A Bachelor’s Degree in Health Sciences prepares students for rewarding professional jobs in the vast healthcare industry.
Many professionals acquire this degree to obtain a management or administration position in the fast-growing healthcare sector. Graduates have employment opportunities in hospitals, public health agencies, insurance companies, community organizations, research laboratories, the pharmaceutical industry, and more.
Individuals can use a Bachelor in Health Science degree as a springboard to enroll in a graduate degree program focused on a specific health-related field (bachelor’s degree programs tend to be more general rather than narrowly focused).
Many of the Bachelor in Health Sciences online degrees and on-campus degrees provide two tracks: the pre-professional track and the clinical manager track. Graduates of the pre-professional track typically also pursue a master’s degree program (often online) focusing on such health fields as health administration, health informatics, or physical therapy. On the other hand, colleges typically design the clinical management track for healthcare professionals and people who already have an associate’s degree or a technical degree related to health.
Since the health sciences constitute such a huge area of study and employment, many on-campus and online Bachelor’s in Health Sciences degree programs let students choose their concentration.
The best Health Science Bachelor’s online degree programs ranking guidelines:
We evaluated the following programs based on such factors as academic quality, range of courses offered, faculty strength, awards, rankings, and reputation.
The 25 Best Bachelor’s Degrees in Health Sciences
Boston University’s (BU) College of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences combines health sciences, health and wellness at the population level, and global public health into their on-campus Bachelor of Health Science degree.
The first two years of the health science degree consist of foundational courses in biological sciences, humanities, and social sciences. Students tailor their other classes towards their chosen specialty. (Students needing to complete the pre-requisites for medical school or a graduate program in medicine, nursing, or physician assistance follow a specific, pre-determined course of classes.) Additionally, juniors and seniors have the unique opportunity to participate in an internship in either Boston or abroad.
Students graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in Health Science, and if selected, a minor or concentration. Students are also eligible for the accelerated five-year program, Bachelor of Science and Masters of Public Health, offered in conjunction with the School of Public Health. Previous graduates of the program have gone on to careers in public health, government agencies, the pharmaceutical industry, law, and more.
U.S. News & World Report ranked Boston University #41 among national universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
Northeastern University’s Bouvé College of Health Sciences offers an on-campus and an online Bachelor of Health Science degree designed to prepare students for admission into graduate school or professional programs for medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, public health, physician assistance, or social work.
After a foundational core comprising natural sciences, social sciences, and liberal arts, students take classes designed to provide a thorough understanding of the U.S. healthcare system, health research, quality-of-care improvement, and evidence-based healthcare.
Senior-year students complete their online degree with a capstone project to broaden their skills. Students have the opportunity to explore other areas of academic interest through elective courses or a minor. Northeastern University provides a Pre-Med focus for students intending to pursue graduate school in medicine, veterinary medicine, dentistry, or podiatry.
Students can complete the on-campus or online Bachelor degree in Health Science in four years, though many students choose to participate in a fifth-year co-op experience, in which students alternate semesters of study with semesters of full-time employment within their area of interest (teaching hospitals, community-based programs, international locations, research hospitals, etc.).
U.S. News & World Report ranked Northeastern University as tied for #49 among national universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
The University of Florida’s on-campus Health Science Bachelor’s degree provides foundational skills to students seeking to work as healthcare providers, or with health-challenged individuals, groups, or communities. Most students who complete the online degree continue on to graduate school or professional training.
To complete the 120-credit Bachelor online degree in Health Science, each student chooses a focus (general health science, pre-occupational therapy, pre-physical therapy, pre-professional, or pre-public health) before beginning a series of courses which includes a specialized core of math, writing, and health science prerequisites. Regardless of chosen focus, students also take elective courses to round out their academic interests.
Freshmen to the University of Florida apply for the Bachelor of Health Science through a traditional admissions process. However, students transferring into the program at the junior level must meet a number of prerequisites, which may vary according to specialization.
U.S. News & World Report ranked the University of Florida as tied for #49 among national universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
The University of Missouri’s School of Health Professions offers an online Bachelor of Health Sciences degree aimed at students interested in a non-clinical occupation within the field of healthcare.
Best suited for students with prior college credits, the online Bachelor degree in Health Sciences requires a total of 120 credits, including general education (minimum of 42 credits), Health Sciences core (minimum of 19 credits), Health Sciences electives (minimum of 19 credits), and electives fulfilling a chosen concentration (minimum of 41 credits).
