Master of Public Health Program

Curriculum — Course List

The instructor and the university reserve the right to modify elements of the course during the term. The university may change dates and deadlines for any or all courses in extreme circumstances. If either type of modification becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. It is the responsibility of the students to check their McMaster email and course website during the term and to note any changes.

Click here for School of Graduate Studies Course Listing page for Public Health


PUBHLTH 700 / Foundations of Population and Public Health Practice

3 unit(s)
The Foundations of Population and Public Health Practice course runs for 14 weeks in the Fall term. This course is mandatory for MPH students. The course provides an overview of core concepts and frameworks in public and population health practice. Students will gain an understanding of the history, governance and core functions of public health at local, provincial, federal, national and international levels; how public health organizations work with the public and stakeholders; with primary care and other aspects of the health care system and as well how public health works with key players such as municipalities, school boards, non-profit organizations and others to promote and maintain health and reduce health inequities.

Students from other graduate programs can be accepted into this course with permission of the course instructor.


PUBHLTH 701 / Population and Public Health Epidemiology

3 unit(s)
The Population & Public Health Epidemiology course runs for 14 weeks in the Fall term. This course is mandatory for MPH students. It provides students with introductory epidemiology concepts and an understanding of the major issues in communicable disease and non-communicable disease epidemiology as well as measures of determinants of health and health equity. Students will learn to perform computations commonly used in epidemiology.

Students from other graduate programs can be accepted into this course with permission of the course instructor.


HRM 702 / Introduction to Biostatistics

3 unit(s)
The Introduction to Biostatistics course runs for 14 weeks in the Fall term. This course is mandatory for MPH students. Basic statistical concepts and techniques as they apply to analysis and presentation of data in biostatistical and epidemiology practice. The course covers: graphical presentation of data, elementary probability, descriptive statistics, probability distributions, and introduces hypothesis testing using parametric and non-parametric methods. Specific techniques covered include z-tests, t-tests, ANOVA, contingency tables, regression and correlation.

Students from other graduate programs can be accepted into this course with permission of the course instructor.


PUBHLTH 703 / Population and Public Health Policy

3 unit(s)
The Population and Public Health Policy course runs for 14 weeks in the Winter term. This course is mandatory for MPH students. Students learn about public health policy, healthy public policy, and health system policy as it relates to population health. They will learn skills and knowledge in policy agenda setting, development (institutions, interest and ideas), contexts, implementation and evaluation as well as the roles of public/stakeholder engagement, evidence and the media in policy making.

Students from other graduate programs can be accepted into this course with permission of the course instructor.


PUBHLTH 704 / Population and Public Health Research Methods

3 unit(s)
The Population and Public Health Research Methods course runs for 14 weeks in the Winter term. This course is mandatory for MPH students. The course provides students with fundamental public health research skills (quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods) necessary for work in both research and applied settings. Students will learn to critically appraise relevant literature, design and conduct research, and plan and evaluate interventions using appropriate research methods. Students will learn public health research ethics concepts
and approval processes, research literature search skills, funding opportunities and prepare a protocol for their thesis or practicum projects.

Students from other graduate programs can be accepted into this course with permission of the course instructor.


PUBHLTH 705 / Master of Public Health Seminar Series Year One

3 unit(s)
The Public Health Seminar course runs for 14 weeks in the Fall term. This course is for Master of Public Health Students to learn and demonstrate skills and knowledge using current public health issues (understanding, choosing a position and defending it; continuous learning and collaboration). The course includes a variety of education methods including interactive seminars, debates, local field trips, participation in Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact and other relevant rounds and at the Ontario Public Health Association Fall Forum.

This course is mandatory for all full time MPH students in their first term. For part-time MPH students, they will be expected to take this course in their first, second or third year of studies.

This course is not open to non-MPH students.


PUBHLTH 706 / Introduction to Health and Public Health Economics

3 unit(s)
This is a course on the economics of health, public health and health care, with special emphasis on the Canadian health care system. The course examines the nature of health care as a commodity, health care financing and insurance, the demand for health and health care, methods for evaluating health care programs and interventions, issues of efficiency and equity, the economics of health behaviour and selected other topics. Special attention is given to the attributes of health care markets and the implications of those attributes on the financing, funding, organization, delivery of health care services, and public policy.

This course is not mandatory for MPH students and runs in the Winter term. This course is open to all health sciences graduate students including Health Policy, HRM, Global Health and eHealth students.