Graduate Certificate of Public Health

Postgraduate coursework

Take your first steps towards a leading role in public health. You'll build vital skills in public health practice, epidemiology and biostatistics.

Key facts


Up to 1 year of part-time study. The course is only available to students on a part-time basis.

Key dates

Direct applications to Deakin for Trimester 3 2024 close 27 October 2024

Current Deakin Students

To access your official course details for the year you started your degree, please visit the handbook

Course overview

From tackling the spread of infectious disease, to shaping preventive health programs, public health professionals play an important role in our healthcare system. Take your first steps towards a leading role in this field with Deakin’s Graduate Certificate of Public Health. You’ll build vital skills in public health practice, epidemiology, and biostatistics, preparing you for the dynamic scenarios that you will face when working in the field.

Are you ready to lead public health strategy and policy development?

The Graduate Certificate of Public Health will equip you with the knowledge to respond to and prevent health issues at a big-picture level. You’ll be exposed to the latest research and industry evidence, empowering you to lead policy change and public health interventions. As a graduate, you will demonstrate advanced problem solving, analytical, and collaboration skills, enabling you to become a high-performing member of a public health team.

The Graduate Certificate of Public Health is ideal for clinical and non-clinical professionals, as well as graduates from other fields who are passionate about improving societal health. You will learn about the strategies and practical techniques employed by public health professionals, with a particular focus on preventative measures and health equity. This course enables you to:

  • explore how different theories and disciplinary perspectives have informed public health principles and practices.
  • understand the role of epidemiology in public health, by exploring study designs, tools, methods, as well as the latest research findings in the field.
  • apply biostatistical techniques to health-related data, by exploring the philosophical basis of statistical thought, examining fundamental statistical concepts and methods, as well as exploring their application in a variety of health settings.

Your learning will be shaped by Deakin’s leading public health research, which is rated as well above world standard^. You’ll have direct access to research produced by the Institute for Health Transformation, which is led by internationally recognised researchers. Close links with cutting-edge research will allow you to gain critical insights for your current role and throughout your career.

You have the option to study on-campus, or through our innovative online learning platform. The flexible online option allows you to study when and where it suits you, without compromising quality or support. You will receive personalised support from teaching staff who will guide you through class discussions and seminars, preparing you for a career in public health.

Upon successful completion of the course, you will also have the option to further your skills by continuing on to the Graduate Diploma of Public Health, or the Master of Public Health.

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Course information

Award granted
Graduate Certificate of Public Health

2024 course information

Deakin code
Postgraduate (Graduate Certificate and Graduate Diploma)
Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) recognition

The award conferred upon completion is recognised in the Australian Qualifications Framework at Level 8

Course structure

To complete the Graduate Certificate of Public Health students must attain 4 credit points. Three are core units (these are compulsory) and one unit may be selected from a list of electives.

All commencing Faculty of Health Undergraduate and Postgraduate course work students are required to complete DAI001 Academic Integrity Module (0-credit-point compulsory unit) in their first trimester of study.

Core units

  • Academic Integrity Module (0 credit points)
  • Principles and Practice of Public Health
  • Epidemiology 1
  • Biostatistics 1
  • Plus one elective unit from the following list:

  • Health Promotion
  • Health Protection
  • Intakes by location

    The availability of a course varies across locations and intakes. This means that a course offered in Trimester 1 may not be offered in the same location for Trimester 2 or 3. Check each intake for up-to-date information on when and where you can commence your studies.

    Trimester 1 - March

    • Start date: March
    • Available at:
      • Burwood (Melbourne) campus
      • Online

    Trimester 2 - July

    • Start date: July
    • Available at:
      • Burwood (Melbourne) campus
      • Online

    Trimester 3 - November

    • Start date: November
    • Available at:
      • Burwood (Melbourne) campus
      • Online

    Additional course information

    Course duration

    Course duration may be affected by delays in completing course requirements, such as accessing or completing work placements.

    Mandatory student checks

    Any unit which contains work integrated learning, a community placement or interaction with the community may require a National Police Record Check, a Working with Children Check or other check. Refer the relevant unit guide.


