Health Policy

Milken Institute School of Public Health

Master of Public Health (M.P.H.), Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), Doctor of Public Health (Dr.P.H.), Graduate Certificate
Location(s): Foggy Bottom - Main Campus

Program Overview

Dedicated to health policy education and research, our faculty members include some of the nation’s best-known health policy experts, as well as leaders from the public and private health policy sectors. Our program joins stimulating classes with hands-on experience with critical health policy issues. Our graduates can be found in congressional offices, federal health agencies, the most prominent professional health societies in Washington, D.C., trade associations and health policy consultancies. With courses scheduled in the late afternoons and early evenings, our programs allow students to attain valuable career experience while they earn their degrees.

Masters Degrees

The M.P.H. in health policy provides students with in-depth analysis skills for employment in government, private sector health policy consulting and not-for-profit advocacy. Additionally, this program is available to attorneys, GW law students and GW medical students who wish to enhance training with a thorough understanding of health policy.

Doctoral Degrees

The Dr.P.H. develops skilled public health professionals uniquely equipped to provide real-world leadership at the national and state levels in all phases of public health, health care and health policy development, implementation and evaluation. 

The PhD in Health Policy program develops scholars who are skilled at critically assessing the political, economic, legal and social aspects of health policy and management and learning to apply innovative research tools to analyze processes and outcomes in the health care delivery and public health setting to inform policy decision-making.

Graduate Certificate

The 18-credit graduate certificate can be taken as a stand-alone program. Or it can be combined with a master’s degree to position graduates for careers that require both breadth and depth in public health knowledge.


Admission Requirements

Admissions Deadlines:


  • MPH – March 15 (Applications must be complete by December 15 for priority scholarship consideration.)
  • Graduate Certificate – March 15
  • DrPH – December 1 (this DrPH program enrolls on a biennial basis every even year.)
  • PhD – December 1


Spring – MPH and Graduate Certificate – October 1

Summer – MPH and Graduate Certificate – December 15

Individuals interested in applying to this program should submit their application and supporting documents through SOPHAS, a general online application for Schools of Public Health. A graduated fee is charged for this application, depending on the number of accredited schools to which you apply.

Standardized Test Scores:

GRE general test (institutional code 5268).  

Master's and certificate applicants may also submit the LSAT, MCAT, or GMAT instead of the GRE.  Master's and certificate applicants who already have a conferred graduate degree (i.e. M.A., M.S., J.D.) are exempt.

Recommendations required:

M.P.H. - Two (2) recommendations

Dr.PH - Three (3) recommendations

Prior Academic Records:

Transcripts are required from all colleges and universities attended, whether or not credit was earned, the program was completed, or the credit appears as transfer credit on another transcript. Transcripts must be forwarded to SOPHAS in their original sealed envelopes directly from the institution.

Official transcripts from institutions outside the United States must be accompanied by an official transcript evaluation from an accredited independent evaluating agency. Please be sure you request a detailed evaluation that includes all course titles, credit hours, grade-point average (GPA), United States degree equivalency, and date of degree conferral. Please see the list of acceptable foreign credential evaluation services.

Statement of Purpose:

In no more than 1500 words, state your purpose in undertaking graduate study in your chosen field. Include your academic objectives, research interests, and career plans. Also discuss your related qualifications, including collegiate, professional, and community activities, and any other substantial accomplishments not already mentioned in the application. 

Dr.P.H. - In addition to the above, please describe your current skills and future goals related to research, leadership, and problem solving.

The Committee reviews your Statement of Purpose to determine your motivation for pursuing a career in public health.

International Applicants:

Please review International Applicant Information carefully for details on required documents, earlier deadlines for applicants requiring an I-20 GW, and English language requirements. Detailed documentation needed for this program is available here.

PLEASE NOTE that all programs in the Milken Institute School of Public Health require the following minimum English language test scores for admission:

  • Academic IELTS: an overall band score of 7.0 with no individual band score below 6.0.
  • TOEFL: 100 on Internet-based.

Supporting documents not submitted online should be mailed to:

Office of Admissions
Suite 200
Milken Institute School of Public Health
950 New Hampshire Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20052

Contact for questions:
[email protected] ~ 202.994.2160 (phone)
9:00 am – 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday