MA, MS

Units: 4

Syllabus

You will examine the principles and methods underlying the use of R, emphasizing multi-disciplinary, collaborative, and “real world” uses. Throughout the course, You will learn real-world principles of data collaboration using R through discussion of case studies as well as through an applied project.

Term(s) Offered: Fall Full Term

Instructor(s): William Wheeler, PhD, MPH; Lauren Nelson, MPH

Units: 2

Syllabus

R proficiency level: 0 – None

In this 2-unit course we will discuss the theory behind effective graphical design, how to apply this theory to communicating health data to different audiences, and how to produce a variety of graphical types using primarily the ggplot command in the statistical analysis environment R. There are two lectures per week accompanied by readings. Generally, the course content and assignments alternate weekly between theory and R programming. You may opt to take the course for an additional 3rd unit in which you will apply the lessons throughout the course to an analysis of your own data, culminating in a final academic or professional product.

Term(s) Offered: Fall Full Term

Instructor(s): Adrienne Rain Mocello, PhD

Units: 2 or 3

Syllabus

R proficiency level: 2 – Developing

This 4-unit course will cover modern quantitative methods relevant to epidemiologic research drawing heavily on concepts covered in PHW250B and PHW241. Course topics include regression models for continuous and discrete outcomes, models for analysis of matched data, Kaplan-Meier estimation, survival distributions, and models for parametric and semi-parametric survival analysis. We will also cover methods for confounder selection, dose-response modeling, and interaction and effect modification. The course format will include 4 hours of lecture and 2 hours of lab per week. Most lectures and labs will be delivered live (synchronous). Students requiring a more flexible experience can view recorded lectures and attend a lab section held in the evening. Completion of PHW250B (Epidemiologic Methods II) and PHW241 (Intermediate Biostatistics for Public Health) is required to enroll; completion of a course in R or practical experience with R is highly recommended.

Term(s) Offered: Fall Full Term

Instructor(s): Patrick Bradshaw, PhD, MS, MS

Units: 4

Syllabus

R proficiency level: 3 – Proficient

With the ongoing “data explosion”, methods to delineate causation from correlation are perhaps more pressing now than ever. This course will introduce a general framework for Causal Inference in Public Health: 1) clear statement of the research question, 2) definition of the causal model and effect of interest, 3) assessment of identifiability, 4) choice and implementation of estimators including parametric and non-parametric methods, and 5) appropriate interpretation of findings. The statistical methods include G-computation, inverse probability weighting (IPW), and targeted minimum loss-based estimation (TMLE) with machine learning.

Term(s) Offered: Spring Full Term

Prerequisite(s): PHW241 or instructor permission

Instructor(s): Laura B. Balzer, PhD

Units: 4

Syllabus

R proficiency level: 2 – Developing

Students learn (through lectures and graded student presentations and projects) to design clinical and population-level field trials. Topics: formulation of a testable hypothesis; identification of appropriate populations; blinding (including indices for assessment); randomization (including traditional and adaptive randomization algorithms); sample-size estimation; recruitment strategies; data collection systems; quality control and human subjects responsibilities; adverse effects monitoring; improving participant adherence; use of surrogate outcomes.

Term(s) Offered: Fall Full Term, Spring Full Term

Instructor(s): John M Colford Jr., MD, PhD, MPH

Units: 2

Syllabus

You will learn why and how clusters of illnesses/epidemics are investigated. Methods and approaches required for such investigations will be discussed in detail, with a specific focus on basic concepts, developing case definitions, laboratories, surveillance, epidemiology of outbreak data, hypotheses, and communication of results, all in relation to outbreak investigations.

Term(s) Offered: Fall 2

Instructor(s): Wayne Enanoria, PhD

Units: 3

Syllabus

R proficiency level: 2 – Developing

Building upon the competencies of epidemiology and biostatistics, we will explore surveillance, mitigation, preparedness, and response and recovery (from natural and “man-made” emergency events). You will develop familiarity with the major categories and classifications of disaster events, including weapons of mass destruction, including how the public health system integrates with the National Response Plan and Framework.

