Apply to Maternal and Child Health

We thank you for your interest in exploring degree options in the Department of Maternal and Child Health (MCH) where we are dedicated to improving the health of women, children and families, both domestically and globally.

Decide which degree is for you. The first step is to determine which Maternal and Child Health degree program suits your interests and career goals.

The UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health is now participating in SOPHAS (Schools of Public Health Application Service). All MCH MPH, MSPH and PhD applicants must submit a SOPHAS application. Applicants must e-submit their application and all required documents to SOPHAS and to UNC by department deadlines listed in our Gillings Program Search – links below. We recommend that you allow 4 weeks for your application to be received by UNC.


Check out our Gillings Program Search (GPS) for prospective students. The GPS provides a search option for our School’s degree and non-degree programs, as well as the ability to drill down to an overview of each program’s quick facts and related information about how to apply. Begin the application process: click link(s) below to view the requirements and procedures that apply to you. See our tuition and fees page for related information.


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Doctoral Program Show Details

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD Residential)

Develops research scholars capable of producing and disseminating new knowledge and methods for the public health profession in the field of MCH. Each doctoral student is expected to develop and demonstrate competence in at least three areas: core Maternal and Child Health content, research methods, and a chosen area of ‘specialization.’ The specialization area is topic-specific and should be related to the area chosen for the student’s dissertation research.

Master's-to-Doctoral Programs Show Details

Master's-to-Doctoral Program (MSPH-PhD Residential)

Students earn the Master of Science in Public Health (MSPH) degree before enrolling in the PhD program. Students in the MtD program complete all requirements for the MSPH, and, if approved to proceed to doctoral study, all requirements for the PhD.

Master's-to-Doctoral Program (MPH-PhD Residential)

Students earn the Master of Public Health (MPH) degree before enrolling in the PhD program. Students in the MtD program complete all requirements for the MPH, and, if approved to proceed to doctoral study, all requirements for the PhD.

Master's Programs Show Details

Master of Public Health (MPH Online + campus visit(s))

***THIS PROGRAM IS NOT CURRENTLY ACCEPTING NEW APPLICANTS.*** Provides knowledge of the major factors associated with maternal health and child health, principles and methods for improving the health of mothers and children, including methods of program planning, management, research design, consultation and policy analysis in the United States and in international settings. Program aims to enable students to develop an interdisciplinary public health perspective focusing on population-based strategies for improving the health of mothers and children. Once campus visit before the start of your first semester is required.

Master of Public Health (MPH Residential)

Provides knowledge of the major factors associated with maternal health and child health, principles and methods for improving the health of mothers and children, including methods of program planning, management, research design, consultation and policy analysis in the United States and in international settings. Program aims to enable students to develop an interdisciplinary public health perspective focusing on population-based strategies for improving the health of mothers and children.

Master of Science in Public Health (MSPH Online + campus visit(s))

***THIS PROGRAM IS NOT CURRENTLY ACCEPTING NEW APPLICANTS.*** An option only for students who have, or are expected to have, a terminal health professional or allied health professional degree. Once campus visit before the start of your first semester is required.

Master of Science in Public Health (MSPH Residential)

An option only for students who have, or are expected to have, a terminal health professional or allied health professional degree.

Dual Master of Public Health and Master of Social Work (MPH-MSW Residential)

A cooperative arrangement between MCH and the School of Social Work (SSW): Provides knowledge of the major factors associated with maternal health and child health, principles and methods for improving the health of mothers and children, and principles and methods of program planning, management, consultation and policy analysis in the U.S. and in international settings. The program provides skills related to program planning, implementation and evaluation; limited scientific investigation; computer applications; interdisciplinary functioning; and consultation as they relate to maternal and child health. The program objective is to develop a public health perspective consistent with population-based strategies for solving community health problems, addressing the responsibility of government and the contributions of scientific investigation and the interdisciplinary approach.

