Who Should Apply?

Who Should Apply?
PHI Innovators

The Ph.D. program in Personal Health Informatics aims to provide students with strong fundamental technical training in the development of computer-based health interface technologies, strong design sensitivity and methodological experience that permits students to assess healthcare technology needs and to design effective solutions, and strong training and practical experience in evaluating novel health technologies within hospital settings and with a diverse range of user populations. Students will participate on and lead research teams that invent, design, and prove the efficacy of novel health interface technologies with a high degree of patient understanding and empathy.

Students will gain skill in needs assessment, experimental design and evaluation in health research, software engineering, and prototyping of modular, customizable personal health systems. Students will also acquire knowledge on theories of health behavior and health communication and how such theories impact health technology development. The program will enable graduates to effectively communicate and collaborate with medical personnel, end-users of personal health technologies, computer scientists, engineers, public health researchers, and policy makers in topics related to personal health technologies. They will continue to contribute to the advancement of the field by performing independent research, advising companies making personal health technologies, starting companies with technologies that improve health and wellness, and educating future generations.

Applicants to the program should

  • Be passionate about changing healthcare delivery using person- and patient-facing health technologies; and
  • Have a strong interest with some experience in both the technology and health domains, with a goal of immersing themselves in both areas through coursework and research.

We expect graduates to work in the following professions:

  • As faculty, focusing on transdisciplinary research in departments of information science/computer science, health sciences, nursing, and schools of public health;
  • As technical leaders in industry, creating technology with health interfaces that are used directly by patients and consumers;
  • As scientific advisors or lead developers at non-profits or governmental agencies developing or using health technologies for public health applications; and
  • As entrepreneurs who start up innovative companies based on the research initiated in the program.

Why PHI at Northeastern?…

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