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Health Sciences Colleges in Denver with Course and Degree Info

Mar 04, 2019

The Denver area has three colleges that offer health sciences programs. Learn about the degree programs, admission info and program requirements for these schools, all within 35 miles of downtown, and make an informed education decision.

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Denver Colleges with Health Sciences Programs

Students interested in health sciences programs have several schools and a variety of areas of study to choose from in the Denver area. This article looks at these schools, none more than 45 minutes from the city center, and at the programs they offer. A table within the article gives prospective students information on important topics about each school, such as enrollment, school type, tuition and the percentage of students who graduate on time.

  • The University of Colorado Denver offers roughly 60 programs through several schools on the Anschutz Medical Campus. Options include nursing, public health, health services clinical science, cancer biology and pharmacy. This article explores the school's Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Clinical Science and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Health Services Research degree programs. The university is about a mile from the heart of the city.
  • Another option is the Community College of Denver which is also a little more than a mile from downtown Denver. Through several departments within the health sciences division, students can choose from programs including nursing, dental hygiene, emergency medical technician, radiologic technology and radiation therapy. Practical Nurse Certificate and Associate of Applied Science in Radiologic Technology are the programs examined here.
  • A third school for students to look at is the University of Northern Colorado, approximately 33 miles from downtown Denver in Greeley, CO. Through the College of Natural and Health Sciences, students can choose from a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs including biological sciences, pre-health, nursing, dietetics, human rehabilitation, nutrition and public health. This article looks at these programs: Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Bachelor of Science in Dietetics and Ph.D. in Human Rehabilitation.

Comparison of Schools

Individuals who are looking for their best education option need to consider many factors. The following table displays important information about each school in a format that makes it easy to compare them.

University of Colorado Denver Community College of Denver University of Northern Colorado
School Type Four-year, public Four-year, public Four-year, public
Total Enrollment (2017) 15,586 undergraduates and 9,253 graduate students* 8,556 undergraduates* 10,092 undergraduates and 3,307 graduate students*
Campus Setting Large city Large city Midsize city
Tuition & Fees (2017-2018) $9,283 for in-state and $25,771 for out-of-state residents* $4,750 for in-state and $15,830 for out-of-state residents* $9,918 for in-state and $21,786 for out-of-state residents*
% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2017) 74%* 80%* 93%*
Acceptance Rate (2017) 65%* N/A - Open admissions policy 89%*
Retention Rate (2017) 67% for full-time and 44% for part-time students* 55% for full-time and 39% for part-time students* 71% for full-time and 8% for part-time students*
Graduation Rate (2011) 45% * 10%* 48%*

Source: *NCES, College Navigator.

University of Colorado Denver

CU - Denver's Anschutz Medical Campus is located in Aurora, approximately 10 miles from the university's main campus and has six colleges and schools on its campus. Anschutz is the newest health sciences campus and is the only comprehensive research, patient and educational facility of its kind. Students can earn a baccalaureate, master's or post-graduate degree and receive high-quality training in a variety of specialties.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Through the College of Nursing students have several degree options in the nursing field, including three baccalaureate tracks. The school offers a traditional, accelerated and online program that all result in students earning a bachelor of science in the field. The traditional and accelerated options both consist of 66 credits and coursework includes classes such as essentials of nursing practice, nursing care of the older adult, professional nursing and public health nursing. The program can be concluded in four semesters for the accelerated option and six semesters if enrolled in the traditional track. Additionally, students enrolled in either option are required to participate in a supervised clinical experience. Registered nurses (RNs) who would like to earn a baccalaureate degree in the field can enroll in the RN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program. This program is entirely online and requires students take 30 credits of required coursework including nursing research, public health nursing and leadership. Students will complete the program in either four semesters or 16 total months and it is designed to allow students to work while attending the program. The school also works in conjunction with the Community College of Aurora to allow students working towards an associate degree in nursing to complete all program prerequisites and then transfer to CU - Denver to finish the program and obtain a BS in nursing.

Master of Science in Clinical Science

The Master of Science in Clinical Science (MSCS) is a program designed for students who would like to gain a deeper comprehension of the clinical sciences and to further develop research skills associated with clinical and translational sciences. Students will receive a solid foundation in specialty areas including clinical research, statistical sciences, epidemiology, health services and outcomes and biomedical ethics. Students must take at least 30 credits and coursework includes applied biostatistics, scientific design, grant writing and epidemiology. Students will engage in collaborative research projects, preparing them for the last requirement of the program which is a final research project and thesis that will consist of four to six credits.

