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PHPM 504 Internship/Field Experience. Preceptor Orientation and Answers to Frequently Asked Questions. What is the Internship/Field Experience?. A practicum experience for students in the OMPH Epidemiology & Biostatistics Track

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PHPM 504 Internship/Field Experience

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phpm 504 internship field experience

PHPM 504Internship/Field Experience

Preceptor Orientation


Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

what is the internship field experience
What is the Internship/Field Experience?
  • A practicum experience for students in the OMPH Epidemiology & Biostatistics Track
  • An opportunity to demonstrate mastery of epidemiology and biostatistics learning competencies
  • 3-6 credits total (100-200 hours), during 1 term (6 credits usually occurs during a summer). 10 hours/week/quarter=100 hrs.
  • To be completed by the end of the quarter
prior coursework
Prior Coursework
  • MPH in Epidemiology & Biostatistics is a 60-credit degree
  • The Biostatistics 1 class (or equivalent for MD/MPH students) is a required prerequisite.
  • Preferably, the Epidemiology 1 class should be completed before beginning the Internship/Field Experience
what is the purpose of the internship field experience
What is the purpose of the Internship/Field Experience?
  • To demonstrate and apply knowledge and skills gained during the program in a real-world setting
  • To integrate theory and practice in a supervised, applied setting
  • Socialization into the field of public health
  • To reflect on learning competencies in the context of the field experience
who takes phpm 504
Who takes PHPM 504?
  • All OMPH Epidemiology & Biostatistics students complete the internship/field experience
what steps should the student follow
What steps should the student follow?
  • Complete required courses (described earlier)
  • Watch for opportunities posted on the department website.
  • Meet with advisor to discuss interests and possible sites
  • Meet with Epi/Bio Director regarding additional questions.
student s steps cont d
Student’s steps, Cont’d
  • Draft proposal (included on Internship Guidelines)
  • Draft measurable learning competencies addressing Epi/Bio Competencies 1,2,3,5, and 6 (see next slide)
  • Data analysis is required at least to the competency level of Biostat 1 (correlational level).
related learning competencies
Related Learning Competencies

Apply population-based concepts of epidemiology and risk determination to the assessment of health problems

Apply evidence-based knowledge of health determinants to public health issues

Apply and interpret a variety of statistical methods commonly used in medical and public health research

Identify ethical problems that arise when epidemiology is used to guide public policy decisions

Identify cultural dimensions of conducting research, including culturally sensitive recruitment of study participants, and develop strategies for interpretation of data in the larger cultural context

what does the internship field experience involve
What does the Internship/Field Experience Involve?
  • Participating in a project addressing a public health issue, with guidance of preceptor
  • Applying classroom experience, knowledge, and skills
  • Applying statistical software to analyze public health data
  • Preparing a final report (see Internship Guidelines for format). An additional, more extensive report can be provided to the agency.
what does internship field experience involve continued
What does Internship/Field Experience Involve, continued
  • Demonstrably meeting measurable learning, track, and program competencies (as described in the final report)
  • Important note: Student must seek Epi/Bio Director approval for any proposed changes to tasks and timeline, in order to ensure applicability to degree requirements.
what is the role of the preceptor
What is the role of the Preceptor?
  • Helps shape, and agrees to facilitate, the Internship Proposal
  • Supervises and guides the student through the field experience; confers with the Epi/Bio Director, as necessary
  • Completes the student’s Internship Report and forwards it via email to the Epi/Bio Director with a recommended grade (Pass/No Pass).
what are the minimum qualifications for preceptors
What are the minimum qualifications for Preceptors?
  • Public health credentials, by virtue of training and/or experience, for purposes of mentoring the student in the application of the public health skills and knowledge developed during the MPH degree program.
how does the student identify a relevant project
How does the student identify a relevant project?
  • Public health project of interest to the student


