MHCI Admissions

We encourage recent undergrads and accomplished professionals from a variety of educational and employment backgrounds (e.g., health communication, health professions, public health, nursing, human resource management, management, psychology, leadership or other social sciences) to apply. Rutgers’ MHCI is designed for working professionals and sixty percent of our students work full-time.

Application for Admission

To apply:

  • Complete our admission application
  • Provide a $70 non-refundable fee
  • When you are applying for the New Brunswick MHCI degree select “Health Communication and Information – 17503”
  • If you are a SC&I undergraduate applying for the five-year BA/MHCI dual degree: 
    • Communication majors, select "Health Communication - Communication BA/MHCI Dual Degree - 175033C"
    • Information Technology and Informatics majors, select "Health Communication - Information Technology and Informatics BA/MHCI - 175033I"
    • Journalism and Media Studies majors, select "Health Communication - Journalism and Media Studies BA/MHCI - 175033J"

For application questions, guidelines and forms, visit Rutgers Graduate and Professional Admissions. For MHCI program questions, email MHCI Program Director Richard Dool or call 848-932-7550, option 2.

Transcripts of Previous Academic Work

E-transcripts are strongly encouraged and can be sent to

If your institution does not offer e-transcripts, please have official transcripts mailed to:

Office of Graduate and Professional Admissions
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Proctor Hall, Suite 308
65 Davidson Road
Piscataway, NJ 08854 U.S.A.

We expect MHCI students to have a minimum 3.0 cumulative grade point average and are particularly interested in your allied coursework grades.

International applicants or those with international degrees: We require all transcripts to be evaluated by a National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) member. Please refer to the International Students section below.

Official GRE Scores (Optional for Fall 2023)

Graduate Records Exam (GRE) scores are OPTIONAL for MHCI applicants for the Fall 2023 semester. All applications will be reviewed equally with or without GRE scores. Not submitting GRE scores will not hurt an applicant's chances of admission, nor will submitting GRE scores give applicants an advantage in admissions.

To send your GRE scores to Rutgers, use institution code 2790. We review files once the Graduate Admissions office receives your official GRE score OR you have been granted a waiver (see next section for more information).

Ideally, our applicants will have:

  • A combined score in the mid-150s for Verbal and mid-140s for Quantitative
  • A writing score at or above 4.0

Learn more about the GRE and how to sign up for it at ETS.

Waivers for GRE

In general, GRE scores are good for five years. We may grant GRE waivers when an applicant has:

  • Significant, related full-time work experience (5+ years)
  • A graduate degree in a related social science or arts and sciences field
  • A cumulative undergraduate GPA of at least 3.5

Students meeting any of the GRE waiver requirements are automatically exempt from needing to provide GRE Scores. No further action is necessary.

Two Letters of Recommendation

We require two letters of recommendation. As part of the online application process, you must supply the recommenders’ names and email addresses.

The letters should:

  • Come from the applicant’s professor or senior member of a professional and/or corporate organization.
  • Comment substantially on the applicant’s academic capabilities (e.g., problem solving, thinking, analytical and reflective skills to undertake a rigorous graduate program) rather than on workplace efficiency and character traits.
  • Include the recommender’s relationship to the applicant.

Personal Statement

We require all applicants to provide a personal statement of 300-500 words. In writing it, please describe your professional and academic backgrounds as well as your career objectives.

Within the statement, be sure to:

  • Include why you want to attend Rutgers’ MHCI program
  • Detail aspects of the program that you find attractive
  • Note specific areas you would like to study within the program

Résumé or CV

We require all applicants to submit either a résumé or CV (curriculum vitae) as part of the application process.

The résumé or CV should describe your skills and experience and include:

  • Employment history
  • Academic honors
  • Scholastic recognition
  • Publications
  • Leadership roles and/or other academic, professional and community activities

Admission Checklist

Use the admission checklist to keep yourself on track with your admission process. 

Guidelines for International Students

Five Requirements for All International Applicants

We welcome international students to apply. See the Rutgers University Graduate Admissions page for International Students for more detailed information. Please note that there are five additional requirements that all international applicants must meet:

  • Minimum required scores on either TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) earned within the past three years
    • TOEFL minimum required scores are 80 for internet-based test (iBT) or 60 for paper-delivered test. The Rutgers Graduate School-New Brunswick suggests these minimum sub-score distributions: Writing, 24; Reading, 24; Listening, 22; Speaking, 24 (on iBT only). Use Rutgers Institutional Code 2790; Rutgers does not use ETS department codes.
    • IELTS Academic test minimum required overall band score is 7.0. IELTS results are delivered to receiving organizations by postal mail or electronic download. See IELTS for more information.
    • The MHCI program will accept the Duolingo English Test from affected graduate applicants applying to begin their studies in Fall 2020. The Duolingo English Test is an online English language proficiency test that can be taken via a camera-enabled computer. The minimum Duolingo score is 105.
  • Evidence of adequate financial resources
  • Proper visa status
  • An official transcript evaluation by any member of NACES (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services) such as WES (World Education Services). Refer to NACES for a full list of eligible evaluators.
  • A video-based interview (see below)
Video Interviews

Rutgers’ MHCI program uses two interview platforms for our international candidates: Duolingo and Spark Hire. This helps us determine that an applicant’s English proficiency is at a level that will ensure a positive learning experience and success in the MHCI program.

What you need to know for Duolingo:

  • You will need to create Duolingo account and review the test requirements.
  • There is a graded 45-minute adaptive test that evaluates your reading, writing, speaking and listening skills.
  • The adaptive test is followed by a ten-minute ungraded video interview.
  • The minimum Duolingo score for acceptance is 105.

What you need to for know Spark Hire:

  • You will need a webcam or the Spark Hire mobile application (available for iOS and Android).
  • You will be asked to record answers to four short questions.
  • You will have a specified time limit and set number of attempts to complete each answer.
  • You can review the Spark Hire video interview before you begin. The interview does not start until you are completely ready.
Waivers for TOEFL or IETLS

We grant waivers to:

  • Students who earned their bachelor's degree from an accredited U.S. college or university or have taken an accredited English as a Second Language program or course.
  • International applicant students coming from an English-speaking country with a minimum of three years undergraduate education where the mode of instruction was English.

We will not apply a waiver until we receive an applicant’s official transcript or certificate and confirm that a degree was earned.

Please note: Applicants of questionable English proficiency will be required to take a written or oral test when entering the program and, if necessary, take course work in the English as a Second Language program before commencing MHCI studies.

Application Deadlines

We consider applications on a rolling basis. Complete your application by the deadlines stated below in order to be considered for admission.

September Program Start

  • U.S. resident deadline: August 1
  • International student deadline: July 1

January Program Start

  • U.S. resident deadline: December 1
  • International student deadline: November 1

May Program Start 

  • U.S. resident deadline: April 15
  • International student deadline: March 15

Credit Transfer Policy

Students may transfer up to six credits of graduate coursework toward the degree if credits were earned within the past five years and from another program outside of the MHCI. The coursework must translate directly to the student's development and preparation in the MHCI program, and the student must have received a grade of B or higher in this coursework. A syllabus for each course should be forwarded to Richard Dool, MHCI Program Director, for consideration of transfer.

Students should also fill out the credit transfer evaluation form.