Maternal & Child Health Advanced-standing Program

One of the oldest, most highly regarded maternal and child health programs in the nation.

Rooted in the principles of social justice and focused on skills development to serve the programmatic and policy needs of vulnerable populations, our students work to improve the health of women, children, fathers, and families around the world.  Our training focuses on public health skills development (program design and evaluation, advocacy, epidemiology) and MCH content (reproductive health, infant and child health, adolescent health, social disparities, family systems, and women’s health).

Our advanced-standing MPH is designed for individuals with graduate degrees and/or 3 years of professional experience. This 42-credit program can be completed by full-time students in two years, or may be pursued by part-time students. The program is flexible. Students may obtain the degree completely through online courses, without ever visiting our campus, or students may choose to take some courses online and some in-person.

See a Prezi presentation about the breadth and depth of the Maternal & Child Health program.

Why Minnesota?

  • This online program allows students the flexibility to choose a schedule that fits their life.
  • Employers know our nationally recognized program, our School of Public Health, and our University.
  • Our program boasts about 600 graduates, many of whom are public health leaders who serve as employers, mentors, and teachers to our students.
  • Our multidisciplinary 23-member full faculty and 11-member adjunct faculty includes epidemiologists, psychologists, sociologists, anthropologists, geneticists, physicians, nurses, and public/community health specialists. They are nationally recognized researchers in MCH content areas, such as health disparities, social epidemiology, and reproductive, perinatal, adolescent, and women’s and child health.

You will be trained in maternal and child health content (i.e., the health and behaviors of vulnerable populations, women, children, youth, and families) and learn skills in public health assessment, program development, and policy formation, with an emphasis on health disparities, health inequity, lifecourse theory, and leadership development.

This 42-credit online program is designed for students who either have an advanced degree (e.g., MD, MS, MSW, MEd) OR who have at least three years of professional experience in maternal and child health or public health.

The MPH in MCH requires that you take courses in the following competency areas:

  • Public Health Core (15 credits) – Required courses include Epidemiology, Biostatistics, Environmental Health, Public Health Management, Fundamentals of Social and Behavioral Science, and Ethics.
  • Scientific Basis of Maternal and Child Health (5 credit minimum) – Students choose from courses in Global Reproductive Health, Women’s Health, Reproductive and Perinatal Health, Adolescent Health, Maternal and Infant Nutrition, Children with Special Health Care Needs, Children’s Health, and Immigrant Health.
  • Methodologic and Analytical Skills (5 credit minimum) – Students choose from courses in program evaluation, data analysis, needs assessment, and research methods.
  • Management, Communication, Policy/Advocacy Skills (6 credit minimum) – Required courses include Principles and Programs in Maternal and Child Health and Grant Writing, with elective courses in areas like leadership development, culturally responsive public health, continuous quality improvement, and principles of public health.
  • Application of MPH Knowledge and Skills (4 credits) – A 2-credit field experience and a 2-credit final project are required.
  • Elective courses in public health and related fields may be taken to complete the credits required for the MPH.

The University of Minnesota offers affordable and competitive graduate tuition while also being situated in one of the most affordable metropolitan areas in the country.


2015-16 Tuition & Fees

MPH Resident
per credit $910
Total tuition (42 cr)* $38,220
Fees ** $3,300

*Based on 2015-16 tuition rates and subject to change.
**Fees are approximate and assume enrollment in student health insurance plan (approx. $1,100/term). Additional fees apply for international students. See SPH Tuition & Fees for full details.


See a full list of scholarships available to Public Health students

Applicants who meet our priority deadline (December 1) are given first consideration for all school-awarded funds.

Financial aid is generally awarded to the strongest applicants as defined by academic merit, congruence with the program’s goals and objectives, and/ or public health experience.

All graduate students are also eligible to apply for any research or teaching assistant positions available. Students with excellent writing skills, previous public health or professional experience in education or research, and those with data analysis skills in SAS or SPSS are highly sought after.

Applicants should be interested in working on behalf of socially vulnerable populations, women, infants, children, and families.

The qualifications for admission to the advanced-standing Maternal and Child Health MPH program are:

  • A strong interest in, and understanding of, MCH and public health content, expressed in the applicant’s letter of intent.
  • At least three years experience in a clinical, community-based, public health or managed-care agency/program that focuses on vulnerable populations, women, children, adolescents, and/or families OR a graduate degree (e.g., MSW, MA, PhD, MD).

Test Scores

Average score of admitted student Minimum score
GPA 3.5  3.0
GRE Combined 310  300
GRE Analytical Writing 4.5  3.5
TOEFL (for international applicants)  Minimum scores apply  600/250/100

How to Apply

All applicants must apply and submit through SOPHAS.

  • A letter of intent describing the applicant’s professional experience and career goals.
  • An up­to­date résumé or C.V.
  • Official transcripts or mark sheets from each college and/or university attended.
  • Three letters of recommendation using the School Recommendation Form.
  • GRE scores from all applicants except those who have earned a doctoral level degree from an accredited U.S. or Canadian institution.
  • TOEFL scores from all international applicants.

Be trained in research methods and research critique by leading scholars in Maternal and Child Health.

See faculty in Maternal & Child Health

Examples of faculty research:

  • Ellen Demerath’s research focuses on chronic disease and genetic epidemiology with an emphasis on obesity, body composition, and cardiovascular disease risk factors in infancy and childhood.
  • Susan Mason’s research explores the role that stress has on women’s health, especially the long-term effects of childhood abuse on eating behaviors, weight gain and reproductive health.
  • Ruby Nguyen’s research involves chronic pain and women, as well as perinatal and reproductive health. She is currently conducting studies of vulvar pain and the role of weight loss and reproductive function in men.

Graduates work to promote social and environmental conditions that contribute to the health of women, children, youth and families. Much of their work is focused on socially and economically vulnerable populations in the US and abroad.

Our graduates work in city, county, and state health departments and other government agencies; non-profit organizations, clinics, and agencies; universities; and research institutes. They are public health program and department managers, epidemiologists, clinicians, survey researchers/analysts, health educators, and policy aides.

Maternal & Child Health Online Program In-Depth Career Information

Michelle Gin

I’m energized by my peers, who have similar passions and goals, as well as the opportunity to build lifelong friendships and professional networks. –Michelle Gin, MPH 2015

Application Deadline

Scholarship Consideration Deadline for Fall Admission: December 1

Final Deadline for Fall Admission: May 1

Spring Admission (advanced-standing program only): November 15

May and Summer Admission (advanced-standing program only): March 1


Contact Us

Program Coordinator
Kathryn Schwartz Eckhardt