Certificate in Public Health (Online)

Degree Requirements: 15 Credit Hours

Admission Requirements

The Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health (JPHCOPH) Certificate in Public Health is an ONLINE program. International applicants are eligible to apply for the Certificate in Public Health if he/she plans to complete the program from outside the U.S. International applicants are not eligible to apply for a student visa, nor can they maintain their current F-1/J-1 status in a fully online program.

Students who wish to obtain the Certificate in Public Health need not be enrolled in the M.P.H. program but must still apply and be admitted to the certificate program. Admission into the Certificate in Public Health program does not guarantee subsequent admission to a graduate degree program. Applying to a graduate degree program is a separate process and different criteria must be met.

Regular Admission

  1. Application - Completion of an application in Schools of Public Health Application Service (SOPHAS) Express.
  2. Degree - Completion of a Bachelor’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited institution.
  3. Transcripts - Official transcript(s) from each college or university previously attended. A transcript is required even if the courses from one school appear on the transcript of another school.*
    • All foreign transcripts must be evaluated by World Education Services (WES). Visit http://www.wes.org/ to view which documents are required for your country and to request an International Credential Advantage Package (ICAP) Course- by-Course Report.*
    • Upload transcript(s) from all institutions attended. (Do NOT send transcripts to SOPHAS Express)*
  4. Grade Point Average (GPA) - Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0/4.0 scale in either: 
    • Upper division undergraduate courses; OR
    • Upper division graduate courses.
  5. English Language Proficiency - International applicants and U.S. Citizens whose native language is not English must demonstrate English proficiency. Prior to consideration for admission, international applicants whose native language is not English must take and post acceptable scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) (http://www.ets.org/toefl) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) (http://www.ielts.org) unless they have received a degree from an accredited college or university in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada (except Quebec), Australia, or New Zealand. The TOEFL and IELTS examinations are administered at various times of the year and in many centers throughout the world.
    • A score of at least 75 (internet-based test, IBT) or 537 (paper-based test) on the TOEFL and 6.0 on the IELTS is normally required to be considered for regular admission. The official TOEFL and the official IELTS scores may not be more than two (2) years old. Those who do not meet the minimum proficiency standard may be recommended for enrollment in University English courses or for English courses offered by the English Language Program (ELP) on campus. Successful completion of Intensive English Programs (IEPs) at other English Language Program (ELP) providers will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Request that your official TOEFL scores be sent directly to SOPHAS. Go to http://www.ets.org/toefl and request your TOEFL scores be sent to us using code #5253.
  6. Letters of Recommendation - Three (3) letters of recommendation. It is strongly advised that two letters be from individuals who can address your past academic performance and it is encouraged that the third letter is from a work or internship supervisor.
  7. Curriculum Vitae/Resume - A CV/Resume that includes the following:
    1. educational experiences,
    2. professional goals and objectives,
    3. work history,
    4. professional experiences, memberships and/or participation in professional organizations,
    5. experiences in public health programs.
  8. Statement of Purpose - A Statement of Purpose (500-1000 words) that conveys the applicant’s reasons for pursuing graduate study in public health and how admission into the program relates to the applicant’s professional aspirations.

*NOTE: Unofficial documents must be uploaded for review purposes. Official transcripts and TOEFL/IELTS scores are only required if you are offered admission. Following notification of admission, official transcripts mailed in sealed envelopes directly from each university attended (or directly from WES) and official TOEFL/IELTS scores mailed directly from the testing company are required PRIOR to the first day of classes of the original semester of acceptance. Failure to provide the official transcripts and TOEFL/IELTS scores following notification of admission will result in revocation of the admission offer.
Official documents must be mailed to:
Georgia Southern University
Office of Graduate Admissions
P.O. Box 8113
Statesboro, GA 30460-8113


Students who wish to appeal an admission decision must follow the College of Graduate Studies appeal procedures.

Program of Study

The Certificate program requires a total of 16 credit hours and is offered fully online through the Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) program. All courses will be offered every fall and spring semester. The proposed courses are as follows:

Credit Hours
Course Requirements15
Environmental Health
Health Policy and Management
Social and Behavioral Sciences and Public Health
Total Credit Hours15

Other Program Requirements 

To be awarded a graduate certificate, the student:

  1. Must not be on probation,
  2. Must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher on graduate coursework and on coursework applied to the certificate,
  3. Must meet all the requirements of the College of Graduate Studies and the student’s certificate program, and
  4. Must be enrolled during the semester in which the certificate requirements are completed.

After earning the Certificate, all students are welcome to apply to the M.P.H. program which has face-to-face and online options. Certificate earning students will not be required to submit official scores from the GRE in order to apply. Those applicants who are admitted to the M.P.H. program will receive credit for 16 credit hours toward their M.P.H. degree. The M.P.H. degree requires a total of 45 credit hours, whereby in addition to core public health courses, students pursue an area of concentration in public health.

The completion of the Certificate in Public Health program will satisfy the prerequisite requirements for those students who wish to apply for the Dr.P.H. program but have not completed at least one graduate-level course in each of the five core areas of public health.

The completion of the Certificate in Public Health program must not be confused with the Certified in Public Health (CPH) Exam offered by the National Board of Public Health Examiners. The Certificate in Public Health is not a credentialing program. However, the completion of the Certificate in Public Health program will satisfy one of the requirements to sit for the CPH Exam. Other specific requirements to sit for the CPH Exam can be found at the website for the National Board of Public Health Examiners https://www.nbphe.org).


Graduate students are advised by their program. Graduate students should reach out to their graduate program director for information regarding the structures in place to facilitate advisement. For more information visit the Graduate Academic Advisement catalog page.

Graduate students can also contact the Jack N. Averitt College of Graduate Studies for more information about their program director.
Phone: 912-478-COGS (2647)
Email: gradschool@georgiasouthern.edu