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Application Requirements & Process

Prior Degree Requirement

A bachelor's degree from an approved regionally accredited institution (or equivalent from an approved international institution) earned prior to starting a graduate program at USF is required for admission to the College of Public Health.

Application Process Outline

  1. Complete a SOPHAS application.
  2. The SOPHAS application will be verified by SOPHAS (allow two to four weeks)
  3. Once verified by SOPHAS, the application will be sent to USF and entered into our Graduate University System.
  4. You will receive an email confirming your SOPHAS application has been received by USF. The email will contain a link to the USF application form and fee information.
  5. Once the USF application is completed and the fee has been paid, and all required College of Public Health supporting documents received, the application will be forwarded to the department for review (allow two to four weeks).
  6. Monitor your e-mail and the USF web site for decisions and other communications.

Materials Required for SOPHAS

Note: If you have not taken any of the required tests (GRE, GMAT, TOEFL, IELTS) prior to submitting your SOPHAS application the application is considered incomplete unless the official scores are received prior to the deadline. Scores received after the deadline cannot be reviewed for the semester applied they will be considered for the following term.

  • Official GRE, MCAT or GMAT test scores are required (view Admissions Test Information)
    • Have official GRE scores sent to USF College of Public Health (ETS code “4224 U SOUTH FLORIDA COLL PUBLIC HEALTH”). This will automatically enter your scores in the SOPHAS system.
  • TOEFL scores (Applicants whose native language is not English or who have not earned a degree in the United States must also submit TOEFL scores earned within two (2) years of the desired term of entry). Have official TOEFL scores sent to USF College of Public Health (ETS code “5688”). This will automatically enter your scores in the SOPHAS system.
  • Transcripts - Send all transcripts and evaluations to SOPHAS:
    • Official transcripts from all institutions of higher learning where a degree was earned and from all institutions from which courses were used to apply to a degree at another institution (for example community college coursework).
    • SOPHAS requires ALL foreign transcripts to have a course by course evaluation from World Education Services (WES, http://www.wes.org/). An exception to the WES evaluation requirement may be made on a case by case basis by Graduate Admissions at the College of Public Health, if WES is unable to evaluate an applicant’s transcripts, and such proof is submitted.
    • If you are admitted to USF and waiting to enroll you may be required to send your final transcripts to USF.
  • A minimum of two letters of recommendation of a professional or academic nature. All programs in the Community and Family Health department require three letters. Refer to your degree type to see if additional letters of recommendation are required.
  • A resume or curriculum vitae should be uploaded to the SOPHAS application.
  • M.P.H., M.S.P.H., M.H.A. applicants must include a statement of purpose and objectives.
  • Ph.D. and Dr.P.H. applicants must include a detailed statement or purpose of less than five pages that describes why you wish to obtain a Ph.D. or Dr.P.H. degree in Public Health.
  • The SOPHAS application fee must be paid (depends on number of schools applied to).
  • Ph.D. applicants must include a writing sample (graduate level term paper, thesis, research paper, article where applicant is first author). The sample should be uploaded to the SOPHAS application and has a 5MB size limit. If you have problems uploading your writing sample please contact Academic and Student Affairs at: (813) 974-6505.

To start the SOPHAS application process, go to http://www.sophas.org.


Helpful Suggestions about SOPHAS

  • Apply to SOPHAS EARLY. It can take SOPHAS up to four weeks to receive all documents and verify the application materials.
  • Submit your application as soon as you have completed the online information. To facilitate the timely processing of your application, do not wait for SOPHAS to receive all your documents before you submit the online application. Processing will begin automatically when all required official transcripts, letters of recommendation, and payments are received by SOPHAS if you have submitted your application.
  • Frequently log-in to your SOPHAS account (at https://portal.sophas.org/) and check the status of your application (see the “Status “section of your application). You will be able to monitor the receipt of external documents after you have submitted the SOPHAS application and see when the application is sent to USF for review. It is your responsibility to ensure application materials and official transcripts meet designated deadlines.
  • Remember, schools do NOT receive your application for review until it has passed through the SOPHAS system.

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