Graduate Certificate Program in Maternal and Child Health

Please note: This page has been updated and the revised requirements for the certificate program are effective as of May 1, 2015.

This graduate certificate program offers an integrated course of study for students interested in maternal and child public health (MCH) content and tools. Students currently enrolled in any graduate program at the University of Washington, including non-School of Public Health graduate programs and Graduate Non-matriculated (GNM) students, may apply. The certificate program is not available to epidemiology and health services students enrolled in the MCH track.

Students may apply to the certificate program any time during the year by submitting the following items to Melissa Schiff, MD, MPH, at mschiff@uw.edu:

  1. Application form (PDF)
  2. Goal statement (see application form for details)
  3. Current resume or CV
  4. UW transcript

Certificate Requirements

The program requires a minimum of 15 student credit hours, including 2 MCH courses, electives, and 1 credit for a capstone project (EPI 600A). A minimum of 9 credits must be completed for a grade. See the Checklist of Requirements (PDF) for a list of required and elective courses.

A cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for all courses counting toward the certificate, and a grade of 2.7 or above is required of any individual course.


Required Coursework:

For School of Public Health (SPH) graduate students (8 credits):

  • HSERV 541 Topics in Maternal and Child Health (3)
  • EPI 521 Epidemiology of MCH Problems (4)
  • EPI 600A Capstone (1)

For non-SPH graduate students and GNM students (12 credits):

  • EPI 511 Introduction to Epidemiology (4)
  • HSERV 541 Topics in Maternal and Child Health (3)
  • EPI 521 Epidemiology of MCH Problems (4)
  • EPI 600A Capstone (1) Spring

Elective Coursework:

Electives can be selected from those listed below. For SPH students, a minimum of 7 elective credits are required. For non-SPH students, a minimum of 3 elective credits are required. All MCH certificate students are responsible for checking course availability and for required pre-requisites prior to signing up for elective courses.

MCH Electives

Capstone Experience:

The capstone project for all students follows from the required two-quarter MCH course sequence. It is a fieldwork project that provides students the opportunity to integrate and apply what they've learned during their first year of course work. A detailed description of the capstone, student responsibilities and faculty mentoring is provided in the EPI 600A capstone course in the spring quarter.

Briefly, the capstone project is an in-depth analysis of an MCH preventive intervention program, a community-based service agency, or an existing MCH data source. For program or service agency evaluations, students are expected to identify the service goals of the organization or agency, the methods of service delivery, the assumptions or theories of change that are implied or explicit about how and why the program works, and the results. Students are expected to utilize multiple sources of information such as interviews with key informants, direct observation of the program in action, formal and informal presentations, the internet and existing scholarly publications.

For data analysis projects, students are expected to perform an in-depth analysis of a specific, focused epidemiologic question or problem using an existing MCH data source such as birth certificates, hospital discharge data, or state or national data sources related to reproductive, perinatal, child, or adolescent public health. A formal scientific poster presentation of their capstone project will be included at the annual MCH Research Festival at the end of spring quarter. For examples of capstone projects, view past poster presentations from the 2014 MCH Research Festival

When you have completed all the course requirements and capstone, submit the Checklist of Requirements to Melissa Schiff, MD, MPH, at mschiff@uw.edu.

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