The Department of Public Health Sciences and Epidemiology offers the masters of science (MS) in public health and the master of public health (MPH) with a specialization in epidemiology or gerontology. Epidemiology is the study of the distribution and determinants of health events, including diseases, in human populations. Epidemiology is based upon the premise that these health events do not occur in a random manner. Nonrandom patterns provide clues to their causes and their modes of transmission and acquisition. Epidemiologic methods, including biostatistical methods, are essential for evaluating the effectiveness of disease control measures. Epidemiology is thus the science of public health.
Students are required to take advanced level training in chronic and infectious disease epidemiology, advanced biostatistics, and research design. There is opportunity for students to choose from epidemiology electives in the following areas: nutrition, genetics, environment, aging, AIDS, cancer and heart disease. Course work in specialized statistical applications is also available. Students participate in on-going epidemiological research programs throughout the university system through a field-work assignment.
The John A. Burns School of Medicine maintains a resource center of high use materials in public health. Some efforts have been made at cooperative selection of materials, and the library's collections are accessible through the online catalog.
Public health draws on material in business, education, nursing, nutrition, psychology and sociology. Clinical materials are available at the Hawaii Medical Library. A locally produced union list of medical periodicals, MLGH Union List of Serials, directs users to periodicals not available in Hamilton Library.
Because of the School's Asian and Pacific connections, students and faculty focus on topics with a geographic emphasis in these areas. This is especially true of the School's foreign students from the Pacific and the Pacific Rim countries, who make extensive use of the Pacific Collection. There is an increasing use of materials in the Hawaiian Collection by students doing research on health concerns of native Hawaiians. Because the Asia Collection is essentially a humanities and social science collection, it has little to offer public health students save some compilations of vital statistics and background information on socioeconomic aspects of health.
The Government Documents Collection houses material from the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services, and the Public Health Service, as well as international documents from the World Health Organization (WHO), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and UNESCO.
Date compiled: 7/01 Compiler: Kristen L. Anderson