SBS students have the option of pursuing an interdisciplinary concentration designed to deepen their experience in academic or professional areas aligned with their career goals. The concentrations in which SBS participates are:
The Health Communication Concentration (HCC) is a concentration housed within the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences. HCC prepares students who are interested in health communication to apply rigorous, theory-based research and methods to health and risk communication and to apply and evaluate health communication technologies.
Through coursework and practical experience, HCC provides a rich mix of conceptual, analytical, and applied competencies to understand the role of mass media institutions in public health, to be a critical consumer of health communication literature, and to obtain skills in using communication to promote public health policy and practice.
Maternal and Child Health
The Maternal and Child Health Concentration (MCH) is designed for those who aspire to future leadership in the promotion of maternal and child health. It recognizes that contributions to MCH can be in research, policy development, advocacy, education, practice and in program planning and management. Leadership in MCH requires mastery of the knowledge of the special health care needs of MCH populations, analysis of the issues, and the programs addressing these needs worldwide.
Nutrition and Global Health
The Nutrition and Global Health Concentration is designed to build upon a strong base of ongoing research, teaching, collaborative work, and training in nutrition and global health at the Harvard Chan School. The concentration has four participating departments: Nutrition, Global Health and Population, Epidemiology, and Social and Behavioral Sciences, together with the involvement of the François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights and the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative. It takes an interdisciplinary approach to teaching and conducting research about nutrition; its effect on human and economic development; nutrition in humanitarian crisis situations; and the dynamic interplay among the epidemiologic, nutritional, and demographic transitions around the globe. The concentration is dedicated to research that stresses integrative problem solving and evaluation approaches to global health challenges, with a focus on lower- and middle-income countries.
Obesity Epidemiology and Prevention
The Obesity Epidemiology and Prevention Concentration is designed for students interested in training in the theoretical, methodological, and applied knowledge and skills necessary to conduct obesity-related epidemiologic and prevention research. The concentration includes obesity epidemiology and prevention in international settings. Areas of training include assessment of obesity in individuals and populations; biological and social determinants of obesity; epidemiologic and prevention study designs; health and social consequences of obesity; worksite-, community-, and school-based interventions; gene environment interactions; and global obesity epidemiology and prevention.
Population Mental Health
The goal of the Population Mental Health Concentration is to increase expertise in mental disorders among public health professionals. Students who complete this interdisciplinary concentration will be prepared to articulate the U.S. and global public health impact of mental disorders and obtain critical skills that will enable them to conduct important work, in both research and practice, aimed at understanding the causes and consequences of mental disorders as well as reducing their public health burden.
Public Health Leadership
The Public Health Leadership Concentration was developed to improve the leadership skills of students in order to meet the public health challenges facing society in the 21st century. The concentration is geared toward students who desire careers in leading and implementing transformative public health initiatives. The curriculum focuses on theories, models, and skills that will enable students to enter or reenter the public health profession and assume positions of responsibility with confidence and authority. Students explore areas of leadership development through coursework, experiential workshops, hands-on experience, and reflection.
Women, Gender, and Health
The Working Group on Women, Gender, and Health was founded in 1996 by Harvard School of Public Health faculty members, postdoctoral fellows, and students interested in advancing the study of women, gender, and health at the School. In 2002, the school-wide faculty approved the Interdisciplinary Concentration on WGH. The Women, Gender, and Health Concentration is now governed by a Steering Committee comprised of faculty members, post-doctoral fellows, and students who meet monthly to discuss ways to promote curriculum development and public health research and practice regarding women, gender and health at HSPH.