Public Health (PhD)

Program Description

The rigorous Public Health PhD program at GPH allows students to balance the theoretical with the practical; the innovation with the application. Students will work side-by-side with, and under the guidance of, esteemed faculty from NYU’s global and interdisciplinary network on vanguard research and solutions to universal public health issues.


Students will further tailor their studies by selecting one of the following four areas of study:


The Epidemiology concentration will deepen your understanding and application of advanced data analytic techniques and research methodology, taking at least three courses in these disciplines. You’ll also identify a specialization area (e.g. chronic disease epidemiology, mental health epidemiology, etc.) and take a minimum of two courses in this specialization area.

Social and Behavioral Sciences

In the Social & Behavioral Sciences Concentration, you will Identify a social science discipline that will serve as your subfield, such as sociology, political science, anthropology, or psychology. You will take at least two additional courses in advanced methods, as well as a minimum of three theory or seminar courses in your social science subfield.

Public Health Policy and Management

The Public Health Policy and Management concentration prepares students to apply appropriate research methods to analyze health policy and management issues and questions, synthesize evidence to guide policymaking and assess public policies and programs that promote population health and health equity, and assess different theoretical perspectives in management and apply these ideas to the identification, analysis and understanding of critical themes and issues in health care and public health. The PHPM PhD concentration builds on doctoral-level methods, policy and management courses offered at Wagner and Stern, combined with PhD-level public health policy and management as well as health services and policy research courses offered at the School of Global Public Health.


The Biostatistics concentration prepares students for careers in which they will develop and apply statistical methods to advance research in public health and biomedical sciences. The program is designed to train students to be independent scholars in the theory, methodology, and application of biostatistics. The program includes classroom learning, training in consulting and scientific collaboration, and mentored independent research. Dissertation research will typically be motivated by important problems in public health that require novel statistical methods for design or analysis. Upon completion students will have gained a broad foundation in statistical computing, public health sciences, and learned to communicate effectively with biostatisticians and scientists from other disciplines.


All applications to the PhD programs at NYU GPH must be submitted through SOPHAS, the common application for schools and programs of public health.  You are required to select a single area of concentration when you apply, and we encourage you to research the four different areas of study available to identify one which best aligns with your interests.

In general, the elements of a complete application include:

  • SOPHAS application form
  • Official transcripts from each institution attended (or an evaluation of your credentials if you graduated from a foreign institution)
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Personal statement 
  • Resume/CV
  • English language proficiency exam results for all applicants whose native language is not English and who did not receive the equivalent of a US bachelor's degree at an institution where English is the primary language of instruction.  
  • Writing sample (must be sole author or first author among multiple)

Although not required, PhD applicants are encouraged to identify potential faculty mentors at NYU whose research interests align with theirs and with whom they would like to work with in a proposed area of research interest.