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How to Apply

Dates and Deadlines for Admissions 2021-2022

Applications for entry in September 2021 will open 13 November 2020 and close 29 January 2021 at 4:00pm ET.


Admission Requirements

Please click each of the links below for more detailed information about admission requirements.

What you need to apply:

You will need to have a minimum four year Bachelor's degree (or equivalent) with at least a B+ from an accredited university (equivalent to a McMaster 9.0 on McMaster's 12 point scale) in the most recent academic year. GPA calculations are typically performed using the most recent 30 units/credits (at most institutions this is 10 courses). 

McMaster's grade conversion table for Canadian institutions can be found here.

If you attended an institution outside of Canada, please input the grades as they appear on the transcript from the issuing institution and submit copies of the transcript(s).

All applicants who meet the minimum B+ average and submit all application documents prior to the deadline will be considered for admissions. Admissions decisions are based on the full application package, which includes GPA, CV, academic references, and statement of interest. 

For course-based applicants, you will need to provide a demonstrated interest in one or more of the fields of study available:

  • Globalization and Equity (McMaster)
  • Global Health Management (McMaster)
  • Global Health: Disease Burden, Challenges, and Changes (McMaster)
  • Implementing Innovations on a Global Scale (Maastricht)
  • Global Health Leadership and Organization (Maastricht)
  • Global Transitions within Local Communities. Small Places. Big Places. (Norway).

Learn more about Fields of Study

Required Documents

Please click each of the links below for more detailed information about required documents.

Applicants must submit the completed application online with the (non-refundable) application fee of $110 CAD.

Applicants must upload electronic transcripts for all post-secondary institutions attended along with their application. This includes transcripts from courses taken on exchange, through continuing education, summer courses, etc. Unofficial transcripts should include the applicant's full name and the name of the issuing institution. 

Applicants who attended an institution outside of Canada: In addition to the electronic transcript, applicants must send an original transcript for all education completed outside Canada. All transcripts must arrive to the Global Health office before the application deadline in January. If a transcript is not in English, the applicant is responsible for providing an official translated version of the transcript. In this case, both the original untranslated transcript and the official translation are required. The only exception to this requirement is where the official translation is done by the institution (university) issuing the transcript.

*If we can’t read it, we can’t review it. Illegible documents can cause an applicant’s file to be dismissed before review, so please check your files before submitting your application.

Two confidential academic references to be completed using an electronic reference form. Referees also have the option to upload additional documentation (i.e. PDF reference letter) to supplement the e-reference form. Referee forms will be sent only after the applicant has fully submitted the application (typically within 24-48 hours). All applicants are encouraged to submit the application early to allow referees sufficient time to complete the electronic forms, which will be sent via email directly to the referee's email address inputted by the applicant. If you need to change your referee at any point, or would like to send a reminder email, this can be done through the application portal (Mosaic) after your application has been submitted. 

In order to demonstrate your potential to succeed in an academic setting, academic references should come from professors or faculty members who have supervised you as part of a course. This could include an instructor, a thesis supervisor, or supervisor for a major research paper. A professor with whom you worked on research as employment, however, would be considered a professional reference.

Applicants who have been out of an academic setting for five years or more (as of September 2020) are permitted to submit one academic and one professional reference (in lieu of the two academic references typically required). 


A statement of interest uploaded as a PDF to the Upload Documents page in the application. The statement of interest should be no more than 750 words and include the following:
  1. Why are you applying to the MSc. in Global Health Program?
  2. What are your expectations of the program and how will it contribute to your future plans?
  3. What will you bring to the program and to your fellow students?
  4. Your selected Field of Study at McMaster, Maastricht or Norway (for course-based applicants only).

A preliminary research statement uploaded as a PDF to the Upload Documents page in the application. The research statement should be no more than 250 words and include the following:

  • If global health is a collection of problems, which one do you intend to focus on for your thesis?
  • Place your work in a broader context or framework - the big picture.
  • Discuss how you became interested in your topic and why it continues to interest you.
  • Why is it important? How will your research contribute to global health? Why does your research matter?

A CV or Resume uploaded as a PDF to the Upload Documents page in the application. The CV should be no more than 3 pages double-spaced with 12 point font, and must include the following headings:

• Education
• Honours and Awards
• Experience (could be further subdivided into Research Experience, Teaching Experience, Professional Experience, Volunteer Experience)
• Languages

Additional headings could include:
• Publications
• Conferences


For all experiences, please include a start and an end date (e.g. April 2017 to March 2018). Additional tips and suggestions for your CV can be found on the Student Success Centre website.

Complete the GPA Calculation Template and upload as a PDF to the 'Upload Documents' page of your application. Refer to our step-by-step GPA calculation guide when completing the template. 

GPA Calculation for Admission

In order to verify that you meet the required minimum B+ GPA for admission, please complete the following GPA Calculation Template and upload to the 'Upload Documents' page of your application. 

For more information, please refer to our step-by-step GPA calculation guide

Sending Documents

We ask institutions to send* documents outlined above directly to:

Global Health Office, Faculty of Health Sciences
Attn: MSc. in Global Health Program McMaster
University 1280 Main Street West, MDCL 3500
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada L8S 4K1

*Electronic documents are preferred.

International Applicants

  • To determine your degree equivalency in Canada, you can use the free WES tool. Degrees must equate to minimum 4 year Bachelor's Degree. 
  • Language requirements (e.g. TOEFL, IELTS, etc.) can be found here
  • Funding opportunities are very limited for international students. A full list of funding and awards can be found on the School of Graduate Studies website. As well Enrolment fees are subject to change from year to year. Have a look at the current program fees for Graduate Programs - Masters. 
  • MPOWER Financing was created as a Public Benefit Corporation to help promising students from around the world who struggle to complete their education as a result of being excluded from traditional financing options. They offer both Scholarships and Loans; specifically, we encourage international students to consider applying for the Global Citizen Scholarship or the Women in STEM Scholarship
  • Applicants from a select number of countries are eligible for the Study in Canada Scholarships. If eligible, please indicate on your application your interest in being considered for this scholarship.
  • Information regarding study permits and student visas can be found on the International Student Services website.