Dual Master of Science in Public Health and Master of Social Work (MSPH-MSW Residential)

A cooperative arrangement between MCH and the School of Social Work (SSW): Provides students with grounding in the major factors associated with maternal health and child health, principles and methods for improving the health of mothers and children, and principles and methods of program planning, management, consultation and policy analysis in the U.S. and in international settings. The program provides skills related to program planning, implementation and evaluation; limited scientific investigation; computer applications; interdisciplinary functioning; and consultation as they relate to maternal and child health. The program aims to develop a public health perspective consistent with population-based strategies for solving community health problems, addressing the responsibility of government and the contributions of scientific investigation and the interdisciplinary approach.

Certificate Program Show Details

Certificate in Online Leadership Education (OLE Online + campus visit(s))

***THIS PROGRAM IS NOT CURRENTLY ACCEPTING NEW APPLICANTS.*** This program provides practitioners with core knowledge, skills and competencies for promoting the health of the MCH population in domestic and global settings. Major emphasis is placed on critically evaluating population-based solutions to complex health problems in MCH – with maternal and child health defined in the broadest sense to include physical, political, economic, cultural, and psychosocial factors. The Certificate is intended to build field leadership in addressing health disparities in MCH and in defining a population-based vision for improving health and well-being of women, children, youth and their families. Once campus visit before the start of your first semester is required. Online certificates are available to individuals NOT currently enrolled at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Certificate Programs Show Details

Graduate Certificate in Interdisciplinary Health Disparities (CIHD Residential)

Provides training that supports a long-term and sustained public health effort toward addressing and ultimately eliminating public health disparities experienced by African-Americans, Hispanics, American Indians, Alaska Natives, Asian-Americans, and Pacific Islanders, compared to the U.S. as a whole. Students enrolled in the Interdisciplinary Health Disparities Certificate Program will gain a synthesis of knowledge across a variety of disciplines and an expanded depth of the nature and causality of health disparities and be able to translate knowledge into effective action within the U.S. and across the globe. This residential certificate program is available to current degree-seeking residential UNC system affiliate graduate students and professional learners enrolled in the Part-Time Classroom Studies program through the William and Ida Friday Center for Continuing Education.

Graduate Certificate in Global Health (CGH Residential)

The purpose of the Graduate Certificate in Global Health is to provide current graduate students with a comprehensive understanding of global health conditions, needs, and solutions that cross borders in both developing and industrialized countries and regions. The Certificate complements students’ departmental requirements by offering courses and seminars that will prepare them to work in changing environments and with diverse populations, enabling them to respond competently to the challenges inherent to a career in global health.  Students will learn to identify and analyze the factors that generate disparities in health status, health resources, and access to health information and services, particularly for ethnic minorities and other marginalized and vulnerable population groups. In conferring a Global Health Certificate, the School of Public Health acknowledges students’ capability and capacity to perform as public health professionals with a global perspective, with collaborative and cross-cultural sensitivity and skills. Residential certificate programs are available to students currently enrolled in a residential graduate degree program at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Graduate Certificate in Interdisciplinary Health Communication (CIHC Residential)

Provides current degree-seeking residential UNC graduate students with specialized training in health communication. Courses are designed to build expertise for applied practice, academic, and research settings. IHC faculty represent 6 disciplines and conduct research on e-health, message tailoring, risk communication, health decision-making, dissemination, media effects, usability of electronic medical information, and health marketing. Residential certificate programs are available to students currently enrolled in a residential graduate degree program at UNC Gillings.

Graduate Certificate in Public Health Informatics (CPHI Residential)

This 12-credit hour specialized educational option prepares graduates for a variety of public health informatician roles. Combining the existing strength of the SPH curriculum and the informatics curriculum at the School of Information and Library Science (SILS), it will offer focused education with emphasis on public health information systems, information management and manipulation as well as evidence-based public health policy. The PHI certificate is envisioned as complementary to a graduate degree from SPH. Residential certificate programs are available to students currently enrolled in a residential graduate degree program at UNC Gillings.


For more details contact:
Carrie Aldrich
Registrar and Student Services Manager
Rosenau Hall, Room 424
CB #7445