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How to Apply

The NYU MPH requires that students apply to our program using SOPHAS, the centralized application service for public health schools and programs. All dual degree applicants must apply to both the MPH and the other program separately.  To be considered for review, a complete application must be submitted by the appropriate deadlines.  Please see below for specific concentration requirements and application instructions.  


Applicants to all concentrations in the MPH must hold a bachelor's degree or higher from a regionally accredited college or university. International candidates must hold at least the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor's degree.

There are no specific course prerequisites for any concentrations, although applicants should be aware that some concentrations (Epidemiology, for example) typically require demonstrated evidence of quantitative competence for admission.

The NYU MPH program does not require previous work and/or research experience to apply.  We welcome applications from those currently finishing an undergraduate degree. 

For All Concentrations:

  • Completed SOPHAS application.  Please see here for further details on how to apply using SOPHAS.
  • Resume or CV
  • Personal statement
  • Official transcripts from each post-secondary institution attended
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Official GRE scores taken within the past 5 years.  The GRE must be taken again if your GRE scores are older than 5 years.  When ordering test reports from ETS, you must include the proper institution code for the NYU CGPH (8752)  Please see below note on GRE waivers.
  • TOEFL scores from all applicants whose native language is not English and who did not receive the equivalent of a US bachelor's degree at an institution where English is the primary language of instruction. Applicants holding or completing only a graduate or professional degree from an institution where English is the primary language of instruction are still required to submit a TOEFL score unless the graduate program was four or more years in duration. When ordering test reports from ETS, you must include the proper institution code for the NYU MPH (8752). 

All official transcripts should be addressed to: 

P.O. Box 9111
Watertown, MA 02471-9111

SPECIAL NOTE FOR DUAL DEGREE APPLICANTS: All dual degree applicants are required to submit separate applications to both the MPH program and the partner program that participates in the dual degree you wish to apply to.  If you apply to the MPH dual degree but fail to submit an application to the other program, we will be unable to consider you for entrance into the dual degree.

SPECIAL NOTE ON GRE WAIVERS: Applicants who already hold an advanced graduate or professional degree are not required to submit a GRE score as part of their application unless they are applying to the Epidemiology concentration.  Examples of degrees that meet this requirement are MA, MS, MSc, MEd, MD, MBBS, MSW, MPA, MPhil, BDS, DDS, PharmD, EdD, PhD.  This list is not exhaustive. If you are unsure if your graduate or professional degree qualifies you for a GRE waiver, please contact us at and we will let you know.  GRE is waived only for students holding these degrees; they are not waived in any other circumstances.

Admission review is conducted on a rolling basis; applications are reviewed in order of their receipt and completion. We encourage you to submit your materials as early as possible as admission offers are extended throughout the year and space will become limited as the deadline approaches.

Please note that due to heavy application volume during certain times of year, admission decisions can take anywhere from three weeks to three months to be issued. Applicants are notified of their admissions decisions via email sent to the email address entered into the SOPHAS application. The CGPH no longer mails print admission letters except by special request.

August 18: Application opens

 SOPHAS application opens for fall 2017 applicants to all concentrations.

November 1: Priority deadline

Priority application deadline for all MPH concentrations.  Applications submitted by this earlier deadline will be reviewed first and will be eligible for forms of scholarship funding which typically become unavailable as the admissions cycle progresses.

February 1: Final deadline

All applications are due for both domestic and international applicants. Admission review is conducted on a rolling basis. Once an application is complete, it will be forwarded to the Admissions Committee for review.

April 15: Enrollment decision deadline

All applicants admitted to the MPH program are given until April 15th to formally make a decision about enrolling.

  1. Apply early. Submitting your materials early helps ensure timely processing and avoids costly delays. Depending on volume, it can take up to 10 business days for items such as transcripts or money order payments to be marked as received by SOPHAS from the date they are mailed. Remember, once your application is considered COMPLETE, it can take up to FOUR WEEKS for it to be processed and mailed to your programs. Therefore, to ensure your application is mailed on time, ALL MATERIALS should arrive at SOPHAS at least four weeks prior to your earliest deadline. 
  2. Don’t wait to submit your application. Do not wait for your standardized test scores, recommendations or other documents to be received by SOPHAS before submitting your application. Submit your application as soon as you have entered all required information. Documents, recommendations and test scores will be added to your application after they are received. We will be able to access your application as soon as you e-submit it and may wish to begin processing your application right away. It is your responsibility to ensure that all documents have been received in the program office by the appropriate deadlines. 
  3. Do not send any copies of application documents, as they will not be accepted as part of your application. SOPHAS will not accept faxes, photocopies, or unofficial documents. SOPHAS cannot accept student copies of transcripts. You should notify your registrar that you need an official copy sent to SOPHAS. A request form can be found in SOPHAS in the Colleges and Universities section. 
  4. After you have submitted your application, remember to use the SOPHAS application system to check the status of your application. Once you submit, you should monitor your status in the “my status” section often to ensure all required documents are received and your application is being processed. SOPHAS will e-mail you if there is an issue with documents or coursework verification but about missing documents. Check your status often until you application is complete. 

