The Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) participates in the Schools of Public Health Application Service (SOPHAS). SOPHAS is an online, common application service.
What are the deadlines?
The priority application deadline is December 15; to ensure all applications materials arrive at the Harvard School of Public Health on time, applicants are highly encouraged to submit to SOPHAS by December 1st (for the December 15th deadline). Prospective students may apply after the priority deadline on a space available basis with prior permission from the program. The final, space available application deadline is February 15th. Again, we strongly encourage candidates to submit their application two weeks in advance of the deadline to allow for processing time.
Please note that SOPHAS will only forward completed applications to HSPH.
When is the application available?
The application is available starting the beginning of September
What does a completed application consist of?
The TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or IELTS test is required for all applicants who have not received a degree from an institution where English was the language of instruction. Those who have already taken the TOEFL may submit scores that are two years old or less. The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) exam will be accepted if the applicant’s score is 7.0 or above.
- Statement of purpose and objectives (personal essay)
- Resume / Business CV
- Official transcripts for each post-secondary institution attended
- Three letters of reference
- One standardized test score (the MCAT for most US and Canadian medical graduates and typically the GRE for foreign medical graduates)
- SOPHAS application fee
*We recommend requesting letters of reference and transcripts as early as possible; SOPHAS will only release an applicant file to HSPH after all transcripts and all references are received.
SOPHAS and Admissions Frequently Asked Questions
Statement of Purpose and Objectives (personal essay):
Official Transcripts: We recommend that candidates request three signed and sealed copies of all post-secondary transcripts, marks sheets, and degree conferral certificates. The first should be sent directly to SOPHAS (applicants should use the SOPHAS Official Transcript Request Form), the second and third should be held by the applicant. Successful applicants will be required to send the second unopened copy to the HSPH Office of Admissions in order to matriculate. The third is an extra copy for your records.
Transcript data entry (US transcripts):
The SOPHAS system requires that all prior courses and grades be entered manually into the application. While SOPHAS prefers that applicants enter their own course work, they provide an optional data entry service to ensure applicants are not discouraged from submitting applications due to this requirement. The fee for this service is $150 independent of the number of transcripts submitted.
If you are interested in the data entry service please complete the SOPHAS Coursework Entry Form. Please allow 3 weeks for this data entry service to be completed, please note that SOPHAS will enter your coursework only after all transcripts have been received.
SOPHAS Coursework entry agreement (optional):
SOPHAS Coursework Entry Form (PDF)
Applicants with non-US transcripts should visit the HSPH Office of Admissions Transcripts and Marks Sheets website for detailed submission instructions.
Letters of Reference: The program requires three letters of reference. References should comment on the candidate's executive leadership experience and potential. Candidates should seek references from managers as senior in their organization as possible; at least one letter should come from a current direct manager.
Standardized test score:
One standardized test score is required for each applicant. Most domestically trained physicians and dentists submit their MCAT or DAT score respectively. Foreign trained clinicians typically take the GRE exam. For a detailed explanation of the standardized test score requirement please see the Office of Admissions Test Score Designations website . For instructions on how to request MCAT scores, review our Frequently Asked Question on requesting MCAT scores.
*IMPORTANT TIP: Be sure to select 'Master of Science (SM) 42.5-credits - Health Care Management' on the SOPHAS application. We are a 1-year (42.5 credits) Master of Science taken over 2 years.
SOPHAS Admissions FAQ:
Application Notes from the HSPH Office of Admissions:
What is the application process? When will I know my acceptance status?
Applicants apply directly to SOPHAS. Please note that interviews are not a required part of the application. Feel free to call to discuss the match between our program and your career goals. Completed applications are forwarded by SOPHAS to HSPH, then to a Health Policy and Management faculty committee for review and admission recommendation. Applications are then reviewed by a school-wide committee for final decision.
Typcially, candidates who submit completed applications by December 15 will be notified of admission decision by March 1st.
General Application Problems?
Contact HSPH Office of Admissions: