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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the COPHP program about?

The COPHP is a two-year graduate degree program that prepares students for careers in community and public health practice, such as health program planning, program evaluation, and health policy analysis. Students receive a solid foundation in the core disciplines of public health (epidemiology, biostatistics, environmental health, maternal and child health, social and behavioral science and international health) while developing knowledge or competencies in a variety of skill areas including analytical skills, communication and management skills, assessment, policy development and cultural skills. A commitment to social justice and community involvement in solving health problems, combined with rigorous academic preparation is the basis of the curriculum.

How does the COPHP MPH program differ from the other MPH programs?

Students learn using an integrated, interdisciplinary approach known as "problem-based learning", in which carefully crafted case studies are used to teach students competencies, or the knowledge, skills and values that will help them become effective public health practitioners. Students work in groups to examine case studies, identify key issues, research information and resources necessary to address the public health problem and apply the information gathered and skills acquired to solving the problem.

In addition, students integrate what they learn in the classroom into extensive fieldwork with community organizations and public heath agencies throughout the two years.

Is PBL right for you?

What kinds of skills are emphasized?

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:
  • Assess community health problems, health needs, assets and resources
  • Intervene to improve health (on individual, organizational, community and policy levels)
  • Engage and mobilize communities
  • Plan, implement, and manage public health programs
  • Evaluate health programs
  • Develop and analyze health policy

Who should apply to this program?

Students who desire master's-level training in applied public health practice. Preference will be given to applications likely to pursue careers in community and public health practice, as evidenced by previous professional experience and prior academic and/or clinical training. Although past experience and clinical training are desirable, highly qualified students with only a bachelor's degree and limited experience will be considered for admission to the program. We are especially interested in applications from individuals with backgrounds and life experiences that would motivate the applicant to pursue a committed career in public health, such as prior work experience, disability, cultural and ethnic experiences, disadvantaged social or economic backgrounds.

What is your application deadline for classes beginning Fall 2014?

There are three application deadlines for COPHP for both domestic and international applicants.
  1. "First Round" Applications are due by December 1, 2013.
  2. "Second Round" Applications are due by January 15, 2014.
  3. "Space Available" Applications are due by March 7, 2014.
(All applicants are highly encouraged to observe a class and/or speak with a faculty member prior to submitting their application.)

Do I need to submit official transcripts?

The on-line application asks for uploaded unofficial transcripts. One transcript sent directly from your degree-granting school will be required if you're offered admission and decide to accept the offer.

When will I learn the status of my application, and how?

Most applicants will be informed of the status of their application by email.
  1. "First Round" Applicants will learn of the status of their application by February 4.
  2. "Second Round" Applicants will learn of the status of their application by March 4.
  3. "Space Available" Applicants will learn of the status of their application by April 15.

Can I apply through SOPHAS?

No. The School of Public Health at the University of Washington is currently not participating in the SOPHAS common application service.

How many students are admitted each year to the COPHP Program?

Between 16 and 24 new students are admitted each year.

By when must you receive official GRE scores?

We must receive GRE scores (the general test) no later than two weeks after the application deadline.

Are there minimum GPA and GRE scores that you will accept?

Generally, we expect applicants to have a minimum GPA of 3.0 and GRE scores above the 50% percentile. Nevertheless, each application is reviewed as a whole; lower scores may be acceptable if counterbalanced by other strengths in the applicant's record.

Can I apply to more than one MPH program at a time?

Yes, you can apply to other MPH programs in the School of Public Health. You need to submit separate applications to each program.

What if I wanted to concentrate in a specialty area within Public Health or some other discipline?

Those who choose to concentrate in a specialty area during their program may earn a graduate certificate, which is acknowledged on the student's transcript. A certificate generally requires about 12 course credits and 3 seminar credits. Per credit course fees, including graduate certificate and other elective credits, are outlined at Tuition and Funding.