Public Health Careers--Epidemiology

female epidemiologist looking in a microscope

Using your Psychology degree to pursue being an Epidemiologist

An interesting path you can take with your Psychology degree is that of an Epidemiologist. This career involves the study of the factors that determine the distribution of health and disease in human populations. In addition, Epidemiologists deal with the possible control of diseases. Their research tools include designing studies, collecting and analyzing various types of data (e.g., blood and tissue samples), interviews, and surveys. They may work for a government agency (e.g., health department), in hospitals, and in higher education.

Graduate degrees in public health are offered at both the Master's (Master of Public Health-MPH), Master of Science in Public Health-MSPH) and Doctoral level (Doctor of Public Health--DrPH, Doctor of Science in Public Health-ScD, or Doctor of Philosophy-PhD). Master's programs in public health usually require 2 years of graduate school to complete your thesis research project. With regard to a Doctoral degree, it takes around 4-6 years, and you have first completed your Master's degree at the same or different school. Graduate school can be expensive, so make sure you check if a school you plan to apply to offers any financial assistance.

Here is a site for specific job opportunities with a masters in public health.

Salary Information

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics lists the median (middle) yearly income for an Epidemiologist at $70,000.

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Click on the links below to read about other Public Health careers that only require a Bachelor's Degree:

Public Health Careers--Nutritionist/Dietician

Public Health Careers--Health Educator/Worker

Click on the links below to read about other Public Health careers that require a graduate degree:

Public Health Careers--Biostatistics

Public Health Careers--Environmental Health

Public Health Careers--Health Services Administration

Public Health Careers--Social and Behavioral Sciences