Are you seeking advanced leadership roles in public health and healthcare? If so, the two main doctoral degrees awarded are: the DrPH and PHD in Public Health. Do you have the Master of Public Health or its equivalent? Are you intending to pursue or advance a professional practice career in the field? Or. are you seeking to lead a team or initiative? If so, either the Doctor of Philosophy or the Doctor of Public Health degree (DrPH Programs) warrants consideration.
DrPH Programs and PhD Programs in Public Health: Basics
Applicants to both the DrPH and PhD in Public Health often aspire to work in leadership positions, either locally or internationally. They frequently work in groups such as:
- Health ministry
- Government agency in public health
- Health-related corporation
- International organization[i]
Admission requirements vary between universities and programs. However, to be eligible to apply into a doctoral program, a prospective candidate usually needs a bachelor’s degree. Also they may need some type of public health and/or service experience. Often required also a master’s or doctoral degree (e.g. MD) in a relevant field plus experience. Universities may look for a candidate with an undergraduate or graduate degree background in the health sciences. Universities may also look for candidates with a background in other applicable fields (e.g. biology, medicine, psychology, economics, business, health care, epidemiology).
DID YOU KNOW? Some health educator positions require a doctoral degree. Graduate programs are commonly in community health education, school health education, public health education, or health promotion (BLS)[ii].
DrPH vs. PhD in Public Health: Which one is best for you?
In the field of public health, the highest scholarly awards include the Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) and the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.).[iii] Ascertaining which one is best for you comes down to identifying your goals as well as the differences between the two degrees. Essentially, the DrPH is regarded as a professional leadership degree. The Ph.D. as more of an academic degree[iv].