Application Requirements

Thank you for your interest in Boston University School of Public Health, where we are proud to offer a world-class educational experience. The Admissions office is ready to assist you as you begin the admissions process to SPH. Your application will go through three distinct phases. The table below summarizes what you need to do during these phases, who will handle your application during each phase, and who to contact with questions regarding your application. For more detailed information regarding the application process, use the links below.

Stage One: SOPHAS
Stage Two: SPH Admissions
Stage Three: Departmental Review and Admissions Decision

Stage and Timeline

Steps in Process

Contact Information

Timeline: 2–4 weeks

SOPHAS will process and release the applicant file electronically once all necessary documents are submitted. Our deadlines are for submission to SOPHAS.

Complete all sections of the online application at Select up to two SPH designations ranked in order of preference.Submit transcripts, letters of recommendation, personal statement, résumé, and official test score(s) to SOPHAS.Pay application fee.Monitor status of documents and application through SOPHAS. (24/7 up-to-date status checks).Applications will be forwarded to SPH once verified by SOPHAS.
PO Box 9111
Watertown, MA 02471
2) SPH Admissions

If applicant file is complete upon receipt to SPH, Admissions will forward the application to the department within 1 week.

If the admissions file is incomplete, it will be held until the applicant submits all necessary documents.

SPH will send an email confirming the receipt of the application from SOPHAS to the preferred email address entered on application.Once the application is complete, it is forwarded to the department for review.
715 Albany St., T2C
Boston, MA 02118
3) SPH Departments & Admissions Committee

MPH applicants for Spring semester may expect 2–4 weeks for the admissions committee to review an application and return it to the Office of Admissions for a final decision to be released.

MPH applicants for Fall semester may expect 6 weeks for the admissions committee to review an application and return it to the Office of Admissions for a final decision to be released. Early fall applicants (applying well before the February 1 deadline) will be given a timeline estimate for decision.

Applicants for the MS, PhD, and DrPH will be given a timeline for expected decision from the admissions office. For most programs, this will be after the deadline, around mid-March.

Monitor email for communications.

Once a final decision has been reached, the applicant will be officially notified via postal mail.
715 Albany St., T2C
Boston, MA 02118

Stage One: SOPHAS

SOPHAS (Schools of Public Health Application Service) is the Centralized Application Service (CAS) for schools of public health. This means that applicants can apply to multiple SOPHAS schools and only need to submit one application, one set of recommendation letters, and one set of transcripts. SOPHAS runs on a yearly cycle, from September to August. SOPHAS will hold applications until the following criteria are met:

  • Application is completed and submitted. This includes entering all coursework, submitting a personal essay, and answering any supplemental questions each school of choice might include.
  • All domestic transcripts are received.
  • Two out of three recommendations have been submitted.

Once these items have been submitted, SOPHAS will begin verifying applicant coursework and will forward applications to SPH when the verification process is complete. Please keep in mind that once SOPHAS has received all applicant materials, it may take up to four weeks during peak periods for an application to be processed and mailed to SPH.

SOPHAS will not hold an application for the following items:

  • Standardized test scores
  • WES evaluations

SPH Admissions may receive an incomplete applicant file. Should this happen, SPH will hold incomplete files until Admissions receives the necessary documents either from SOPHAS, the corresponding test agencies, or academic institutions.

*In order to check on the status of transcripts, letters of recommendation, or any issue regarding the SOPHAS application prior to its being mailed to SPH, simply log in to a designated SOPHAS account. For problems regarding the receipt of transcripts, the submission of recommendation letters, or the application, please contact SOPHAS customer service directly at 617-612-2051.

Stage Two: BUSPH Admissions

After SPH receives an application from SOPHAS, the applicant will receive an email notification that the application was received and is either complete or incomplete.

If there are any outstanding items that should be arriving to SOPHAS, applicants can continue to check the SOPAHS account for updates regarding the status of application materials. The status of application materials will only be updated in the SPH local system once we receive them from SOPHAS.

When the admissions office receives all the necessary documents, the applicant file will be forwarded to the first program  indicated on the SOPHAS application. Applicants will receive an email from admissions confirming that the application has been forwarded to the department for review.

Please contact Admissions regarding outstanding items or to make any updates to an applicant file. SPH Admissions can be contacted via email at or via phone at 617-638-4640. If an applicant needs to update a mailing address, email address, or phone number, it must be updated through the applicants’ SOPHAS account.

Stage Three: Departmental Review and Admissions Decision

When the departmental committee has made a decision regarding an application, it is returned to the BUSPH Admissions office. Admissions decisions will be sent via e-mail notification with an official letter sent via US mail. Due to privacy regulations, applicants cannot request their decision over the phone.

Once a final decision has been made, Admissions will mail an official letter to the mailing address listed with SOPHAS. If there is no mailing address, it will default to the home address. Accepted applicants are mailed an official acceptance packet via US mail. In most parts of the country, this will reach the applicant within 6–8 business days (if not earlier) from the date it is mailed. International letters are delivered using a private courier service that can reach most parts of the world in under 6 days. Please be sure to keep all contact information up to date.

Once the applicant file is complete and referred to the department, no further action is required of the applicant. Applicants will be contacted at each stage of the decision process.