M.P.H. Practicum — HLTH 698

Health Agencies

All students enrolled in the Master of Public Health program must complete a practicum field experience in an organization, agency, or community that provides planning or services relevant to public health and their specialization. The goal of the M.P.H. practicum is to provide students the opportunity to use knowledge and skills acquired in the academic program under the direction of a preceptor /supervisor. The practicum also affords an opportunity to develop and apply certain competencies that are better developed outside of the classroom. Examples include the development of leadership ability and group process skills, political awareness and communication skills, understanding of public and private financing mechanisms, and understanding organizational behavior.


In order to sign up for a practicum experience students must do the following:

  • Successfully complete the core M.P.H. course and your area of specialization. ALL core courses must be successful completed before the practicum, NO EXCEPTIONS.
  • Complete your Background Check
  • Gain approval from the M.P.H. Practicum Coordinator

Once you have completed these requirements, you can find a practicum site.


  • 120 hours (minimum)
  • A pre-defined project that assists an organization in addressing an unmet need while supporting student growth in developing skills in public health practice
  • Preceptor site approval from director and practicum coordinator


  • Timeframe: A student signed up for the practicum must complete 120 hours minimum in a public health setting over a 15 week period/one semester
  • Online component: The online class component will serve to connect student learning and provide opportunity for cross discussion
  • Minimum hours: The M.P.H. curriculum requires students to complete a minimum of 120 hours of practical fieldwork in a public health practice setting. That means 120 hours of fieldwork at/or for the site.

*The 120 hours does not include technical aspects of the practicum requirements such as completing paperwork with the site supervisor and getting the required signatures. Nor is the time completing required assignments part of the 120 hours. 

It is each student’s responsibility to find, arrange, and complete a satisfactory field experience that fulfills program requirements. The practicum coordinator and faculty here to help but the student is ultimately responsible for finding a practicum that will meet his or her particular needs. Find a Practicum Site


The HLTH 698 - MPH Practicum Student Guide contains information about the practicum, course registration, and application (pages 16 - 18).