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The Bachelor of Science in Public Health will provide students with a strong foundation in population health, social and environmental determinants of health and strategies related to disease prevention and health promotion—all critical to addressing health threats and strengthening the public health workforce. Public health’s interprofessional nature is ideally suited within an undergraduate curriculum, giving students an opportunity to apply core concepts to myriad fields, including public health, clinical practice, research, mental health or a non-health profession, such as business or engineering.

The B.S. in Public Health curriculum will expose students to the essential principles of public health and the biomedical sciences concurrently (for students pursuing the health professions) and will provide ample opportunities to immerse students in community-based public health experiences and research. The academic rigor, emphasis on science and core public health foundation will fully prepare students for a career in public health or medicine. The instructional delivery method of the B.S. in Public Health program will be an on-site model, with opportunities to participate in global, domestic and local medical outreach initiatives. Traditional classroom instruction will be augmented with innovative, community-based experiential learning and the use of contemporary information technology.

The first three years of the B.S. in Public Health curriculum include traditional liberal arts courses, core public health courses and medical school prerequisites (for students interested in pursuing a medical degree). Courses will be taught by faculty members from the Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine’s Department of Public Health, Department of Nutrition and Department of Family Therapy, as well as by faculty members from the Halmos College of Arts and Sciences.

The fourth year of the program comprises major elective courses in the public health concentration and intensive community-based learning opportunities, with coursework ranging in focus from public health planning to public health issues in disasters so as to fully prepare the student for myriad career choices in public health. Students pursuing the dual admissions B.S. in Public Health-D.O. 3 + 4 option will pursue a concurrent course of study in their fourth year comprising courses in the medical concentration that fulfill the requirements for the B.S. in Public Health degree alongside the first year D.O. curriculum.

View a sample 4-year plan


General Education Requirements   (30)

Students are required to complete 30 hours as part of the General Education Program

Public Health Major

Public Health Major Requirements (57 credits)

BPH 1010                   Foundations of Public Health (3 credits)  
BPH 1020                   Principles of Health Behavior (3 credits) 
BPH 2022                   Public Health Biology (3 credits) 
BPH 2030                   Public Health Seminar (3 credits) 
BPH 2040                   Health Communication (3 credits) 
BPH 2050                   Community Health (3 credits) 
BPH 3010                   Concepts in Epidemiology (3 credits) OR BPH 3010 (Honors)  
BPH 3020                   Public Health Leadership and Management (3 credits) 
BPH 3030                   Introduction to Global Health (3 credits) 
BPH 4020                   Policies, Systems and Environments of Health Care (3 credits)  
BPH 4910                   Environmental and Occupational Health (3 credits) 
BPH 4950                   Community-Based Essentials of Public Health Planning (3 credits)  
BPH 4951                   Community-Based Health Project (3 credits) 

Public Health Major Electives (18 credits required)

BPH 2010                   Human Genomics (3 credits) 

HONR 2020E             Grant Writing for Human Subjects Research (3 credits) 

BPH 2060                   Introduction to School Health (3 credits)  

BPH 2070                   Public Health Research Methods (3 credits) 

BPH 2080                   Dimensions of Wellness (3 credits) 

BPH 3040                   Public Health Issues in Disasters (3 credits)  

BPH 3970                   Disparities and Health (3 credits) 

BPH 3990                   Understanding Mental Health as Public Health (3 credits) 

BPH 3990                   Inside Out: Exploring Mental Health and Well-Being (3 credits, Honors course) 

BPH 4900                   Global Outreach and Applied Learning (3 credits) 

BPH 4901                   Domestic Outreach and Applied Learning (3 credits)  

BPH 4901B                 Local Outreach and Applied Learning (3 credits) 

BPH 4920                   Population Health Outcomes and Analysis (3 credits)  

BPH 4980                   Ethical Issues in Population Health (3 credits) 

BPH 4990                   Independent Study in Public Health (1, 2, 3 credits; varies based on student project) 


Students are permitted to take 9 of the required 18 major elective credits from the BSHN (Bachelor of Science in Human Nutrition) or HAWC (Bachelor of Science in Health and Wellness Coaching).

View degree curriculum sheet

Public Health Minor

KPCOM’s Public Health Minor provides curriculum in areas relevant to public health, social and behavioral health sciences, and community health. The interprofessional experiences of KPCOM faculty offer students a realistic look into the benefits, rewards, and challenges of public health.

Public Health Minor Requirements (9)

BPH 1010 Foundations of Public Health (3 credits)
BPH 1020 Principles of Health Behavior (3 credits)
BPH 2050 Community Health (3 credits)

BPH Open Major Elective
BPH Open Major Elective
BPH Open Major Elective

Students may select up to 9 credits with the HAWC (Health and Wellness Coaching) or BSNH (Bachelor of Science in Human Nutrition)

The BSPH addresses the following Foundational Domains (Council on Education for Public Health):

  • History and philosophy of public health as well as its core values, concepts and functions across the globe and in society;
  • Basic concepts, methods and tools of public health data collection, use and analysis and why evidence-based approaches are an essential part of public health practice;
  • Concepts of population health, and the basic processes, approaches and interventions that identify and address the major health-related needs and concerns of populations;
  • Underlying science of human health and disease, including opportunities for promoting and protecting health across the life course;
  • Socioeconomic, behavioral, biological, environmental and other factors that impact human health and contribute to health disparities;
  • Fundamental concepts and features of project implementation, including planning, assessment and evaluation;
  • Fundamental characteristics and organizational structures of the US health system as well as the differences between systems in other countries;
  • Basic concepts of legal, ethical, economic and regulatory dimensions of health care and public health policy and the roles, influences and responsibilities of the different agencies and branches of government; and
  • Basic concepts of public health-specific communication, including technical and professional writing and the use of mass media and electronic technology

The BSPH also addresses the following Foundational Competencies (Council on Education for Public Health):

  • Ability to communicate public health information, in both oral and written forms, through a variety of media and to diverse audiences, and
  • Ability to locate, use, evaluate, and synthesize public health information.
1. Demonstrate a working knowledge of the core areas of public health education (i.e., epidemiology; biostatistics; environmental health; social and behavioral sciences)
2. Demonstrate essential knowledge of the core functions of public health: assessment, policy development and assurance
3. Demonstrate an understanding of the ecological model of health behavior and the logic model of public health practice
4. Apply evidence-based principles to public health practice
5. Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of research design and analysis
6. Describe the scientific foundation for understanding health and disease, as well as chronic, infectious and emerging diseases
7. Demonstrate essential knowledge of population health and vulnerable population groups
8. Explain the impact of health behaviors, ethics, diversity and culture
9. Identify emerging topics in public health, including nutrition, disaster preparedness, and infectious diseases
B.S.P.H. students will participate in community based public health projects to further develop skills in program development, research, and program evaluation.

The Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine places a strong emphasis on experiential learning and practice-based education. The experiential learning approach “learning by doing” is a vital aspect of these courses. The public health local, domestic and global outreach courses are practice-based field experiences that expose students to public health issues both domestically and globally. All outreach trips involve participating with underserved populations in a public health capacity. Trips have included India, New Orleans, Mississippi and Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico Outreach Trip

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