PhD in Epidemiology FAQs

PhD in Epidemiology FAQs

How much will I pay for tuition and fees for the Epidemiology PhD program?
To estimate the tuition and fees, use the calculator provided by the IUPUI Office of the Bursar.

Do Epidemiology PhD students have the option of enrolling full-time or part-time?
Yes, the program may be completed on a full-time or part-time basis. However, some required courses must be completed during the day between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.

Is the Epidemiology PhD program offered online?
A very limited number of courses are offered online. The majority of classes must be attended in person.

I would like to meet with the Epidemiology PhD program director. Is that possible?
Yes, please e-mail Shawne Mathis, snmathis@iupui.edu or call (317) 274-3126 to schedule an appointment.

How many students do you admit each year?
Cohorts of approximately four to eight students are admitted to the Epidemiology PhD Program for matriculation in the fall semester.

Is financial support available for students in the Epidemiology PhD program?
Funding is available for a limited number of full-time students. Students enrolled in nine or more credit hours are considered full time.

Is there a time limit for courses that may be applied toward a Epidemiology PhD program?
Yes, there is a time limit. The IU Graduate School policy states all course work for a PhD must be completed within seven years of taking the qualifying exam (after all coursework is completed). If you have coursework that was completed more than seven years prior to taking the qualifying exam, you may work with your advisor to devise a revalidation plan.

How long do I have to complete the PhD program?
If admitted, your admission is valid for 10 years. Coursework must be completed in seven years or less, and the dissertation must be completed within the 10-year limit.

What is the application deadline for Epidemiology PhD program?
The application deadline for the Epidemiology PhD program is December 15.

Will my application still be considered if it is submitted after the deadline?
Late or incomplete applications will not be considered after the December 15 deadline.

What are the requirements for admission?
Admission to the Epidemiology PhD program is based on completion of a baccalaureate degree, although it is anticipated that many applicants will have completed a post-baccalaureate degree in public health or other related discipline. Additional admission requirements include:

  • A cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in all prior completed degree programs.
  • A letter grade of B or higher in all courses applied toward prerequisites.
  • Competitive scores on the GRE or other related graduate entrance exam.
  • A score of 213 on the TOEFL computer version (or iBT equivalent of 79) if your first language is not English.


How do I apply for admission?

Applicants must apply online through SOPHAS, the centralized Schools of Public Health Application Service. Be sure to designate the IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health as your school choice, along with your desired program.

To where should my recommendation letters be sent?
You will be asked to submit e-mail addresses for your recommenders as part of the SOPHAS online application. After your online application is submitted, recommendation forms and submission instructions will be sent electronically to your recommenders.

What supporting documents are required for admission to the Epidemiology PhD program?
In addition to completing the online application, you must submit the following documents through SOPHAS:

  • Official transcripts from all U.S. colleges and universities attended. Transcripts should be submitted directly from the institution.
  • World Education Services (WES) ICAP course-by-course evaluation for all post-secondary foreign institutions attended. 
  • Current resume or CV
  • GRE or other graduate exam test scores. GRE scores should be sent directly from the testing service (ETS).
  • TOEFL score for applicants whose native language is not English
  • A scholarly writing sample for which you are the sole author (e.g., published article or class paper)


I have graduate degree, and I took the GRE before being admitted to that program. Do I have to take the GRE again?
PhD program applicants may request a waiver for the requirement to submit GRE or other graduate entrance exam scores if they have at least one graduate degree from an accredited US institution. Applicants interested in requesting a waiver may e-mail Shawne Mathis, snmathis@iupui.edu.  However, if you plan to attend the Epidemiology PhD program as a full-time funded student we strongly encourage you to submit GRE or other test scores. Some funding sources require current (less than five years old) GRE scores in order for students to be eligible.

Can I submit a paper application?
No, applications must be submitted online through SOPHAS.

In addition to applying through SOPHAS, will I also need to apply to IUPUI?
Yes, in addition to applying to SOPHAS, all applicants are required to complete an abbreviated application to the IUPUI Online Graduate and Professional Admissions Application system, accessible through the link provided in the SOPHAS application.

What is the application cost?
For the current application cost, visit the SOPHAS website

How can I check on my application status?
You will receive notification via e-mail when we have received your application from SOPHAS.

