The doctoral program in Health Promotion Sciences is an academic degree program designed to prepare students for research positions in the areas of preventive medicine, public health, behavioral epidemiology, and policy research. The program seeks to train independent researchers in the field of health promotion sciences with two primary goals 1) to provide students with the necessary preparation to conduct etiological research on the causes of health-related behavior 2) to ensure that professionals are equipped to fashion and evaluate effective intervention strategies to prevent and manage disease.
Admission requirements are detailed in the Admission section of the Bulletin.
Coursework. The program requires 72 units, consisting of 20 courses. Students complete 40 units of core courses, 8 units of directed research, and a minimum of 12 units of elective coursework that constitute a concentration, one transdisciplinary course and 4 units of culminating courses. Students may select an established concentration or, in collaboration with the program director, develop a customized specialization.
Concentration. Students must successfully complete 120 units (three courses) in a concentration. Students may select from: Biostatistics, Global Health, Public Health, Health Informatics, Health Communication, and Neurocognitive Science.
Research Tools. In lieu of a specific language requirement, demonstrated proficiency in one research tool tailored to individual needs is required. Research tools in health promotion include statistics, computer programming, statistical programming applications, survey research, evaluation research, neurocognitive assessment, and physical activity/dietary assessment. The selection of research tools is part of each student’s advisement plan. Students should plan to fulfill the requirement within the first three years of study.
Annual Reviews. Student work and progress is reviewed annually. Intended as a constructive and developmental process, the review provides feedback to the student on progress in the program, examines career goals and aspirations, and identifies avenues of continued development. Participants of the review include the doctoral program director and a minimum of two faculty members familiar with the student’s course work or research activities. At the time of the review, the student submits a portfolio which includes a current vita, list of courses and grades received, and statements of accomplishments and goals for the upcoming academic year. Students are required to participate in the annual review until they successfully pass the qualifying exam.
Qualifying Examination. Oral and written examinations center on the dissertation proposal and assess the depth and breadth of a student’s knowledge and aptitude in approaching and solving fundamental research issues in health promotion. Successful completion of the qualifying exam is required for advancement to candidacy.
Dissertation. Each candidate must submit acceptable dissertation research conducted with the approval of an advisory committee. An oral examination is scheduled upon submission of the dissertation.
University Policies. University policies detailed in the Academic Policies section of the Bulletin apply, including the Transdisciplinary Course and other University requirements disclosed in the Doctoral Degree Regulations section.
Transfer Credit. The University’s policy on transfer credit applies. The PhD program permits the transfer of up to 24 semester units from prior graduate work completed outside of CGU with advisor approval.