PhD Division Requirements

Community Health Sciences

In addition to the general program requirements of the Graduate College and of the School of Public Health, Community Health Sciences requires the following. Students should refer to the CHS Student Handbook as well.

1. PhD students must take BSTT 400, BSTT 401, EPID 400, CHSC 400, and CHSC 501. In addition, the student must select either HPA 400, EOHS 400 or HPA 401.

2. PhD students must select a major area of concentration in which at least 9 semester hour credits are completed at the 500-level. Advisor approval is necessary for elective course selection.

3. In addition, PhD students must select a collateral area in which at least six semester hours are completed at the 500 level. The student will be tested in the collateral area as part of the preliminary examination. PhD students with a concentration in Maternal and Child Health Epidemiology have additional requirements.

Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences

PhD Core

EPID 400 Principles of Epidemiology (3 sh)

BSTT 400 Biostatistics I (3 sh)

BSTT 401 Biostatistics II (4 sh)

IPHS 660 DrPH Integrative Seminar (1 sh)

Sub-total 11 sh

Division Core

All students are required to take at least 4 sh in each of the following three areas:

Exposure Assessment and Measurement

EOHS 405 Environmental Calculations (1 sh)

EOHS 440 Chemistry for Environmental Professionals (3 sh)

EOHS 421 Fundamentals of Industrial Hygiene (2 sh)

EOHS 418 Analysis of Water and Wastewater Quality (2 sh)

EOHS 428 Industrial Hygiene Laboratory I (2 sh)

EOHS 438 Air Quality Laboratory (2 sh)

EOHS 542 Water Chemistry (3 sh)

EOHS 543 Environmental Organic Chemistry (3 sh)

Health Assessment

EOHS 450 Principles of Occupational/Environmental Medicine (2 sh)

EOHS 455 Environmental and Occupational Toxicology (3 sh)

EOHS 551 Occupational Diseases (4 sh)

EOHS 558 Industrial Toxicology (2 sh)

EOHS 554 Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology (2 sh)

Intervention Strategies

EOHS 411 Water Quality Management I (3 sh)

EOHS 431 Air Quality Management I (3 sh)

EOHS 461 Community Health and Consumer Protection (2 sh)

EOHS 482 Occupational Safety Science (2 sh)

EOHS 556 Risk Assessment in Environmental and

Occupational Health (2 sh)

Sub-total 12 sh

Electives

Students should select courses with their advisor in a discipline of interest. At least 9 sh of coursework in the studentís discipline must be at the 500 level. At least 6 sh of coursework in a collateral area is required.

Capstone Requirement

A capstone experience is required of all students in EOHS. For students in the PhD program, the capstone experience is the PhD research (IPHS 599) and written dissertation.

Sub-total 32 sh

Program Total: 96 sh


Environmental and Occupational Health Perspective for PhD Students

To accomplish the schoolwide objectives in the context of environmental and occupational health sciences, the PhD student is expected to identify and master an appropriate web of theoretical perspectives and research methods in both a major and collateral area along with the capacity to communicate and work with researchers and professionals in a wide variety of disciplines.


Epidemiology and
Biostatistics

Epidemiology

Minimum credit hour requirement: 96 sh

In addition to the 10 sh of core PhD course requirements, students in Epidemiology must take the following courses:

Epidemiology Requirements (18 sh)

EPID 401 Quantitative Methods - I (2 sh)
EPID 402 Quantitative Methods - II (2 sh)
EPID 410 Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases (2 sh)
EPID 411 Epidemiology of Chronic Disease (3 sh)
EPID 501 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Epidemiology (3 sh)
EPID 591 Current Epidemiologic Literature (2 sh)
EPID 595 Research Seminar (1 sh)
Choose one:
BSTT 430 Design of Clinical Trials (3 sh)
-or-
BSTT 440 Sampling and Estimation Methods (3 sh)

Electives 36 sh (minimum)

Dissertation Research 32 sh (min.)

PROGRAM TOTAL 96 sh (min.)

Any specific course requirement may be waived on the basis of previous course work or experience. Please refer to the section on Academic Policies and Standards for course waiver rules and procedure.

Credit for Prior Masters Degree
PhD students with a relevant earned Masters degree can transfer up to 32sh to their Epi or Bio doctoral program. This credit can apply to course requirements and/or electives, but not research hours. Faculty advisors determine student eligibility when reviewing the first program proposal. The maximum amount of transferable credit is not necessarily available to every student.

Standards of Performance for Epidemiology Program
In addition to school-wide standards, for students majoring in epidemiology no grade below "B" is acceptable in any Epidemiology or Biostatistics course. If a grade lower than "B" is achieved in such a course, it may be repeated once. Failure to maintain this standard will be grounds for dismissal from the epidemiology program.

