This 15-hour certificate program is offered to any UAB graduate student (degree seeking or non-degree seeking) who wishes to gain knowledge and skills in the field of global health. Students may choose from several online or classroom-based courses to meet the requirements for this program. Upon successful completion of program requirements, students will receive a certificate of completion awarded by the University of Alabama at Birmingham. In order to be enrolled in the graduate certificate program, you have to be enrolled as a student with the UAB graduate school (UAB Graduate Admissions).


Global health is defined as the application of public health principles to solutions of health problems and challenges that transcend national boundaries. In the face of a growing awareness of the need for shared solutions to shared problems, opportunities in global health work are increasing, and more individuals are expressing interest in careers in global health. Individuals who desire to work in the global health field require skills to identify and delineate critical health and human development issues that confront populations in the settings in which they work. They may be required to design and/or implement large- or small-scale interventions to prevent disease, protect, or to promote population health. In addition, they may also be hired as consultants to provide technical advice.

The UAB Graduate GHS certificate program is designed to equip participants with the basic skills necessary to function effectively in global health practice. It covers several critical issues in global health, including epidemiology and disease control, health systems management, disabilities, evidence-based policy and practice, project design, monitoring and evaluation, environment and health. It is a flexible, internet and classroom-based alternative for University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) graduate students as well as local, regional, national, and foreign professionals working or intending to work with organizations engaged in global health.


Upon completion of the GHS certificate program, participants will be able to:

  • Analyze the relationship between global health and development.
  • Use appropriate methods to appraise global health challenges and health care systems, as well as responses to these challenges.
  • Synthesize information from primary and secondary sources to help identify appropriate interventions and actions in the field of global health.
  • Use research, planning and management methods to make efficient and effective use of available resources in field settings.
  • Develop professional skills in program design, program monitoring, and evaluation.

Program Format

Students are required to complete 3 hours of an approved global health core course and 12 hours of approved global health elective courses. The Sparkman Center offers field studies as well as classroom-based and online courses that count towards fulfilling the certificate requirements. For a listing of GHS courses, click here.

In addition to courses offered by the Sparkman Center, students may take other courses offered at SOPH that have a global health component. The GHS curriculum planning sheet provides information on approved GHS certificate courses and a schedule of course offerings. Permission of GHS course director must be given for any substitutions from the list of approved GHS courses.

Standard UAB tuition and fees apply for all GHS courses. Please click here to see a detailed list of current tuition and fees. Note that each online course taken in the School of Public Health incur a $250.00 course fee (rate current as of 2013).


Students may enroll in the GHS certificate program at any time during their graduate course of study at UAB. There is no timeline for completion of the certificate program; however, given that the GHS certificate program incurs an additional 15 hrs, it is important for a student to begin planning his or her course of study as soon as possible once entering his or her primary degree program.

Any student who wishes to enroll into the GHS Certificate Program is responsible for meeting with his or her departmental coordinator and with the GHS program coordinator to ensure that all administrative requirements have been met. Any student who does not maintain a “B” average in his or her certificate courses is subject to dismissal from the certificate program.

Admissions Requirements:

  • Official transcripts from ALL higher education institutions you attended and received college credit
  • A bachelor degree with an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher