PhD in Health Policy and Clinical Practice

TDI PhD students and facultyThe Dartmouth Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) program is designed for those pursuing a career involving major research or leadership roles in the areas of health policy and clinical practice.

Our PhD Program offers in-depth, multi-disciplinary training in the conduct of research and teaching in the areas of special expertise at the Institute. The doctoral program is designed so that each student-researcher works closely with a faculty advisor and his or her research group to design a course of study and participate in ongoing research.

The doctoral program involves a multi-disciplinary approach that integrates relevant theories, methodological strategies, and evidence from a variety of fields. Disciplines represented by the faculty include clinical medicine, decision science, economics, epidemiology, health services research, geography, political science, psychology, public health, and sociology.

PhD students are encouraged to investigate a specialized area in-depth while also gaining an informed appreciation of other core areas. They are trained in independent and team-based strategies to integrate these perspectives into research. Our PhD graduates are expected to further the development of these core areas, to lead in the design, initiation and management of effective change in health care, and to contribute to the education of future scholars in health policy and clinical practice. Graduates of the doctoral program go into academic, government, and corporate positions involving health services research and health policy.

Recent dissertation topics that PhD students have worked on include:

  • Digital technology for health promotion among individuals with serious mental illness
  • Treatment decision making in multi-vessel coronary artery disease
  • Serious choices: Decision-making support for seriously ill patients at risk of death
  • Patient-centered communication about early abortion methods in the United States 

To learn more about the PhD curriculum and program structure, review our TDI PhD Handbook. Meet our current PhD students.

Applying for the PhD Program

Admission to our PhD program is highly selective. Around 2 students will be admitted each year.

The application deadline is December 1. Students will apply through the online application portal for the Guarini School of Graduate and Advanced Studies at Dartmouth. When applying to the program, select 'Health Policy and Clinical Practice' as the program of study.

For frequently asked questions about the application process and a list of application requirements, please refer to the Guarini School of Graduate Studies Application FAQs.

Full applications will be reviewed by the PhD Admissions Committee and qualified applicants will be invited for an interview with prospective faculty advisors and members of the Admissions Committee.

Contact Us

Alex Thorngren
Associate Director of the PhD Program
(603) 646-5598

Paul Barr, J. PhD, MSc, Associate Professor
Faculty Co-Director of the PhD Program

James O'Malley, PhD, Peggy Y. Thomson Professor
Faculty Co-Director of the PhD Program