Degree Programs

The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health prides itself on the diverse backgrounds of its students and on the commitment they share to making the world a healthier place.

Our degree programs are designed to meet the specific needs of students with varying levels of experience and prior education, and with career goals focused on either professional practice or research and academia. There is also considerable flexibility within degree programs for students to shape the learning experience to match their own interests and aspirations.

The table below summarizes our degree programs. For more detailed information, please see the chart of eligibility requirements for Harvard Chan School programs.

PRIMARY CAREER ORIENTATION
Professional Practice Research
Master’s Degrees

Master of Public Health (MPH)*

Master in Health Care Management (MHCM)

Master of Science (SM)
Doctoral Degrees Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

*MPH degrees in clinical effectiveness or quantitative methods prepare graduates for a variety of careers, including academic medicine.

Before applying, please be sure to check the eligibility and testing requirements specific to the program or field of study you wish to enter, as these may differ from the general information provided on this page.

Demonstrated excellence in written and spoken English, plus strong verbal and quantitative aptitudes are prerequisites for all degree programs.

Professional Degrees

Master of Public Health (45-Credit)

In general, applicants for the MPH-45 degree must have one of the following:

  • a prior doctoral degree—for example, MD, DO, DMD, DDS, PhD, SD, JD (or equivalent)
  • a master’s degree in a health-related field—for example, MSN, MSW, MBA—plus at least two years of relevant health experience
  • completed the primary clinical year of medical or dental school or be a 1L student at Harvard Law School or a concurrent applicant to the master of science in nursing at Simmons University. For more information, visit Dual/Joint Degrees.
  • a bachelor’s degree, plus five or more years of relevant health experience (for the epidemiology, global health, health and social behavior, health management, and health policy fields of study only)

Specific admissions requirements vary for certain fields of study within the MPH 45-credit program. Please review the eligibility requirements within your desired field of study carefully.

Master of Public Health (65-Credit)

Applicants for the MPH-65 degree must have the following:

  • a bachelor’s degree, plus two or more years of post-baccalaureate work experience in a relevant public health field.

Specific admissions requirements vary for certain fields of study within the MPH 65-credit program. Please review the eligibility requirements within your desired field of study carefully.

MPH in Epidemiology (online / on-campus)

Requires a prior doctoral degree—for example, MD, DO, DMD, DDS, PhD, SD, JD (or equivalent). Also eligible to apply are those with a master’s degree in a health-related field (for example, MSN, MSW, MBA) plus two years of relevant experience, or those with a bachelor’s degree plus five or more years of relevant experience in a health-related field. Current MD and DO students are not eligible to enroll in the MPH in epidemiology.

Master in Health Care Management

An executive degree program open only to mid-career physicians seeking to improve their managerial and leadership skills.

Doctor of Public Health

Requires a master’s degree or non-U.S. equivalent and a minimum of six years of relevant experience.

Medical Residency program

The Harvard Occupational and Environmental Medicine Residency (OEMR) is available to MPH-45 students in the occupational and environmental health field of study or Special Students.

The Environmental Health Pediatric Fellowship is open to physicians who are board eligible or certified in pediatrics. This two-year fellowship is located in the Pediatric Environmental Health Center at Boston Children’s Hospital and consists of a nine month MPH-45 program at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in the occupational and environmental health field of study, followed by 15 months of clinical training in children’s environmental health.

Research Degrees

Master of Science (80-Credit)

The 80-credit master of science requires prior bachelor’s degree or non-U.S. equivalent. Some departments prefer relevant work experience as well. The 80-credit SM is offered in:

Master of Science (60-Credit)

Requires prior bachelor’s degree or non-U.S. equivalent in one of the mathematical sciences or an allied field (for example, biology, psychology, or economics). The 60-credit master of science is offered in biostatistics and health data science.

Master of Science (42.5 Credit)

The 42.5-credit master of science requires a master’s or doctoral degree. Some departments prefer relevant work experience as well. The 42.5-credit SM is offered in:

PhD in Biological Sciences in Public Health

Requirements include a bachelor’s degree and undergraduate preparation in advanced-level biology and chemistry (including organic chemistry) as well as physics and calculus appropriate for the mastery of diverse fields of biology. Preference will be given to applicants who have relevant work experience or prior graduate work in their primary area of study. All PhD programs at the Harvard Chan School are offered under the aegis of the Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

PhD in Biostatistics

All candidates must have a strong background in mathematics with college-level coursework successfully completed through multivariable calculus and at least one semester of linear algebra, as well as knowledge of at least one computer programming language. Preference will be given to applicants who have relevant work experience or prior graduate work in their primary area of study. All PhD programs at the Harvard Chan School are offered under the aegis of the Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

PhD in Health Policy

Candidates with a record of success in undergraduate study and strong interest or experience in health policy are eligible to apply. Although student backgrounds vary and a previous graduate degree is not required, most successful applicants have a prior master’s degree and/or relevant work experience in the field of health policy.

PhD in Population Health Sciences

Any candidate with a distinguished undergraduate record and a demonstrated enthusiasm for the rigorous pursuit of scientific public health knowledge is encouraged to apply. Although a previous graduate degree is not required, you should have successfully completed coursework in introductory statistics or quantitative methods. Preference will be given to applicants who have relevant work experience or prior graduate work in their primary area of study. All PhD programs at the Harvard Chan School are offered under the aegis of the Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

Summer-Only Degree Options

Master of Public Health (MPH) in Clinical Effectiveness – Summer-Only Option (45-Credit)

Available only to physicians who have completed their residency, have the support of their home hospital or university, and have completed the Program in Clinical Effectiveness, a joint program of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and the Harvard Chan School. Students may apply concurrently to the program in clinical effectiveness and the master of public health 45-credit program in the clinical effectiveness field of study.

Master of Science (SM) in Epidemiology – Summer-Only Option (42.5-Credit)

Requires a medical degree or master’s-level background in a relevant discipline (e.g., biology, chemistry, genetics, physiology, bioengineering, or related social and computational sciences)

Please note: Current degree candidates at the Harvard Chan School and individuals who have applied to a degree program at the Harvard Chan School for the fall will be contacted directly in the spring with information on how to apply for summer courses.

Dual/Joint Master’s Degrees

MD/DO/MPH

MD and DO students at LCME-accredited schools in the U.S. or Canada may apply to enroll in our 45-credit MD/MPH program post primary clinical year.

DMD/DDS/MPH

DMD and DDS students at LCME-accredited schools in the U.S. or Canada may apply to enroll in our 45-credit DMD/MPH program post primary clinical year.

JD/MPH

Students who are in their first semester at Harvard Law School may apply to the JD/MPH joint degree program.

MSN/MPH Dual Degree Program with Simmons University

Students must apply concurrently to the master of science in nursing at Simmons University and the master of public health 45-credit program in the health and social behavior field of study at the Harvard Chan School.

MUP/MPH

Students may apply concurrently to the master in urban planning program at the Harvard Graduate School of Design and the master of public health 65-credit program at the Harvard Chan School. Current MUP students in their first year of study at the GSD also are eligible to apply.