University Policy

School of Public Health Policy

Students in all degree programs must be registered in every fall and spring semester in which they are enrolled at the School of Public Health. Students may elect to register for the summer semester, though in most cases, this registration is not required. International students graduating in September must follow the requirements of the International Students & Scholars office in regard to summer registration in the summer immediately prior to their graduation. Students are urged to meet with their advisor a month before registration begins to plan a schedule and to enter this schedule into the “Planner” function on the Student Link.

All continuing students in good academic standing with an active Boston University email address may register online via the Student Link.

Undergraduate junior and senior students may use the registration function on the Student Link to enroll in SPH courses according to the University Registrar’s registration timetable. Students must meet course pre-requisites and have at least a 3.0 grade point average to register. Sophomores may enroll in 500-level classes. Freshmen may not register in SPH classes.

The Office of the University Registrar establishes dates for SPH registration. Students should watch for notices regarding registration for upcoming semesters.

Students are urged to register early on the first morning of the registration period to avoid being closed out of courses. For classes requiring paper registration (all directed studies, directed research, and practicum courses), registration materials are available on the School of Public Health website and on the shelves outside the SPH Office of the Registrar on Talbot 2 Center. Students completing the required thesis or dissertation for their master’s or doctoral program must register for continuing study status. Students are certified as full time and are charged for the associated tuition and fees. After registering, students should verify their registration and account charges on the Boston University Student Link. If changes are needed, students may add or drop courses prior to the beginning of the semester on the Student Link.

Enrollment Options

All degree candidates in general may enroll as either full-time or part-time students. Domestic students may change their status as their circumstances dictate, bearing in mind that students must be registered for at least 6 new credits each semester to be eligible for federal financial aid or loan deferment of existing loans. International students are required to maintain full-time status except in their final semester, when they may request permission from the International Students & Scholars office (ISSO) for Reduced Course Load status.

Full-time status is a registration category assigned to students enrolled in 12–18 credit units per semester. Part-time status is a registration category assigned to students enrolled in 1–11 credit units per semester.

Students who change status must notify the SPH Registrar so their coding may be corrected in the University system.

Each program specifies a time frame within which all program requirements must be met. Students who do not meet their degree requirements within the specified time frame may petition for an extension of their degree program duration.

Changing Master of Public Health Concentration

Once students have matriculated into the MPH program, they may request to change their concentration or add a dual concentration by submitting a Change of Concentration Form to the SPH Office of the Registrar. Change of Concentration Forms are available on the SPH website and on the shelves outside the Office of the Registrar.

Completed Change of Concentration Form applications include:

  1. A one-page statement indicating the reason for changing concentration.
  2. A tentative schedule outlining how the student will satisfy the concentration requirements by the student’s anticipated/desired graduation date. This schedule should include SPH courses taken to date and any approved transfer credits.
  3. Review and signature by the designated faculty member in the concentration to be added. If the student wishes to add a dual concentration, he/she must have the form reviewed and signed by the designated faculty member in both concentrations.

Faculty may review the student’s academic record prior to approving the change or addition. The student is responsible for obtaining and reviewing the bulletin and concentrator’s guide(s) so he/she is prepared to meet the graduation standards in place at the time of the change to the new concentration. It is possible that changing concentration or adding a dual concentration will result in the student’s having to complete more than 48 credits for the MPH degree.

Enrollment Verification

Students may process an enrollment verification from the “Personal” tab on the Student Link. If the verification is not acceptable to a third party, the School of Public Health Office of the Registrar will produce a signed, sealed enrollment verification. Requests for such verifications must be made in writing; emails that include the student’s name, BU ID number, and date of birth are acceptable.