USC Master of Public Health Dual & Progressive Degrees

Dual Degrees

At USC, students have the opportunity to earn two professional degrees concurrently. The Department of Preventive Medicine partners with other schools and departments on campus to make innovative degree programs available to highly motivated and qualified students. The body of knowledge and skills of each discipline complement the other, preparing students to be more responsive to today’s health care needs. Students with dual degrees are in high demand in the health care industry, including hospitals and medical centers, government, research agencies, pharmaceutical manufacturers, managed care organizations, and community based organizations.

The Master of Public Health/Master of Science in Social Entrepreneurship (MPH/MSSE) dual degree program is designed for individuals who wish to create sustainable solutions to public health challenges through the creation of innovative enterprises and organizations.

This program combines the business aspects of social entrepreneurship with the knowledge and understanding of how to improve the health of individuals, communities, and populations, locally and globally. It will enable graduates to become agents of change by equipping them with the tools to build innovative enterprises that balance financial sustainability with public health impact, preparing them uniquely to become leaders in the field.

A total of 64 units are required for the dual degree. Students may apply to both programs simultaneously or may apply to the complementing program during the student’s first semester in either the MPH or MSSE program. Upon admission to the dual degree program, coursework is taken simultaneously in both programs.

Learn more about the MSSE program »

The Master of Social Work/Master of Public Health (MSW/MPH) dual degree offers the student interdisciplinary preparation in the fields of public health and social work leading to the Master of Social Work (MSW) and Master of Public Health (MPH) degrees.

The dual degree program is a collaborative effort between the School of Social Work and the Department of Preventive Medicine in the Keck School of Medicine. The objectives of the program are to provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to promote health, prevent disease, and enhance the delivery of health and social services in the community.

Students will build interdisciplinary skills and an interdisciplinary professional identity by developing an understanding of the breadth of each field and their interface, while permitting concentration in particular specialization areas. The program prepares graduates for work in a variety of interdisciplinary settings; and for some, it will provide the basis for doctoral study.

The student enrolls primarily in the MSW program and may apply to the MPH program during the first year. During the second and subsequent years, course work is taken in both programs.

The Master of Planning/ Master of Public Health (MPl/MPH) dual degree is designed for individuals who envision a career that combines urban planning and public health disciplines. This dual degree combines the knowledge of urban planning with an understanding of health from a population perspective. It will provide training for planning, evaluating and guiding healthy community and urban development, and will enable graduates who seek to be agents of change within the profession to assume leadership roles in planning and in public health at the local, state and national levels.

A total of 79 units are required for the dual degree. The student enrolls primarily in the Master of Planning program and may apply to the M.P.H. program during the first year. During the second and subsequent years, course work is taken in both programs.

For further information about dual degree requirements, see the Sol Price School of Public Policy »

The PhD/MPH dual degree combines knowledge of clinical psychology research and practice with an understanding of health from a population perspective.

The student enrolls primarily in the clinical psychology doctoral program and may apply to the MPH program during the first year. During the second and subsequent years, course work is taken in both programs. The dissertation is undertaken through the Department of Psychology.

The School of Pharmacy and the Master of Public Health program, in recognition of the rapidly changing health care environment and in response to the growing demand for pharmacists who are knowledgeable in both pharmacy and population-based health care issues, have developed a dual degree program.

The joint Pharm.D./MPH degree enables graduates to be more responsive to today’s health care needs and will provide training for pharmacists who seek to be agents of change within the profession and to assume leadership roles in the pharmacy field and in public health at the local, state and national levels.

The joint M.D./M.P.H. program at the Keck School of Medicine is designed for individuals who envision a medical career that combines public health and medical disciplines. The MD/MPH program spans five years (four years of medical school and one year of public health courses).

Students begin the core MPH courses in the summer semester following the successful completion of the first three years of medical school. At the conclusion of the joint degree program, students will have completed 43 units in the Master of Public Health program and four years of courses in the Keck School of Medicine.