Indigenous Applicants

Indigenous participation in Global Health is important. To ensure equitable admissions we have a facilitated admissions process for First Nations, Inuit and Métis applicants.  In accordance with the Self-Identification policy of the Faculty of Health Sciences, Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit and Métis) applicants who wish to apply through this stream must complete the supplementary Self-identification Application. Information on the policy, application requirements and the online application can be found here

Indigenous applicants need to meet the following requirements.

• Honours Bachelor’s Degree (or equivalent)
• Minimum B+ Average

Applicants who wish to be considered under the Indigenous application process must submit the Self-Identification Application by 29 January 2021.

One self-identification application is used for all Faculty of Health Sciences programs that have a facilitated Indigenous admissions stream.  The Self-identification Application must be completed by whatever the earliest deadline date is for the programs for which you have applied to.

Indigenous applicants are strongly encouraged to apply for the Harvey E. Longboat Graduate Scholarship for Inuit, First Nations, and Metis students. The application deadline for the 2021-2022 academic year is TBD. Details can be found here

Once your application is submitted

  • Once the applicant has paid for and submitted an application, they will receive an email to activate their MacID, which will allow them to monitor the status of their application. 
  • Within 24-48 hours of submitting the application, referees will receive electronic reference forms to the email address provided in the application, to be submitted electronically. Applicants can monitor the status of their references on their Applicant Portal, and can resend reference forms online through the Applicant Portal. Applicants can also change their referee through the Student Portal, if a referee is no longer to provide a reference. 
  • Please note that due to the volume of applicants, checklists will not be updated in Mosaic. While the status of references will be automatically updated from "Initiated" to "Completed" once received, all other items will remain as "Initiated". 
  • The 'applicant email' is the address the admissions officers will use to contact the applicant, so this should be an email address the applicant checks regularly. 

Tuition and Scholarships

Enrolment Fees and Expenses

Enrolment fees are subject to change from year to year. Have a look at the current program fees for Graduate Programs - Masters. 
Please note that additional expenses of approximately $2500 will be incurred to cover participation in the International Symposium in India, and other costs may apply to field placements.
For a detailed breakdown of fees, please see Student Accounts and Cashiers


McMaster University awards a number of competitive entrance scholarships. We strongly encourage applicants to apply for external funding, where eligible.
A few funding opportunities are outlined below:
  • Thesis students can apply for CIHR funding through Canada Graduate scholarships. The deadline to apply for CIHR is December 1st, at which point you will select the programs & schools you will be applying to. 
  • All incoming domestic students are considered for OGS. There are currently three OGS scholarships available for incoming students, valued at $15,000 each. Any offer of financial support will be identified in the letter of offer, if the applicant is accepted into the program. 
  • Grant money may be available to support a limited number of student exchanges. Application details will be provided to the incoming students in the fall. 
For more details, please visit the School of Graduate Studies' scholarships page.

Admissions FAQ

No, there are no specific prerequisite courses.

An Honours Bachelor's Degree is equivalent to a four-year undergraduate degree.

Admission decisions are based on a combination of not only GPA, but also CV, Statement of Interest, and Academic References. While a higher GPA would increase likelihood of receiving an offer of admission, applicants with a B+ may be successful in gaining admission due to the strength of their application as a whole. 

No, we do not require applicants to complete the GRE.

You will need to demonstrate English Language Proficiency if the primary language of instruction during your previous education was anything other than English. If you are an international student whose first language is not English, but the language of instruction during your Bachelor’s degree was English, you will not need to submit Proof of English Language Proficiency. Additional information about minimum scores can be found on the School of Graduate Studies website. 

Yes. Your most recent available grades will be used to calculate your GPA. Any offer of admission would be conditional upon the completion of your Bachelor's Degree. 

The completed application package includes the following: online application, payment of application fee ($110 CAD), two academic references, one electronic transcript from all post-secondary institutions, the GPA Calculation Template, a CV, a personal statement, and a preliminary research statement (*thesis program plan only*)

Each year we have approximately 500 applicants to the Global Health program. 

There are approximately 70 seats in the program

Yes. Your referee will not receive the electronic reference form until your application has been submitted. 

No. Please wait until September when you have are enrolled in the program and are on campus.

Admission decisions for domestic applicants will be announced in mid-May, while international applicants will be notified in late April. Applicants will be notified of admission decisions by electronic mail.

No. Given the volume of applications, the Admissions Committee cannot expedite admission decisions

All students enter into a general program plan in September. In the fall, faculty members will facilitate workshops on preparing a thesis and scholarly paper, and you will officially declare your program plan in September.

No. Due to the increasing number of applications in recent years and in fairness to all applicants, we unfortunately do not allow for deferrals of offers. Applicants must submit a new application to be considered for admissions the following year. 

Yes. Statistics courses are not required for admission, though they are recommended. This is because, in the past, a few students who did not have any statistics background have struggled with the Global Health Research Methods course. 

Ask a Student Ambassador

Have a question for a current student? Get in touch.
Whether you have specific questions for a current student or want to know more about the MSc Global Health program in general, just email the Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) Student Ambassadors. 
The Student Ambassador program is made up of current FHS and FHS-affiliated graduate students who come from a variety of disciplines and backgrounds. They are happy to answer questions from prospective students. Contact this year's Student Ambassadors:

Sabrina Price

Thilini Herath


If your question is about admissions, contact an admissions officer directly at