Public Health - BS/MPH

Program Contacts

Program Director

Sara Wilensky

Undergraduate Advisor

Meaghan Wilson


The Milken Institute School of Public Health offers a unique opportunity to a select group of students who not only demonstrate academic excellence, but also demonstrate a strong commitment to public health.  Milken Institute SPH will accept a small number of outstanding students each year to the BS/MPH program.  Applicants may apply to any of the MPH programs, except Public Health Management. As incentive to move beyond the traditional undergraduate curriculum, Milken Institute SPH offers participant's admission to the MPH program without having to sit for the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and the opportunity to complete both the BS and MPH degrees more efficiently than had the degrees been completed separately. The BS/MPH program is a multi-level, dual-degree program, meaning that students are concurrently enrolled in one undergraduate program and one graduate program and degrees will be awarded in different semesters. 

This dual degree program strives to graduate public health leaders who are committed to improving the health and well-being of our local, national, and international communities and to life-long learning. This is an appropriate program for pre-professional students who are interested in public health issues.


Admissions Requirements

Starting in 2016, SPH is using a new admissions process for the BS/MPH program.

Only BSPH majors with a cumulative GPA of 3.3 or higher are eligible to apply to the BS/MPH program.

Students interested in the BS/MPH program apply directly to one of the six SPH departments:

For most departments, students apply to the BS/MPH program in the summer after their sophomore year. * NOTE: The Department of Global Health will only consider BS/MPH applicants after completion of a student’s junior year.

Transfer students must be admitted and matriculating at GW before they will be considered for admission to the BS/MPH in Public Health program.

Students admitted by their department of choice to the BS/MPH program, are considered to be provisionally admitted.  Admission is conditional upon on earning a B or higher in PUBH 6003, 6004, and 6007.  Students who do not obtain a B or higher in all three courses will remain a BSPH major, but they will not be eligible to continue in the BS/MPH program.

It is highly recommended that students receive guidance from the Undergraduate Program Advisor, Meaghan Wilson, before submitting an application.

The application will be submitted online and will be activated annually during the application period after the spring semester has concluded.

The application will requires the following:
  1. A personal statement
    1. Your statement of purpose should explain how you became interested in your field of choice; the contribution you hope to make to your field; and how you believe GW's program will help you reach your career goals. If there is anything unusual in your transcripts, standardized testing, or resume that you wish to explain to the admissions committee, please include this information in your Statement of Purpose.
  2. 2 letters of recommendation – faculty preferred
  3. Your resume 
  4. Your transcript (you may include either an official or unofficial transcript, as long as GPA is included)
    1. For students applying to the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics ONLY, you must have taken MATH 1200 or higher OR STATS 1051, 1053, 1127 or higher.
  5. GREs are not required, but scores will be accepted. 

Admission to the program is made on a selective and space available basis.  The admissions committee considers applications holistically, considering applicant’s academic strengths, commitment to public health, leadership qualities, and other attributes.   


Program Requirements

The most current program guide can be found here: BS/MPH 2016-2017.


Credit Distribution Chart

Category Non Premed Credits Premedical Credits
BS general curriculum requirements 28-34 52-71
BS Public health core course requirements (BS Program = 21) (Includes 9 graduate crossover credits) 27 27
BS SPH electives 12 12
BS additional electives 47-54 10-29
BS total credits 120 120
MPH total credits (Includes 9 graduate crossover credits) 45 45
Total remaining MPH credits (45 credits minus 9 credits = 36 credits) 36 36
BS/MPH total credits (120 credits plus 36 credits = 156 total credits) 156 156
Undergraduate core courses- (18 credits)  
PUBH 1101 Intro/Pub Health & Health Svcs  
PUBH 1102 History of Public Health  
PUBH 3130 Health Services Management and Economics  
PUBH 3133 Global Health & Development  
PUBH 3135W Health Policy  
PUBH 4140W Senior Seminar  
Graduate crossover courses- (9 credits)  
PUBH 6007 Social&BehaviorAppr-Pub.Hlth (Replaces PubH 2112 Principles of Health Education and Health Promotion [3 credits] in the BS Public Health Program)  
PUBH 6003 Prin & Practice/Epidemiology (Replaces PubH 3131 Epidemiology: Measuring Health and Disease [3 credits] in the BS Public Health Program)  
PUBH 6004 Env/Occ Hlth-Sustainable World (Replaces PubH 3132 Health and Environment [3 credits] in the BS Public Health Program)  
PUBH 6001 BiologicalConcepts/PublicHlth (Replaces PubH 2110 Public Health Biology [3 credits] in the BS Public Health Program)  

Public health elective courses (12 credits)

BS/MPH students follow the same elective rules as BSPH students. Please refer to the BSPH program page for details.

