How to Apply

Prospective applicants should note that application materials must be sent to two (2) separate offices:

The following documents should be sent directly to the UHM Graduate Division for admission to the University:

Graduate Division
Student Services Office
University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa
2540 Maile Way, Spalding 354
Honolulu, HI 96822

International applicants must also submit:

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
  • Complete information on financial status

*The Graduate Division will forward the applicant’s file to the department once the above application materials have been received and evaluated by their office.

Please submit the following directly to the Office of Public Health Studies for admission to the Program:

Office of Public Health Student Academic Services
University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa
1960 East West Road, Biomed D-204
Honolulu, HI 96822

  • Public Health application (available as a download on the Admissions page)
  • Statement of Objectives
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation, including the Letter of Recommendation Form. Applicants with three or more years of work experience may submit two (2) letters of recommendation and two (2) letter of recommendation forms. Your recommender should sign the seal of the envelope. (Note: Native Hawaiian and Indigenous Health applicants are still required to submit three letters of recommendation and three letter of recommendation forms and one letter should be from Indigenous community in which the applicant has an established history of service. This letter of recommendation serves as an opportunity to demonstrate established relationships and/or service in communities. Examples might include, but are not limited to, a letter from an Indigenous community member or leader who can write on your ability to 1) engage in community and/or cultural events or activities, 2) perform service activities in the community or through organizational work, and/or 3) engage in community and/or cultural protocol, etiquette, and/or practices )

PhD in Public Health (Community-Based and Translational Research) Applicants must also submit:

  • Writing sample that demonstrate aptitude for scholarly writing.

Applications and all supporting documents must be received by the appropriate deadline. Arrangements to take the GRE and TOEFL, if required, should be made well in advance so that the scores are received before the application deadline. International applicants should write for application materials as far in advance as possible since they are required to submit additional documents and international mail service requires more time.

Please retain a copy of your application for your records. Once submitted, application materials (which includes the public health application and statement of objectives, letters of recommendation, transcripts, and test scores) are not released except for the purpose of admission and cannot be returned or photocopied for the applicant.

Fall Application Deadlines

U.S. and international applicants to the department have from October 1 to December 1 to submit an application for fall admission for the in-person programs. Those applying to the DE option have until March 1 to submit an application. Priority consideration will be given to those with completed applications submitted by the deadline. The program cannot guarantee that applications received or completed after the application deadline will be reviewed for admissions, as late applications are considered on a space available basis. In addition, late applicants have fewer opportunities for financial assistance from the program.

After the application deadline has passed, interested applicants are advised to contact the program to ascertain whether space is available in their selected area of specialization before submitting an application. Please note that application fees are nonrefundable and nontransferrable so prospective applicants should contact the department before submitting a late application.

Spring Applications

The MPH, MS, and PhD programs do not typically offer spring admission. Recently, exceptions have been made to accommodate exceptional public health circumstances. Please check with the program to inquire if Spring applications will be accepted or not.

Application Fee

In addition to the application materials and supporting documents, applicants are required to submit an application fee of $100. No application fee waivers or deferments are granted.

Applicants may pay by credit card, check or money order. Payment by check or money order must be in U. S. dollars, drawn on a U. S. bank, and made payable to the “University of Hawai‘i.” Include your full name and date of birth on the check or money order. Do not send cash. This fee is nonrefundable and nontransferable. Note: an application submitted without the appropriate application fee will not be processed.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

The GRE General Test is optional for all Fall 2024 applicants unless it is required by the Graduate Division. If you do submit your scores, both the score and the percentile on each of the verbal, quantitative and analytic sections of the examination will be evaluated. 

If submitting GRE Scores, please include a note with your public health application so we know to expect your scores. The GRE should be taken at least one month prior to the application deadline. GRE scores that are more than five years old and/or photocopies of the Examinee Score Report are not acceptable. Please direct ETS to forward the official GRE General Test scores to the university (Institution Code: 4867; Department Code: 0616).

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)

Most applicants whose native language is not English are required to take TOEFL. An applicant is exempt from the test if he or she has earned a bachelor’s or advanced degree within the last five years at a regionally accredited or recognized institution in the United States, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Singapore or United Kingdom.

Applications for admission will not be processed until official TOEFL results have been received. TOEFL scores that are more than two years old and/or photocopies of the Examinee Score Report are not acceptable. The minimum acceptable TOEFL score for master’s degree applicants is 550 (213 for the computer-based test, 79-80 for the Internet-based test) and 600 (250 for the computer-based test, 100 for the Internet-based test) for doctoral degree applicants. Direct the Educational Test Service (ETS) to forward the official TOEFL score report to the Graduate Division, University of Hawai‘i (Institution Code: 4867; Department Code: 50).

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score reports may be submitted in lieu of the TOEFL. An IELTS overall score of 6 or higher is required for master's degree applicants and a score of 7 or higher is required for doctoral applicants. Applicants should contact the nearest British Council/Embassy/Consulate or IDP Education Australia Office in their country for the nearest testing center. It is advised that applicants also check the IELTS website for the most up-to-date information for testing centers.

English Language Institute (ELI)

The ELI program is only for students admitted to a degree program at the University of Hawai‘i. Prior to registration, all non-native speakers of English must be evaluated by the institute. Based on this evaluation, the ELI provides suitable instruction for those whose English fails to meet the standards determined by the University to be sufficient for the pursuit of full-time studies. Students in ELI training take a reduced academic load and should expect to make proportionately slower progress in regular University studies. This should be carefully considered by students whose time or financial support is limited.


A current transcript from each college or university attended (including any study abroad or exchange programs, summer programs, non-degree work and extension programs) must be submitted directly from each post-secondary school attended to the Graduate Division. Applicants who are still in U. S. undergraduate programs must submit transcripts after the first quarter or semester of their senior year. Note: Transcripts are not required for course work completed at any of the University of Hawai‘i campuses. The Graduate Division will obtain UH transcripts on behalf of applicants.

Writing Samples

PhD in Public Health (Community-Based and Translational Research) applicants must submit writing samples that demonstrate aptitude for scholarly writing (e. g., literature review, a report of a needs assessment or evaluation project, a master's thesis, or a published article on a public health topic). If no examples of your academic or scholarly writing are currently available, the applicant should write a paper as though he/she would submit it for publication in a professional journal. The writing sample should:

  • demonstrate conceptual and analytic skills
  • use appropriate and consistent citation and referencing format
  • demonstrate writing ability

International Transcripts and Academic Records

All international applicants are required to submit one transcript or academic record from each institution of higher education attended, including any study abroad or exchange programs, summer programs, and non-degree work and extension programs. Applicants may submit unofficial copies of transcripts while applying for admission, however, admitted students are required to submit official transcripts in order to enroll at UHM. Official transcripts must be sent directly from the issuing institution to the Graduate Division. If submitting with your application, transcripts must be received in institution-sealed envelopes. See for details.

Financial Statement

International applicants need to show proof of sufficient funding to cover all educational and living expenses, including expenses for any accompanying spouse or children. Upon admission to UHM, only international applicants with proof of funding will receive visa documents.

Health Clearance Requirements

Students must meet all health clearance requirements and submit a completed Health Clearance Form to University Health Services Mānoa (UHSM) before students will be allowed to register. In addition, a Tubuerculosis (TB) Clearance must be obtain within 12 months prior to your start date. For further information on UHSM health clearance and immunization requirements, see