University of Texas at El Paso Academic Catalog

Academic Catalog

Graduate Certificate in Public Health

Public health uses a multidisciplinary approach in which professionals from different disciplines work together for a common purpose: promoting health, preventing disease, and improving the life quality of communities. The UTEP Graduate Certificate in Public Health is a 15-credit hour program of study that provides students with the core public health concepts they need to improve their professional knowledge or to later pursue a graduate degree in the public-health field. The certificate consists of the five core courses required for the Master of Public Health degree. Students who successfully complete their certificate program with grades of B or better in all courses will be eligible for consideration for admission into the MPH degree program, although acceptance is not guaranteed.

This flexible, convenient certificate program is designed for several types of prospective students. These include:

  1. currently enrolled graduate/professional students who would like to explore public health as a possible future profession;
  2. persons who currently work in the public health sector but whose undergraduate training did not include formal education in public health;
  3. individuals who currently hold an undergraduate, graduate, or professional degree in another area and who are interested in increasing their public-health knowledge and expertise, or who wish to move into the field of public health; and
  4. persons with prior undergraduate/graduate/professional degrees who do not currently have the time to complete a MPH program, and/or who might feel more comfortable initially pursuing a certificate program.


All MPH courses are held in late afternoon/early evenings to accommodate working professionals. The five core courses that constitute the graduate certificate are offered every year during the fall and spring semesters. Full-time students can expect to complete the certificate requirements in as little as two semesters, i.e., three courses in the fall and two courses in the spring semesters. Part-time students will take longer to finish the certificate requirements, depending upon how many courses they enroll in per semester.

Admission Requirements

Admission to the UTEP graduate public health certificate program is competitive. The admission requirements for the Public Health Certificate program are similar to those for the MPH program for the purpose of maintaining program quality.

  • Completed baccalaureate degree from an accredited U.S. institution or recognized foreign institution.
  • Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA on 4.0 scale for all prior academic work.
  • International applicants must meet the minimum TOEFL score requirement set by the UTEP Graduate School.
  • Prior health experience (e.g., in health care, research, community development, health promotion/education) and/or commitment to public health.

Application Process

The Public Health Certificate Program has fall-semester admission only. All application documents must be received by the UTEP Graduate School by the date specified in the Department of Public Health Sciences website for fall admission. Students should submit the following documents on line to the UTEP Graduate School at (click on Apply Now under Quick Links):

  • A completed UTEP application form.
  • Current curriculum vitae or resume.
  • Official transcripts from all colleges/universities attended.
  • Three letters of recommendation from professional references such as current/former professors or employers (not relatives or friends). At a minimum, one of these must be from an academic reference (former professor; dean).
  • A 500-word statement clearly describing previous health-related experience, reasons for pursuing the Public Health Graduate Certificate, and future career plans.

Degree Plan

Required Credits: 15

Graduate Certificate in Public Health (All courses require a grade of B or better)
Required Courses:
PUBH 5302Epidemiology for Pub Hlth Prof3
PUBH 5304Environmental Health3
PUBH 5305Biostatistics in Public Health3
PUBH 5307Health Services Admin & Policy3
PUBH 5353Social and Behavioral Approach3
Total Hours15