HLWL 1106 Drug Awareness  
HLWL 1109 Human Sexuality  
HLWL 1110 Issues in Alternative Medicine  
EXNS 1114 Community Nutrition  
EXNS 2122

Food Systems & Public Health 

EXNS 2119 Basic Nutrition  
HIST 3363 Race, Medicine & Public Health  
ANTH 3504 Illness, Healing, and Culture  
ANTH 3513 Anthropology of Human Rights  
ANTH 6302 Issues in Development  
BIOC 3560 Diet, Health, and Longevity  
GEOG 2137 Environmental Hazards  
HSCI 2101 Psychosocial Aspects of Health and Illness  
ORSC 4161 Research Methods in Organizational Sciences  
PSC 2101 Scope and Methods of Political Science  
PSYC 2101 Research Methods-Psychology  
PUBH 2113 Impact of Culture upon Health  
PUBH 2114 Environment, Health, and Development  
PUBH 2115 Health, Human Rights, and Displaced Persons  
PUBH 2116 Global Delivery of Health Systems  
PUBH 2117 Service-Learning in Public Health  
PUBH 3136 Health Law  
PUBH 3137 Global Public Health Nutrition  
PUBH 3150 Sustainable Energy & Env Hlth  
PUBH 3151 Current Issues in Bioethics  
PUBH 3199 Topics in Public Health   
Master of Public Health required core courses (6 are new credits, 9 are crossover credits)-   
PUBH 6001 BiologicalConcepts/PublicHlth (Replaces PubH 2110 Public Health Biology (3 credits).)   
PUBH 6002 Biostatistical Applic for PubH   
PUBH 6003 Prin & Practice/Epidemiology (Replaces PubH 3131 Epidemiology: Measuring Health and Disease (3 credits) in the BS Public Health Program)  
PUBH 6004 Env/Occ Hlth-Sustainable World (Replaces PubH 3132 Health and Environment (3 credits) in the BS Public Health Program.)    
PUBH 6006 Mgt & Policy Approaches to PH   
PUBH 6007 Social&BehaviorAppr-Pub.Hlth (Replaces PubH 2112 Principles of Health Education and Health Promotion (3 credits) in the BS Public Health Program).   

At least two (required or elective) public health courses must be completed at the end of the semester the student applies to the program.


BS/MPH Policies

  1. To retain eligibility for many undergraduate federal and institutional financial aid opportunities,
    undergraduate students’ total course load each semester must be less than half graduate courses. It is the student’s responsibility to confirm with the Office of Student Financial Assistance what requirements are needed to keep their undergraduate financial aid.
  2. The fixed rate tuition plan remains in effect for BS/MPH students who chose to participate in the plan upon enrolling at GW.  Students who are not part of the fixed-rate tuition plan will pay on a per-credit basis according to the undergraduate rate for undergraduate courses, and students who are still enrolled at GW after completion of their BS will pay the graduate rate on a per-credit basis. As part of the Grad2Grad program, BS/MPH students will receive a 10% discount on graduate coursework per Grad2Grad program rules.
  3. Unless otherwise specified, students should follow the policies and procedures relating to course-specific issues that coincide with the program level of the course. In other words, if the issue relates to an undergraduate course, students should follow the undergraduate rules; if the issue relates to a graduate course, students should follow the graduate rules.
  4. Students are advised to meet with both the Undergraduate Program Advisor and their MPH advisor upon acceptance into the BS/MPH program. By meeting with both advisors early in the program, BS/MPH students are less likely to encounter scheduling or sequencing conflicts that delay graduation.  It is assumed that BS/MPH students will take courses during summer sessions if they wish to graduate in a reduced timeframe. However, BS/MPH students are not required to take courses during the summer to maintain enrollment status.
  5. BS/MPH students are required to complete 16 hours of professional enhancement activities during their program.  At least 8 credit hours must be completed to meet the requirements for the BS degree.
  6. BS/MPH students who wish to drop out of the BS/MPH dual-degree program but wish to continue to pursue a BS in Public Health should submit an undergraduate petition.  In the area labeled “Request”, students should check “other” and describe the reason for the petition in the “Specifics” section. 
  7. BS/MPH students earn their degrees sequentially, with the BS awarded after students successfully complete 120 credits and meet all other requirements for the undergraduate degree. Students may choose to participate in the Spring Commencement Ceremony twice – once to celebrate their undergraduate degree and later to celebrate their graduate degree.

Past Program Guides

This is the current program guide for this program. Students should follow the course requirements from the year in which they entered the program. 

Past Guides:
Guides that are not available online can be acquired from the Academic Affairs Program Coordinator in the Dean's Office.

Graduation Requirements

Refer to the relevant MPH program for your program-specific graduate requirements.

  1. Graduate credit requirement: 156 undergraduate and graduate credits

  2. Course requirements: Successful completion of the undergraduate degree, graduate core courses, and program-specific courses

  3. Grade point average requirement: A 3.0 (B average) overall grade point average is required for graduate courses

  4. Time limit requirement: Degrees must be completed within six years of the date accepted to the program

  5. Transfer credit policy: In concordance with undergraduate and graduate established policies

  6. Comply with policies and procedures as outlined in the University and SPH requirements. Pay particular attention to the SPH requirements to complete human research training, to complete 8 hours of professional enhancement activities, and to pass the Academic Integrity Quiz

Transfer Approval Credits

See previously approved and denied courses here