FAQ

What types of degrees are offered?

Use the Degree Finder to explore the many options available to prospective students, or browse by department

Is the mailman school of Public health currently accredited?

Yes. Information on both the Mailman School's accreditation and Columbia University's can be found here.

Do you offer any joint degree programs?

Yes, the School currently has ten dual-degree programs. Applicants must apply separately to each of the two collaborating schools and must meet the admissions requirements of each. For more detail information about these opportunities, please visit Dual Degrees or review the School Handbook.

How long does it take to complete a master's program?

On a full-time basis, the MPH and MS are typically completed in one-and-a-half to two years. The Accelerated MPH program can be completed within a year. The part-time MPH program can be completed in three years.

Why did the Mailman School change its MPH curriculum?

Like all academic institutions, the Mailman School continually works to improve the educational experience in all of its programs. In consultation with students, alumni, potential employers, and faculty, the School launched a full review of the MPH program at the beginning of 2010. The resulting renewed curriculum builds on the School's departmental strengths and creates an educational experience that captures the depth and breadth in which the Mailman School operates.

How has the curriculum changed for Columbia MPH and Accelerated MPH students?  

The following are new elements of the MPH curriculum that build on current strengths:

Core Curriculum
The Core curriculum works as an integrated whole—building from foundations of public health, such as ethics and history, to domestic and international policy, environmental and social determinants of health, and public health research methodologies. The Core curriculum consists of a progression of modules that encapsulate the core knowledge that MPH students must achieve. 

Certificates
Students in the two-year Columbia MPH program can elect one Certificate program from a list of over 20 options to complete as supplementary to his/her disciplinary focus. The offerings provide either interdisciplinary expertise (for example, public health research methods, health management, chronic disease) that complements the six disciplines, or deeper training within a discipline (for example, toxicology, advanced epidemiology, policy analysis). 

Integration of Science and Practice
The Integration of Science and Practice (ISP) course provides students a small cohort experience. Utilizing case-based learning, students work in interdisciplinary teams to apply what they learn in the classroom to real-life public health challenges. 

Leadership
Public health challenges demand an interdisciplinary approach. The Leadership course instills the concepts and skills of effective teamwork and leadership necessary for successful public health research and practice.

Teaching
This curriculum engages students in the classroom with experiential and participatory teaching methods, such as case-based learning, small group work, role-play, and simulations.

How does this change the student experience?

MPH students will learn public health in the same way that public health professionals practice it: in interdisciplinary teams, drawing on the expertise of colleagues from multiple domains. The new curriculum introduces a small-group, cohort experience that students maintain throughout their MPH training. Each cohort—comprised of twenty MPH students, one professor, and one doctoral student—meet weekly in semesters one through three as part of the Integration of Science and Practice course.

Will this curriculum teach me what I need to know to be a competitive candidate upon graduation?

Yes. The curriculum renewal effort is focused on giving students the knowledge and skills they need to be successful public health practitioners and was developed in direct consultation with key employers of MPH graduates.

Do you offer any certificates?

The School offers over 20 certificate and interdisciplinary tracks to students enrolled in the two-year and part-time MPH programs.

I am interested in applying to a Certificate program. What types of Certificate programs do you offer?

Learn more about the Certificate Programs and how to apply for individual ones.

Why are some Certificates/Interdisciplinary Tracks only open to certain departments?

Certificates/interdisciplinary tracks are available to students enrolled in the two-year Columbia MPH program. As some require a number of courses from a specific department, they are only open to students from those departments. In other cases, while the certificates may be open to all students, the number of required courses makes those certificates most feasible for students from specific departments.

Can students take classes at other Columbia graduate schools?

As members of the Columbia community, Mailman School students can choose from more than 1,000 graduate courses offered throughout the University, drawing on the resources of the schools of International and Public Affairs, Social Work, Business, Law, and Journalism. Students should check with their department to confirm that course credits from other graduate programs can be applied to their degree.

What support systems are available for disabled students?

The Mailman School of Public Health works directly with the University’s Office of Disability Services to make reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities.

What career services are available?

The Office of Career Services is committed to supporting Mailman School students and alumni with the career education process. These services and resources are designed to help you develop and refine your career exploration and career management strategies, and provide infrastructure to support successful job searches while you are a student and after graduation.

For a comprehensive look at career services at the Mailman School, please visit the Office of Career Services.