Term(s) Offered: Summer 1

Instructor(s): Eric Gebbie, DrPH, MIA, MA; Michelle Larson, PhD

Units: 3

Syllabus

More than 1400 different infectious diseases recognized today are distinct from other diseases because they affect all human organ systems and contribute to the burden of many other types of disease: 175 new such diseases have emerged in the past 30 years. You will explore the framework through which all infectious disease problems can be addressed.

Term(s) Offered: Fall 1

Instructor(s):  Lee W Riley, MD; John E Swartzberg, MD

Units: 3

Syllabus

This course is designed for students who may be interested in working in countries where contaminated water, inadequate sanitation and poor hygiene (WaSH) are the cause of serious health problems. In this course, important concepts in WaSH will be covered so that students can understand what is needed to develop, implement, monitor and evaluate a WaSH program. It emphasizes concepts that are needed to develop effective, appropriate, accessible and affordable WaSH interventions to reduce the global burden of disease.

Term(s) Offered: Summer 2

Instructor(s):  Jay Graham, PhD; Anoop Jain, DrPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

This class is an introduction to the use of the SAS programming language for managing, cleaning and analyzing biomedical data.

Term(s) Offered: Spring Full Term

Note: this is a Residential course with optional (online) synchronous sessions.  No required attendance on campus.

Instructor(s): Sadie Costello, PhD, MPH

Units: 2

Syllabus

Global Health Courses

Using the Murray-Frenk health systems framework, you will engage in a real-world, practical analysis of health systems, along with engaging in current debates about health systems, health financing, and UHC in the international community. Assess health system performance based on quality, cost, and access metrics.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 2

Instructor(s): Neelam Sekhri Feachem, MS

Units: 3

Syllabus

You will apply essential concepts of global health to current challenges through course activities, assignment, and readings. Guest lectures will present global health experts detailing real world initiatives, encouraging critical thinking approaches through the application of tools and frameworks that address diverse global health needs.

Term(s) Offered: Fall 1 

Instructor(s): Hildy F Baker, PhD, MHS; Arthur L Reingold, MD

Units: 3

Syllabus

Ethical frameworks, theories, and historical references are used to elevate the ethics conversation to the global stage, linking theory to practice in research, experiential learning, and delivery. Consider ethical questions about the delivery of global public health and the roles of governments, academic institutions, organizations, health professions, and citizens as stewards of public health.

Term(s) Offered: Fall 2

Instructor(s): Rohini J. Haar, MD, MPH; Rebecca Deboer, MD, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

Health Policy and Management Courses

This course serves as an introduction to key topics in health policy making in the United States, with a focus on policy analysis methods. Using the policy analysis framework of Eugene Bardach’s Eightfold Path first introduced in PHW200E, the course will explore the entire policy analysis process from the identification of a problem, to the evaluation of policy solutions, and finally to the techniques and formats for effective health policy communications.

Over the course of 8 weeks students will learn, practice and refine policy analysis skills in a team setting through a series of practical exercises. We will touch on the role of research and evidence in forming health policy, and the critical use of data and visualization in health policy contexts. Topics will include current and pressing issues in American health policy with ongoing discussions on equity, intersectionality and racial justice in policy analysis and decision-making.

Upon successful completion of the course, students will gain both a solid understanding of, and the practical skills to complete, the following:

  1. Build critical policy analysis skills to identify and evaluate the methods used for developing policy alternatives and understand the impact of existing public health policies.
  2. Critique the role of research and evidence in public health policy formation and evaluation.
  3. Describe our country’s institutional players (i.e., legislative, administrative, judicial), their roles in policy making and how to influence policy outcomes.
  4. Apply learned policy analysis skills to proposed and existing public health policies.
  5. Leverage critical analysis tools of language and framing to develop and advocate health policies in verbal and written communication deliverables.

