PsyD/MPH

Program Description

Mercer University's College of Health Professions is pleased to present the PsyD/MPH combined degree program.  This innovative combined degree program addresses the ongoing mental health care provider workforce shortage by preparing graduates to provide cost-effective, evidence-based mental health care to diverse populations within Georgia. This program is structured around one specific goal as stated in the Healthy People 2020 objective: “Improve mental health through prevention and by ensuring access to appropriate, quality mental health services”.  Innovative programs such as the PsyD/MPH combined degree program address issues within the health care delivery system that are essential on both local and national levels. The curriculum plan facilitates preparation of mental health care providers who are able to address public health concerns and evaluate community-based programming.

The traditional MPH program consists of 42 credit hours and occurs over 2 years; however, there is a fast track option available that allows students with the appropriate GPA to complete the program in three semesters. Students admitted to the PsyD/MPH program can complete both degrees in 5 years, completing 30 credits of the MPH in year 3 of the PsyD program. Four courses (PCM 712, PCM 715, PCM 993, PCM 912) in the PsyD program will fulfill MPH elective requirements, internship, and capstone requirements. The PsyD program consists of 70 didactic credit hours plus 22 credit hours of precepted clinical rotation practicums over 15 semesters of fulltime study. Students who complete the program will be awarded a Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Medical Psychology (PsyD) and Master of Public Health (MPH).

 

Program Outcomes

The outcomes and learning objectives for the PsyD and MPH programs will remain unchanged, as the student will complete both programs, with only minor adaptatations.

The PsyD program’s mission is to prepare psychologists as integrated health care practitioners who contribute to and apply scientific knowledge of human behavior to benefit individuals, systems, and society.

To this end, we aim to produce:

  1. Graduates with broad and general training in the science of psychology grounded in the biopsychosocial model. This aim reflects discipline-specific knowledge of history and systems of psychology, basic content areas in scientific psychology, research and quantitative methods, and advanced integrative knowledge in scientific psychology.
    • Competency: Substantial discipline specific knowledge of affective, biological, cognitive, developmental, and social aspects of behavior
    • Competency: Substantial knowledge of history and systems of psychology
    • Competency: Substantial understanding and competence in advanced integrative knowledge of affective, biological, cognitive, developmental, and social aspects of behavior
    • Competency: Substantial understanding and competence in research methods
    • Competency: Substantial understanding and competence in quantitative methods
    • Competency: Substantial understanding and competence in psychometrics
  2. Graduates who understand that the competent practice of psychology occurs in broad contexts that encompass diverse cultures, ethical/legal standards, and professional attitudes and values. This aim reflects profession-wide competencies.
    • Competency: Research – Demonstrate the integration of science and practice in health service psychology
    • Competency: Ethical and legal standards – Demonstrate ethical and legal standards in increasingly complex situations with a greater degree of independence across levels of training following the APA Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct, as well as relevant laws and regulations
    • Competency: Individual and cultural diversity – Demonstrate sensitivity to human diversity and the ability to deliver high quality services to a diverse population
    • Competency: Professional values and attitudes – Demonstrate profession values and attitudes in increasingly complex situations with a greater degree of independence across levels of training
    • Competency: Communication and interpersonal skills – Demonstrate communication and interpersonal skills in increasingly complex situations with a greater degree of independence across levels of training
    • Competency: Assessment – Demonstrate evidence-based assessment with a greater degree of independence across levels of training
    • Competency: Intervention – Demonstrate evidence-based intervention with a greater degree of independence across levels of training
    • Competency: Supervision – Demonstrate knowledge of supervision models and practices
    • Competency: Consultation and interprofessional/interdisciplinary skills – Demonstrate knowledge and respect for the roles and perspectives of other professions

 

The Master of Public Health Foundational and Concentration Competencies are as follows:

Foundational

Evidence-based Approaches to Public Health

1. Apply epidemiological methods to the breadth of settings and situations in public health practice

2. Select quantitative and qualitative data collection methods appropriate for a given public health context

3. Analyze quantitative and qualitative data using biostatistics, informatics, computer-based programming, and software, as appropriate

4. Interpret results of data analysis for public health research, policy, or practice

Public Health & Health Care Systems

5. Compare the organization, structure and function of health care, public health, and regulatory systems across national and international settings

6. Discuss the means by which structural bias, social inequities and racism undermine health and create challenges to achieving health equity at organizational, community, and societal levels

Planning & Management to Promote Health

7. Assess population needs, assets, and capacities that affect communities’ health

8. Apply awareness of cultural values and practices to the design or implementation of public health policies or programs

9. Design a population-based policy, program, project, or intervention

10. Explain basic principles and tools of budget and resource management

11. Select methods to evaluate public health programs

Policy in Public Health

12. Discuss multiple dimensions of the policy-making process, including the roles of ethics and evidence

13. Propose strategies to identify stakeholders and build coalitions and partnerships for influencing public health outcomes

14. Advocate for political, social, or economic policies and programs that will improve health in diverse populations

15. Evaluate policies for their impact on public health and health equity

Leadership

16. Apply principles of leadership, governance and management, which include creating a vision, empowering others, fostering collaboration, and guiding decision-making

17. Apply negotiation and mediation skills to address organizational or community challenges

Communication

18. Select communication strategies for different audiences and sectors

19. Communicate audience-appropriate public health content, both in writing and through oral presentation

20. Describe the importance of cultural competence in communicating public health content

Interprofessional Practice

21. Perform effectively on interprofessional teams

Systems Thinking

22. Apply systems thinking tools to a public health issue

 

Rural and Underserved Populations Concentration Competencies

1.  Incorporates strategies for interacting with persons from diverse backgrounds including rural and underserved populations, cultural, socioeconomic, educational, racial, ethnic, and sexual orientation.

