Admissions & Cost

The Population Health Sciences master’s program is open to current or recent undergraduates looking to build quantitative expertise and current professionals – including clinicians – who want to extend their quantitative and methodological skills. Given the multidisciplinary nature of the field, prospective students with strong interest in social sciences, analytics, or health care all may find a Master of Science degree adds to their knowledge, skills, and career preparation.

Successful applicants generally will demonstrate a passion for improving population health, an aptitude for learning high-level analytic research methods, and academic or professional achievements that show leadership skills, ethics, determination, resilience, and creativity. The admissions process considers both past accomplishments and future potential.

The Application Process

Prospective students apply online through the Duke Graduate School. A list of requirements and necessary documents can be found on the graduate school website

The Master of Science in Population Health Sciences is a quantitatively and methodologically rigorous program; students will take courses that rely on a basic knowledge of statistics and mathematics. While the program does not mandate specific prerequisite classes, successful students will likely have completed at least one course in introductory statistics (or possess equivalent work experience) and at least one college-level math course (calculus or higher, e.g. linear algebra). Familiarity with computers and software are helpful.

Finalists for admission will meet with faculty members and other high-level department staff via video teleconference.

Key Dates

The application for fall 2020 is now available and the deadline to apply is January 17, 2020. Be sure to take standardized tests in time for official scores to reach The Graduate School by this deadline. 

Diversity and Inclusion

The School of Medicine and the Department of Population Health Sciences hold as a central tenet that diversity and inclusion are key drivers of institutional excellence and amplify our capacity for innovation and solving complex problems. The department takes seriously its responsibility to recruit and retain students that exemplify a wide diversity of backgrounds, life experiences, and perspectives.

We strongly encourage applications from traditionally underrepresented minorities, those from disadvantaged backgrounds, and those with disabilities. Duke offers the following resources in that regard: 
Duke University School of Medicine Office of Diversity & Inclusion
Duke University School of Medicine Multicultural Resource Center
Duke University Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity
Duke Health Sciences Gay-Straight Alliance
Duke Health Disparities Consortium

Tuition and Financial Aid

The Duke Graduate School annually sets tuition and fee rates and can provide estimates for cost of attendance. Population Health Sciences master’s students must register for a minimum of three full-time terms and pay a per-credit rate for any remaining credits if less than full time after they have met the minimum requirement.

The Duke Graduate School Financial Aid Office works with students to arrange for federal financial aid and student loans. Students apply for financial aid through the Graduate School. Financial aid, which is offered in the form of loans and federal work study, is available to citizens and eligible noncitizens (green card holders).
The department awards a limited number of scholarships based on both financial need and merit. Students are considered automatically for scholarships based on their Graduate School application; no additional application is required.

Additionally, graduate assistantships (research-based, or a combination of research and teaching) may become available. Graduate assistantships do not provide tuition remission but offer hourly compensation.

Duke has a strong commitment to supporting our graduate students. The Graduate School maintains a vast funding database with information on both awards available through Duke, as well as national and foundation awards that many Duke students qualify for. Duke’s Office of Research Support also offers a variety of workshops, including one specifically devoted to finding funding.