Doctoral (Ph.D.) Degree

The mission of the Ph.D. program is to develop intellectual leaders who will produce important new insights in health policy and administration. Through clear thinking and analysis, rigorous research, and effective teaching and communication of new knowledge, our graduates contribute to the design and implementation of cost-effective services and programs that improve people’s health.

Our research-oriented Ph.D. program trains quantitative, multi-disciplinary graduates to meet the rapidly growing demand for health service researchers in government, private industry, and academia.

Graduates of the Ph.D. program are leading research programs in health systems and managed care organizations, and they are employed as academics and research scientists at universities and in private and public policy research organizations.

Ph.D. students need strong analytical abilities and substantial interests in health policy and administration. Course work provides a solid foundation in economics, organizational theory, and health services research methods. Students focus their studies in areas where HPA faculty are leading research, including:

  • Aging and Long Term Care
  • Quality Improvement in Health Systems and Health Care Organizations
  • Health Disparities among Children, Youths, and Families
  • Demography and Population Health Outcomes

HPA students may complete graduate minors in gerontology or demography. An option to complete a dual-title Ph.D. in HPA and Demography is also available.

The department has current funding support for a qualified, incoming Ph.D. student interested in tobacco policy research.

Access the Predoctoral_Research_Fellowships_Information.pdf for more detailed information.

Apply to the Ph.D. Program

If you are ready to proceed to the application but have NOT read the Graduate School requirements, please visit that website at http://www.gradschool.psu.edu/index.cfm/prospective-students/requirements/.

Additional Information about the Ph.D. Program

Current Students

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