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Application Instructions


Funding Information

Application Instructions

(Updated Oct 28, 2011)


MS, MPH and PhD: The admissions committee reviews applications during the winter quarter for admission to the program in the following autumn quarter. Students are not accepted for other quarters due to the sequencing of the Public Health Genetics core courses.


MS, MPH and PhD: Admission is based on committee review of each applicant's academic and professional qualifications, including previous degrees and grades, work experience, applicable test scores, statement of purpose, and letters of recommendation.

Domestic Applicants: The online Graduate School application must be complete, with requested materials uploaded, by the close of business on January 10, or the following Monday if it falls on the weekend.

International Applicants: We recommend submission of the online Graduate School application, with the requested materials uploaded, by December 10.


  1. All items should be submitted online through the University of Washington online Graduate School Application.

  2. Statement of purpose.

    MPH and PhD:

    Describe your reasons for seeking admission to the IPHG MPH or PhD program. Although there are no specific guidelines, consider including your relevant past experience and educational background, which core knowledge areas are of most interest to you, your personal strengths and how they will contribute to the program, your perspective on the field of public health genetics, and your long term career goals. The admissions committee will use your essay to evaluate your writing, thinking, and editing skills, as well as to understand your intellectual priorities and your ability to think across disciplines. Your statement should be a maximum of 2 pages, single-spaced, and submitted online.


    Please discuss your educational and professional background, reasons for seeking admission, career goals and how a degree in genetic epidemiology would contribute to these goals. Your statement should reflect your understanding of the field of genetic epidemiology and the training you will receive in our program. The admissions committee will use your essay to evaluate your writing, thinking, and editing skills, as well as to understand your intellectual priorities. Your statement should be a maximum of 2 pages, single-spaced, and submitted online.

  3. Unofficial transcripts that include courses, grades and degrees from all institutions attended after secondary school. Please upload online.
  4. Official Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores. Public Health Genetics requires GRE scores from all applicants, except those who hold a U.S. doctorate (neither the MCAT nor ECFMG are acceptable substitutes for the GRE.) The UW code is R4854. No department code is necessary. ETS will eventually send your score electronically to UW Graduate Admissions. Applicants should take the examination at least one month before the application deadline to ensure timely receipt of official scores.

    GREs must have been taken within the last 5 years. For a registration booklet and information, contact ETS-GRE, P.O. Box 6000, Princeton, NJ 08541-6000, (609) 771-7670, fax (609) 771-7906, email Information is also available at

  5. Three recent letters of recommendation from professors, supervisors, or others who know your work reasonably well. No standard format is required for these letters, but the recommendations should comment in detail on your qualifications for training in public health genetics or genetic epidemiology. At least two of these letters must focus on your academic performance.

    Applicants should request email references through the online system described in the UW online application. Alert your recommenders that they will receive an email requesting a reference and inform them of our January 10 deadline.

    If the recommender requests to send a letter of recommendation by postal mail, you are allowed to change a reference from email to postal mail by going back into your online application and deleting the recommender and re-adding him/her with the correct delivery method. If letters are going to be sent by postal mail, provide your recommender with the IPHG contact information.

    It is your responsibility to check with your references to ensure that we receive your letters on time.

  6. Optional Disadvantage Statement
  7. Public Health Genetics believes that students with varied cultural experiences and/or disadvantaged social backgrounds contribute to the intellectual and social enrichment of our program. If you wish to have these factors included in the review of your application, please include information in your statement of purpose or submit a separate optional disadvantage statement concerning your personal history, family background, and influences on your intellectual development.

  8. Resume or curriculum vitae, submitted through the UW online Graduate Admissions system.

    Applicants need to apply separately to both the Public Health Genetics MPH Program and to the Law School. The applications to both schools should state the applicant is seeking concurrent degrees.

  10. INTERNATIONAL APPLICANTS Official copy of your TOEFL score

    Note: The Graduate School will require additional materials, including official transcripts, financial ability form, copy of visa, etc. from international applicants when they are recommended for admission by the graduate program.

    Please review the information at the following website:

    The graduate school requires international applicants, immigrants to the United States, and permanent residents of the United States, whose native language is not English and who have not received a bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degree from an accredited U.S. institution, or from an institution in Australia, the Bahamas, Canada, Ireland, Jamaica, New Zealand, Singapore, Trinidad and Tabago or the United Kingdom to submit a valid TOEFL score. Only official TOEFL score reports less than two years old will be accepted.

    A minimum score of 92 (TOEFLIBT) or 580 (TOEFL) or 237 (TOEFLC) is required.

    For additional information or to make arrangements to take the TOEFL, contact the Educational Testing Service at

If you have any questions about our application procedures, please send an email to

CONTACT INFORMATION should you need to mail us anything:

Mailing Address:

Institute for Public Health Genetics
University of Washington
Box 353410; 331 Raitt Hall
Seattle, WA 98195-3410

Or by Courier:

If you send any application materials within a few days of the deadline, we advise you to use an express courier service. Use the address shown above. Include our office phone number on the shipping form:.

Phone: (206) 616-9286
FAX: (206) 685-9651


All applications for IPHG programs are reviewed and evaluated by the Academic Program Committee (APC). Decisions to admit or deny admission are based on a simple majority vote of APC faculty members. Applicants will be notified of the admissions committee's decision by April 15.


The Institute for Public Health Genetics (IPHG) is committed to increasing the enrollment of students from groups traditionally underrepresented in public health professions. Prospective students are encouraged to attend Graduate Opportunities & Minority Achievement Program (GO-MAP) events, and meet other continuing IPHG students. For more information, please visit:

"The University of Washington is committed to providing access, equal opportunity and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, education and employment for individuals with disabilities. To request disability accommodation contact the Disability Resources for Students Office at least ten days in advance at: 206-543-8924/V, 206-543-8925/TTY, 206-616-8379 (FAX), or"