    As a student in the Faculty of Health you can expect to participate in a range of teaching activities each week. This could include lectures, seminars, workshops, and online interaction. You can refer to the individual unit details in the course structure for more information. You will also need to study and complete assessment tasks in your own time.

    The course requires a part-time commitment, with a substantive load of learning activities and study time. Although the course is designed for working health professionals, students will on average spend 150 hours per unit credit point over the teaching period undertaking the teaching, learning and assessment activities.

    Participation requirements

    See individual unit descriptions for full details.

    Reasonable adjustments to participation and other course requirements will be made for students with a disability.

    Public health postgraduate course guide

    Take the next step to a brighter future

    Kickstart your career growth. We'll prepare you for the career you've always wanted.

    Download course guide

    Entry requirements

    Selection is based on a holistic consideration of your academic merit, work experience, likelihood of success, availability of places, participation requirements, regulatory requirements, and individual circumstances. You will need to meet the minimum academic and English language proficiency requirements to be considered for selection, but this does not guarantee admission.

    Academic requirements

    To be considered for admission to this degree you will need to meet at least one of the following criteria:

    • completion of a bachelor degree or higher
    • at least two years' relevant work experience (or part-time equivalent)

    English language proficiency requirements

    To meet the English language proficiency requirements of this course, you will need to demonstrate at least one of the following:

    Admissions information

    Learn more about Deakin courses and how we compare to other universities when it comes to the quality of our teaching and learning.

    Not sure if you can get into Deakin postgraduate study? Postgraduate study doesn’t have to be a balancing act; we provide flexible course entry and exit options based on your desired career outcomes and the time you are able to commit to your study.

    Fees and scholarships

    Fee information

    Estimated tuition fee - (CSP)?
    $3,839 - Commonwealth Supported Place (HECS)

    Learn more about fees.

    The available fee places for this course are detailed above. Not all courses at Deakin have Commonwealth supported places available. 

    The 'Estimated tuition fee' is provided as a guide only based on a typical enrolment of students completing this course within the same year as they started. The cost will vary depending on the units you choose, your study load, the length of your course and any approved Recognition of prior learning.

    One year full-time study load is typically represented by four credit points of study for Graduate Certificates. Each unit you enrol in has a credit point value. The 'Estimated tuition fee' is calculated by adding together four credit points of a typical combination of units for your course. You can find the credit point value of each unit under the Unit Description by searching for the unit in the handbook. Learn more about fees and available payment options on our Current students fees website.

    FEE-HELP calculator

    What is FEE-HELP?

    FEE-HELP loans cover up to 100% of tuition fees for eligible students. By taking out a FEE-HELP loan, the government pays your tuition fees directly to Deakin, and the balance is repaid from your employment income - but only once you're earning over $51,550.

    Please note: fees shown by the calculator are indicative only and based on 2024 rates. Actual fees may vary. We advise confirming fees with Prospective Student Enquiries prior to enrolment.

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    • $* is the estimated full cost for a Graduate Certificate of Public Health (4 credit points), based on the 2024 fees.
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    Deakin University (Deakin):

    • gives no warranty and accepts no responsibility for the currency, accuracy or the completeness of the information provided;
    • advises users that no reliance should be placed upon on the information provided, and;
    • instructs users that they should confirm the actual course fee with Prospective Student Enquiries prior to enrolment.

    This tool provides indicative information about the fees that will be payable in respect of courses and subjects offered to prospective students domiciled in Australia during the periods indicated.

    Please note that the fees shown by the calculator are indicative only and actual fees may vary. Users are advised to confirm the actual course fee with Prospective Student Enquiries prior to enrolment.

    The estimated course fee is based on the tuition fee costs applicable to a domestic full time student commencing the course in Trimester 1 and studying full time for the duration of the course but:

    • does not include non-tuition costs that may apply, such as Student Services and Amenities Fees (SSAF);
    • does not take into account any scholarships or bursaries awarded to the student (including the 10% Deakin alumni discount);
    • assumes the maximum number of units that need to be successfully completed actual number completed may be reduced if recognition of prior learning is granted;
    • assumes that no exceptional, or non-typical, circumstances apply to the proposed course of study;
    • assumes that the options that the user selects are appropriate for the course of study that they intend to undertake;
    • where fees are estimated for future years those fee will be subject to annual increases in accordance with increases in the cost of course delivery.