PhD Preliminary Examination
With the assistance of the advisor, the student should select appropriate faculty for his or her preliminary examination committee. The committee must be comprised of five members at a minimum, having at least two faculty members with tenure. The committee will administer the full preliminary examination, the details of which are as follows:

  1. The written exam includes four areas: core and intermediate methods, advanced methods and two substantive areas. Students can select any two substantive areas in which they have completed a 500 level class. There are three 3-hour in-class examination sessions and a take-home component. The in-class sections focus on core and intermediate methods and substantive areas, and the take-home focuses on advanced methods.
  2. The oral examination follows the written examination (within one month) and may reexamine students based on the answers to the written portion or include additional material based on required coursework.

PhD Dissertation Research: IPHS 599
The PhD dissertation in Epidemiology at UIC SPH represents the culmination of a student's doctoral training. The thesis or dissertation process is composed of two distinct components: a) the development of the dissertation proposal in conjunction with a dissertation advisor and committee, and b) conduct of the dissertation research and the writing of the dissertation. The dissertation proposal is developed under the guidance of the student's dissertation advisor. Past experience indicates that a close working relationship between the student and advisor greatly facilitates the proposal writing process. The dissertation proposal should be developed as soon as possible after the student passes his or her doctoral preliminary examination. With the assistance of the advisor, the student should select appropriate faculty for his or her dissertation committee. The committee must be comprised of five members at a minimum, having at least two faculty members with tenured status, and one member outside of UIC. The dissertation committee will meet with the student to approve the dissertation proposal, and to determine that the student is adequately prepared to undertake it. If human subjects are involved, the student must undergo Institutional Review Board (IRB) training and review prior to conducting research.

A typical epidemiologic dissertation proposal will involve investigating the risk factors for a particular disease using a cohort, case-control or cross-sectional research design. Emphasis is placed on primary data collection though in some instances secondary analysis of already collected data may be permitted. In this situation, extensive manipulation of data must be involved to address a specific hypothesis with several components. The dissertation research must be creative and original and add significant new knowledge to the field of epidemiology. It is expected that the thesis results will be suitable for publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal.

The thesis committee will re-convene at the completion of dissertation research to participate in the dissertation defense. After the student successfully defends, he or she will submit a paper copy of the dissertation to the SPH Director of Student Affairs, for approval of the thesis format. Prior to the defense, the student should obtain and read carefully the Graduate College Thesis Manual for rules and regulations regarding the writing and submission of a doctoral dissertation.

Note: the written and defended thesis is required for submission mid-semester. Students are advised to plan their program completion and graduation accordingly.

Maternal and Child Health Epidemiology

In conjunction with the Community Health Sciences division, the Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics allows students the opportunity to pursue a PhD in Epidemiology under the Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Epidemiology track. This program offers courses in both maternal and child health and epidemiology for students wishing to focus on applied MCH epidemiology.

SPH Core Course Requirement

BSTT 401 Biostatistics II (4 sh)

Major Area Requirement -13 credits at 500 level (13 sh)

CHSC/EPID 545 Reproductive and Perinatal Health (3 sh)
CHSC 548 Readings in Reproductive and Perinatal Epidemiology (1 sh)
EPID 518 Epidemiology of Pediatric Diseases (3 sh)

EPID 501 Advanced Quantitative Methods in Epidemiology (3 sh)
Choose one:
CHSC 542 Advanced Maternal & Child Health Applied Programs (3 sh) OR
CHSC 543 MCH Policy and Advocacy (3 sh)

Division Requirements (21-24 sh)

BSTT 440 Sampling & Estimation Methods Applied to PH (3 sh)
CHSC/EPID 594 Advanced Applied Methods in MCH Epidemiology (3 sh)
EPID 401 Quantitative Methods in Epidemiology (2 sh)
EPID 402 Quantitative Methods in Epidemiology (2 sh)
EPID 410 Introduction to Infectious Disease Epidemiology (2 sh)
EPID 411 Introduction to Chronic Disease Epidemiology (3 sh)
CHSC 400 Public Health Concepts and Practice (If not UIC MPH) ( 3 sh)
CHSC 501 Foundations of Public Health Inquiry (3 sh)
Choose one:
CHSC 434 Introduction to Qualitative Methods in Public Health (3 sh) OR
CHSC 432 Analytic Methods in Public Health (3 sh) OR
CHSC 446 Research Methods in Community Health (3 sh)

Seminars/Electives (8-11 sh)

CHSC 441 Introduction to Maternal and Child Health (3 sh)

Choose one:
EPID 591 Current Epidemiologic Literature (2 sh) OR
CHSC 595 MCH Seminar (1 sh) OR
EPID 595 Epidemiology Research Seminar (1 sh)

