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One way to learn more about public health before you commit to a degree program is to complete a certificate program. These programs allow you to take some of the same academic courses that students enrolled in degree programs take, only not as many of them. You can focus on public health in general or a specific aspect of public health, like disaster management or global health.

In addition to providing opportunities to learn more about an area of public health, these programs have several other “pros”.

  • First, if  your grades or test scores are not as high as you would like for them to be before you apply to a degree  program, you can take graduate level courses and demonstrate that you can do well in them.
  • Second, via the courses in a certificate program you can make connections with faculty and staff who might later be good references for you.
  • And, third if you are a health professional or have another advanced degree, you may not want another degree. A certificate in public health may be just the way for you to complement your current training.

To learn more about a variety of certificate programs, try the ASPH database. You can search for certificates and learn more about the different programs and their application requirements.

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