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Application Tips

  • The School of Public Health offers ~50 degrees/tracks and ~15 graduate certificates. Carefully consider which program best matches your qualifications and goals before applying as you will have to start your application over if you decide to change your program or track. Complete list of degrees and certificate programs offered by the School in the SPH Academic Catalog.

  • Epidemiology is the study of the distribution of disease in populations and the study of risk and preventive factors for disease.

  • If you are interested primarily in program design, implementation, or management, health education, law, or policy, or health services research, you should apply to Health Services (requires about 2 years health-related work experience) or Global Health (requires about 2 years health-related work experience in a developing country, although part may be with under-served or immigrant populations in the U.S.) instead of Epidemiology.

  • Read the Admissions Criteria well in advance of applying.

  • Relevant work (especially research) experience in epidemiology, public health or related fields (e.g. quantitative social sciences) is especially important. If the applicant has no or limited health sciences work/research experience, more emphasis will be placed on appropriate educational background, health-related research experience as a student, and excellent grades, GRE, statement of purpose and references.

  • Read the Application directions carefully well in advance of the deadline. Click on each item to learn what is expected.

  • Select recommenders well in advance after reading the criteria for recommenders and reference letters.

  • Send recommenders the information we seek in reference letters from the above webpage, and give them AT LEAST a month to write the letter.

  • Read the Statement of Purpose information concerning what to include in your statement.

  • If you do not have a health sciences background, we recommend you take some of the following courses, as applicable to your interests, to provide some of the knowledge needed in public health:
    • Human Anatomy/Physiology - recommended for all
    • Human Genetics
    • Statistics - recommended for all
    • Public Health (especially epidemiology, environmental health or survey courses in public health) - recommended for all
    • Nutrition
    • Microbiology (if interested in infectious diseases)
    • Molecular/Cellular Biology
    • Human Biology

  • Study hard for the GRE and take it the prior summer, if possible, so you can retake it if your scores are lower than our preferred GRE scores at the 75th to 80th percentile or above. Early November is the latest you can take the GRE to reach us in time.

  • Non-Native English Speakers: See recommendations under GRE above. It is strongly recommended if your GRE verbal score does not meet the above standard, that you take the TOEFL/IELTS to improve your admission chances, even if it is not required.


    This page was last updated on November 4, 2013