Public health is the science of protecting and improving the health of people and their communities. With a focus on health promotion and disease/injury prevention, the B.S. in Public Health program provides students with foundational public health knowledge and skills that can be applied across a range of settings.  The program prepares students to enter the workforce or continue their education into areas such as public health, medical school, or other professional and allied health programs. Students must complete one of the two concentrations offered in the program: Health Education and Promotion or Health Professions.

Health Education and Promotion Concentration: 

The Health Education and Promotion concentration provides additional courses to help students develop competencies in program design, implementation, and evaluation, as well as other areas such as assessing need and capacity for health education. Students completing this concentration are eligible to take the national Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) exam (visit the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc. for more information). The concentration prepares students for careers in community, health care, and work-site health promotion among others.  Students in this concentration may also be interested in pursuing graduate studies in public health or health promotion (e.g., Master of Public Health) and other related disciplines.

Health Professions Concentration:

The Health Professions concentration is designed for public health majors that are interested in pursuing undergraduate and/or graduate studies in physical therapy, medicine, dentistry, nursing, and other allied health professions.  The concentration allows additional health-related elective courses (as approved by and selected in consultation with the BSPH program coordinator) to be used towards such program pursuits.

Accelerated Master’s Program (AMP):

An Accelerated Master’s Program (AMP) in Health Education & Promotion provides students an opportunity to take courses that count simultaneously toward the B.S. in Public Health and the Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) degree programs. Students admitted into the program could complete both degrees in five years. Prospective AMP students should consult with the MPH Program Coordinator as early as possible; applications should be submitted prior to completing the junior year. Please visit the UA Graduate School for more information.

Total coursework required for the B.S. in Public Health degree is 120 semester hours, of which 51 must be in the major. Of the 51 hours of coursework in the major, 15 should be completed in one of two concentrations: Health Education and Promotion or Health Professions.

Public Health, BHLMore Information

Hours
Major Requirements
HHE 270Personal Health3
HHE 273Community And Public Health3
HHE 370Prin/Foundatn Health Promotion3
HHE 378Drugs, Society, & Human Behav3
HHE 440Understanding Stress Mgt3
HHE 445Environmental Health3
HHE 446Health Disparities3
HHE 450Intro Epi Health Ed/Promo3
NHM 101Intro Human Nutrition3
HD 475Human Sexuality Sex Education3
Select one of the following:3
Elem Statistical Methods
Educational Statistics
Statistical Data Analysis
Select one of the following3
Culminating Experience in P.H.
Service Learning in Hlth Promo
Internship Communty Hlth
Independent Study
Credit Hours Subtotal: 36
Total Hours36

Concentrations

In addition to the public health major requirements (36 credit hours), students must complete either the Health Education and Promotion Concentration (15 credit hours)  or the Health Professions Concentration (15 credit hours).

Health Education and Promotion Concentration

Requirements for the Health Education and Promotion Concentration are listed below.

Hours
HHE 467Design Eval Health Promo3
HHE 468Pract Appl Health Comm & Promo3
HHE 265Safety and Injury Prevention3
KIN 199Ecol Appr Hlth & Fitness3
Health Education/Promotion or Related Course3
Credit Hours Subtotal: 15
Total Hours15

Health Professions Concentration

Health Professions Advising Office
200 Clark Hall; (205) 348-5970
prehealth.ua.edu
 

The Health Professions Concentration can be used by students who identify an interest in applying to allied health undergraduate and/or graduate programs (i.e., medicine, dentistry, physical therapy, pharmacy, physician assistant, nursing, etc.). Students should identify this interest early in order to complete the program requirements for the respective allied health program. Submission of applications to such programs is entirely the responsibility of the student. The Health Professions Advising Office in the College of Arts and Sciences is available to assist public health majors wishing to apply to allied health undergraduate and/or graduate programs.

The requirements for the Health Professions Concentration are listed below.

Hours
Required Courses
HHE 378Drugs, Society, & Human Behav3
HHE 440Understanding Stress Mgt3
HD 475Human Sexuality Sex Education3
NHM 101Intro Human Nutrition3
Credit Hours Subtotal: 12
Health Professions Support Courses
Select four courses in consultation with public health advisor:
Health related course3
Health related course3
Health related course3
Health related course3
Credit Hours Subtotal: 12
Total Hours24

NOTE: Prerequisite courses for allied health undergraduate and/or graduate programs can also be used for the Health Professions Support Courses. Specific admissions requirements vary; therefore, students preparing to enter allied health programs should consult the catalogs of the schools of their interest early in their undergraduate enrollment in order to be informed of the exact requirements for entrance.

The undergraduate catalog is published at one-year intervals. Program advising sheets are updated much more frequently and are thus likely to provide the most up-to-date information on degree and other requirements. Students should always obtain the most recent advising sheet available from their academic advisers.

The overall employment outlook for public health graduates regardless of concentration or sub-discipline is strong (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018). The employment of health educators and community health workers, specifically, is projected to grow 16 percent from 2016 to 2026, which is faster than the average for all occupations (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018). Health educators and community health workers work in a variety of settings, including hospital and other clinical settings, nonprofit organizations, government, private businesses, and universities and colleges.

Learn more about opportunities in this field at the Career Center