Term(s) Offered: Summer 2, Fall 2

Instructor(s):  Irina Titova, MPH, MPP; Lizzie Jekanowski, MPH, MPP

Units: 3

Syllabus

This course examines the policy framework for biomedical technology, including medical devices, drugs, diagnostics, digital therapeutics, and algorithms. Emphasis will be placed on the funding of research and development, the protection of intellectual property, FDA market authorization, insurance coverage, and algorithm design. While, the focus will be on the US, the course will examine industrial policy and innovation nationalism within a global context.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 1

Instructor(s): James Robinson, PhD, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

The focus is on your development of leadership skills in strategic planning, analysis, and implementation. Emphasis is placed upon the leader’s role in simultaneously taking into account a wide variety of internal and external factors to improve organization and system performance in meeting the health needs of individuals and communities. Prior professional or coursework experience required

Term(s) Offered: Summer 2

Instructor(s): Julie Brown, MPH, MBA; Emma Dolan, MPP, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

A solid understanding of organizational behavior is critical for managing complex demands and arrangements in public health organizations. Through exploring the active theories and perspectives in management and organizational theory, you will gain a solid comprehension of a diverse set of frameworks and theories relevant to understanding healthcare delivery and public health organizations.

Term(s) Offered: Fall 1

Instructor(s): Hector Rodriguez, PhD, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

The U.S. spends a great deal on health care, yet has relatively poor health outcomes, quality of care, and equity. You will examine how this situation can be improved by analyzing markets and government policy, including identifying contexts where the free market operates relatively well versus poorly and debating the role of government in health and healthcare.

Term(s) Offered: Fall 2

Instructor(s): Brent Fulton, PhD, MBA

Units: 3

Syllabus

Cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit analysis tools are applied to the evidence base for population health interventions and policies. You will engage with community and clinical preventive services, systemic population health management innovations, behavioral economics approaches, and policies targeting upstream social determinants of population health.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 1
Note that students may not take both 226C & 226F for credit. Please only register for one of these courses.

Instructor(s): William H. Dow, PhD

Units: 3

Syllabus

Cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit analysis tools are applied to the evidence base for population health interventions and policies. You will engage with community and clinical preventive services, systemic population health management innovations, behavioral economics approaches, and policies targeting upstream social determinants of population health.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 1
Note that students may not take both 226C & 226F for credit. Please only register for one of these courses.

Instructor(s): William H. Dow, PhD

Units: 1

Syllabus

Through a case study format, employing the quantitative functions in Excel, you will gain the basic financial and accounting skills needed by all health professionals. Consider financial decision making in an applied manner, interpret financial statements and ratio analysis, and conduct investment assessments in discounted cash flow, healthcare pricing strategies, and cost-volume-profit/break-even analysis.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 2

Instructor(s): Kimberly MacPherson, MPH, MBA

Units: 3

Syllabus

Nutrition & Community Health Sciences Courses

You will employ digital innovations and social media to promote healthy behaviors and policy in 6 online weeks. Several guests will visit the online class, including public health professional who are currently engaged in new media and digital communications activities.

Term(s) Offered: Summer 2

Instructor(s): Jessica Watterson, PhD, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

You will build the necessary skills to plan effective public health programs through examination of the principles and methods underlying program planning; With an emphasis on multi-disciplinary, collaborative, and “real world” planning processes, the course offers a real-world application of program planning principles, along with through critique and discussion of case studies.

Term(s) Offered: Summer 2

Instructor(s): Sharon O’Hara, DrPH, MPH, MS; Brigid Cakourous, DrPH, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

You will be presented with the major nutritional issues faced infants, children, adolescents and reproductive age women in the United States. Course topics include programs and interventions aimed at improving MCH nutrition, evidence-based MCH nutrition practice guidelines, application of knowledge to food choices at a personal and programmatic level.

