Practicum and Culminating Experience

Taking theory and applying it into action.

The MPH in Epidemiology practicum is a student initiated and faculty mentored experience, which enables students to apply the skills learned from the courses taken online and on-campus. During the first year of the program, students will work with a member of the MPH in Epidemiology Practicum Committee to initiate and develop a practicum proposal. After the project is approved, the MPH-EPI Practicum Committee will refer each student to a Harvard faculty mentor with the expectation that students can meet with their Harvard mentor when they return for their second on campus session in June. The Harvard faculty mentor will continue to work with the student throughout their second year of the program.

Students will be given the opportunity to work on the practicum project throughout their entire the program. As part of their program, students in the MPH in Epidemiology are required to develop and complete a practicum project. Students register for the practicum in the fall and spring semester of their second year. Students can earn either 5.0 or 7.5 credits for completing the practicum. Practicum credits can be graded as pass/fail or ordinal. Students should elect to take their practicum for 7.5 credits if the workload associated with the Practicum makes it difficult to take two elective courses at the same time. In this case, the student takes only three elective courses, rather than four, during their second year.

Students who do not have an idea of their practicum topic after the first year of the program can use the fall elective, EPI 526: Analysis of Publicly Available Databases for Epidemiologic and Health Services Research, to develop a project idea. This course describes multiple databases that are available for public use and could provide the basis for a practicum topic.

MPH Symposium and Culminating Experience

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

At the completion of the practicum, students return to campus in May the week of Commencement for a symposium and culminating experience. The finale practicum project of the degree program is a PowerPoint presentation to the faculty and students in this program. This culminating experience will provide the opportunity for students to showcase their mastery of program competencies to the Harvard community.