MA in Drugs, Health and Society

David Herzberg teaching a class.

Whether it is the opioid overdose crisis or the psychedelic boom, the need for expertise in drugs has never been greater. Yet drug expertise has often been divided between science and medicine, and society and politics.

The MA in Drugs, Health and Society is a unique multidisciplinary program that brings together experts from across the University to train students in all dimensions of drugs and addiction: scientific, therapeutic, social, and political. It prepares students for a wide range of careers, including addiction treatment, addiction research, or other drug-related scientific or medical disciplines, as well as drug policy or advocacy, and related fields such as journalism, human resources, or criminal justice where expertise on drugs and addiction is important.

The Learning Environment

Students take classes from a diversity of expert faculty in Social Sciences, Humanities, Medicine, Public Health, Nursing, Law, Social Work and Education. All students receive advanced training in both the science and the politics of drugs and addiction, and choose a specialty emphasis in one of two concentrations: Science and Health or Society and Politics.

Program Requirements and Curriculum

MA Coursework (27 credit hours)

Mentored MA Project (3 credit hours)

Depending on advisor and topic, select from:

  • HIS 598 Project for MA students
  • PSY 600 Graduate Work
  • SOC 600 Project Guidance
  • PMY 517 Project Guidance

Learning Goals and Competencies

By the completion of their studies in the proposed advanced certificate program in Drugs, Health, and Society, students are expected to demonstrate the following primary student learning outcomes:

  1. Knowledge of the sciences of drugs, drug use and addiction. Students will become familiar with, understand and be able to apply biomedical, psychological and public health knowledge about drug use and addiction.
  2. Knowledge of addiction treatment. Students will become familiar with, understand,and be able to apply the main modalities of addiction treatment.
  3. Critical thinking about drugs, health and society. Students will develop analytical skills needed to understand and communicate effectively about the social and political dimensions of drugs, drug policy, addiction and addiction treatment.

The Admissions Process

Each application is reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Applications include a written statement of goals, academic transcripts, and two letters of recommendation (at least one must be an academic recommendation). Particular attention and consideration will be given to applicants with lived expertise, including those with experience as peer counselors, who when appropriate may be given exceptions from some admissions requirements.

Want to learn more? Complete this form for additional program information.


Contact Us