Term(s) Offered: Summer 2

Instructor(s): Cindy Leung, ScD, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

Nutrition assessment tools are used to evaluate an individual’s or population’s nutrition status and/or risk of specific nutrient excess or deficiency. This 3-unit course will discuss various dietary, anthropometric, clinical, and biochemical nutrition assessment tools and provide you with skills to determine which assessment tools are needed based on program/research project goals, how to interpret nutrition assessment survey results and apply them to populations, and critically evaluate the metrics used to define different types of malnutrition.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 1

Instructor(s): Sarah Zyba, PhD

Units: 3

Syllabus

This course examines the historical origins of food and nutrition improvement programs in the United States, including the political and administrative conditions that led to the development of these programs. It also examines the goals, design, operations, and effectiveness of some of these programs: Food Stamp Program, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), the National School Lunch Program, the School Breakfast Program, Head Start, the Child Care Food Program, and the Elderly Nutrition Program.

Term(s) Offered: Fall 2

Instructor(s): Hannah Thompson, PhD, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

The Anti-Racist and Racial Justice Praxis Spring Student Elective is a semester-long student elective course for continuing MPH and DrPH students. This class will cultivate champions to develop an anti-racist analysis of public health, present a set of anti-racist public health tools, and build skills necessary for advancing an anti-racist agenda within the field.

Term(s) Offered: Spring Full Term

Prerequisite: HSB Breadth Course (PHW200G)

Instructor(s): Zea Nachama Malawa, MD, MPH; Jenna Gaarde, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

Though exposure to the “life course” of a public health evaluation, from initial planning to implementation and sharing results, you will design an evaluation that informs program and policy decisions, using both qualitative and quantitative methods. Small groups will work together to develop a real-world evaluation plan.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 2

Instructor(s): Mara Decker, DrPH, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

You will practice survey research in its different forms, including traditional pencil-and-paper surveys, telephone interviews, and web surveys. Using a project topic of your choice, you will develop a survey instrument and write a research plan to use that instrument. Start thinking about one of your favorite public health research areas!

Term(s) Offered: Spring 1, Summer 2

Instructor(s): Jylana Sheats, PhD, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

Spatial Data Science for Public Health Courses

PHW272A is an introductory course in geographic information systems (GIS) that covers topics such as cartography and the processing, visualization, and description of spatial public health data. The course will introduce principles, methods, and techniques that enable students to acquire, manipulate and effectively display spatial data. As maps have become an increasingly popular and powerful means of communicating the spatial complexity of health and disease data, public health researchers and practitioners can increase the impact of their work by using GIS to convey information and synthesize data from multiple sources. The course will cover basic GIS concepts, such as coordinate systems, layering, buffering, joining, merging, and aggregating spatial data, conducting spatial queries, and appropriate visualization of spatial data. Students will gain hands-on practice working with and reporting on a range of spatial health data, through activities that teaches use of R as a GIS platform.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 1

Instructor(s): Jennifer Head, PhD, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

R proficiency level: 2 – Developing

Students who have completed PHW272A or gained permission from the instructor can enroll in PHW272C. In PHW272C, students will increase their proficiency in the application of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to public health data. The course will cover the theory and methods behind the analysis of patterns of health and disease in space as students will learn how to perform a wide variety of space and space-time analyses. The course will introduce statistical techniques for describing, analyzing and interpreting layers of mapped health data, including the acquisition and classification of remote sensing data. Overall, through this series, students will gain a deeper understanding of the role of locational information in improving our understanding of patterns of health and disease, and the factors that give rise to them.

Prerequisite: PHW272A

Term(s) Offered: Spring 2

Instructor(s): Adam Readhead, PhD, MPH

Units: 3

Syllabus

R proficiency level: 3 – Proficient

You will be exposed to the application of GIS technologies for rendering disease surveillance maps, developing effective spatial data visualization, creating compelling, credible spatial risk maps, and acquiring/processing positioning information for health applications. Learn from examples demonstrating the spatial characterization of social and environmental conditions, such as poverty and water quality.

Term(s) Offered: Spring 2

Instructor(s): Charlotte Smith, PhD, MA

Units: 3

Syllabus