2. Considers the role of cultural, geographic, social, and behavioral factors in the accessibility, availability, acceptability, and delivery of public health services in rural and underserved populations

3. Responds to diverse needs that are the result of cultural and geographic differences in rural and underserved populations.

4. Explains the dynamic forces that contribute to cultural and geographic diversity in rural in underserved populations.

5. Assesses community linkages and relationships among multiple factors (or determinants) affecting health in rural and underserved population


MPH Foundational Public Health Knowledge (Learning Objectives)

Profession and Science of Public Health

1. Explain public health history, philosophy, and values.

2. Identify the core functions of public health and the 10 Essential Services.

3. Explain the role of quantitative and qualitative methods and sciences in describing and assessing a population's health.

4. List major causes and trends of morbidity and mortality in the US or other community relevant to the school or program.

5. Discuss the science of primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention in population health, including health promotion, screening, etc.

6. Explain the critical importance of evidence in advancing public health knowledge.

Factors Related to Human Health

7. Explain effects of environmental factors on a population's health.

8. Explain biological and genetic factors that affects a population's health.

9. Explain behavioral and psychological factors that affect a population's health.

10. Explain the social, political, and economic determinants of health and how they contribute to population health and health inequities.

11. Explain how globalization affects global burdens of disease.

12. Explain an ecological perspective on the connections among human health, animal health and ecosystem health (e.g., One Health).

 

Admission Requirements and Procedure

Applicants must apply to each program according to the guidelines in the Admissions Process and Requirements section of MPH and PsyD programs.

The primary target audience includes students with strong academic records who demonstrate an interest in community-based health promotion and mental health care practice. The admissions requirements for the combined degree are the same as for each individual degree.   


Program Requirements

Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Medical Psychology  (92 Hours Required)

Biological, Methodological, and General Psychology Requirements (28 hours)

PCM701        Psychometrics (3)
PCM702        Lifespan Developmental Psychology (3)
PCM703        Biological Bases of Behavior (3)
PCM704        Integrated Primary Healthcare (3)
PCM710        Cognition and Affective Processes (3)      
PCM711        Social Psychology and Social Neuroscience (3)
PCM712        Research Design (3)
PCM714        Statistical Methods (3)
PCM715        Advanced Statistical Methods (3)
PCM812        Seminar in History and Systems (1)

Clinical and Medical Psychology Requirements (14 hours)

PCM717        Ethics and Professional Issues (3)
PCM718        Individual and Cultural Diversity (3)
PCM721        Personality and Psychopathology (3)
PCM726        Health Psychology I (3)
PCM704        Integrated Primary Healthcare and Consultation (3)

Assessment and Intervention Requirements (16 hours)

PCM731        Personality Assessment (3)
PCM732        Cognitive Assessment (3)
PCM733        Clinical Interviewing (3)
PCM743        Evidence-Based Assessment and Therapy I (4)
PCM745        Evidence-Based Assessment and Therapy II (3)

Practicum and Internship Requirements (12 hours)

PCM754        Practicum I (1)
PCM755        Practicum II (1)
PCM857        Practicum III (1)
PCM858        Practicum IV (1)
PCM 910       Advanced Practicum I (1)
PCM 911       Advanced Practicum II (1)
PCM993        Internship (6)

Dissertation (7 hours)

PCM971        Clinical Dissertation (1-3)*
*PCM971 is repeatable with 7 credits required.

Electives (15 hours from among the courses below)

PCM912        Elective Practicum (3)                   
PCM708        Psychopharmacology (3)
PCM746        Medical Family Therapy (2)
PCM833        Neuropsychological Assessment (3)
PCM834        Neuroanatomy / Neurology
PCM843        Advanced Personality Assessment (3)
PCM860        Psychology of Aging (3)
PCM861        Health Psychology II (3)                           
PCM862        Anxiety and Mood Disorders (3)                  
PCM863        Addictive Disorders (3)                              
PCM864        Trauma and Maltreatment (3)           
PCM865        Child Assessment and Psychopathology (3)
PCM866        Pediatric Psychology (3)   
PCM867        Rehabilitation Psychology (3)
PCM868        Psychology of Pain (3)
PCM869        Advanced Neuropsychological Assessment (3)
PCM872        Forensic Psychology (3)
PCM873        Community Psychology (3)          
PCM874        Child & Family Behavior Therapy (3)
PCM875        Developmental Disabilities (3)
PCM880        Special Topics/Independent Study (1-3)

 

Master of Public Health 42 hours to be completed via fast track option during 3rd year.

MPH 723       Grant and Proposal Writing (3)                       
MPH 675       Community Health Needs (3) 
MPH 722       Overview Rural Health (3) or MPH 728 Social Determinants of Health (3)  MPH 730       Introduction to Evaluation (3)     
MPH 621       Biostatistics (3)
MPH 611       Epidemiology (3)
MPH 631       Environmental Health (3) 
MPH 653       Public Health Management (3)
MPH 721       Minority Health and Health Disparities (3)  
MPH 793       MPH Internship (3); Substitute PCM 993 (3)
MPH 794       MPH Capstone (3); Substitute: PCM 912 (3)
MPH 641       Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (3)     

Electives (6 hours)

PCM 712       Research Design (3) 
PCM 715       Advanced Statistical Methods (3)