Progressive Degrees

The Department of Preventive Medicine admits a limited number of USC undergraduates to pursue a progressive degree in the Master of Public Health Program. The Application for Admission to a Progressive Degree Program must be approved by the deans of the bachelor’s and the MPH degree-granting schools at USC and submitted to the USC Graduate School. Progressive Degree program students must fulfill all the requirements for both the bachelor’s degree and the MPH degree. Students will be subject to undergraduate academic progress standards while in undergraduate status and graduate academic progress standards while in graduate status. The degrees may be awarded separately, but the MPH degree will not be awarded before the undergraduate degree. The time limit for completing a progressive degree program is a total of 12 semesters.

Application

The Application for Admission to a Progressive Degree Program is available through the USC Graduate School.

Eligibility Requirements
  •  Applicants for the MPH Progressive Degree program must have completed 64 units of course work applicable to their undergraduate degree since graduating from high school. (AP units, IB units and course work taken prior to high school graduation are excluded).
  • Applicants must submit their application prior to completion of 96 units of course work in the fall semester of the third year of enrollment at USC and must have a least a 3.0 cumulative GPA at the time of application. The recommended deadline to apply is November 30.
  • Applicants must submit their application prior to completion of 96 units of course work in the fall semester of the third year of enrollment at USC and must have a least a 3.0 cumulative GPA at the time of application. The recommended deadline to apply is November 30.
Admission Requirements

The Application for Admission to a Progressive Master’s Degree Program must be approved by the deans of the bachelor’s and the MPH degree-granting schools at USC and submitted to the USC Graduate School.

Progressive Degree program students must fulfill all the requirements for both the bachelor’s degree and the standalone MPH degree. Students will be subject to undergraduate academic progress standards while in undergraduate status and graduate academic progress standards while in graduate status. The degrees may be awarded separately, but the MPH degree will not be awarded before the undergraduate degree. The time limit for completing a progressive degree program is 12 semesters.

  • Applicants for the MPH Progressive Degree program must have completed 64 units of course work applicable to their undergraduate degree since graduating from high school. (AP units, IB units and course work taken prior to high school graduation are excluded).
  • Applicants must submit their application prior to completion of 96 units of course work in the fall semester of the third year of enrollment at USC and must have a least a 3.0 cumulative GPA at the time of application.
  • An approved course plan proposal and letters of recommendation from two USC faculty members must be submitted with the application, with at least one of the recommendations coming from a faculty member in the student's bachelor's major department.
  • FOR STUDENTS FROM UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMS OTHER THAN HEALTH PROMOTION AND DISEASE PREVENTION & DENTAL HYGIENE: A Statement of Purpose of approximately 2-3 pages addressing the following questions: Why are you interested in pursuing the MPH Degree? How will an MPH Degree affect or enhance your career aspirations and goals?
Student Status​

In most cases, students will be classified as undergraduate students for the first 8 semesters of college enrollment. In the ninth semester, students will be changed to graduate status.

While classified as an undergraduate, students will be assessed the undergraduate tuition rate and the enrollment status will be determined by undergraduate standards.

While classified as graduate students, students will be assessed the graduate tuition rate appropriate for their master’s degree program and the enrollment status will be determined by graduate standards. (For summer session units and transfer units, 16 units equal one USC semester).

Application Requirements
  • Students must complete a Progressive Degrees Program – Proposed Course Plan form as part of the application process. The Proposed Course Plan must include all graduate course work required for completion of the requirements for the Master’s program.
  • Students must complete all necessary sections on the Application for Admission to a Progressive Master’s Program form. Admission must be approved by the dean of the student’s undergraduate major, and by the department chair and the dean of the master’s degree program at USC and approved signatures must be present on the completed application form.
  • For more information, contact the approprate undergraduate office or the MPH Program at 323-442-7257.