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Health, Behavior and Society

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the criteria for admissions?

Prospective applicants can find more information about how to apply here.

What is the admissions review process?

Once your application packet is deemed complete by the Bloomberg School’s Office of Admissions, your application is sent to the MHS program faculty who review your application. Faculty look for solid academic performance and letters of recommendation, a strong link between the applicant’s stated career goals and mission of the MHS program, and previous relevant experiences.

Are the GREs required?

For prospective students applying for 2022-2023 admission to the MHS in Social Factors in Health, GRE scores will be optional. The admissions committee will make no assumptions if a standardized test score is omitted from an application, but will require evidence of quantitative/analytical ability through other application components such as academic transcripts and/or supplemental questions. Applications will be reviewed holistically based on all application components.

Applicants may submit GRE scores to JHSPH using the SOPHAS code 3738.

My GRE scores are more than five years old. Will you accept them?

The policy of the Educational Testing Service (ETS) is to maintain GRE scores for a five-year period only. After the five years, the scores are purged from the ETS computer system. If you have a copy of your original test scores, the Department may consider that in lieu of the report from ETS. However, more recent GRE scores are preferred.

What is available by way of financial aid or departmental scholarship?

The Department is committed to seeking opportunities that will allow it to provide financial support to its students. All master's students in good academic standing receive a 75 percent departmental scholarship during their field placement year. This scholarship is available for up to four terms as long as the student is completing the field placement and/or final report. Students interested in financial aid should contact the Bloomberg School's Office of Student Financial Services at 410-955-3004.

What types of certificate programs are available to students?

HBS masters students may pursue any of the certificate programs offered in the Bloomberg School. For more information about certificate programs, please visit certificates.

Can I complete the master's program on a part-time basis or virtually?

The MHS in Social Factors in Health is only offered on a full-time basis. Some courses may be taken online, but most courses require attendance at the East Baltimore campus.

What courses am I required to take?

View the MHS curriculum.

How many electives can I take and how should I use them?

The MHS program allows students considerable flexibility to create a program of study that meets their unique career goals. Students are encouraged to plan their electives with their faculty advisors. Electives can be used to grow areas of strength or to address deficiencies in a student’s portfolio of experiences and competencies. Electives may be selected from graduate-level courses throughout the School or University.

What will I need to do for my master's research paper?

The student will work in a mentored research activity for a minimum of 600 hours, most typically beginning in the summer after completing the first year of coursework, and concluding during the first and second terms of the second year.

The specific content of the paper is to be developed by the student in close consultation with the faculty advisor (and research project mentor, where these are not the same person). The research paper must 1) be based on original research, 2) address a public health problem with a social and behavioral focus, 3) represent original work conducted by the student in conjunction with the research advisor 4) include a rigorous and scientifically defensible analytic component, 5) be based on a conceptual model that relates the work to existing knowledge and 6) be acceptable to the Department of Health, Behavior and Society. It is possible, but not required, that the research be worthy of peer review publication.

Who can I contact for more information?

Program Director

Academic Program Administrator


410-502-4415