Professional Science Master's Program
Master of Health Physics
The advent of the Nuclear Age has brought about tremendous advancements in nuclear and radiological technologies that provide unprecedented benefits to mankind. When ionizing radiation is used properly, it is an excellent means for diagnosing and treating medical conditions, for providing a steady supply of safe and cost-effective nuclear power, and for furthering scientific research using radioisotopes and radiation sources.
In order to assure continued usage and development of these technologies, universities must educate health physicists to be vigilant in their oversight, use, and disposal of radioactive sources as well as oversee the protection of those being exposed to these sources. Health physicists employed in government agencies, nuclear facilities, national laboratories and medical centers must be highly trained professionals.
Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) fulfills this critical need by offering a professional master of health physics (MHP) degree program. The MHP provides in-depth knowledge of radiation protection and detection while emphasizing strong analytical and communication skills. This is a non-thesis degree that can be completed in less than three years of online, part-time study. In addition, students must complete one on-site instrumentation course that provides valuable hands-on experience.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) "health physicists are provided with many opportunities. The field is broad, diverse, and continually evolving." Aside from being in demand in a variety of work environments, health physicists also enjoy other benefits, including very competitive salaries in an otherwise challenging market (see 2012 Health Physics Society Salary Survey).
Let IIT's master of health physics program help prepare you for an important, exciting, and rewarding career in the field of health physics. Come study with nationally renowned faculty members to further advance your career goals, especially if you are working towards becoming a Board Certified Health Physicist.
If your career goals do not require a full master's degree, we offer a Certificate in Radiological Physics. We also offer a distinct co-terminal BS/MAS program for the completion of a bachelor of science in physics and a master of health physics in just five years.
To be considered for admission, applicants must have completed course-work in calculus through differential equations and a calculus-based general physics sequence. A course in modern physics, including some basic quantum mechanics, is strongly recommended.
Domestic students are required to hold a bachelor's degree in physical or biological sciences with a GPA of at least 3.0/4.0 from an accredited U.S. institution of higher education. International students are required to hold a four-year bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with a minimum GPA equivalent to a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. All applicants must submit their transcripts, two letters of recommendation, an application fee, and a professional statement. Applicants for spring 2014 and beyond will be required to submit a resume no longer than two pages in length. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is required for all international students, domestic students with an undergraduate GPA between 2.5 and 3.0, or at the request of the admissions committee. The minimum score for admissions consideration is 300 [quantitative + verbal], 2.5 analytical writing on tests taken after August 1, 2011; 900 [quantitative + verbal], 2.5 analytical writing on tests taken before August 1, 2011. GRE scores older than five years are not admissible.
*Students must take one of the following electives: PHYS 566, 574, 577 or 578
**Students must take either PHYS 563 or INTM 511
Are you a certified health physicist in need of recertification by the American Board of Health Physics (ABHP) or the American Board of Radiology (ABR)? IIT offers 10 American Academy of Health Physics (AAHP) approved continuing education credit (CEC) courses aimed to help you achieve this goal. AAHP describes a creditable CEC course as a “bona fide offering by accredited institutions for which academic credit is offered” and one that is "professionally enhancing." The CECs offered at IIT fit that description perfectly and can all be taken online for your convenience (with the exception of the instrumentation course). Below is a list of the CEC courses, describing how many credits they each fulfill and an identification number that will help you locate the specific course on AAHP's list of approved courses for 2012.
Director, Professional Master's Programs
Board of Advisors
Steven Bakhtiar, Ph.D. Dr. Bakhtiar is an expert in radiochemistry, specializing in actinides. He received his Ph.D. in nuclear radiochemistry from University of Arkansas. Dr. Bakhtiar's experience ranges from laboratory operations, quality assurance, assessments, training, science education, actinide chemistry, radiological control, and waste management. He is a member of the National Health Physics Society, Waste Education Research Consortium (WERC), International Radiological Science Application, Academy of Certified Hazardous Material Management, Institute of Nuclear Materials Management, and U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Analytical Managers. Dr. Bakhtiarhas served in many capacities at the DOE including his current position as Director of the New Brunswick Laboratory, Argonne, Illinois.
David Hearnsberger, Ph.D., CHP. Dr. Hearnsberger has over 20 years of experience in radiation safety practices, program management, planning, and research/development. He received his Ph.D. in nuclear engineering from Texas A&M University. Dr. Hearnsberger's specialties include the study of leadership behavior in the workforce, optimizing thinking during change, challenging unproductive norms, and letting the organization feel external pressures within a tolerance band. Dr. Hearnsberger's experience includes services in the private sectors and university research laboratories. Dr. Hearnsberger is currently Radiation Safety Officer at Argonne National Laboratory, Argonne, Illinois.
