The Masters of Public Health-Doctor of Philosophy (MPH-PhD) dual degree allows students to have a richer learning experience by developing competencies in both public health and their doctorate field of study. Unlike an MPH-MD dual degree, where students become medical doctors with public health knowledge, an MPH-PhD dual degree prepares students for careers in academia and research that have a public health focus.
What is unique about a Doctor of Philosophy degree is that it can be gained in almost any field; however, when receiving it with an MPH, the field of study is usually related to public health, such as biostatistics, epidemiology, nutrition, social work, etc. Depending on the MPH-PhD program chosen, there will be different requirements, courses, and take different lengths of time to complete, but there is the possibility of some courses overlapping between the MPH portion of the program and the doctorate portion. However, no matter which MPH-PhD program is chosen, most schools require PhD candidates to produce original research, normally in the form of a thesis or dissertation.
Those who receive an MPH-PhD dual degree will have various employment opportunities in research and academia and can go on to become professors, principal investigators of research projects, and scientists.