Frequently Asked Questions
What are the Department's Admissions Requirements?
- Baccalaureate-level degree in a related field
- The Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
- Personal statement of professional and/or research goals
- Official transcripts from all institutions attended
- Resume or curriculum vitae
- TOEFL or IELTS for non-native English speakers. Minimum scores:
- TOEFL: 100 iBT; 600 PBT (paper-based test)
- IELTS: 7
- Three letters of recommendation
Do any of the degrees require a specific background?
The MSPH in Global Disease Epidemiology and Control: a degree in hard sciences highly preferred
The MSPH in Health Systems: a degree in biological or health sciences or alternatively in management or social sciences
The MSPH in Social and Behavioral Interventions: a degree in the health or social sciences
The MSPH in Human Nutrition, Registered Dietitian track, requires all students to have an undergraduate major in a hard science, health, or psychology. It also requires students to take 6 additional courses prior to applying (up to 2 of the courses can be done after submitting the application.) For more information, please see the Registered Dietitian page.
The PhD in GDEC, Health Systems, and SBI require a prior master’s degree.
The PhD in Human Nutrition requires a minimum of 1 year of post-baccalaureate such as a master's degree, a dietetic internship, medical training, or other relevant work experience.
How do I apply?
The School's Application Instructions are available here.
Doctoral program: December 1
MSPH, Registered Dietitian program: December 1
MSPH programs, except for the Registered Dietitian program: Priority deadline: January 15. Applications accepted on an ongoing, space-available basis after the priority deadline until all spots are filled or until March 1.
MHS: Priority deadline: January 15. Applications accepted on an ongoing, space-available basis after the priority deadline until all spots are filled or until April 30.
BA/MSPH program with Public Health Studies at JHU: July 1
For more updated information, please check the School’s deadlines page.
What kind of recommendations should I use when applying?
- Master's applicants should have at least two academic recommendations out of three. The third can be professional.
- Doctoral students can have a mix of academic and professional recommendations, and with permission from the academic manager, can submit a fourth letter of recommendation if appropriate.
What is the funding for doctoral degree students?
Most doctoral students will receive a scholarship of 25% of tuition for their first year followed by a scholarship of 75% of tuition for the subsequent 4 years. Up to 3 doctoral students can receive 100% funding for 2 years, followed by 75% funding for the following 3 years (if funds are available). All doctoral students must be registered full time and be in good academic standing every term to receive these funding options. The Department expects students to finish their PhD in five years.
What is the funding for master's degree students?
The Department awards a limited number of full-tuition scholarships to incoming master's students each year in a competitive process. During the second year, after completing a minimum of 64 course credits and during the internship stage of the program, the Department automatically provides a 75% scholarship to all master's students; students are responsible for the remaining 25% of the tuition. Research and teaching assistantships may be available that can support students in selected areas. Financial support for internships varies depending on the sponsoring organization.
What is the difference between the Master of Science in Public Health (MSPH) and Master of Public Health (MPH) programs?
The MSPH is a department-based degree program designed for students who are looking to begin a career in global public health. It provides a foundation in core public health disciplines while allowing students to develop more specialized skills in a particular area of interest by choosing from one of our four program areas. The MSPH includes a practicum requirement of a minimum of four months full time.
The MPH is a schoolwide degree program designed to provide students with broad-based education in the areas of population health and disease, as well as training to work with a variety of public health issues. Applicants must have a minimum two years of experience in a health field or public health prior to applying.
The two degrees are equivalent in terms of their level of recognition and respect in the field of public health.
The PhD prepares students to become independent investigators in academic and non-academic research institutions, and emphasizes contributions to theory and basic science. Applicants must apply to one of the Department's four program areas.
The DrPH degree is no longer being offered through the Department of International Health. It is being redesigned and will be offered as a schoolwide degree for a start date of June 2017. For more information, please read about changes to the DrPH program here. The DrPH is designed for students with experience in the practice of public health who have already earned their MPH or an equivalent degree and want to further prepare themselves for leadership positions at federal agencies, state and local health departments, nongovernmental organizations, universities, and health care institutions.
What are the typical GRE, GPA and TOEFL/IELTS scores for students admitted into the Department?
In general, GRE scores for most students admitted average the 70 percentile in all three areas, with the average somewhat lower for MSPH students and higher for PhD and DrPH students. Undergraduate GPAs average 3.25 for MSPH students, and graduate GPAs average 3.50 for PhD and DrPH students.
It should be noted that no one factor dominates the admissions decision. The admissions committee looks at applications holistically. Factors examined include previous grades, types of courses taken, GRE scores, personal statement, letters of recommendation, match to track and faculty interests, and experience. Experience in one developing country is viewed favorably, especially for admission to the PhD program.
TOEFL scores have to be a minimum of 100 in internet-based tests.
IELTS scores must be a minimum of 7.
Do you accept MCAT scores in place of GRE scores?
No, all doctoral and master's applicants must submit GRE scores.
What are the application requirements for international students?
Visit the International Applicant Information website for details. Application requirements for the Department are also posted. Experience in international developing countries is viewed favorably, especially for admission to the PhD program.
If I am a foreign, non-native English speaking student who graduated from a college in the United States, do I still need to submit a TOEFL score?
If you received a degree from an English-speaking university, you can request a TOEFL score waiver from the Academic Program Manager by email. We will review your degree and university to determine whether you will need to submit a TOEFL score or you qualify for a waiver.
Can I visit the campus?
Applicants are welcome to visit the campus to meet the faculty and attend classes. To learn more about school-organized Visitors' Days, the Fall Open House, and guided tours, visit the Admissions Office website. You may also schedule a visit with the Department by contacting the Academic Program Manager.
Can I complete the MSPH , PhD, or DrPH programs online or on a part-time basis?
The Department does not offer these options for any degree programs. While some courses are available through the Web, the programs require that students be enrolled full-time and be in residence. However, the MPH program offers part-time/Internet-based options.
Can I enroll in the Winter or Summer Institutes as a full-time student?
You can enroll in these Institutes but you will have to pay additional tuition for each course. Your regular year tuition does not cover the cost of courses in these Institutes.