Electives - Includes biological science requirement (4-6 sh) *

Transfer of Masters credit 32 sh

Dissertation Research 32 sh

PROGRAM TOTAL 110-116 sh

** Suggested Electives
One or more of the following courses are strongly encouraged:
CHSC 577 Survey Questionnaire Design (2 sh)
EPID 520 Genetic Epidemiology (2 sh)
CHSC 594 Management Analysis of Qualitative Data (3 sh)
PA 541 Advanced Data Analysis (4 sh)
EPID 510 Advanced Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases (2 sh)
EPID 471 Population I (3 sh)

Biological Sciences Requirement
Depending on clinical background, one or more of the following courses are strongly encouraged:
HND 510 Nutrition, Physiologic Aspects (3 sh)
HND 520 Maternal Nutrition & Perinatal Development (3 sh)
HND 522 Adv. In Pediatric Nutrition (2 sh)
NuMC 507/508 Scientific Basis for Women's Health & Perinatal Nursing I/II (2 sh) / (2 sh)
NuSc 214/216 Clinical Pathophysiology I/II (2 sh) / (2 sh)

Note: Students who have not taken EPID 400 and BSTT 400 prior to entering the PhD program are required to do so.

Any required course may be waived on the basis of prior education or experience. Please refer to the section on Academic Policies and Standards for course waiver rules and procedure.

Preliminary Examination in MCH Epidemiology
The MCH Epidemiology preliminary examination will include an in-class Epidemiology exam based on EPID 401 and EPID 402, a 10-day take home analytic project based on CHSC/EPID 594 (Advanced Applied Methods in MCH Epidemiology) and EPID 501 and six to nine hours of content/methods questions to be determined by the preliminary exam committee.

Students in the Maternal and Child Health Epidemiology program should adhere to all other guidelines for the Epidemiology PhD degree, in addition to schoolwide PhD degree information.

Epidemiology Perspective for PhD Students
In addition to the schoolwide learning objectives for the PhD student and the learning objectives for MPH and MS students in epidemiology, the PhD student in epidemiology should attain skills specifically for the practice of epidemiology in research, teaching and practical settings.

Biostatistics

Minimum credit hour requirement: 96 sh

Note: Biostatistics students should not take BSTT 400 as an SPH course requirement.

Course Work: 64 sh

Biostatistics Requirements (17-21 sh)

Offered every other fall semester:
BSTT531 Advanced Statistical Inference (4 sh)
BSTT533 Linear Models (4 sh)
Offered every fall and spring semester:
EPID400 Principles of Epidemiology (2 sh)*
EPID401 Quantitative Methods in Epidemiology (3 sh)*
* May be waived if completed previously.
Repeat each semester of enrollment:
BSTT595 Seminar (4-8 sh)

Electives (43-47 sh)

BSTT594 Special Topics in Biostatistics (4 sh)**
**Offered alternating spring semesters:
- Generalized Linear Models
- Bayesian Methods
Courses in a collateral area (0-16 sh)
Other electives (23-43 sh)

Doctoral Preliminary Examination

Offered every year in September.

Dissertation (IPHS 599) 32 sh (minimum)

Includes Dissertation Research, Proposal Approval, and Defense

PROGRAM TOTAL 96 sh

Note: PhD students majoring in Biostatistics must take any required MS courses whose equivalent they have not taken previously.

Any required course may be waived on the basis of prior education or experience. Please refer to the section on Academic Policies and Standards for course waiver rules and procedure.

Credit for Prior Masters Degree
PhD students with a relevant earned Masters degree can transfer up to 32sh to their Epi or Bio doctoral program. This credit can apply to course requirements and/or electives, but not research hours. Faculty advisors determine student eligibility when reviewing the first program proposal. The maximum amount of transferable credit is not necessarily available to every student.

Standards of Performance for Biostatistics Program
Students in Biostatistics are allowed only one grade of C in required courses. A student who receives two Cs in required courses will not be allowed to graduate from the program. A student may re-take a course one time and attempt to replace the C with a higher grade.

Doctoral Preliminary Examination in Biostatistics

  1. The written exam includes both in-class and take-home portions. The in-class portion is scheduled for 4 hours, while students have 1 week to complete the take-home portion. Material for the exam is based primarily on the 500-level biostatistics courses as well as the required statistics courses.
  2. The oral examination follows the written examination (within one month) and may re-examine students based on the answers to the written portion or include additional material based on required coursework.

PhD Dissertation Research: IPHS 599
Biostatistics students should follow the guidelines found in paragraphs 1 and 3 under Epidemiology Doctoral Dissertation Research, and in the schoolwide PhD degree information.

 

Health Policy and Administration

No additional requirements.