  • Project of interest and relevance to the field site
  • Work that integrates epidemiology and biostatistics skills developed in courses
  • Work that provides an opportunity to demonstrate learning competencies
  • Can be manageably completed within 100-200-hour timeframe
can students get paid
Can students get paid?
  • Payment is not expected, nor required
  • May be negotiated between student and preceptor
  • Not a condition of establishing the PHPM 504 Internship/field experience
  • University is not involved in these arrangements
why is the learning contract important
Why is the Learning Contract important?
  • Specifies student’s learning competencies for the placement, and relates these to the Epi/Bio track competencies
  • Identifies activities and roles student will fulfill
  • Lists the products student will develop during placement
  • Provides information about the site
  • Projects date of completion
what goes into the student s internship proposal
What goes into the student’s Internship proposal?
  • Completed proposal signed by the student, preceptor, advisor, and Epi/Bio Director
  • Specific, measurable learning competencies for Internship
  • Description of the work student will complete by the end of the Internship
what kind of proposal is expected
What kind of proposal is expected?
  • Students are asked to list the setting, the organization, and the preceptor’s role, credentials, and contact information
  • Withthe Preceptor, define the objectives to be accomplished
what is the internship proposal
What is the Internship proposal?
  • A signed interagency agreement between OHSU and the field placement site
  • Delineates roles, responsibilities, and institutional terms of placement
  • Tailored to each placement
  • Must be complete and on file prior to start date. If IRB approval is needed, it must also be completed prior to start date.
other processes
Other processes?
  • OHSU Human Subjects approval if placement has research component, even if project has completed IRB process at non-OHSU site or data are de-identified
  • Risk Management approval is no longer necessary for students working with agencies outside OHSU UNLESS there is interaction with clients or data that can be identified
what final products does the student submit
What final products does the student submit?

1: Evidence/Examples of work completed

  • Product developed for organization
  • Description of what was done and how
  • Submitted to the agency and a copy submitted with the Internship report to the Epi/Bio Director in a version cleaned of any private or sensitive information

2: Internship report with responses to report questions

  • Insights into experiences
  • Observations on outcomes, accomplishments, processes, challenges
  • Specific reflections on demonstration of learning competencies

3: Evaluation of student by preceptor (forwarded directly to Epi/Bio Director by preceptor on form provided by student)

  • Preceptor provides feedback to Epi/Bio Director though direct communication during and after placement, and recommends a final grade via the Student Evaluation form.
  • Epi/Bio Director reviews all submitted materials and provides final course grade
how is the phpm 504 grade determined
How is the PHPM 504 grade determined?
  • Pass:
    • Accomplishment of learning competencies
    • Preceptor’s assessment on the final Internship report
  • No Pass:
    • Learning competencies not met
    • Poor evaluation of student’s work by preceptor
what is the purpose of the internship final report
What is the purpose of the Internship Final Report?
  • To reflect on the overall Internship/field experience
  • To identify the challenges and successes of the experience
  • To provide ideas regarding how the field experience can be improved for future placement of students
what is the purpose of the internship final report cont
What is the purpose of the Internship Final Report, cont.?
  • Allows the preceptor to comment on the student’s performance
  • Provides feedback to the student regarding his/her contributions to the organization
  • Provides additional information to Epi/Bio Director regarding student performance
what are the deadlines for students
What are the deadlines for students?
  • Students must register before the term prior to the planned Internship term in order to allow for all approval processes to be completed
  • Students are to provide their preceptors with the Internship final report with due date, to be returned by the end of finals week of the term
  • Final products must be received by the Epi/Bio Director before the end of finals week of the Internship term
  • An Incomplete may be assigned in extenuating circumstances at the request of the student to the Epi/Bio Director. Incompletes should be avoided, if at all possible.
how do we resolve problems during phpm 504
How do we resolve problems during PHPM 504?


  • Work with the student to address any issues
  • Contact the Epi/Bio Director to discuss the situation
  • Rely upon the Internship proposal to frame the workStudents:
  • Are encouraged to resolve problems initially with the preceptor
  • If no resolution, students are to meet with the Epi/Bio Director
  • Rely upon the Internship proposal to ensure learning objectives are being pursued
who is the mph internship course director
Who is the MPH internship course director ?
  • William Lambert, PhD.Director, Epidemiology & Biostatistics track

further information
Further information
  • For more information, please refer to the Internship guidelines at:

Thank you for being an OMPH Program Internship/Field Experience Preceptor!We value your time and expertise.