Susan Langhorst, Ph.D., CHP. Dr. Langhorst received her B.S. in nuclear engineering from University of Missouri-Rolla, and her M.S. and Ph.D. in nuclear engineering-health physics from University of Missouri-Columbia. Dr. Langhorst is currently the Radiation Safety Officer at Washington University in St. Louis and is a faculty member at the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology. Dr. Langhorst is certified by the American Board of Health Physics; she is a Council Member of the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (NCRP); and she currently serves as the Radiation Safety Officer Representative on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's Advisory Committee on Medical Uses of Isotopes.
Ruth McBurney, CHP. Ms. McBurney is currently the Executive Director of the Conference of Radiation Control Program Directors, a position she has held since 2007. Prior to that, she was the Manager of the Radiation Safety Licensing Branch of the Texas Radiation Control Program. Ms. McBurney has served on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's Advisory Committee on the Medical Use of Isotopes and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's National Mammography Quality Assurance Advisory Committee. She is currently a member of the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (NCRP), and also serves on the NCRP Board of Directors. Ms. McBurney holds a B.S. degree in biology from Henderson State University in Arkansas and an M.S. degree in radiation sciences from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. She is also certified in comprehensive health physics by the American Board of Health Physics.
Matthew Moeller, CHP. Mr. Moeller is CEO of Dade Moeller. He co-founded Dade Moeller & Associates in 1994. Under his leadership, Mr. Moeller helps establish Dade Moeller as a leader in the fields of environmental health and radiation protection. A Certified Health Physicist, Matt earned his master's degree in environmental health sciences from Harvard University and his bachelor's degree in mathematics from Cornell University. He has more than 35 years of experience as a safety professional, supporting several federal agencies in the areas of environmental protection, radiation safety, industrial hygiene, risk assessment, and emergency preparedness. Mr. Moeller serves on several corporate, charitable, and professional boards and committees, providing contributions benefiting from his business and technical experience.
Richard Vetter, Ph.D., CHP. Dr. Vetter is Professor Emeritus and former Radiation Safety Officer for the Mayo Clinic. He received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in biology from South Dakota State University, and Ph.D. in health physics at Purdue University. He is board certified by the American Board of Health Physics and the American Board of Medical Physics. Prior to joining the staff at Mayo Clinic in 1980 he was Professor of Health Physics at Purdue University. Dr. Vetter is past Editor-in-Chief of the journal Health Physics, past President of the Health Physics Society, and past President of the American Academy of Health Physics. Dr. Vetter is a member of the National Academies Nuclear and Radiation Studies Board and a Distinguished Emeritus Member of the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements. He served as Vice Chair of the NRC Advisory Committee for Medical Uses of Isotopes and was a member of the Radiation Advisory Committee of the EPA Science Advisory Board.
R. Craig Yoder, Ph.D., CHP. Dr. Yoder is currently Senior Vice President at Landauer, Inc. and is an internationally known expert in radiation monitoring. He has led Landauer's transition from film and thermoluminescent dosimetry technology to optically stimulated luminescence, an assignment that required strategic planning and direction in areas spanning scientific research, product development, manufacturing, laboratory operations and marketing. From 1993 to 2001, he was Vice President of Operations and managed Landauer's manufacturing and analytical laboratory activities in addition to overseeing R&D programs. Dr. Yoder is a member of the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (NCRP) and former President of the Council on Ionizing Radiation Measurements and Standards (CIRMS). He has served on several national and international committees to develop dosimetry standards. Dr. Yoder earned his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in bionucleonics at Purdue University and received a B.S. degree in pre-medicine from Davidson College. He is also a Certified Health Physicist.
There are a number of fellowship opportunities for graduate students of Health Physics at the Health Physics Society web page.
Links to resources and documents for Health Physicists
Professional Master's News
New Master of Health Physics Academic Advisory Board Holds First Meeting
On Wednesday, September 18, the new Master of Health Physics academic advisory board, appointed by S.Y. Chen, director of the Master of Health Physics program, held its first meeting on IIT's Main Campus. The board consists of a list of highly esteemed professionals in the field of radiation protection and health physics practices. More >
S.Y. Chen Receives Health Physics Society Fellow Award
S.Y. Chen, director of IIT's Professional Master of Health Physics Program, was selected by the Health Physics Society (HPS) Awards Committee to receive an HPS Fellow Award. He was presented with this prestigious award at the HPS Awards Banquet which was held on July 9 at the 58th Annual HPS Meeting in Madison, WI.
Master of Health Physics Student Trang Marquez Wins HPS Dade Moeller Scholarship
IIT Master of Health Physics student Trang Marquez was awarded one of this year’s Health Physics Society (HPS) Dade Moeller Scholarships. Her scholarship includes $2,000 to apply to her graduate studies, and another $800 to use toward her attendance at the 2014 HPS Annual Meeting. More >
S.Y. Chen, from Argonne National Laboratory, accepts directorship of IIT's Professional Master of Health Physics program. The announcement of his new position has received coverage in the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, and the Baltimore Sun.