Master of Public Health

Build the intellectual foundation and highly specialized skills you need to lead change and make a difference in communities around the world.

The Harvard Chan School master of public health degree will provide you with the breadth of knowledge, the subject-specific expertise, the specialized skills, and the powerful global network you need to forge the career you want in public health. Whether you are a medical doctor, an established public health professional, or new to the field of public health, flexible degree formats and an array of options for specific fields of study will provide you with the right mix of grounding in the core disciplines of public health, as well as specialized focus to meet your individual goals.

Harvard Chan School master of public health graduates have done some remarkable things. They have led global efforts to eradicate diseases such as smallpox and Guinea worm disease. They have led departments at hospitals and health care agencies. They have become leaders of ministries of health, humanitarian organizations, corporations, academic institutions, and government agencies. They have developed lifesaving vaccines. They have served as surgeons, primary care physicians, and veterinarians. They have become best-selling authors. And they have even become heads of state.

The master of public health degree opens an extraordinary number of pathways to a meaningful career. Which one will you choose?

The Curriculum: Intellectual Breadth + Career Specialization

The innovative MPH curriculum—the culmination of a multi-year planning process at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health—is designed to open clear paths to action-oriented professional careers. The new curriculum aims to instill “T-shaped” competencies, providing deep knowledge in an area of specialty (the vertical bar of the “T”) coupled with the breadth of knowledge (top horizontal bar) needed to work effectively across many disciplines and fields of inquiry.

As a Harvard Chan MPH student, you will enjoy unique educational experiences both in and out of the classroom. You will build skills not just in analytical and quantitative methods, but also in problem solving and the application of public health training in real-world situations. And you will work with a remarkable group of peers from around the globe, and with faculty members who are global leaders in their fields.

Learn more about the MPH-45 curriculum (pdf) and an overview of the new MPH-65 curriculum (pdf).

The Format: Flexibility That Fits Your Experience, Your Life, and Your Goals

The School offers two variants of the MPH degree designed to fit the needs of students with different educational goals and varying levels of professional experience and prior education:

  • The 45-credit MPH (MPH-45) is for students who already hold a graduate degree or have at least five years of relevant work experience in the field of public health or a related field. You can complete the MPH-45 in two semesters as a full-time student or over as many as three years as a part-time student.* A summer-only program, in which an MPH-45 is earned over three consecutive summers, is available for students in the clinical effectiveness and quantitative methods fields of study only, both of which require prior doctoral degrees. We also offer an MPH-45 in Epidemiology as a two-year, part-time program that combines online and on-campus classes.
  • The 65-credit MPH (MPH-65) is for students who are earlier in their careers or are new to the field of public health. The MPH-65 is a full-time program that you can complete in three semesters, plus a summer. Part-time study options are available to some students in the MPH-65 program. Please contact admissions if you would like more information.

* Note: International students on a student visa must be full-time students.

Our Community: Committed, Accomplished, Collaborative

As a Harvard Chan School MPH student, you will work in a collaborative classroom environment alongside talented students from around the world and from a variety of academic and professional backgrounds. You will take advantage of the extraordinary resources of Harvard University and Boston’s Longwood Medical Area—home to Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston Children’s Hospital, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and other world-class health facilities. You will meet global leaders and work with world-renowned faculty members. And when you graduate, you will benefit from Harvard’s unparalleled global network of alumni leaders.

Fields of Study

When applying for the MPH-45 or MPH-65, you must choose one of the following specialized fields of study. Eligibility requirements vary by program format and field of study.

MPH-45 Fields of Study

  • Clinical Effectiveness (CLE 45-credit academic year and summer-only options)
  • Epidemiology – Online / On-Campus (EPI 45-credit)
  • Global Health (GH 45-credit)
  • Health and Social Behavior (HSB 45-credit)
    • Planned Social Change track
    • Social Determinants of Health and Disparities track
  • Health Management (HM 45-credit)
  • Health Policy (HP 45-credit)
  • Occupational and Environmental Health (OEH 45-credit)
  • Quantitative Methods (QM 45-credit academic year and summer-only options)

MPH-65 Fields of Study

  • Environmental Health (EH 65-credit)
    • Environmental Health Sciences track
    • Occupational and Environmental Health and Safety track
  • Global Health (GH 65-credit)
  • Health and Social Behavior (HSB 65-credit)
    • Planned Social Change track
    • Social Determinants of Health and Disparities track
  • Health Management (HM 65-credit)
  • Health Policy (HP 65-credit)

Learn more about the MPH fields of study.