Khan Annex windows at night

Community Health:

Master of Public Health

Assess community needs. Develop innovative solutions. Implement impactful programs and policies. Focus on prevention. Build stronger, healthier communities.

How to Apply: MPH

Application Deadlines

We take and review applications on a rolling basis. All application materials must be received prior to the deadline.
Deadlines this year are:

March 1st - Priority deadline for scholarship consideration

March 1st - Final deadline for international students (to allow time for visa processing)

May 1st - (final deadline for domestic students)

  • Applicants to the MPH program should submit their application through SOPHAS.
  • Application opens in August.
  • Applications to the MPH are accepted on a rolling basis. The earlier an application is received, the earlier it will be reviewed.
  • The MPH program only accepts applications for Fall terms. We do not have Spring or Summer term start dates.

A Complete Application Includes:

  • Online SOPHAS Application
  • GPA above 3.0
  • Resume
  • Official Transcripts1
  • Personal Statement
  • Three Letters of Recommendation 
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores (international students only)
  • Graduate Record Exam (GRE) Test Scores2

Grade Point Average (GPA)

All applicants must have at least a 3.0 GPA (out of 4.0 GPA) to apply to the MPH program. GPA is calculated from the last 60 hours (approximately two years) of undergraduate coursework.

Official Transcripts

MPH Program: Transcripts must show courses completed, grades, degree completed, and date of graduation. If you are in process of completing your degree, and expect to do so before you would enter the University of Illinois, have the current transcript sent now. After your degree is completed, you must arrange for another transcript to be sent directly to the University. Official transcripts are required to be sent directly to SOPHAS from all U.S. and English-speaking Canadian institutions. See the International Student Requirements section below for more detail on International transcripts.

Personal Statement

This statement is a very important part of your application.  In a 1-2-page statement (1.5 spacing), please respond to the following prompts:

  • Why are you interested in the MPH program at the University of Illinois?
  • How will the education and skills you gain from the MPH program help you meet your academic and professional career goals?
  • Describe any previous Master of Public Health-related experience including volunteer time, paid work, internships, coursework, and pertinent training
  • Share unique personal qualities, characteristics, and/or skills you believe will enable you to be successful in the program
  • If desired, share information to explain anything unusual in your transcripts or resume

Helpful Resources:

Letters of Recommendation

This program requires 3 letters of recommendation with at least 1 letter* from an academic professional (e.g. professor or instructor) who can attest to your capability to pursue graduate studies. The other letters may come from academic or professional sources who can speak to your educational endeavors, work history, internship experience, and/or use educational, communication, or health promotion; for MPH-Epi use quantitative, analytical or research team building and leadership skills.
*Individuals who received a degree 2 or more years ago may submit a professional reference in place of an academic reference if desired.

Helpful Resources:

Letter conventions

  • Use your institutional letterhead to write the letter. If letterhead is not available, include a heading with your contact information
  • Date and hand-sign the letter
  • Letters have no stated minimum or maximum length, but one to two pages is typical

Contents of the letter

We seek letter writers’ opinion on the following:

  • How long and in what capacity you have known the student
  • Details of your assessment of the student’s abilities
    • Academic ability or professional skills
    • Personality traits
    • Knowledge and suitability for the field of public health
    • Special attributes and assets, illuminating the strengths and weaknesses of the student
    • Overall potential of the student
  • A summary of the strength of your recommendation (e.g., “Ms. Jones is among the top 5% or 10% or 20% of students with whom I have worked,”)

Graduate Records Examination (GRE)

GRE scores are no longer required to submit your application to the MPH program. However, your application must demonstrate sufficient academic/quantitative preparedness to be considered for admission to the program. Your prior coursework, volunteer and/or work experiences, and recommendations are just a few of the items the admissions committee will review to gauge your preparedness for graduate studies.

Although the GRE scores are not required, applicants that have taken the GRE and feel their scores would benefit their application are encouraged to submit the scores. If you would like to submit scores, we recommend you scan your official score report as a PDF file and attach it to your application. You do not need to submit official scores through ETS.

1Official transcripts are required to be sent directly to SOPHAS from all U.S. and English-speaking Canadian institutions. If you attended a foreign school or earned your degree outside of the United States, you must have your foreign coursework evaluated by the World Educational Services (WES). SOPHAS will only accept evaluations obtained directly from WES. For more detailed information, please visit the SOPHAS page regarding foreign transcripts.

2If you choose to submit GRE scores, the GRE code for the University of Illinois MPH Program is 4229.

International Student Additional Requirements

English Language Proficiency

International students must submit Test of English as a Foreign Language scores, with the minimum for full status admission: 103 (TOEFL - IBT) or 7.5 (IELTS). Scores cannot be more than 2 years old. DUOLINGO is also being accepted.

Official Transcripts

If you attended a foreign school or earned your degree outside of the United States, you must have your foreign coursework evaluated by the World Educational Services (WES). SOPHAS will only accept evaluations obtained directly from WES. If a student studied abroad or participated in an exchange program through a U.S. institution, WES is not needed for that coursework. It is only needed if a degree was earned or if a foreign university was their primary school.

Statement of Financial Resources

Upon being offered admission, if you are not a citizen or permanent resident of the United States, you need to provide the University Admissions Officer with a copy of your passport (also any dependents) and proof of funding. You will need to prove that you have sufficient funds to cover the estimated expenses for admitted students as described in the Declaration and Certification of Finances form. You may subtract the amount you have been awarded in scholarship funds for ONE year. 

Other International Student Resources

International Applicant FAQs from the Graduate College 

Information from the International Student and Scholar Services Office

Contact Information

  • MPH Program
  • Department of Kinesiology and Community Health
  • 1206 S. Fourth Street
  • Champaign, IL 61820
  • Phone: 217-300-0330
  • Email: mph-admissions@ahs.illinois.edu

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