Master of Public Health Degree in Health Behavior & Health Education

Interns standing in front of the Lansing capitol building

Year Program, including course work and internship
Credit Hours
Of recent graduates employed or pursuing advanced degree

The Department of Health Behavior and Health Education's Master of Public Health program prepares students for leadership positions in the development and application of social and behavioral science theory to health problems. It teaches research methods to analyze social and behavioral determinants of health and approaches to effective intervention design to improve population health and quality of life for diverse groups.

Want to learn more?

Request Information

Skills and Competencies

The HBHE competency-based curriculum ensures students gain a breadth of foundational public health knowledge and key skills including:

  • Applying social and behavioral science theories, concepts and models
  • Program development
  • Program evaluation
  • Behavioral science research methods
  • Perspectives for addressing health disparities
  • Applied health communication


Program Curriculum and Prerequisites

Our curriculum in HBHE consists of several components designed to prepare you for success in the profession you choose upon graduation. Students enroll in select courses from the School of Public Health Masters of Public Health Core Curriculum to gain a foundation of knowledge in public health. They also enroll in a series of Health Behavior and Health Education Program Requirements ensuring expertise in our concentration. This classroom experience is complemented by Internship and Applied Practice Experiences and culminates in the Integrative Learning Experience.

The HBHE MPH Program is 60 credit hours, and half of the required credits must be taken in Health Behavior and Health Education courses (HBEHED). In addition to the required courses listed below, students will complete electives of their choice to achieve the required total credit hours to earn the degree.

Public Health Core Curriculum

Course Title

Course Number Credits
Foundations of Public Health Practice Online Module   Non-credit
Introduction To Biostatistics (or BIOSTAT521 or Exam Exemption) BIOSTAT501 3
Principles of Epidemiology for Public Health PUBHLTH512 3
Public Health Systems, Policy And Management PUBHLTH513 3
Public Health Sciences And The Environment PUBHLTH514 2
Leadership Skills for Interprofessional Practice PUBHLTH516 1
An overview of the Core Curriculum Policy is available for those desiring more information about the "Core".


Health Behavior and Health Education - Master of Public Health Curriculum
Course Title Course Number Credits
Psychosocial Factors of Health-Related Behavior HBEHED600 3
Program Development in Health Education HBEHED651 3
Program Evaluation in Health Education HBEHED622 3
Behavioral Research and Evaluation Methods (select one class) HBEHED 530, 620, 621, 626638, or 700 3
Health Equity (select one class) HBEHED 605613, 614, 617, 640, 645, , 677679, 690, 710: Racial & Ethnic Disparities, 733 3
Applied Health Communications (select one class) HBEHED 641, 661, 668 3
Internship (credit reduction limited to 3 credits for dual degree students) 318 to 636 hours (F19 cohort)/ 252-504 hours (F20 cohort) 3-6 credit reduction
Foundational Skills in HBHE (Only required for F19 cohort) HBEHED601 (F19 cohort only/Not required for F20 cohort) 3
Culminating Seminar in HBHE (Year 2) HBEHED675 1

The Health Behavior & Health Education MPH Degree program is 60 credit hours. In addition to the courses listed above, students will complete electives of their choice to achieve the required total credit hours to earn the degree.

Note: Students are required to take at least half of their credit hours within the Department of Health Behavior and Health Education. The credit reduction received for the internship may not count toward this requirement.


While HBHE does not have a specific prerequisite requirement regarding quantitative preparation, we do require all applicants to demonstrate foundational quantitative ability through successful completion of any of the following:

  • college algebra or higher mathematics courses (e.g, Calculus)
  • college-level statistics or biostatistics courses
  • college-level chemistry, physics, economics, or other mathematics-dependent courses
  • demonstrated work experience that incorporates these types of quantitative skills

Any student whose quantitative preparation is missing, weak, or significantly out of date is highly encouraged to take a college algebra course (e.g., through an accredited community college) in preparation for or concurrently with their application. Admission to the program may sometimes be made conditional on successful completion of such a course.

Internship and Applied Practice Experience

Internship & Applied Practice Experience

Students gain experience in professional, mentored, and evaluated research and practice placements resulting in work products that contribute to their training and benefit partner organizations.

Integrative Learning Experience

Students integrate and synthesize foundational and concentration competencies and apply them to solving a complex public health problem in writing the HBHE Culminating Essay.

Financial Support

In addition to financial aid and funding opportunities from the School of Public Health, students can receive financial support from the Rackham Graduate School.

Ready to Apply?

Applications for the Health Behavior and Health Education MPH program are processed through SOPHAS. Visit our Applications & Deadlines page to start the application process.

Start your application