Social and Behavioral Sciences Competencies

Upon receiving an MPH degree with a concentration in Social and Behavioral Sciences, the student will be able to:
  • Identify the effects of social, psychological, and behavioral factors on individual and population health, including prevention, treatment and management of chronic disease, adjustment to illness, adherence to treatment regimens, and promotion of recovery
  • Analyze health from multiple levels, including the individual, the social group, and society (e.g., understand a broad ecological model of health)
  • Critically evaluate and interpret the public health scientific literature as presented in professional journals and the popular media, including descriptive, analytic, and intervention studies
  • Construct research hypotheses and design a study to test these hypotheses
  • Apply social, psychological and behavioral theory in the design, implementation, and evaluation of prevention interventions aimed toward: (a) decreasing health damaging behaviors (e.g. risky sex); (b) increasing health promoting behaviors (e.g. nutrition, exercise); and (c) increasing psychosocial well-being (e.g. coping with chronic illness)
  • Design an intervention aimed at changing a particular health behavior or preventing a disease
  • Develop procedures and training materials to implement effective behavioral interventions
  • Describe how culture, social inequities, and biology influence health across the lifespan
  • Identify ways to address health inequalities and promote health equity
  • Describe the appropriate statistical analyses to examine different types of research questions in the social and behavioral sciences
  • Demonstrate oral and written communication and presentation skills to effectively communicate and disseminate results to various professional and community audiences
  • Explain the dynamic interaction between policies and the social and behavioral sciences
  • Apply ethical principles involved in social and behavioral sciences as they relate to public health