USC MPH Community Health Promotion Concentration

Community Health Promotion

Contemporary public health emphasizes a community and population-based approach to health promotion and disease prevention that encompasses social and environmental influences, in addition to individually-focused determinants that explain health behavior. Taught by leading faculty from the Department of Preventive Medicine at USC, students in this MPH concentration will take courses designed to prepare community health practitioners to assess the needs of populations, and to design, implement and evaluate health promotion programs to diverse audiences.

MPH students in this concentration will take the public health core courses plus 24 units of concentration- specific coursework (16 units of concentration core courses + 8 units of elective courses) in topics that include health education and promotion, health communication, and child and family health.

Concentration Curriculum
Concentration Directors
Sheela Rao, MD
Clinical Associate Professor of Pediatrics
srao@chla.usc.edu
Anamara Ritt, PhD
Assistant Professor Of Clinical Preventive Medicine
ritt@usc.edu
Frequently Asked Questions
  • To learn to use health education and specific interventions to tackle public health problems
  • To use health education to facilitate behavioral and environmental changes to improve health
  • To deliver programs and interventions conducive to health enhancement to individuals and communities
  • Develop community-wide education programs
  • Design and implement of health education programs
  • Promote individuals and communities to efficiently use health services and adopt self-care practices
  • Assist clinicians in applying public health principles in their practice
  • Develop program materials and curriculum for use in health promotion programs
  • Program Manager
  • Project Director
  • Health Education Specialist
  • Health Education Coordinator
  • Patient Education Coordinator
Coursework

Click courses for descriptions.

Overview and application of behavioral theories to the field of health education and promotion. Examines the determinants of health behavior and strategies for change at the individual, group and community level.

Core concepts, methods and values of public health program planning and evaluation, including community needs assessment, writing objectives, designing health promotion programs, process and outcome evaluation.

Survey of effective community organizing and mobilization efforts in the U.S. and abroad, using participatory, organizational, community empowerment and public-private partnership models.

And choose one of the following:

Application of communication theories and methods to community health problems. Includes background assessment, program design, evaluation, social marketing, media advocacy, and a review of major health campaigns.

Overview of concepts, tools, data collection, analysis methods and designs used to evaluate health promotion programs. Examples from substance abuse prevention, family planning and reproductive health programs.

Approaches for modifying health behavior in various settings and within diverse populations. Emphasis on practical considerations necessary to design and implement interventions with demonstrated effectiveness.

 
Elective Options

Click courses for descriptions.

*May receive credit for concentration core or concentration elective only.

Historical development of the American health care system; determinants of health care utilization; role of health care providers; health policy; public health services; and health care finance.
Prerequisite: PM 502

Exploration of the interplay between systems, policy, advocacy, programs, and research with sexually transmitted infections. Issues such as health literacy, access to care, and evidence-based interventions designed to avert disparities in health, especially sexual health, will be evaluated.

Recommended Preparation: PM 501 and PM 512

International variations in health status with a focus on the impact of socioeconomic status, politics, environment, education and gender in etiology of illness, access to health care, progression of disease, and recovery.

Application of communication theories and methods to community health problems. Includes background assessment, program design, evaluation, social marketing, media advocacy, review of major health campaigns.

Recommended Preparation: PM 500.

An overview of environmental health, identifying issues in assessing effects of exposure on health and potential interventions for reducing adverse health risks. 
Prerequisite: PM 512

With a physiological overview, differentiates genetic and environmental disease; emphasis on the relationships between lifestyle, behavior, and health.

Prerequisite: admission to PhD in Preventive Medicine, Health Behavior Research or basic biology.

Overview of concepts, tools, data collection, analysis methods and designs used to evaluate health promotion programs. Examples from substance abuse prevention, family planning and reproductive health programs.

Physiological basis for good nutrition during pregnancy and childhood through adolescence. Design, implementation and evaluation of public health nutrition programs and policies serving women and children.

Recommended Preparation: PM 530.

Theory, methods and procedures of network analysis with emphasis on applications to public health programs.

Approaches for modifying health behavior in various settings and within diverse populations. Emphasis on practical considerations necessary to design and implement interventions with demonstrated effectiveness. 

Introduction to leadership and management concepts, tools, and practices in the context of domestic and global public health and healthcare delivery settings. 

Definition and chronology of natural and man-made disasters and their effects on the global community. Structure and organization of disaster management systems and the role of humanitarian organizations.

Recommended Preparation: PM 501, PM 512

Ethical principles in the distribution of health resources, conduct of global public health research, and implementation of public health initiatives across different nations, cultures, religions.

Recommended Preparation: PM 501

Overview of issues related to infant, child and adolescent health, including special health considerations at different points in the developmental cycle, health care systems and policies and health disparities. 

Overview of issues related to infant, child and adolescent health, including special health considerations at different points in the developmental cycle, health care systems and policies and health disparities. 

History of child health and social welfare programs during the past century. Issues examining health status and health service delivery, the role of health care financing and health policy.

Introduction to common uses of qualitative research methods in public health research and application. Methods include ethnography, participant observation, open-ended interviewing, and focus groups. 

Theory and research on value and attitude formation and change; consequences for communication and behavior.

Connections between health providers’ communication and patients’ well-being; consultation language, nonverbal behavior, physical settings, design of media messages, information technologies in patient education and care.

Theoretical foundations of social marketing and entertainment education; uses of dramatic serials, telenovelas and animation to promote human rights; program design, evaluation.

Fundamental principles of audience research; critique of existing methodologies; implications for global audiences and mass media markets.

This information represents an effort on the part of your advisor to help you plan your academic program. It is not an official document.

For program requirements, please refer to your USC Catalogue .

Courses listed may be offered irregularly. Check the USC schedule of classes  for semester-specific course offerings and/or meet with your advisor to discuss available options for your concentration.