Health Equity

Designed to increase the cultural competency of public health and other professionals, this innovative graduate certificate program addresses the systemic root causes of health disparities. While racial and ethnic health disparities are examples of the consequences of social and economic disadvantages, disparities may also be related to sexual orientation, religion, gender, native language, age and disability status. As a certificate student, you will: 

  • Assess the complexity of inequities among diverse groups of marginalized populations.
  • Mobilize communities where disparities exist.
  • Develop culturally tailored interventions and advocate for health public policy.
  • Evaluate the impact/potential impact of policy measures on overall health, health care access, and quality of care for these populations. 

Academic Requirements

The 15-credit certificate comprises 10 credits of required courses, 5 credits of approved electives and an approved applied experience with a health equity component.

Required courses (listed in recommended sequence)

  • BCHS 2554 Introduction to Community Health** (fall)
  • BCHS 2524 Overview of Health Equity (spring)
  • PUBHLT 2501 Health Equity Research: Methods and Interventions* (fall)
  • PUBHLT 2500 Integrative Seminar in Health Equity (spring)

* Students enrolled in the certificate are encouraged to substitute an approved methods course in their own discipline to satisfy this requirement.
** Or an approved substitute course.


The Graduate Certificate in Health Equity is also open to Pitt graduate students in other fields (medicine, nursing, social work, public policy, etc.), and to others interested in health equity. Applicants must submit a brief statement explaining how they would apply the experience gained in the certificate to their career and to the field of health equity. Applications are reviewed by the certificate program admissions committee.

How to Apply

This program is managed by the Department of Behavioral and Community Health Sciences and the Center for Health Equity.