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Bachelor of Science (BS): Health Sciences Degree Overview

Bachelor's of science (BS)- health sciences degree programs can serve as a springboard for graduate work in a specific health-related field or lead to various occupations in the health field.

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Essential Information

This 4-year degree program can serve as a springboard for graduate work in a specific health-related field or lead to various occupations in the health field. Several public and private universities and colleges offer these B.S. degrees in health sciences that may also include fieldwork training for hands-on experience. Concentrations are available in several fields. Applicants typically only need a high school diploma; however, degree completion programs that require an associate's degree are also available.

  • Program Levels in Health Sciences: Bachelor's degrees, Master's degrees, Ph.D degrees
  • Prerequisites: High School diploma or GED, Associate's degree (for some programs)
  • Program Length: Four years

Bachelor's of Science Degree in Health Sciences

In a health sciences bachelor's degree program, students can gain broad knowledge about the health field by studying natural and social sciences, mathematics, professional development and humanities. Students also study issues within the healthcare industry, such as policy, healthcare operations and medical ethics.

Because health sciences incorporate a vast field, some B.S. in Health Sciences programs allow students to select a concentration, such as pre-physical therapy or environmental health. Earning a certificate in a health specialty is another way some programs allow students to customize their education to meet their career goals. Internship opportunities are often available to provide students with professional experience. Topics in a program may include:

  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Healthcare ethics
  • Biology
  • Healthcare policy
  • Organizational management
  • Community health
  • Patient care
  • Environmental health
  • Medical terminology

Popular Career Options

A Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences prepares graduates for a broad range of health careers, including management and leadership roles. Programs may prepare students to work as:

  • Health services managers
  • Pharmaceutical sales rep
  • Community health educator
  • Health system analyst
  • Sonographer

Medical and health service managers, for instance, earn a median annual income of $92,810, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in May 2014. Employment growth is expected to be much faster than average during the 2012-2022 decade, with a 23% increase in jobs projected (www.bls.gov).

Continuing Education Information

Graduates can continue their health sciences studies further in a Master of Health Sciences program or a doctoral program. A master's program typically requires students to select a health specialty, in which they complete advanced coursework and conduct research. Doctoral degrees are offered as a Doctor of Health Science and a Doctor of Philosophy in Health Science. They are geared toward individuals pursuing advanced clinical positions or who want to work as clinical researchers or postsecondary teachers.

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