Public Health

Degree:Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
Major:Public Health
Minor:Health Promotion
College:Usha Kundu, MD College of Health
CIP Code:51.2201
Semester Hours Required For Degree: 120

Bachelor of Science in Public Health

Building Phone Website Email
Bldg 38/Room 135 (850) 474-3191

Health Promotion Minor

Building Phone Website Email
Building 72, Room 241 850-474-2194

The Bachelor of Science in Public Health (BSPH) degree program prepares graduates for careers in public health at the local, state, national, and global health agencies as well as in community and organizational settings. Graduates will be equipped with competencies to conduct health needs assessments; to develop, implement, and evaluate health programs geared toward disease prevention and control. With the appropriate mix of elective courses, graduates of the BS in Public Health degree program may petition NCHEC to sit for the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) national exam. Additionally, the BS in Public Health degree prepares graduates for advanced public health education at the masters and doctoral levels with training in any of the major domains of social behavioral health sciences, environmental health, health policy, health education, epidemiology, and qualitative and quantitative research.

Admission Requirements

In order to graduate, all students must complete at least 120 semester hours with a minimum of 48 specified upper-division hours (3000/4000 level) at UWF.  

Acceptance to the University does not constitute admission to the upper-division Public Health Degree. Students entering UWF or declaring a major in public health will automatically be placed in a pending status until they meet the requirements for admission.

  • Students must have a cumulative GPA of 2.50 in all previously attempted college work.
  • Students must be at the level of a sophomore or higher.
  • Students will not be admitted to the program less than one week before the beginning of the term in which they have applied.
  • Students must complete the BSPH Application form. 

Those who do not complete these requirements may be denied further registration, and may be prevented from further enrollment in Public Health courses. Not all states authorize online programs, if you reside outside of Florida you will want to check the status of your state's acceptance of this program: UWF State Authorization Status

This program will not meet immigration requirements for students holding an F1 or J1 Visa to maintain status.  Contact International Affairs for further information.

No more than 24% of the program requirements for this degree may be in traditional business subjects.

Students must consult with the BSPH academic advisor for courses which may satisfy both the General Education requirements and common prerequisites.

General Education

In addition to the General Education requirements listed on this page, students must satisfy all additional University requirements, including the Gordon Rule, multicultural, and foreign language requirements. With appropriate planning and coordination with an academic advisor, students may satisfy some of the general University requirements through the General Education curriculum. For a complete listing of general degree requirements, refer to the "University Requirements" section of this catalog.

General Education Curriculum

Multicultural Requirement 

Civic Literacy Requirement

The 2017 Florida Legislature amended Section 1007.25, Florida Statutes, to require students initially entering a State University System (SUS) and/or Florida College System (FCS) institution in 2018-2019 and thereafter to demonstrate competency in civic literacy.  The 2021 Legislature further amended Florida Statutes, requiring students to complete both a civic literacy course and exam. As a result, there are three cohorts of students currently matriculating at Florida public institutions subject to varying requirements. As demonstrated in the table below, the exact civic literacy requirements are based on the academic term in which a student first enrolled in a Florida public institution.

Students Included in Cohort Civic Literacy Competency Requirement
Cohort 1: Students first entering the SUS or FCS prior to fall 2018 None
Cohort 2: Students first entering the SUS or FCS in fall 2018 – summer A 2021 Complete a course or exam
Cohort 3: Students first entering the SUS or FCS in summer B 2021 (on or after July 1, 2021) and thereafter Complete both a course and exam

Additionally, the 2021 Legislature made two additional exceptions: approving the use of accelerated mechanisms for meeting the course competency requirement and exempting high school students who pass the Florida Civic Literacy Exam in high school from the postsecondary exam requirement. These two changes are in effect for Cohort 3.

There are multiple ways to satisfy this requirement. Students should work with their academic advisor to determine which option is best for their degree requirements/degree plan. 

Additional information can be found on our Civic Literacy website.

*BOG 8.006s.1007.25(4,a-b) 

Common Prerequisites

State-mandated common prerequisites must be completed prior to graduation, but are not required for admission to the program. See the Common Prerequisite Manual for course substitutions from Florida colleges and universities.

