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Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Center for Education in Health Sciences
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The application portal for the 2021/2022 academic year are now closed! The next admission cycle starts Fall 2021. 

NOTE: Applicants are responsible for submitting all materials including letters of recommendation (LORs) and English Proficiency Certification by the deadline: December 1, 11:59PM US-Central Standard Time.

To view our most frequently asked questions, please refer to our updated FAQ on our About the Program page.

If your question was not answered and you need additional assistance, you can submit an inquiry on the Contact Us form on the same page or email the HSIP inbox: Note that all inquiries must include a valid email address in order to provide information.

All inquiries will be answered during regular business hours Monday through Friday, 9:00AM-5:00PM US-Central Standard Time.

Application Process

 1. Apply online.

We do not accept paper applications. The online application is available via The Graduate School (TGS) admissions portal. Please indicate the application is for the Health Sciences Integrated PhD Program (program code H01PH). If you plan to apply for the Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety (HQPS) Track, you must indicate that you are applying for Summer Quarter. Coursework for this track begins in July. The application fee is $95, which must be paid by credit card. TGS are in charge of application fee waivers and not the HSIP program. Please refer to the instructions listed on the Application Fee site.

The online application includes the following sections:

Statement of purpose: In no more than 750 words, outline your background, education, research interests, research experience and identify potential faculty with whom you’d like to work. Please note that you do not need to know what type of research you’ll pursue; courses during your first year will give you an opportunity to explore many types of research before you have to select your dissertation project.

  • Academic background: List all post-secondary institutions you’ve attended (community colleges, studies abroad and current registrations in degree or non-degree programs); leave the GPA section blank if the institution does not use a 4.0 GPA system.
  • Transcripts: Upload a scanned copy of all your transcripts, following The Graduate School guidelines.
  • Curriculum vitae (CV): We encourage applicants to list and link to all research papers.
  • Writing sample: Include a research paper (30-page maximum); papers submitted by mail or email will not be considered. Examples: published/unpublished research papers, co-authored research with your contribution to the work designated, manuscripts (can be in-progress), grants, and previous undergraduate/graduate research projects.
  • Diversity statement (optional): Applicants may choose to explain how they would contribute to the diversity of the community of scholars at Northwestern University.

All supporting documents must be submitted in PDF format with the online application.

 2. Submit all required supplementary information.
NOTE: Applications for the 2021-2022 academic year will not require the GRE. However, at this time, English Proficiency Certification (TOEFL, IELTS, or degree from accredited institution where language of instruction is English) are still required for the upcoming admissions season. 

Other required information includes:

  • Three letters of recommendation (LORs): These letters are confidential and must be submitted online. No special forms or templates are needed. We prefer to see letters from professors or instructors who are familiar with your work at an advanced level and can speak to your potential for success as a doctoral student. Letters from employers are also accepted.
  • Certification of proficiency in English (if applicable): All applicants whose native language is not English must certify their proficiency in the English language in one of two ways:
    • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score: Tests must have been taken within two years of the intended quarter of entry. TOEFL scores must be 600 or higher on the paper-based exam, 250 or higher on the computer-based exam or 100 or higher on the Internet-based exam. IELTS scores must be 7.0 or higher. We do not require the Test of Spoken English.
    • Or, an undergraduate or graduate degree from an accredited institution where the language of instruction is English and approved by TGS. This degree must be awarded before the student enrolls in doctoral classes in the upcoming quarter at Northwestern. This satisfies the English proficiency requirement, but applicants should still include any TOEFL or IELTS scores in the online application, even if test scores have expired.

Applicants are responsible for submitting all materials including LORs and English Proficiency Certification by the deadline: December 1, 11:59PM US-Central Standard Time

 3. Attend an interview.

Interviews take place in the final two weeks of January. An applicant cannot request an interview. We will reach out to arrange an interview if we are strongly considering an applicant or need more information.

All applicants selected by the admissions committees for the 2021-2022 academic year will be interviewed via Zoom.

Applicant Evaluation


We evaluate applicants for admission based on the entire application package. Our goal is to identify and offer admission to those individuals with potential for success in graduate school and beyond. To this end, we carefully examine each applicant's academic achievement and research experiences.

The evaluation necessarily begins with numerical qualifications such as undergraduate and master’s GPAs, and TOEFL score for foreign students. No minimum score is required, but entering classes typically have an average GPA of 3.5 (ranging from 3.0 to 4.0). The admissions committee also looks closely for success in previous coursework.

We place great emphasis on quality research experience, strong letters of support from research and/or academic mentors and colleagues and a personal statement that indicates an appreciation of the research enterprise and a dedication to graduate training. Successful applicants are able to communicate a clear understanding of their own research experiences both in writing (personal statement included with application) and orally (during interviews).




NOTE: Due to the record number of applications this year, admission offers will come on a rolling basis starting in February and possibly into April.

After enrollment, you will be required to mail one official copy of each transcript to The Graduate School Admission Office. All transcripts should be sent in sealed, unopened envelopes, directly from the issuing institution.

Funding Opportunities & Resources

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