Doctor of Philosophy in Health Services Research

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Health Services Research program is designed for students interested in an advanced degree that will provide them with the training and skills to assess all aspects of the health care sector including organization, delivery and reimbursement. This program is within the Colorado School of Public Health and Graduate School and will give students a strong foundation in cost efficiency, access to care and patient satisfaction at a variety of health care facilities. The 66-credit program consists of 30-33 credits within the health services research major, six credits of related coursework and 30 credits for the doctoral thesis. Coursework includes foundations in public health, clinical outcomes, grant writing, epidemiology, ethics and regulation, health care economics and clinical sciences research.

Community College of Denver

Originally established in 1967, the Community College of Denver (CCD) has more than 100 areas of study and serves over 13,000 students annually. A two-year school, CCD offers a variety of comprehensive and vocational programs that will provide students with the training to either enter the workforce or transfer to a four-year college or university. Popular health sciences programs offered include nursing, radiologic technology, emergency medical technician and veterinary technology.

Nurse Aide Certificate

The full-time practical nurse certificate program at CCD is a 5-credit program that should take four, seven, or fifteen hours to complete. Students are required to have successfully completed anatomy and physiology, composition and dietary nutrition before they can be considered for the program. This program includes pharmacology, basic concepts of mental health, practical nursing skills, socialization and alterations in adult health. Students must also participate in several clinical experiences in a range of topics such as advanced adult health and application of alterations in adult health, practical nursing and maternal child.

Associate of Applied Science in Radiologic Technology

Students interested in a position as an entry-level radiographer can enroll in CCD's Associate of Applied Science in Radiologic Technology. This is a five-semester program that will integrate lectures, labs and several clinical experiences to provide students with the training to gain employment in a variety of medical settings. The program consists of 81 credits and coursework includes radiographic patient care, advanced medical imaging, radiation biology, medical technology and radiologic procedures.

University of Northern Colorado

The University of Northern Colorado (UNC) was established in 1889 and offers more than 200 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in a wide variety of subjects. There are seven schools and departments within the College of Natural and Health Sciences that serve over 3,500 students through a number of baccalaureate, master's and doctorate-level degree programs.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

The School of Nursing at UNC offers three baccalaureate-level nursing programs: a traditional program, second degree option and the RN to BSN program. The traditional program consists of 126 credits and should be completed in four years. Students will take 40 credits of general liberal arts courses followed by two years of prerequisite nursing courses before entering the clinical portion of the program. Prerequisite courses include anatomy and physiology, pharmacology and nutrition. The final five semesters of the program consist of a series of supervised clinical experiences and clinical nursing courses. Totaling 69 credits, students will engage in a variety of clinical experiences including nursing concepts and care, alterations in adult health, pediatric nursing, advanced acute care and public health nursing. Students who already hold a baccalaureate degree and would like to earn a BSN can enroll in UNC's second degree-seeking program. This is a 20-month program that requires students take the same prerequisite nursing courses as the traditional track as well as complete the clinical portion of the program. The RN to BSN option is a 30-credit program that will be completed entirely online and is designed to take 16 months or five semesters. Students will take two courses per semester and coursework includes several foundations classes, a health assessment course and two practicums in community health and professional roles.

Bachelor of Science in Dietetics

The Bachelor of Science in Dietetics is designed for students interested in nutrition and health in a variety of settings including clinical counseling, food service, health maintenance, rehabilitation and management. This is a 120-credit program that requires students take 30 credits within the major, 14 credits of supporting science and business courses, 32 liberal arts core classes, 12 elective courses within the liberal arts and 32 university-wide electives. Program-specific coursework includes medical terminology, nutrition in the life cycle, food science, professional development and community nutrition.

Doctor of Philosophy in Rehabilitation Sciences

The PhD in Rehabilitation Sciences at UNC will give students an advanced degree in the field through rigorous coursework, clinical experience and research. This is a 66-67-credit program that requires students take 9 credits within the major, 9 credits of practicum work, 18 credits of research and 15 credits in an area of concentration. Coursework will include a seminar in rehabilitation, collaborative research and college teaching and a practicum in college teaching, rehabilitation administration or counseling supervision. Students opting to declare an area of concentration as an additional tool in place of a foreign language can choose from but are not limited to gerontology, community health, nursing, special education or sociology.

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