Checking your status online is a much quicker way of determining your status than calling or emailing the admissions office. Please note that during certain times of year, due to extremely heavy inquiry volume it may take up to 1-2 weeks for email or phone inquiries to be responded to.

The NYU MPH takes a comprehensive approach to evaluating applications, and does not eliminate any application based on any single criterion or score (assuming basic application requirements are met). Described below are the major categories used to evaluate and score each applicant along with the general criteria within each category.

Applications are and scored on the following categories:



To evaluate the academic performance and potential of applicants, the Admissions Committee considers transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate schools at which the applicant has taken courses.

Reviewers consider the following factors when evaluating transcripts:

► What is the overall GPA?

► Is the academic institution considered to be above/below average in academic rigor?

► How did the student perform on courses similar or related to those in the MPH program?

► Does the student show a pattern of improving grades over the course of study?

► Are there any unusual lows (may be explained by unexpected circumstances)

► Does the applicant change programs during the course of study and does this change affect their academic performance?

► How long ago did the applicant receive their degree? If the applicant has been out of school for some time, greater emphasis is placed on the applicant’s professional accomplishments. In such cases, letters of recommendation become one of the more important factors in reviewing the application.

Test Scores

The Admissions Committee prefers to see scores that are at a minimum of 50% percentile; the higher the test scores and the percentile ranking which indicates the percentage of students below the applicants score, the stronger the applicant. Test scores are particularly important when an applicant has a weaker academic record.

Honors and Awards

Students are asked to submit their resume or CV as part of the online application. Reviewers consider honors and awards as additional evidence of academic performance.

Student Internships

What type of internships has the student undertaken, if any? If possible, assess whether the internship was required or initiated by the applicant. Of particular interest is the type of internship, the agency and the global aspect of the experience.


Beyond the traditional academic criteria, we are interested in admitting candidates who have the potential to be global public health leaders. Evidence of leadership (during their educational experiences and outside) can be found by evaluating the following:


Has the applicant been involved in any volunteer programs and if so, have they served in leadership positions?

Professional Associations

Assess involvement in professional and/or student associations and organizations and in particular, any leadership positions held.


Has the applicant served as a reviewer of any peer-reviewed journals or has the applicant served as editor of any publications (professional work-related and/or student publication).


The personal statement is given considerable weight in the admissions process. In the statement, we ask applicants to provide insight into their career goals, their interest in global public health and the NYU MPH program, and how their education, work experience, and personal attributes have prepared them for admission to the program.  We expect thoughtful and reflective answers to the questions provided in the statement prompt, although we are not evaluating applicants on the basis of their existing knowledge of public health topics. In that sense, there are no necessarily “right” or “wrong” answers to the questions in the prompt; instead, we are inviting applicants to take this opportunity to creatively and honestly communicate their own engagement with global public health and interest in graduate study at NYU.

Writing Ability

We consider writing style, spelling, and grammar as well as the applicant’s ability to be focused and concise.


After reading a personal statement, we should be able to quickly identify ways in which the applicant has responded to the above questions and would benefit from being a student in the NYU MPH. More compelling personal statements will go further to demonstrate that the applicant already has a sophisticated understanding of the field in which s/he is currently working or intends to work.

Congruence with Program Goals

The personal statement should show an understanding of the degree program and the applicant should be able to describe how the program’s mission and goals will help them to achieve their own professional and/or academic pursuits.

Ability to Follow Directions

The personal statement should, in some way, make an attempt to respond to each of the questions in the prompt. Although we do not require applicants to answer each question individually and/or separately within the statement, the substance of each question in the prompt should be addressed either directly or indirectly somewhere in the statement.


Three confidential letters of recommendation are required. Each reference should include a recommendation form and an accompanying letter of recommendation. Applicants who are currently students applying for a joint degree program, or who have graduated within the past three years must submit at least one academic reference. Other references should be from professional contacts. Recommendations that are from friends or peers at work are not appropriate. In some cases, applicants are individuals who run their own organization or work as independent consultants. In these cases, peer references may be appropriate, but the applicant should still try to get a recommendation from someone who has evaluated his or her work. Specifically, when evaluating applicant recommendations, reviewers consider the following:

Strength of Recommendation

Both academic and professional recommendations writers should discuss/evaluate the applicants’ academic and/or professional qualifications and potential for success.

Credential of Recommender

Consider the credentials of who is writing the recommendation; is the writer a supervisor, senior professor, etc? Is the person qualified to make the recommendation?

Comparison to Others

The Admissions Committee considers how the recommender evaluated the applicant against others s/he has taught or supervised (included on recommendation form).


Recommendations that vary substantially in their overall evaluationmay not show clear evidence of the applicant’s potential.


Applicants are asked to include their most recent resume or curriculum vitae. Although work experience is just one factor in the application evaluation, it is an important one. In terms of work experience, the Admissions Committee considers the following factors:

Public Health Experience:

Does the applicant have prior work experience in public health or a related field and in particular, public health issues?

International Experience

Has the applicant worked internationally and/or in the US on international issues? Does the applicant show evidence of cultural competence?

Types of Positions Held

Does the applicant’s work history lend support for success in the program as well as success in a career in public health?


Although not required for admissions, reviewers consider any publications from the applicant, with particular attention to publications in peer-reviewed journals.

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