Students can complete the bachelor’s degree entirely online. Students have the option of following a traditional, semester-based schedule or performing independent study. During the junior or senior year, students culminate their undergraduate experience with a capstone project which includes a course on professionalism and an internship. Students can complete the internship portion of the capstone through participating in a service learning project or a study abroad program, or by working in a health-related field.
Upon completion of the Bachelor of Health Sciences online degree, many graduates choose to enter non-clinical careers, including pharmaceutical sales, wellness coordination, medical equipment sales, and healthcare advocacy. Others choose to further their education through professional programs or graduate work.
U.S. News & World Report ranked the University of Missouri #97 among national universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
For people already working in health-related fields and have an associate’s degree, Arizona State University’s (ASU) School of Nutrition and Health Promotion offers an online Bachelor of Applied Science in Health Sciences.
ASU’s cross-disciplinary program prepares students for a variety of career opportunities within health-related fields. In addition to classes required for the online degree, students have the option of completing a minor in a health-related or other field.
Upon completing the Bachelor online degree program in Health Sciences, many graduates pursue careers in Medical Radiology, Nuclear Medicine Technology, Health Education, Long-Term Care Health, and more.
ASU graduates are also qualified to pursue graduate studies.
U.S. News & World Report ranked Arizona State University #142 among national universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
University of South Florida’s on-campus and online B.S. in Health Science is an interdisciplinary degree aimed at anyone interested in healthcare issues. The interdisciplinary degree offers a variety of coursework designed to equip students with a solid understanding of the biological, social, behavioral, economic, and ethical factors that influence healthcare in the United States.
Students can choose from five concentrations: Biological Health Sciences, Social and Behavioral Health Sciences, Aging Health Studies, Health Management, and Health Information Technology.
Regardless of the chosen focus, all students take a core curriculum of 35–42 prerequisite credits before completing their online degree with 30 credits from their concentration. Required core classes include Introduction to Health Professions, Technical Writing, the Life Cycle, Introduction to Psychological Science, and Biomedical Ethics.
The Bachelor of Health Science degree program, on-campus or online, prepares students for various careers in the health industry. The degree allows students the flexibility to customize their degree to fit their professional goals. A large number of USF’s Health Science majors are preclinical and very successful in gaining graduate admission to Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and Physician Assistant programs as well as graduate programs in Health Care Administration and Health Informatics to name a few. In addition graduates have gone on to work in pharmaceutical sales, clinical lab management, social services, hospital management, geriatric services, as technology specialists, and more.
U.S. News & World Report ranked the University of South Florida #170 among national universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
7. DePaul University
DePaul University offers an on-campus Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences degree which gives students the opportunity to choose both a focus area and a track. Available concentrations include Biosciences and Public Health Studies.
Students choosing to concentrate in Biosciences can further choose between a general track, medical track, lab investigations track, or pre-nursing track. Incoming freshmen to Biosciences are also eligible to apply for an accelerated honors program in which they complete both a bachelor degree at DePaul University and a post-graduate degree at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science.
Students who choose to concentrate in Public Health Studies decide between a general track, health education track, community health track, or health policy & administration track.
Each concentration is structured to help students meet their professional goals and graduate program requirements. The tracks allow students to jump from one to another as their interests evolve.
Besides the four-year B.S. in Health Sciences degree, DePaul offers a five-year dual degree in Health Communication which allows students from either concentration to pursue both a Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts.
U.S. News & World Report ranked DePaul University #121 among national universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
8. Chapman University
The school’s Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences degree is the third-largest major at the University. The on-campus degree emphasizes a team approach to healthcare, and a biological-psychological-sociological perspective to the understanding of health and disease.
In addition to taking the core-curriculum and major-specific courses, students work in teams to develop and complete research projects. They are also encouraged to participate in Chapman’s strong internship program. By the time a student graduates from Chapman, he or she has experienced various roles of a healthcare team.
The overall experience of the Bachelor degree in Health Sciences fulfills the standard, natural, behavioral, and social science prerequisites for graduate programs in physical therapy, occupational therapy, physician assistance, nursing, and other health-related fields.
U.S. News & World Report ranked Chapman University #7 among regional (West) universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
Indiana University’s School of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences offers a Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences. The university designed the interdisciplinary degree for incoming freshmen or licensed healthcare professionals with an associate’s degree. The Health Science Bachelor’s degree is especially appropriate for individuals interested in occupational therapy, physical therapy, or physician assistant studies.
The degree is a combination of on-campus and online courses, with many of the higher-level courses available only online. In addition to a core curriculum, students choose one of several different track, including Gerontology, Global Health and Rehabilitation Studies, Rehabilitation and Disabilities Studies, and Preparation for Graduate Health Professions Program. For any track but the graduate preparation, students receive a certificate in addition to the B.S. degree. The 120 credits required to complete the program include core courses, track courses, and elective courses.
