How to Apply

Department of Public Health requires the following for full admission:

  • An earned bachelor’s degree with a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Three letters of reference. Letters must be submitted, on letterhead, from employers or educators who are willing to provide a reference. Academic referrals are preferred.
  • An Academic Essay (Please note it is not a Personal Goals Statement) is included in the application form.  Answer each of the following three questions with two or more paragraphs:
    • What are the most urgent public health problems facing your community today?
    • How will a master’s degree in public health help prepare you to address these problems?
    • Which area of public health specialization appeals most to you?


  • As a narrative essay, use of the first person pronoun ‘I’ is welcomed.
  • Answer each question specifically in response to the topic presented.
  • The essay should have a purpose and be organized with a clear point of view.
  • The language should be appropriate for an academic audience.
  • Please review Our Student Resources.

Additional Requirements for MPH – Environmental Health

Admission to the Master of Public Health- Environmental Health program requires 30 credit hours of natural science (e.g., biochemistry, biology, math, calculus, physics, chemistry, etc.). If an applicant is deficient in required hours, conditional admittance can be granted at the discretion of the department. If conditionally admitted, students must complete the 30 credit hours of natural science in order to be granted full admission. The Department of Public Health prefers WES evaluations of international transcripts. If applicants submit other evaluations, applicants will be asked to submit supplemental material, such as syllabi from previous courses.

Application Due Dates: MPH accepts applications at any time.

Please Note: The deadlines for Graduate Assistant (GA) and Graduate Public Service Program (GPSI) Internships are March 15 for summer and fall semester admissions and the preceding October 15 for spring semester admissions. Applicants must be accepted into the degree program before they are eligible for one of these programs.  These options are for students in the Springfield or Chicago area.

Prerequisites for Full Admission

The following prerequisites apply for Full Admission to the Master of Public Health Degree:

  • GRE Score Report, some well qualified applicants may be accepted on the condition of providing the report at a later date. Information concerning the GRE test is available here.
  • GPA, The ideal score will be greater than 3.0. Some exceptional students may be accepted with a lower GPA, however specific conditions will be applied.
  • Three letters of reference, to be supplied directly from the person who has agreed to provide a reference for you.
  • The 3-question MPH Academic Essay, two or more paragraphs per question are preferred,
  • And a, “…strong background in natural sciences.”

You can Apply Online Today  When you go to that site, you must create your own custom user name and password. Make a record of that information as you can return to your application to check on each phase of the processing.  The online application will also inform you of other required materials at each step.

Degree ProgramProgram TypeDept Application Materials and Admission CriteriaPrerequisite Course RequirementsDepartment ADM ReviewDept Conditional AdmitsDept Appeal Process
Public Health MPHOn campus & Online• Minimum overall GPA of 3.00 for previous academic work
• Complete university application form
• Essay addressing the areas outlined in the
application form
• Three letters of recommendation on letterhead from employers, professional peers, or educators
• Background in natural sciences recommended
Department Chair; an evaluation rubric is used for file reviewYes, for applicants with public health or environmental health experience who are missing one or more of the conditions listedYes, involves Department Chair reviewing any additional information submitted by applicant

MPH Application

Applications are accepted online through Apply and require graduate student application form and fee, college/university transcripts, graduate record exam (GRE) scores, MPH academic essay, and letters of recommendation. Applications from foreign students require a demonstration of a high level of competence in English. MPH accepts applications at any time. The information about the application process can be accessed via Graduate Education Website.

Tuition Fee and Cost of Study

For tuition fees, please refer to the UIS Tuition Calculation webpage, and make sure that you select the Graduate tab near the top (only 3 drop-down boxes). For example, based on the current tuition rate per hour on the UIS Tuition Calculator webpage, the tuition fee for the Online MPH Program (100% Online Courses) is around $20,957.20 (without counting the cost of textbooks and other miscellaneous items). The tuition fee for non-resident on-campus MPH students is around $39,997.20 (without the estimate of the cost of textbooks, housing, transportation, and other miscellaneous items).

This calculator provides an ESTIMATE of your total tuition, fees, and assessments. All amounts are SUBJECT TO CHANGE without advance notice. For official information, please visit the Tuition website and contact the Office of Records and Registration. You may also wish to review housing information and costs. Estimated total cost of attendance are located on the Cost-Aid website.

Length of the Program

Our MPH program (48 credit hours) can be completed in as few as 24 months on a full-time basis. Part-time students may take up to four to five years to finish their degrees. UIS Academic Calendars display the semester academic calendars.


On admission, each student is assigned an advisor to assist with academic planning. Students must prepare an educational plan before registering for courses in order to map out progress through the degree consistent with career and personal goals.

Course Transfer (MPH Program Only)

UIS may accept up to 12 semester hours of eligible graduate-level work completed at another accredited institution. However, only hours earned with a grade of B or better and accepted by your UIS academic program will be accepted. All transfer credit must be earned within 5 years of the first graduate course taken at UIS in pursuit of the degree/certificate. You may not have used the course for any other degree/certificate you hold. The faculty member who teaches the course will check the syllabus to assure the appropriateness of the transfer. There is no guarantee that any of your courses will transfer until the UIS Office of Registrar has approved. Syllabus and an official transcript will be required.

Course Waiver (MPH Program Only)

When you want to waive a course because you have already taken a similar course at the graduate level, and it is wrapped up in the completion of another degree, the course may be waived ONLY if you satisfy the instructor of record that you are competent in that area. Remember that a waiver does not award credit for the course(s); it only removes the affected courses from those that you need to complete. Students requesting consideration for a waiver of a required MPH course must submit a Student Petition Form, course syllabi, transcripts, or other documentation. Please note that there is no guarantee that any of your requests will be approved. The decision to grant a waiver is at the discretion of the department representative.