Health Services Research

The Ph.D. program in Health Services Research seeks to develop research scientists experienced in the use of state–of–the–art research methods to investigate how people obtain access to health care, the components and impacts of health care costs, and what happens to patients as a result of care.

Health services research aims to identify the most effective ways to organize, manage, finance and deliver high-quality care to benefit population health.

The Ph.D. program explicitly seeks to train research scientists to contribute as part of multidisciplinary teams in academic, government, and private-sector research and health care organizations. The program emphasizes communication of scientific knowledge and development of leadership skills to improve the delivery of services and influence health policy at the organizational, state, national, and international levels. The competency-based curriculum provides students with a strong analytic foundation and general health services research orientation. Students may also select an emphasis area in pharmaceutical health services research, health economics, or comparative effectiveness research/evidence-based medicine.

Additional Resources

Health Services Research faculty are members of the Department of Health Services, Policy, and Practice and the School of Public Health, which is home to world-class research centers, such as the Center for Gerontology and Health Services Research, the Center for Evidence Synthesis in Health, the Center for Long-Term Quality and Innovation, the Centers for Alcohol and Addiction Studies, the International Health Institute, the Centers for Behavioral and Preventive Medicine, and the Center for Statistical Sciences. Students are engaged in collaborative research with faculty and other students at many of these centers, as well as the Rhode Island Department of Health and assorted health care systems throughout the state.

Major areas of faculty activity include long term care research, pharmaceutical health services research, eliminating racial disparities, evaluation of state policies, and end of life care. Strengths of the program include its student-centric approach to learning, high faculty to student ratio, and hands-on experience conducting supervised research.

Admission Requirements

Application in SOPHAS, which includes:

  • Letters of Recommendation (3)
  • Official Transcripts
  • Personal Statement
  • Resume/CV
  • GRE General: Not required 
  • Application Fee

International Applicants:

  • Language Proficiency (TOEFL or IELTS if applicable)
  • Transcript Evaluation (if applicable)

Comprehensive application requirements are detailed on the School of Public Health's admissions requirements website.

Application Deadline: December 15

The application for fall 2022 admission will open in late August.

Admission Inquiry Form

Ph.D. Completion Requirements

24 credits, successful completion of written comprehensive exams in methods and a substantive area, and successful defense of an independent dissertation.

Department of Health Services, Policy & Practice
Brown University
Box G-S121, 7th floor
[email protected]

Visit the Department of Health Services, Policy & Practice


Department Chair: Ira Wilson

Director of Graduate Studies: Amal Trivedi