Health Professions (PhD)

We are not accepting applications to the PhD in Health Professions Education Program at this time.

About the Program

The PhD in health professions education program prepares students to train the next generation of health care professionals. Our program is mostly online, with two short residencies as part of the dissertation process. You'll graduate with a PhD prepared to work in higher education and health care. Learn more about the PhD program.

How to Apply

We are not accepting applications to the PhD in Health Professions Education Program at this time.

Application Requirements

Applicants must have a Master's degree or higher academic degree in public health or in a clinical discipline from an accredited US institution. Applicants need to have practical experience in their field within the past three years, and have current licensure if relevant. An overall GPA of 3.0 in undergraduate and graduate studies is also required.

Application Procedure

NOTE: You will earn the CAGS (Certificate in Advanced Graduate Study) in Health Professions Education, in addition to the Ph.D. in Health Professions Education. Acceptance and completion of both programs is required in order to receive both the certificate and Ph.D.

An applicant will be considered for review if the following requirements are submitted and completed by the deadline:

  1. Complete application
  2. Letter of intent
  3. Analytical writing sample that has not been published or professionally edited
  4. Current resume
  5. Three letters of recommendation
  6. Official college transcripts from all institutions attended, whether or not a degree was earned
  7. English Language Proficiency Exam, if applicable

As part of the admission process an interview will be conducted for PhD applicants.

Once you submit our electronic application, please check the self-service portal to determine that all required application materials have been received.

Academic Records

Official transcripts are required for all courses completed (undergraduate and graduate) at accredited US post-secondary institutions, whether or not a degree was awarded. If you attended a study abroad program and a separate transcript exists, send that as well. Educational documents should clearly indicate the degree earned and the date awarded.

If you hold a visa other than F-1 and you earned a degree abroad, academic records must include end of year marks sheets for each year of attendance, not just final exam results or a copy of the degree. Educational documents should clearly indicate the degree and date awarded. Overseas post-secondary institutions must be recognized by the Ministry of Education in the home country. Academic records in the native language and an official English translation, if needed, are required.

The Office of Admission may require an evaluation of an applicant's academic credentials from abroad. These evaluation reports do not replace the need for signed/sealed academic records. These reports are interpretations of a student's academic history and U.S. colleges and universities may accept all or partial information in these assessments. Our preferred provider is WES.  Evaluations should include English translations and U.S. equivalencies of all transcripts including a course-by-course evaluation with grades.

The Office of Admission also accepts electronic transcripts from certain vendors including Parchment and National Student Clearinghouse.

Standardized Tests

Applicants whose first language is not English must submit official English language test scores taken within two years prior to the application deadline. These include the TOEFL, Duolingo English Test, Pearson Test of English and IELTS. Other English proficiency exams can be considered on a case by case basis. This requirement is based on native language, not citizenship.

Applicants who have graduated from post-secondary institutions abroad (recognized by the Ministry of Education in the host country) in English-speaking countries only or applicants who have earned a bachelor's or master's degree at an accredited U.S. institution do not need to submit an English language proficiency exam report. 

Official scores are required; copies of student score reports are not acceptable. The TOEFL code is 3761. The required scores for the TOEFL are a minimum score of 600 (paper-based), 250 (computer-based) or 105 (internet-based) is required. The TOEFL should be taken well in advance of the application deadline in order for the official scores to be received in time; it takes 5-6 weeks to receive scores from ETS. Further information about TOEFL can be obtained by contacting Educational Testing Service (ETS) by telephone at 609-771-7670 or by visiting their website. The minimum IELTS score is 8.0. The minimum Duolingo score is 125.


Three recommendations, written within six months of the deadline, are required. We do not accept recommendations from individuals who have a personal relationship with you (family members, friends, religious personnel) or politicians since we need evaluations from individuals who can assess your academic ability to engage in graduate studies. Instructions for the online recommendation process can be found within the application.

Enrollment Deposit

Accepted students who choose to enroll are required to submit a non-refundable $750 enrollment deposit by the date stated in the letter of admission. This deposit is applied to the first term bill.

Deferred Entrance

An accepted student may request in writing to the Director of Admission of the Office of Admission a deferral of the entrance date for one year. The student must indicate what they will do in the interim. Deferrals are not granted if the student plans/chooses to attend another institution. If the deferral is approved, a non-refundable enrollment deposit is due on the date stated in the original letter of admission to ensure enrollment for the future.

Reapplication Procedure

An applicant who wishes to re-apply must email or call the Office of Admission at 617-521-2605 about this process. All re-applicants are required to submit a new electronic application and any official academic transcripts for courses completed since the initial application. A reapplication fee is required; application fee waivers are only applicable to one application.

If you require an F-1 visa to study in the U.S., you must be accepted to and enrolled in a degree seeking program on a full time basis. The Ph.D. in Health Professions program is not offered on a full time basis, thus individuals requiring an F-1 visa are not eligible to apply. Taking courses as a non-degree student is not possible.

If you hold an H visa, please contact the Office of Admission via email or at 617-521-2605 to determine if you are eligible to apply. Be certain to tell us what type of H visa you hold and when/where you obtained your bachelor's and master's degrees.


Tuition and fees

Tuition and fees at Simmons are updated annually each spring. They are assessed each semester based on the number of credits enrolled, the level of degree, and the particular program of study.

Merit scholarships and funding options

We believe that your exceptional academic preparation and hard work should be rewarded.

Health insurance

All students taking 9 or more credits are required by Massachusetts State law to enroll in the Student Health Insurance Plan or be covered by a health insurance plan with comparable coverage.

Contact us

Questions? Contact us via email or at 617-521-2605. We're happy to schedule visits and campus tours