Public Health Foundations


The Public Health Graduate Certificate with an emphasis in Public Health Foundations provides training in the five core areas of public health – this certificate is a great way to understand the basics of public health. It is comprised of the five core courses of Public Health: Biostatistics, Environmental Health, Epidemiology, Management and Policy, and Social and Behavioral Health.

Successful completion of this certificate will be denoted on a student’s transcript by “Completed Graduate Certificate in Public Health.” A paper certificate with the same notation will be mailed to the students home 8-12 weeks after final grades are posted.

Features of the Graduate Certificate in Public Health

  • can be completed in 3-5 semesters
  • consists of 5 courses of 3 credits each
  • requires students to maintain a 3.0 GPA and have no grades lower than a “C”
  • requires a final exam covering the 10 Essential Services of Public Health
  • courses in this certificate program may be transferred into the University of Florida’s Master of Public Health (MPH) program upon admission with a B or better grade, provided that the courses were completed less than 7 years prior.

Certified in Public Health (CPH) Exam

Individuals who complete the five core classes (epidemiology, biostatistics, behavioral sciences/health education, environmental health, health administration/policy) at a CEPH-accredited institution are eligible to sit for the CPH exam as long as they meet either of two additional eligibility criteria:

  • Minimum of three years of public health experience OR
  • Possession of a relevant graduate degree

Click here to learn more about the CPH eligibility requirements.

The Graduate Certificate in Public Health Foundations includes all 5 Public Health Core Courses, which meets the academic criteria for CPH Exam eligibility.


Course Plan: Option 1 including PHC 6050 or Option 2 including PHC 6052

Applicants will choose their specific plan of study and course schedule when completing the departmental application. Schedules can be found on our Course Schedule page

Course Descriptions and Syllabi

PHC 6001 Principles of Epidemiology

Description: This course is an introduction to epidemiology for students majoring in any aspect of the health sciences. The purpose of this course is to equip students with the necessary knowledge and skills to explain the place of epidemiology in the general health thinking and to communicate and apply the basic principles of epidemiology.

PHC 6313 Environmental Health Concepts in Public Health

Core Public Health Course
Description: This course is a survey of major topic areas of Environmental Health. It will examine sources, routes, media, and health outcomes associated with biological, chemical and physical agents in the environment.

PHC 6410 Pyschological, Behavioral, and Social Issues in Public Health

Description: This course will provide foundational knowledge of the major social and behavioral science models and theories, and will guide students in the application of these theories to real-world public health challenges.

HSA 6114 Introduction to the U.S. Health Care Systems

Description: The course provides an overview of the structure of the healthcare delivery system and policy. It encompasses organization structure, workforce, healthcare cost, diverse healthcare delivery models, health policy and technology.

Pick 1 of the following courses:

PHC 6050 Statistical Methods for Health Science I

Description: Statistical methods for description and analysis provide investigators with useful tools for making sense of data. The pervasiveness of statistics in public health as well as other fields has led to increased recognition that statistical literacy – familiarity with the goals and methods of statistics – should be a basic component of a well-rounded educational program. In this course, students will develop statistical vocabulary, learn methods for descriptive data analysis, study the fundamentals of probability and sampling distributions, learn methods for statistical inference and hypothesis testing will be based on one or two samples, and become familiar with categorical data analysis and linear regression. Data analysis will be conducted in SPSS.

PHC 6052 Introduction to Biostatistical Methods

Description: Introduction to the concepts and methods of biostatistical data analysis. Topics include descriptive statistics, probability, standard probability distributions, sampling distributions, point and confidence interval estimation, hypothesis testing, power and sample size estimation, one- and two-sample parametric and non-parametric methods for analyzing continuous or discrete data, and simple linear regression. SAS statistical software for data management, statistical analysis and power calculations. Required core course for students in biostatistics, environmental health, and epidemiology concentrations.

  • Admission to the Graduate Certificate in Public Health is not an admission to the UF Graduate School.
  • Credits from other universities cannot be transferred into this certificate program.

For more information, please check out our FAQs or contact Brittany Gibson.