MPH/MPP Dual Degree Program

Program Overview

The University of Virginia’s School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences, and the Batten School offer a dual degree program that leads to the completion of the MPH and MPP degrees in three years instead of the four years that would be required if each degree were pursued independently.

The MPP-MPH program is particularly demanding, and unless the student is clearly able to see the applicability of both degrees to future career plans, he or she should not assume that the chance to squeeze one year from a normal five-year sequence is in itself a persuasive rationale for this undertaking.


A student who wishes to be admitted into the dual program must apply to each school separately and be admitted to both the School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences and the Batten School through the normal admission process of each school. The fact that the student is a candidate for the dual program is not considered at this stage.

Students who have been admitted to both schools and who wish to undertake the dual program should notify the registrar of each school and apply to the faculty advisors for permission to do so. Admission requires approval of both the Public Health and Batten faculty advisors. Financial aid will be provided by the school to which the student is paying tuition during each semester. Financial aid is not guaranteed and is subject to individual school and University availability and regulations.

Application to one school may be made either prior to entrance or while a first-year student at the other.


The program takes three years to complete. In brief, it consists of the complete first year program of each school followed by one year of courses taken from the curricula of the two schools and, in appropriate cases, from other graduate offerings at the University. A student who has been admitted to the program will ordinarily be allowed to elect whether to start in the Batten School or in the School of Medicine. The student will then spend the second year in the program as a regular first year student in the other school.

At the conclusion of the third year, students who have earned a minimum of 42 credits in the School of Medicine and a minimum of 40 credits in the Batten School will be awarded both the MPH and MPP degrees. The MPH/MPP candidate is obligated, as part of these credits, to take all of the required curriculum in both graduate public policy and public health. A maximum of two courses (six credits) can be counted toward both degrees. The remaining credits will be elective credits and can be chosen from the respective public policy and public health curricula after consultation with the program committee. In no circumstances will a dual degree student be permitted to complete the program in fewer than three years (six semesters) of coursework.

Change of Status

At any point in the program, the student may terminate plans for a dual degree and continue toward a single degree at either school. The student must then satisfy the normal requirements of the school elected, which may include credit for some of the work done in the other school, as determined by the appropriate officials of the school in question.

Grading Standards

In the first two years of the combined MPH/MPP program, while enrolled exclusively in either program, students are required to meet the grading standards of the school in which they are enrolled. In the final year, when taking classes in both schools, students are required to meet the session and cumulative grading standards of each school independently to remain in good standing.

Administration of the Program

The program is administered by a program committee composed of one member of the public policy faculty and one member of the public health faculty, as designated by the respective deans. The responsibilities of the program committee extend to admission to the dual program, coordination of curricula for the students involved, resolution of problems that may arise, reconciliation of course and examination conflicts, and promotion of dual offerings by the two schools where that seems feasible. The deans from each school will also appoint a faculty advisor to the program who may or may not also serve as the school representative to the program committee. Professor Ruth Bernheim serves as a faculty advisor for the program.

Students who have been admitted independently to both schools and who wish to undertake the dual program should notify the registrar of both schools and apply to the program committee for permission to do so. Entrance to the MPH/MPP program will not be guaranteed by virtue of acceptance at both schools, but will be judged according to criteria, which is the responsibility of the program committee.

* The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only. The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record represent the official repository for academic program requirements.