A Master of Public Health - or MPH - is a graduate level degree designed to prepare professionals to work for the general public to improve health for the entire population. Many professionals with an MPH work for non-profit organizations or a government organization, but some also work for different hospital groups or other for profit businesses.
Most MPH programs require a concentration or track in Biostatistics, Epidemiology, Environmental Health, Health Policy and Administration, or Social and Behavior Sciences, but Generalist programs are becoming more common to satisfy the demand of students enrolling in MPH programs.
CEPH Accredited MPH Programs
Some MPH programs are accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH). CEPH is "an independent agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education" that sets standards and requirements for education among the public health schools accredited by the CEPH. While it is currently not a requirement for a school to be CEPH accredited in the U.S., the trend is moving in that direction. Some reasons for this are that some employment opportunities are only available to an individual from a CEPH accredited school or because the National Board of Public Health Examiners (NBPHE) offers a national credentialing exam only to students from an accredited school or program.
Consider featured accredited online Public Health programs seeking applicants for a Master's of Public Health:
- The online Master of Public Health (MPH) program from the Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University ([email protected]) prepares public health professionals to make a difference in communities around the world, helping students succeed in advancing the health of populations locally and globally.
Complete your MPH in 12 months. GRE waivers available.
- UNC's Gillings School of Global Public Health, the No. 1-ranked Public School of Public Health, offers an online Master of Public Health program, [email protected]. Earn your master’s degree in as few as 24 months. Part-time and full-time program options are available. GRE, GMAT or MCAT scores are required to apply.
Click for admissions information from OnlineMPH.UNC.edu
- MPH @ Simmons, the online Master of Public Health program from Simmons College, prepares students to become public health practitioners and address health inequity at a local, national, and global level. The program can be completed in 21 months. No GRE required to apply.
Click for admissions information.
A Note on CEPH Accreditation
Institutions and programs in the United States, internationally and online may or may not be accredited by CEPH, but there are other accrediting bodies that make a university legitimate - whether online school or an on-campus location. Generally speaking, regional accreditation is the best, but there are other "program specific" accrediting bodies (the CCNE for Nursing, for example), plus national accrediting bodies. In your research, be sure to check with any universities you are interested in to see their accreditation. On this website, we only place universities that are accredited.
Schools and programs with a physical classroom can allow for a more personal approach and tend to have more hands-on access to health initiatives and experience. Additionally, some programs are adding online courses or will offer their full program online. An online MPH is a good option for an individual who desires to work while in school, or the school of choice would require the individual to move.
Consider a Featured Online Public Health Program
|School and Program Information||Online Program?||GRE Requirements||Time for Completion|
|George Washington University
Online MPH, Online MHI, Online MHA
|check_circle Online||GRE Waivers Available||As little as 12 months|
|University of North Carolina
The University of North Carolina's Gillings School of Global Public Health is an Accredited School of Public Health under the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH).
|check_circle Online||GRE, GMAT or MCAT scores required||As few as 20 months|
Develop the methodological, leadership, and advocacy skills needed to address health inequity during our 21-month program.
|check_circle Online||No GRE Required||As little as 2 years|
International MPH Programs
International schools and programs may be a better option for someone interested in international public health. International public health differs from public health in that it tends to focus more on large, state populations and/or world organizations. The World Health Organization and the Pan American Health Organization are excellent examples of international public health. Currently there are five countries that have CEPH accredited schools or programs: Mexico, Canada, Puerto Rico, Lebanon and Grenada.
National Board of Public Health Examiners credentialing
After you have chosen and completed a relevant MPH degree, you may be wondering if there are any more steps required to display your expertise within your field. Like most other fields, credentialing is vital to showing that you are serious about your subject area. The National Board of Public Health Examiners is a certification agency that specializes in providing certification for public health professionals all over the country. This organization seeks to ensure that graduates have received adequate education within different core areas such as Biostatistics, Environmental Science, Health Policy, and Behavioral Science. Most students meet these requirements through their involvement in CEPH-accredited degree programs.
Since the field of public health is so important to society and its people, obtaining certification can help show that you have met national standards for excellence. More and more employers and agencies are seeking out qualified and certified professionals to fill their positions, making it even more profitable to obtain your certificate after graduating from an accredited program. If you want to pursue certification through the NBPHE, you will be expected to fall into one of the categories listed below.
- Students that are currently enrolled in a CEPH-accredited graduate program
- Graduates of CEPH-accredited MPH or DPH programs
- Graduates that hold a BPH and have a minimum of 5 years work experience in the field of public health
In addition to educational and work experience requirements, applicants for certifications are expected to register for and complete a certification exam for public health professionals through the NBPHE. This examination consists of concepts and ideas that are applicable to public health positions within many different professional settings. Once you have completed the NBPHE examination, you can become certified as a public health professional. In order to maintain this certification over the course of your career, you may need to stay up to date with requirements and ensure that your certification is reinstated based on the requirements of the NBPHE.
Other often mentioned popular MPH programs include:
- University of South Florida
- University of Illinois at Chicago
- Northern Illinois University
- New Mexico State University
- San Jose State University
- University of West Florida
- Nova Southeastern University
- University of Alabama at Birmingham
- East Tennessee State University
Each of these universities received high marks for their quality in academics, flexibility in degree options, cost of attendance, specializations, achievements and accreditation among other merits. However according to U.S. News, the top two ranking public health universities are Johns Hopkins University and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.