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In the Fall of 2021, the University of Kentucky’s College of Public Health started the first student cohort in the new PhD in Health Services Research (HSR) program, which prepares professionals for a career in conducting data-driven health services research.

“Our program had a successful inaugural year,” says Dr. Min-Woong Sohn, Director of Graduate Studies for the PhD in Health Services Research program. “Each student completed their first semester, and we are working with them to identify research interests, current and future projects, and dissertation topics.”

The PhD in HSR prepares graduates to address the practical challenges of conducting health services research in the multidisciplinary research environments of academia, government, consulting, and industry. The mentored research program will prepare independent researchers at designing and conducting health services research, leveraging a variety of study designs, primary data collection approaches, and primary and secondary databases to inform healthcare delivery and health policy.

“This unique program strongly emphasizes applied health services research skills, including study design, data management, statistics and other quantitative methods,” says Dr. Sohn. “There are opportunities to organize coursework based on interests such as health economics or health outcomes.”

In the first 3-4 years, students are in a full-time residential study while completing coursework in four core areas, grant writing, and dissertation work. The program offers students a choice between two disciplinary concentrations: health economics or health outcomes.

PhD in HSR students participate in a directed research study in their chosen substantive areas of health services research and will work under the direction of a faculty member on an ongoing research project.

Students will engage in major components of the research process, including synthesis of existing literature, development of theoretical and empirical models and hypotheses, development of research protocols and instruments, collection and analysis of data, and interpretation and translation of study findings.

For more information on the PhD in Health Services Research, visit here.