What is the IUPUI Institution Code for the GRE and TOEFL?
The code is 1325.

Is the GRE subject test required?
No, the GRE subject test is not required.

May I send photocopies of my test scores?
No, photocopies are not acceptable. Official test scores are required and must be sent to SOPHAS directly from the testing service (Code: 0167).

If I applied for or graduated from another graduate program at Indiana University, do I have to have my test scores sent from the testing service again?
Yes, you must have your test scores sent to SOPHAS.

I have degrees and/or coursework from Indiana University. Do I need to have my IU transcripts sent to apply for the PhD program?
Yes, you must have your transcripts sent to SOPHAS.

If I have a Master's degree from an American university, do I have to submit scores for the TOEFL exam?
A bachelor's or higher degree from a country designated by IUPUI as predominantly native-English speaking is required to exempt you from taking the TOEFL exam or providing other acceptable proof of English proficiency.

Is it necessary for me to take the English Placement test?
Applicants providing proof of a score 100 or higher on the TOEFL exam, or 7.5 on the IELTS exam are exempt from the requirement to take the EAP exam at IUPUI. Applicants with lower scores are required to take the English for Academic Purposes (EAP) exam.

I would like to know if my degree is the equivalent of an American university B.A. or B.S. degree. Can you tell me if I can be admitted with my current degree?
The SOPHAS application system requires a World Education Services (WES) ICAP course-by-course evaluation for all post-secondary foreign institutions attended. The Admissions Committee will use this document to guide them in their decisions for international students. When the committee recommends admission for an international applicant, IUPUI’s office of International Affairs will conduct their own evaluation to finalize the admission process.

When are admissions decisions made?
Applications for the Epidemiology PhD program will be reviewed by the program's admissions committee after the December 15 application deadline. The committee may conduct face-to-face interviews with applicants and require a writing sample. When the interview process is completed, the committee will make its final decisions. Students are typically notified of their admission status in March.

How are the admissions decisions made?
The admissions committee uses the submitted application material to assess an applicant’s scientific leadership potential and ability to engage in advanced graduate work. In addition, the admissions committee will compare the applicant’s career goals and objectives with the mission of the Epidemiology PhD program. Scientific leadership potential is assessed using the applicant's resume/curriculum vita, personal statement, and personal interview. Ability to engage in advanced graduate work is assessed using the applicant's personal interview, letters of recommendation, overall grade point average in prior graduate work, and scores from the GRE or other graduate entrance exams. Learning goals and objectives are assessed using the applicant's personal statement and personal interview.

I received a letter from the department stating that I have been accepted to the Epidemiology PhD program. Do I have to return the enclosed "Intent to Accept / Decline" form?
Yes, you are required to complete and return the "Intent to Accept / Decline" by the deadline indicated on the form.

Can I transfer graduate course credits to the Epidemiology PhD program?
IU Graduate School policy allows up to 30 credit hours from graduate level courses to be transferred to a PhD program. Once accepted, students may request to have courses transferred from another accredited university or program if they received a grade of "B" or better in the courses. The Epidemiology PhD program director and faculty will review and approve or deny requests for transfer. Requests are evaluated on a case by case basis.

I have a Master's Degree in Public Health. Can courses that I've taken in my master's program fulfill any PhD requirements?
Once accepted into the Epidemiology PhD program, students will be assigned a faculty advisor. Advisors will review previously completed course work to determine if any requirements for the PhD program have already been met. Based on this assessment, faculty advisors will work with students to identify the rest of the courses needed to complete the PhD program.

I was accepted to the Epidemiology PhD program. Do I need to meet with my graduate advisor prior to enrolling in courses?
Yes. A faculty advisor will be assigned to you upon acceptance into the program. You will need to talk with your advisor before registering for classes in the fall. If you are unable to meet in person, you can make an appointment for a telephone conversation.

How do I register for classes?
Students register for classes online through a program called OneStart. Registration details will be sent to all admitted students over the summer.

Can I begin a PhD program in the spring semester?
If accepted students are expected to matriculate in the fall semester. In special circumstances other arrangements may be possible.

Is housing provided by the university?
The on-campus housing options include campus apartments, residence halls, and townhomes. Click the link for more information about on campus housing options.