BSC 1085+LAnatomy and Physiology I (+Lab) *4
BSC 1086+LAnatomy and Physiology II (+Lab) *4
PSY 2012General Psychology *3
STA 2023Elements of Statistics *3
Total Hours14

Lower Division Electives

Students must complete sufficient 1000/2000 level electives to satisfy at least 60 sh in the lower division. Current UWF students may use elective courses at any level (1000-4000) to meet this elective requirement. Students in the Interdisciplinary Specialization should see the list of Lower Division Requirements for guidance on how to meet these requirements.13
Total Hours13

Lower Division Electives:

Students must select 9 credit hours from the following:

Choose 3 courses of the following:9
Informatics and Your Health
Personal Health
Fundamentals of Human Nutrition
Introduction to Global Health Sciences (Meets Multicultural Requirement)
Total Hours9

Upper Division Major Courses: 

All Bachelor of Science students must complete the following required public health foundational courses [42-45 credit hours]

HSC 3032Foundations in Health Education3
HSA 3111Understanding U.S. Healthcare (Meets Gordon Rule Writing Requirement)3
HSC 3510Data Analysis in the Health Sciences3
PHC 4101Essentials of Public Health3
PHC 4109 Diseases in Human Populations3
HSC 4211Human Environmental Health3
HSC 4730Research Methods and Evaluation in Health Promotion3
HSC 4500Epidemiology3
HSC 4300Changing Health Behaviors3
HSA 4191Health Information Systems3
MCB 4276Epidemiology of Infectious Disease3
BUL 4602Legal Fundamentals of Healthcare 3
PHC 4140Public Health Planning and Analysis3
or HSC 4581 Health Promotion and Planning
PHC 4940Public Health Capstone3-6
or HSC 4910 Senior Capstone Experience in Health Promotion
Total Hours42-45

Approved Electives:

Students must select up to 15-18 credit hours from the following courses based on career interests.  Students interested in completing the National Commission of Health Education Credentialing (NCHEC) certification should consider the courses indicated for the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) exam.  Students should discuss their professional goals with their advisor and public health faculty before selecting elective courses. 

HSC 4584Health Promotion Strategies and Funding (Recommended for CHES exam)3
BSC 4434Bioinformatics and Data Science (Recommended for students interested in Public Health graduate education)3
STA 4173Biostatistics (Recommended for students interested in Public Health graduate education)3
PHC 4363Occupational Safety and Health in the Health Care Environment3
HSC 4583Theoretical Foundations of Health Promotion and Planning (Recommended for CHES exam)3
HSC 4633Current Issues in Health Promotion (Recommended for CHES exam)3
PHC 4340Fundamentals of Industrial Hygiene3
BSC 4854Bioterrorism3
HSC 4404Medical Disaster Management3
HSC 4572Nutrition and Health3
HSC 4143Drugs in Society3
HSC 4133Health Aspects of Human Sexuality3
GEY 4001Gerontology3
HSA 3551Health Ethics and Professionalism3
PHC 4464Understanding Health Equity and Health Disparities 3
PHC 4341Fundamentals of Occupational Safety and Health3
HSC 4104Health Aspects of Stress Management3
Total Hours15-18

Health Promotion

Students earning the Minor in Health Promotion will be able to assess individual and community/worksite needs for health promotion, develop analytical skills to examine needs assessment data and determine priority area(s) of health promotion.  They will also be able to compare and contrast health promotion program planning models and theories for application in a health promotion and wellness setting, and plan and implement effective health promotion programs. Health Promotion majors may not earn this minor.   

HSC 4581Health Promotion and Planning3
HSC 3032Foundations in Health Education3
Choose two of the following Health Foundations courses:6
Theoretical Foundations of Health Promotion and Planning
Health Aspects of Human Sexuality
Drugs in Society
Communicable and Degenerative Diseases
Health Aspects of Stress Management
Human Environmental Health
Current Issues in Health Promotion
Changing Health Behaviors
Nutrition and Health
Total Hours12