The CEPH-Accredited Online MPH Program From the UNC Gillings School

Earn Your MPH Online from a Top-Ranked School of Public Health

Best Grad Schools - U.S. News & World Report, Public Health 2020

MPH@UNC is the online Master of Public Health (MPH) program from the University of North Carolina’s Gillings School of Global Public Health, the No. 1 ranked public school of public health in the nation and No. 2 overall on U.S. News & World Report's list of Best Public Health Schools.1

The Gillings School emphasizes the integration of practice in public health education and has a nearly 80-year legacy of pioneering research and outstanding leadership. As a student, you will engage with a variety of populations and communities, and you will graduate prepared to solve urgent public health problems on a local, national and global scale — from increasing health equity to preventing childhood obesity to designing better systems for sustainable change.

The #1 ranked public school of public health1

Online Master of Public Health Program Highlights

200 Hours of Applied Field Experience

As a student, you will complete approximately 200 hours of hands-on, experiential learning as part of your Gillings MPH Practicum. These practicum opportunities — which you will create, based on your unique interests, abilities and experience levels — help you:

  • Develop real-world skills and knowledge in health-related settings
  • Address community-identified needs
  • Assist in solving urgent public health problems

Full-time and Part-time Study Options

MPH@UNC gives working professionals the ability to earn their MPH in a timeframe and on a schedule that meets their needs.

If you choose to enroll full time, you can complete the program in 20–24 months. If you choose to enroll part time, you have the ability to set your own pace, provided you complete all program requirements within five years. Part-time students typically complete the program in 28–36 months.

Ongoing Program and Career Support

At Carolina, education and community are inextricably linked. From the moment you request information to long after graduation, you will receive support and ongoing career guidance from program staff, faculty and community members.

  • Admissions support: When you request information, you will be paired with a dedicated admissions counselor who can help you navigate the application process.
  • Student support: Throughout your time as a student, you will work closely with one of our student success advisers and an academic coordinator, who will help track your progress.
  • Technical support: We offer on-demand, 24/7 technical support, enabling you to resolve any IT issues swiftly and efficiently.

Alumni and Career Support

The Gillings School is committed to helping you achieve your goals, emphasize your qualifications in a competitive job market and engage in meaningful service throughout your career. Upon graduation, you will join more than 19,000 UNC Gillings School alumni who are working to promote health and increase equity in communities around the world.

In addition, our Virtual Career Center offers a variety of professional resources, including:

  • Career decision-making tools
  • Job and internship search guidance
  • Salary negotiation support
  • Interviewing tips
  • Résumé/CV and cover letter assessments

Join Us in Setting a New Bar for Public Health

Request information today to learn where an online MPH from UNC Gillings can take you.

Master’s in Public Health Online Curriculum Overview

To create programs, strategies and initiatives that improve health outcomes for all, you need a broad-based understanding of public health principles and specialized knowledge. The MPH Leadership curriculum is designed to help you realize your full potential as an informed leader and an effective problem solver.

To develop those complementary capabilities, our curriculum includes several main components:

  • The Gillings MPH Core — 12 credits
  • MPH Leadership Courses — 15 credits
  • Electives — 9 credits
  • Gillings MPH Practicum — 3 credits
  • Culminating Experience — 3 credits
  • Comprehensive Exam

Explore the online curriculum.

Gillings MPH Core

The Gillings integrated MPH Core will give you the understanding and ability to provide solutions to complex public health problems by leveraging interdisciplinary teams. These essential courses provide the foundational knowledge necessary to begin concentration-specific training.

The core MPH curriculum includes the following five courses:

  • Understanding Public Health Issues
  • Methods and Measures
  • Data Analysis for Public Health
  • Conceptualizing Public Health Solutions
  • Developing, Implementing and Evaluating Public Health Solutions

As a student, you will complete a total of 42 credits. Each term, you will complete case studies and work with practitioners — in some cases, UNC alumni — to complete individual and team projects. Each project will prepare you for future career challenges as you deliver evidence-based practices that seek to eliminate real-world public health issues.

Required MPH Leadership Courses

Designed to teach current and aspiring public health professionals to apply leadership principles in a public health context, the MPH Leadership concentration will provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to lead teams, projects, organizations and systems in eliminating inequities, improving conditions and fostering change in local and global communities. With this course of study, you will be prepared to help populations to live their best lives, no matter their location.