    Scholarship options

    A Deakin scholarship might change your life. If you've got something special to offer Deakin – or you just need the financial help to get you here – we may have a scholarship opportunity for you.

    Search or browse through our scholarships

    Postgraduate bursary

    If you’re a Deakin alumnus commencing a postgraduate award course, you may be eligible to receive a 10% reduction per unit on your enrolment fees.

    Learn more about the 10% Deakin alumni discount

    Apply now

    Apply direct to Deakin

    Some of our courses have limited places available - for the latest on courses still open for application, visit Courses by trimester.

    Create an account in the Deakin Application Portal, start your application, enter personal details, education experience, upload supporting documents and submit. Need help? Play this video, or contact one of our friendly future student advisers on 1800 693 888 or submit an online enquiry.

    Need more information on how to apply?

    For more information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply webpage. If you're still having problems, please contact us for assistance.

    Entry pathways

    Students will be eligible to apply for credit for this course.

    Students completing the Graduate Certificate of Public Health can articulate into a higher award, the Master of Public Health (H757)

    Graduates of the course may also be eligible for RPL (Recognition of prior learning) into the following courses:
    Master of Health Promotion (H759)
    Master of Health Economics (H704)
    Master of Health and Human Services Management (H756)

    Contact information

    Our friendly advisers are available to speak to you one-on-one about your study options, support services and how we can help you further your career.


    Want a degree that’s more than just a qualification? Our industry connections, world-class facilities and practical approach to learning are just some of the reasons why Deakin students graduate confident and ready to thrive in the jobs of tomorrow.

    Study a course shaped by world-class health research

    Flexible online study options

    Top 1% of universities worldwide*

    Pathway to the Graduate Diploma of Public Health and Master of Public Health

    Career outcomes

    The healthcare and social assistance sector is Australia’s largest and fastest growing sector, with 301,000 new jobs projected to be created by November 2026*. The Graduate Certificate of Public Health will prepare you to meet this demand and you will be in a strong position to pursue roles in:

    • global organisations, such as the World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
    • advocacy roles within organisations focused on cancer, tobacco, drugs, reproductive health, environmental health, obesity, food security, violence and HIV.
    • population health and screening
    • federal, state, and local government health departments.

    The course can also be used as a pathway into the Graduate Diploma of Public Health, or the Master of Public Health. Continue your studies to develop more advanced skills, build industry experience and grow your professional network.

    *2021 Employment Outlook – for the five years to November 2026. Australian Government, Jobs and Skills Australia
    ^ Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA), 2018

    Professional recognition

    All students will receive a two-year membership to the Public Health Association of Australia while studying.

    Course learning outcomes

    Deakin's graduate learning outcomes describe the knowledge and capabilities graduates can demonstrate at the completion of their course. These outcomes mean that regardless of the Deakin course you undertake, you can rest assured your degree will teach you the skills and professional attributes that employers value. They'll set you up to learn and work effectively in the future.

    Graduate Learning Outcomes

    Course Learning Outcomes

    Discipline-specific knowledge and capabilities

    Apply knowledge of public health theory, policy, surveillance, disease control and prevention, research principles, and recent public health developments in Australia and globally to practice and scholarship.


    Communicate public health evidence, issues and solutions in an effective and coherent manner to specialist and non-specialist audiences.

    Digital literacy

    Demonstrate digital literacies in public health practice and scholarship to locate, interpret and transmit knowledge, data and ideas.

    Critical thinking

    Critically evaluate public health evidence, theory and solutions.

    Problem solving

    Use appropriate analytical and research methods to identify and interpret public health problems and propose appropriate solutions to prevent disease and injury and protect and improve health.


    Demonstrate effective self-management skills, autonomy and accountability applicable to public health professional practice.


    Collaborate and communicate effectively with others from a range of disciplines and backgrounds.

    Global citizenship

    Apply ethically appropriate research and practice skills to the appraisal of public health related issues and generate appropriate and culturally sensitive responses.

    *ARWU Rankings 2022