Online MPH With No GRE Requirements

Historically, it’s often been the case that standardized entrance exams were required for entry into four-year undergraduate and graduate programs. Times are changing, however, with many institutions modifying their entrance requirements to exclude exams like the GRE. According to the National Center for Fair and Open Testing (FairTest), more than 1,400 four-year institutions no longer require the ACT or SAT1. Graduate programs are starting to follow the trend, with many dropping the GRE requirement for entry into graduate degree programs2. Others are making GRE testing an option, but are not using results to determine entry.

Removing the GRE requirement gives more people access to higher education opportunities by eliminating a barrier to entry, making the application process more equitable for a socially, culturally and economically diverse range of students. There is a growing belief that GRE scores may be connected to a student’s socioeconomic status rather than their intellectual capacity. Additionally, studies have shown the GRE is not an effective predictive tool for overall student success, even for hard-science programs like biomedical doctoral programs3. This means removing the GRE requirement may allow more students to pursue their educational dreams but is unlikely to negatively impact graduation statistics.

Students looking to start or advance their career in public health by earning an online MPH with no GRE may benefit from the shifting attitudes on entry testing in a number of ways. First and foremost, it’s becoming easier to find accredited online programs that don’t require a GRE. Students who struggle with test anxiety, those with socioeconomic barriers to test prep courses and a number of others can also now pursue graduate education without the GRE exam.

Why Pursue an Online MPH Program Without a GRE?

As many colleges rethink the use of the entry exams, it is becoming easier to find an online MPH program without a GRE requirement. There are many reasons why this may be a positive direction, especially for students. One of many key factors to consider is the cost of preparing for and taking the GRE. The basic cost to sit for the GRE starts at $205, with additional subject tests costing an average of $140 each. These usually apply to students who need to add tests in subjects like chemistry or physics.

Removing the GRE also means students can skip the test prep phase, which can take up to three months. This allows students to start a degree program more quickly, ultimately putting them that much closer to graduating with a master’s degree in public health. Since there is also generally a cost for test prep programs, removing the GRE requirement also reduces the overall cost of education. Another benefit of applying to an online MPH program without a GRE is that those with test anxiety — or any number of other personal circumstances that might affect their opportunity to prepare for and take the GRE — have fewer barriers to enroll. 

Earn a Master’s in Public Health Online With No GRE at the George Washington University

The George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health (GWSPH) may be an ideal choice for students looking to earn their MPH degree online without taking the GRE. Founded by an act of Congress in 1821, GW has a long history of providing students access to quality education, which now includes a large range of online programs — and a School of Public Health ranked No. 11 in 2024 by U.S. News & World Report.

Students can pursue a master’s in public health online with no GRE requirement in a supportive environment with small class sizes to provide a more personal learning experience. The online MPH includes multiple degree options and can be completed in as few as 12 months. This allows students to fit education into their schedule, working on their goals while keeping up with work and family obligations.

1 FairTest, 1,400+ U.S. Four-Year Colleges and Universities Will Not Require ACT/SAT Scores for Fall 2022 Entry. Accessed August 25, 2021.
2 Science, A wave of graduate programs drops the GRE application requirement. Accessed August 25, 2021.
3 PLOS ONE, The Limitations of the GRE in Predicting Success in Biomedical Graduate School. Accessed August 25, 2021.