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MS Curriculum

The Master of Science (MS) in Genetic Epidemiology provides students with in-depth training in genetic epidemiology through unique coursework and training opportunities.

Learn more about the MS in Genetic Epidemiology Curriculum:


Sample Schedule

Course listed on this page are based on a two-year, full-time course of study. Only required courses are listed in the sample schedule. Electives are selected by the student in consultation with their advisor. For questions about less than full-time study, please contact our admissions team at

Year 1 Autumn (12 credits)

EPI 512Epidemiologic Methods I4
BIOST 517Applied Biostatistics I4
PHG 512Legal, Ethical, and Social Issues in Public Health Genetics3
PHG 580Interactive Seminar1

Year 1 Winter (9 credits)

EPI 513Epidemiologic Methods II4
PHI 500Public Health Practice, Science and Knowledge1
BIOST 518Applied Biostatistics II4
PHG 580Interactive Seminar1

Year 1 Spring (10 credits)

PHG 511Genetic Epidemiology3
BIOST 550Statistical Genetics I: Mendelian Traits3

PHG 536 or


Bioinformatics and Gene Sequence Analysis3
PHG 580Interactive Seminar1

Year 2 Autumn (12-15 credits)

BIOST 551Statistical Genetics II: Quantitative Traits3
GENOME 552Technologies for Genome Analysis1.5

GENOME 559 or

PHG 536 (SPR)

Introduction to Statistical and Computational Genomics3
EPI 573Methods and Issues in Using Biological Measurements in Epidemiologic Research3
PHG 580Interactive Seminar1
PHG 700Master’s Thesis1-9

Year 2 Winter (4-10 credits)

PHG 580Interactive Seminar1
PHG 700Master’s Thesis1-9

Year 2 Spring (4-10 credits)

PHG 580Interactive Seminar1
PHG 700Master’s Thesis1-9

Additional Requirements Not Tied to a Specific Quarter

 Electives (not listed above)12


  • Courses and timing are subject to change.
  • Sample schedule is provided as a guide. Individual students’ schedules will vary.
  • MS students must complete a minimum 63 credits.
  • MS students must complete a minimum of 9 credits of Master’s Thesis credits.

Degree Competencies

Upon satisfactory completion of the Master of Science in Genetic Epidemiology, graduates will be able to:

  1. Meet the competencies established by the School of Public Health and the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) for all SPH students.
  2. Meet the core competencies established by the Institute for Public Health Genetics for MS Genetic Epidemiology students:
  • Apply knowledge of inheritance to understanding the etiology of a variety of diseases and health conditions;
  • Describe the major genetic epidemiologic research study designs and their advantages and limitations and apply epidemiological and statistical approaches to the study of risk factors and diseases with a genetic component;
  • Design, conduct and analysis of genetic epidemiologic studies and interpretation of findings, including integration of findings from other genetic epidemiologic studies;
  • Describe the importance of evaluating interactions among genes, environmental factors, and behaviors, and their roles in health and disease;
  • Critically read and evaluate quantitative research findings contained in, genetics, medical and public health journals;
  • Write a research proposal including rationale for a specific genetic epidemiologic investigation, including a clear description of methods, and strengths and limitations of the proposed study;
  • Demonstrate proficiency in conducting statistical analysis of genetic epidemiologic data;
  • Describe the legal, ethical and social issues that may be associated with the collection and application of genetic and genomic information;
  • Describe the latest technologies and genomic advances used to investigate the role of genes in disease and normal variation of traits; and
  • Communicate effectively and persuasively, both orally and in writing, with colleagues within genetic epidemiology and from other disciplines.

Master's Thesis

MS students complete a research-based thesis under the direction of a faculty thesis chair and committee.

See past student project