Skip to:

MPH in Environmental Health Sciences

Offering Department: 
Program Description: 

Human health is profoundly shaped by our environment, and the mission of the Department of Environmental Health Sciences is to develop and transmit knowledge about the links between health and the environment and to educate scientists and public health leaders who can design science-based policies to address current and future environmental health challenges. The MPH in Environmental Health Sciences is a professional degree emphasizing public health applications, with a focus on public health practice and the acquisition of broad knowledge related to professional skills. Through coursework, a comprehensive exam and field training, the MPH equips students to be professionals with a broader understanding of the synergistic relationship between applied environmental and public health issues.

Students in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences gain a comprehensive understanding of:

  • The role that the environment plays in human health;
  • How people are exposed to hazards in the environment;
  • The outcomes are of environmental exposures at the cellular or organismal level;
  • The outcomes of environmental exposures are at the level of human populations; and
  • What the societal implications are of these outcomes; and
  • How to design science-based policies to address current and future environmental health challenges.

Program Requirements

The program consists of a minimum of 68 quarter-credit units.

Course Requirements in Environmental Health Sciences (28 units)

  • Biostatistics 100B: Introduction to Biostatistics
  • EHS C200B: Foundations of Environmental Health Sciences
  • EHS C240: Fundamentals of Toxicology
  • EHS 411: Environmental Health Sciences Seminar: One quarter each year is required
  • EHS C200C: Foundations of Environmental Health Sciences
  • EHS 200D: Policy Analysis for Environmental Health Sciences
  • EHS 257: Risk Assessment and Standard Setting

Core Course Requirements in Public Health (24 units)

  • EHS 400: Field Studies in Environmental Health Sciences (Students enroll in this course the quarter that they have completed their final internship report)
  • Public Health 200A: Foundations in Public Health
  • Public Health 200B: Foundations in Public Health
  • Public Health 401: Foundations in Public Health

Elective Courses (16 units)

In addition to School and Department requirements, at least 16 units of upper division or graduate level elective courses are required and are selected by students in consultation with their faculty adviser. Students must submit a blue petition each quarter for the electives that they want to use to satisfy degree requirements. MPH students who already have met these requirements as part of their area of focus e.g. Industrial Hygiene, are exempt.

Chemistry Waiver Exam

Students must successfully complete a written examination in chemsitry when they enter the program, or else they will be required to take Environmental Health Sciences 101.

Industrial Hygiene Focus 

Students may choose to focus on Industrial Hygiene, which has additional curricular requirements beyond the standard MPH program. 

Students interested in being supported for fees and a stipend by the NIOSH Southern California  Education and Research Center must contact the UCLA IH Program Director, Professor Shane Que Hee at

Field Training

The internship or field study constitutes a culminating experience for the degree and provides the student with an opportunity to apply the principles and knowledge obtained in the classroom to real world problems in a professional setting.

All students in the MPH Program in EHS are required to complete a 400-hour internship in an appropriate environmental health setting. Internship settings may include government agencies or departments, non-profit organizations, local industry, consulting firms, community organizations, advocacy agencies, national laboratories, or a university, college, or school setting.

Students must write a project summary paper related to the work performed during the internship; the paper must be approved by both the field mentor and the faculty advisor. The subject of the paper may be on the student’s research project, an environmental sampling or analysis activity, or a policy white paper related to the internship topic. Students should seek approval of their intended paper topic from their faculty advisor and field mentor prior to writing the paper to ensure that the topic is appropriate.

Time To Degree

The MPH degree is normally obtained after six quarters of full-time study (2 academic years), including a required 400-hour internship, usually completed in the summer between the first and second years.


Desired Qualifications

In addition to meeting the University’s minimum requirements, students should have a bachelor's (or master's) degree in public health, environmental health, life sciences, physical sciences, engineering, environmental science, or a related field.  

Applicants with non-science majors who meet the following course work requirements will be considered for admission:

Course Work

  • 1 university-level course or equivalent in Calculus, Linear Algebra, or Statistics
  • 1 university-level course in Chemistry or equivalent
  • 1 university-level course in Biology or equivalent

Students who do not have the prerequisites at the time of application may take equivalent courses at UCLA in their first year.

Admissions Process

Applicants are only admitted in the Fall. Applicants who wish to be considered for all financial aid considerations should have their applications, letters, transcripts and official GRE scores here at the Fielding School of Public Health by December 1 of the year preceding the desired entrance year.

The application process has three steps. You must:

  1. Submit an on-line application and pay the application fee at SOPHAS,
  2. Submit an online application and pay the application fee at UCLA Graduate Admissions, and
  3. Mail required academic documents and test scores to SOPHAS and to UCLA's Fielding School of Public Health.

For complete application instructions and the list of required materials, review UCLA Fielding School of Public Health Admission Application Check List and Submission Instructions.

As we receive many more qualified applicants for the program than there are available spaces, meeting the minimum requirements for admission does not ensure admission to the program. 

Tuition and Fees

For the most up to date fees and more information on fee breakdown, visit the registrar's office.

Please see FSPH Financial Opportunities page for information on awards, scholarships, training opportunities, employment, summer internship funding, and need-based aid. Please note that opportunities listed under 'Summer Internship Funding' are only applicable to MPH students.


Graduates of the department have pursued careers in both the private and public sectors as researchers, educators, managers, policymakers, and practitioners.

Faculty in this Department

For a list of faculty in this department, please click here.

To search all School of Public Health faculty members by name, department or area of expertise, click here.

Helpful Links

Who to Contact for More Information

For more information or questions, please contact Susana Luis at or 310.206.1619.


*This information is intended as an overview, and should be used as a guide only. Requirements, course offerings and other elements may change, and this overview may not list all details of the program. For the most up-to-date information, please consult the registrar’s office.

* Admission requirements listed are departmental requirements, and are in addition to the University's minimum requirements. Many programs receive more applicants than can be admitted, so meeting the minimum requirements for admission does not ensure admission. Every effort is made to ensure minimum admissions requirements are up to date - for the most up-to-date information on the University's minimum requirements, please visit the UCLA Graduate Division.

** Fees are subject to change and should be used as a guide only. For the most up to date fees and more information on fee breakdown, visit the registrar's office.