Students pursuing the MPH Leadership concentration are required to take the following courses:

  • PUBH 718: Designing Systems for Global Health Implementation
  • PUBH 730: Leading Quality Improvement in Public Health
  • PUBH 748: Leadership in Health Policy for Social Justice
  • PUBH 781: Community Engagement and Leadership in Health
  • PUBH 791: Core Principles in Public Health Leadership
  • PUBH 992: Leadership in Practice MPH Culminating Experience

MPH Leadership is designed to meet the following Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) concentration competency requirements:

  • Prioritize public health values and ethics in a philosophy of leadership relevant to adaptive public health challenges.
  • Demonstrate effective communication skills to promote a compelling public health agenda.
  • Facilitate inclusive engagement and lead collaborative decision-making across professions and diverse stakeholder groups.
  • Design transformational systems and innovative approaches to ensure effective public health practice.
  • Integrate research and practice-based evidence to continuously improve the quality of public health practice.
  • Develop structures of accountability to promote good governance and stewardship of resources to improve population health.

Award-Winning Faculty

When you pursue an MPH online with UNC, you will learn from expert instructors who are working on the front lines of public health.

Our faculty members know what it takes to lead practical change because they are already doing it. They are policymakers, researchers, coalition builders and interdisciplinary leaders. They are also talented educators who believe in the power of collaborative learning, and they provide research, mentoring and service opportunities for the next generation of public health professionals.

Meet our faculty.

The University of North Carolina's Gillings School of Global Public Health is an Accredited School of Public Health under the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH).

Admissions Requirements

To be eligible for this online MPH program, you must have a bachelor’s degree — or its international equivalent — from a regionally accredited institution. This degree must be earned before graduate study begins.

In addition, you must have taken the GRE exam or an approved substitute exam (see “View all admissions requirements” below). If you have not already done so, have your official scores sent to UNC-Chapel Hill. Please request that GRE scores be sent using the institution code 5816 for the Gillings School of Global Public Health.

International students and MPH/RD program applicants must satisfy additional prerequisites and requirements.

View all admissions requirements.

Application Requirements

  • Online application
  • Application fee
  • Test scores
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae
  • Transcripts
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Letters of Recommendation
Start Your Application

Local Solutions. Global Reach.
Your Service Starts at UNC.

Turn your passion into practice. Request information to connect with your personal admissions counselor.

What Can You Do with a Master of Public Health degree?

An MPH degree — especially one from a global school of public health, like UNC Gillings — allows you to take action.

Armed with critical thinking abilities, subject matter expertise and practical problem-solving skills, you can serve the communities and address the issues that matter most to you. That might mean preventing and treating chronic diseases in rural communities. Perhaps it means designing and implementing policy that improves health outcomes on a large scale. Or maybe it means creating effective, compelling nutrition education campaigns.

Regardless of how and where you choose to apply your knowledge, you will graduate with the skills to identify, assess and respond to the complex public health challenges you encounter.

Explore a Growing Public Health Job Market

Across sectors and industries, employers need qualified public health professionals. From 2016-2026, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that public health career opportunities will grow at the following rates:

  • Dietitians and nutritionists: 15%2
  • Health educators and community health workers: 16%3
  • Medical and health services managers: 20%4

Read more about public health careers.

Enter a Diverse Field

  • Federal agencies, like the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Department of Health and Human Services
  • Nonprofits, like America’s Health Insurance Plans and the National Association of Community Health Centers
  • Local organizations, like the North Carolina Institute of Medicine
  • National providers, like Mass Health and Kaiser Family foundation
  • Media and communications companies, like Shape magazine

Become a Problem Solver

Public health professionals have a chance to serve communities in life-changing ways. The public health issues we face, locally and globally, are complex and interconnected. They are shaped by innumerable social and environmental factors, and they are constantly evolving.

When you earn your MPH online from UNC Gillings, you gain more than a strong understanding of public health topics. Our communities need public health solutions that work in practice, not just on paper. That’s why we emphasize learning opportunities like practicum experiences that show you how to apply your knowledge, initiate real change and deliver solutions faster.

Explore our curriculum.

To learn more about MPH@UNC, request information and an admissions counselor will contact you.

1 Best Public Health Schools, U.S. News and World Report (2019) Return to footnote reference
2 Dietitians and Nutritionists, Bureau of Labor Statistics (Accessed Aug 2019)Return to footnote reference
3 Health Educators and Community Health Workers, Bureau of Labor Statistics (Accessed Aug 2019)Return to footnote reference
4 Medical and Health Services Managers, Bureau of Labor Statistics (Accessed Aug 2019)Return to footnote reference