Global Health and Environment MS

Our program is a unique, interdisciplinary, campus-wide program that seeks to support people in low- and middle-income countries achieve health and reach acceptable standards of well being, and to stabilize populations, while at the same time protecting the local and global environments.

This program takes two years (plus one summer) and requires 44 units in several departments across campus encompassing environmental health sciences, biostatistics and epidemiology, and elective courses drawn from a range of fields, including: international health, demography, maternal and child health, urbanization and healthy cities, nutrition and malnutrition, environmental sciences, environmental engineering, industrial hygiene and occupational health, and energy and resources. The program requires a minimum of 24 units of upper division and graduate courses. At least 12 of these units must be in graduate courses (200 level) taught by Berkeley Public Health’s Environmental Health Sciences faculty. Students should reference the Berkeley Compendium of EHS Expertise to supplement their required courses with electives. Additionally, no more than six units may be independent research units (PB HLTH 299). Students are required to complete an original research project, which may be pursued through fieldwork, secondary data analyses or systematic review.


  • Required Courses

    Global Health & Environment

    • PB HLTH 200W: Foundations of Public Health Practice (fall and spring)
    • PB HLTH 270: Introduction to Environmental Health Sciences (fall)
    • PB HLTH 270A: Exposure Assessment and Control I (fall)

    Two courses from the following:

    • PB HLTH 270B: Toxicology (spring)
    • PB HLTH 220C: Health Risk Assessment, Regulation, and Policy (spring)
    • PB HLTH 273: Environmental Determinants of Infectious Disease (fall)
    • PB HLTH 271G: Health Implications of Global Climate Change (spring)
    • PB HLTH W272A: Introduction to GIS for Public Health (spring)
    • PB HLTH W272C: Applied Spatial Data Science for Public Health (spring)

    Quantitative Methods

    • PB HLTH 250A: Epidemiological Methods I (Fall, summer)
    • PB HLTH 142: Introduction to Probability and Statistics in Biology and Public Health (fall, spring)
    • An additional biostatistics course is also required, of which the following are generally selected from:
      • PB HLTH 245: Introduction to Multivariate Statistics (fall)
      • PB HLTH 241: Intermediate Biostatistics for Public Health (spring)
  • Electives

    Remaining units are drawn from electives. Students should reference the Berkeley Compendium of EHS Expertise.

Recommendations for Competitive Applicants

  • Candidates with undergraduate coursework in calculus, chemistry and biology are preferred.
  • Common undergraduate majors for admitted applicants: engineering, microbiology, environmental science, biology, chemistry, other biological, natural or physical sciences fields, population sciences and biomedical fields.
  • Common work experience for admitted applicants: lab technicians, student researchers, research scientists, environmental organizers and advocates, program managers, engineers, post-graduate fellows, in global health programs and for the Peace Corps.
  • Submissions of GRE scores are optional but recommended for this program, especially if you have no other evidence of quantitative, verbal, or analytical abilities in your application.

Admission and Application Requirements

A writing sample. There is no length requirement for the writing sample, but a sample approximately 10 pages in length is typical. Please attach a writing sample that highlights your writing and analytical skills. The writing sample may be a final paper from a class, a popular media article, a report, a blog entry, an undergraduate thesis, etc. The purpose of the writing sample is to demonstrate your preparation for graduate-level coursework and research at Berkeley by sharing an example of your prior work that exhibits your ability to articulate and support complex ideas, solve technical problems, construct and evaluate arguments, and/or sustain a focused and coherent discussion. The writing sample should be your own work; if there were multiple authors, please describe your specific contributions to the writing and project.


Graduates take positions across the environmental health and development fields, including jobs at research institutions, environmental non-profits, global health NGOs and advocacy organizations. Many graduates have continued their education in doctorate programs in environmental health and related fields.

Admissions Statistics


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