The requirements below are for the MPH and MHSA programs only. MS and PhD applicants apply through the Rackham Graduate School. MPH/MHSA applications must include all of the following in order to be considered:

  1. SOPHAS application form (you may select more than one designation)
  2. Transcripts
  3. SOPHAS Statement of Purpose and Objectives
  4. Reflective Essay*
  5. Letters of recommendation
  6. Language Proficiency Requirements

*If you are applying to two or more programs, you are required to submit TWO OR MORE SOPHAS Personal Statements. 

Please see SOPHAS instructions for information on submitting the required materials. Note that U-M SPH departments look for different prerequisites and additional information. Refer to department websites.


Applicants must submit official transcripts from any institutions at which they have completed post-secondary coursework directly to SOPHAS. You do not need to submit a second copy of your official transcript to U-M SPH Admissions unless it is requested.

International Transcripts

Individuals submitting transcripts from an international academic institution must first submit their transcripts to World Education Services (WES) for a ICAP credential evaluation. Because this process can take some time, applicants should submit their transcripts to WES at least 1 month prior to the application deadline. WES evaluations should be sent directly to SOPHAS.

Applicants who are residing in the U.S. at the time of application but completed their academic training in a non-U.S. institution must also adhere to this requirement. If the coursework completed abroad was one year or less and is listed on your domestic undergraduate transcript, a WES evaluation is not required.

Essays (both are required)

SOPHAS Statement of Purpose and Objectives:

This statement should be a concise, well-written essay about your educational background and reasons for pursuing a graduate degree in public health, specifically the area of study you wish to follow. This essay should be approximately 1,500 words in length. You should give information about:

  1. Your background as it pertains to your academic and professional goals.
  2. The motivating influences that stimulated interest in your specific discipline.
  3. Your future career goals and objectives.
  4. Indicate how an advanced degree will help to achieve your educational and career objectives.

Reflective Essay:

This essay should be approximately 500 words in length (3,000 character limit). It should provide a brief description of how your personal or academic background and experiences will bring a unique perspective to the program and contribute to a diverse and inclusive U-M SPH community. Please also discuss and explain any unusual patterns or anomalies in your academic or professional record (for example, gaps in work or education, or a poor semester performance).  This essay will be pasted into the Additional Questions section of our programs.

Resume or CV (Recommended):

Applicants may upload a resume or CV directly to SOPHAS via their online application. No cover letter is required.

Letters of Recommendation

We require 3 letters of recommendation from either academic (i.e. a professor) or professional (i.e. a supervisor) sources. We do not accept personal references.

These letters should be submitted electronically via SOPHAS by your recommenders. Once you input your recommender's contact information, SOPHAS will contact them directly with instructions.

Standardized Tests

Standardized test scores are not required for applicants applying to any master’s- or doctoral-level program for the academic year starting fall 2021. If you have taken a standardized test such as the GRE or MCAT and want to submit your scores, please note that they will not be used as an official metric during application review. Scores may be used by some programs after the admissions decision is made to inform future use of standardized test scores in the admissions process. Reach out to admissions staff at if you have questions.

To submit standardized test scores, follow the instructions below.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE): All programs accept general official GRE scores taken within the last five years. Test scores should be submitted electronically to institution code 1954 and/or 1839; there is no need to enter a department code. 

Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT): MCAT scores may be submitted electronically from AAMC to SOPHAS. No code is used.

Language Proficiency Requirements

 For applicants whose native language is not English: Please refer to the Language Proficiency Requirements for minimum TOEFL score requirements and information on other English Proficiency Exams accepted. The TOEFL code for the University of Michigan is 1839.

Holistic Application Review for Master of Public Health and Master of Health Services Administration Applicants

Michigan Public Health practices a holistic review process when making graduate student admission decisions.

In the holistic review process, readers give careful consideration to all the credentials presented by the student. They assess the application materials for indicators that the applicant possesses qualities known to contribute to successful completion of the degree program.

Holistic review ensures that no single factor leads to either accepting the student or excluding the student from admission.

The following items are considered during holistic review:

  • Essays (SOPHAS Statement of Purpose and Reflective Essay)
  • Grades and Key Coursework
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Experiences (Examples- Research, Volunteering, Professional Work etc.)
  • Evidence of academic training for rigorous graduate public health curriculum