Bachelor's/MPH FAQ

Who should apply for the Dual Bachelors MPH Degree
Students who apply to the Bachelor’s/MPH program must be ready to undertake graduate level work and interested in pursuing a career in public health. It is strongly encouraged that interested students take Community Health 1 or 2 as undergraduates, but not required. Students from any major are eligible to apply to the Bachelor’s/MPH program.

What are the academic requirements to complete the Bachelors MPH degree
  • Bachelor/MPH students must complete four graduate-level MPH courses; one must be CE 154 (Principles of Epidemiology).
  • Two of these four graduate-level MPH courses will count towards both the undergraduate and graduate degrees.
  • The remaining two courses will count only towards the MPH degree.  These second two courses may not count towards any undergraduate requirement.  Thus, during their undergraduate years Bachelor/MPH students must take two courses above the minimum required to obtain their undergraduate degree.
  • Upon earning their undergraduate degree, Bachelor/MPH students must take nine additional credits to complete the MPH Program.
  • As undergraduates, Bachelor/MPH students are required to complete a credited or non-credited field placement in a health or human services field approved by the Bachelor/MPH advisor.
  • Students must demonstrate a basic competence in public health biology and are encouraged to do so by completing at least one semester of biology as an undergraduate.
What is the advantage in enrolling in the Dual Degree program
Students who earn a Bachelor’s degree at Tufts usually spend four years and complete 34 courses (38 for engineers). If the student were then to enroll in the MPH program, 13 MPH credits would be required. Students in the Dual Degree program are allowed to count two courses toward both their Bachelor’s and master’s degree, and take two additional courses (as undergraduates) that count toward the Master’s Degree (at no additional cost). This saves four credits of the tuition cost.  Further, the MPH Degree usually takes two years to complete; students who enroll in the Dual Degree program can earn both degrees in five full years, finishing, at the latest, fifteen months after enrolling in the MPH program.

What is the Internship requirement
BA/MPH students are required to complete a field or comparable experience, with or without course credit, prior to matriculating in the MPH Program. This must involve a substantive position in a governmental, non-profit, human services, educational or public health agency. A minimum of 120 hours of service is required. The Bachelor’s/MPH Director will assist in finding suitable field opportunities.

What courses will fulfill the biology requirement
Students must demonstrate a basic competence in the fundamentals of biology. Biology 1, 3, 13 or 14 (or equivalent) are acceptable. This may also be completed while earning the MPH degree.

Do I have to come to Boston as an undergraduate to take MPH courses
Bachelor’s/MPH students are expected to take one course in Boston while an undergraduate.

If I took CE 54 does this count toward the MPH degree
Students who have taken CE 54 cannot take CE 154. Instead, such students have to take an exemption exam in Epidemiology to satisfy the core Epidemiology requirement. Generally, the Epidemiology competency exam should be taken after first completing the core course in Biostatistics; students can do that as undergraduates or during the fifth year. Since passing the Epidemiology competency exam is equivalent to successfully completing CE 154, students who have taken CE 54 end up completing 3 MPH-level classes during their undergraduate career (CE 158 and two other courses) and use the Epidemiology competency exam as the 4th MPH course credit earned prior to matriculating into the MPH program.

Can I take summer courses that count toward the MPH degree
Yes. Many of the Core MPH courses are offered during the summer term. In addition, a number of electives are generally offered.

Is there any order in which to take the MPH courses while still an undergraduate
Students must take CE 154 (Principles of Epidemiology) and CE 158 (Occupational and Environmental Health) as undergraduates. In addition, students select an MPH concentration (above) and take the Core course that corresponds to that concentration. The fourth course is elective. There is no strict order in which these courses must be taken, although students typically benefit from taking Principles of Epidemiology before any of these other courses.

How are courses taken as an undergraduate transferred toward the MPH degree

In your final undergraduate semester, you will be required to complete a transcript reconciliation form and submit it to the PHPD Registrar's Office. This form will detail exactly which courses will be transferred in and applied toward the MPH. Once these courses are transferred, they will appear on your Academic Advisement report and official PHPD transcript.

What happens if I want to change my concentration
Students can change their MPH concentrations. However, depending upon the concentration chosen and the courses already taken, it may not be possible to complete the Bachelor’s/MPH in 5 years after a change in concentration.

What factors are considered for admission
The MPH program seeks students with a sincere interest in public health and readiness for graduate work. This will be demonstrated by college coursework, extracurricular activities, grades, the student’s essay and a recommendation from a current professor.

How do I apply

Tufts undergraduate students are encouraged to apply for the Bachelor’s/MPH dual degree program no earlier than their sophomore year, but no later than October 25th of their junior year. Students must have completed, or be enrolled in, Community Health 1 or 2 before submitting an application.

Junior year applicants are urged to seek academic advising as early as possible. In unusual cases, a later application will be considered

BA/MPH application requirements:

  • 3 letters of recommendation
  • personal statement
  • Tufts undergraduate transcript

Tufts Bachelor’s/MPH students are not required to submit an application fee or GRE scores.

Be sure to choose School of Medicine: Public Health & Professional Degree Programs at the start of the online application, and be sure to choose Bachelor’s/Master of Public Health from the drop down menu on page 4 of the application.

Apply online

Tufts Bachelor’s/MPH students are not required to take the GRE.