Skip Navigation


Admissions Blog

alphabet soupWe know from talking with prospective students that the alphabet soup of public health master’s degrees is confusing. I’m here to try and dispel some of the confusion.

Below is a very general overview of the master’s degrees here at the Bloomberg School. Keep in mind, these same descriptions may not apply to other schools. When you’re researching degrees, don’t focus on degree names. Review each program’s offerings (curriculum, field placement, duration of program, faculty, etc.) to find one that best fits your needs.


At the Bloomberg School, the MPH is a Schoolwide program designed to prepare students to address current global public health problems through multidisciplinary approaches.  Our full-time MPH is an eleven-month program. The degree is also offered in an online/part-time format. Because of the program’s intensity and leadership skills required, MPH applicants without a doctoral degree are required to have two years of post-baccalaureate, full-time, health-related work experience.

If you have not met the experience and coursework requirements, you are ineligible to apply to the MPH, but don’t despair! The Bloomberg School offers six other master’s degrees, most of which do not require work experience.


The MBE is offered through a collaboration of the Bloomberg School and the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics. The MBE is an interdisciplinary and cross-divisional graduate program preparing students from diverse individual and professional backgrounds for the bioethics challenges of professional and civic life. The MBE is offered both full and part-time. The full-time program takes about 1.5 years.


The MHA is offered through the Department of Health Policy and Management. It prepares students to begin or advance leadership careers within health service organizations. It’s the business degree of public health. The MHA is one year of academic coursework and an 11-month field placement.


The MHS is offered by each of the school’s academic departments. It prepares students for further graduate study or research careers through in-depth study and research in a particular public health discipline. The duration of the MHS varies by department, but is typically one year of academic coursework culminating in a thesis or project.


The MPP is offered by the Department of Health Policy and Management. It provides a broad look at public policy formulation, implementation and evaluation. This is the one degree at the School not solely devoted to public health. The MPP combines academic coursework with an internship and typically takes two years to complete.


The ScM is offered by seven academic departments and geared toward students interested in building research careers. The duration of the ScM varies, but is typically one year of academic coursework culminating in a thesis or project based on original research.


The MSPH is a professional degree offered by five academic departments. This degree couples focused academic training with a field experience, providing students the opportunity to integrate what they learn in a classroom with real-world public health practice. The duration of the MSPH also varies by department, but is typically one year of academic coursework, plus a 4-9 month field placement.

The online application, requirements and deadlines vary by program, so Know Your Program!

child holding globeEarlier this month our staff answered questions in a virtual chat. Some participating students knew exactly which degree they were interested in and what they wanted to do with it. Others were a little unsure of “public health” and what opportunities exist in the discipline.

It’s that last group of students I want to help today.

Public health is a broad field encompassing everything from the etymology of disease to health promotion, the molecular structure of viruses to health care delivery.  What you study and where you go after graduation is largely up to you!

Below are some resources for learning more about public health in general and the Bloomberg School specifically.

I hope this helps!

Flying Out Over the BayWhere will Admissions representatives be this month?

It may be easier to ask where we won’t be! Come chat with us in Washington, Berkeley, Baltimore, Chicago, Huntsville, St. Paul, Montgomery, Davis, Seattle, Los Angeles, Atlanta, New Orleans or at a host of other venues.

Check out our recruitment calendar to see where we’ll be when.

Hope to see you soon!

Our admissions blog is three years old today! Happy Birthday!

That’s three years of application tips, deadline alerts, “what you’re asking,” event reminders and a few really bad jokes by yours truly (you know you laughed anyway).

It’s a special day for many reasons. Today is also my last day as the voice of the Admissions Blog. I’ve scheduled a few posts over the next month and I’m leaving you in really good hands. I’m certain there will be many good posts in yours and the Admissions Blog’s future.

So long. Farewell. And happy Admissions Blog reading!

Office birthday

WelcomeCalling all prospective students!

The Bloomberg School OPEN HOUSE is just two weeks from Friday. Have you registered yet?

Open House provides prospective students the chance to tour our facilities, meet with departments, and learn more about our academic offerings.


Friday, October 9
1 to 4:30 p.m.


Space is limited and this event has filled up in the past. Register today!