U.S. News & World Report ranked Indiana University #75 among national universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
10. Drake University
The College of Pharmacy’s on-campus Bachelor degree in Health Sciences helps students to develop the knowledge base, skill sets, and professional experiences necessary for success in fields relating to health and science. The four-year, interdisciplinary degree consists of coursework in the biomedical, pharmaceutical and clinical science, business and health care management, and health behavior fields.
The curriculum consists of three tracks: Pharmaceutical Sciences, Clinical Sciences, and Health Services Management. Students can further individualize a track with a selection of electives.
Students unsure of the direction they want to take within the industry have opportunities early in the program to work with a variety of scientific and health care professionals. In their junior or senior year, students are required to complete a capstone project which specifically relates to their chosen track. Common projects include working at local clinics or medical centers, laboratory- and non-laboratory-based research, and practice experiences.
U.S. News & World Report ranked Drake University #3 among regional (Midwest) universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
11. Sacred Heart University
Whether a student wants to enter the field of healthcare or advance into a healthcare management position, Sacred Heart University’s Health Sciences bachelor’s degree offers two distinct career tracks: the Pre-professional track and the Leadership track.
The university designed the highly individualized Pre-professional track to prepare students to enter a professional healthcare career such as occupational therapy, physical therapy, medical, dental, or others. Advisers guide all incoming students in selecting appropriate courses for their educational and career goals. Students acquire an understanding of a healthcare manager’s role.
The university designed the Leadership track for students who have an associate’s degree and two or more years of experience in a health-related field. The curriculum provides insight into administrative practices, supervision, strategic planning, policy and fiscal responsibility, patient rights, and much more. Students must complete a culminating research project on a topic of their choice.
U.S. News & World Report ranked Sacred Heart University #33 among regional (North) universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
12. Azusa Pacific University–University College
Azusa Pacific University specifically tailored its Bachelor’s in Applied Health degree program for students planning to pursue graduate school or careers in medical sales, physical therapy, physician assistance, or related programs. The B.S. in Applied Health is offered on-campus, in Azusa, California. APU’s University College offers a B.S. in Health Science online.
The core curriculum includes courses in biology, cell biology, chemistry, and physics, all of which provide a solid foundation to support students in their desired career track. The Applied Health majors who don’t want to become physical therapists or physician assistants often choose to pair their degree with an additional major in biology or sports physiology.
Required classes vary by choice of emphasis, but include classes on human anatomy, genetics, psychology, neurobiology, and kinesiology.
Students are also required to gain internship experience through arrangements with local hospitals, physical therapy clinics, athletic training clinics, or similar businesses or organizations.
Students can participate in Team Luke, a Mexico Outreach medical team to gain valuable experience within a ministry context.
U.S. News & World Report ranked University College (formerly Azusa Pacific University) #173 among national universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
13. California State University, Long Beach
California State University, Long Beach offers an on-campus Health Science Bachelor’s degree. Students can focus their degree in either Community Health Education or School Health Education. The school designed the Community Health Education focus for students interested in pursuing a career as an educator with an official, voluntary, or corporate health agency.
Students take classes on human disease, human biology, and contemporary health issues, among others. For individuals seeking to become health science teachers in California schools, the School Health Education program prepares them for the Single Subject Teaching Credential in Health Science.
To graduate with a degree in Health Science, students must complete a total of 120 credits, at least 40 of which must come from a list of upper division courses. In addition to general education classes, the core curriculum is a series of classes designed to prepare students for competency in five separate areas: statistics, program development, professionalism, health services organization, and health promotion. Specific classes include Introduction to Human Disease, General Psychology, Statistics, Child Development, and Persuasive Speaking.
U.S. News & World Report ranked California State University, Long Beach #32 among regional (West) universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
14. New York Institute of Technology
Designed to prepare graduates for entry-level administrative positions in the healthcare industry, the New York Institute of Technology Bachelor of Health Sciences degree combines foundational health science classes with liberal arts and basic sciences.
Students receive an introduction to various careers in the healthcare industry through a course on Community Health Implications. From there, students take classes such as Professional and Cultural Issues in Health Care, Clinical Nutrition Practice, Medical Terminology, Medical Ethics, Health Care Payment Systems, and more.
In their senior year, students take a two-semester practicum which includes 120 hours of work in a healthcare setting.
Students who complete the degree often pursue advanced studies. Graduates of the program also go on to careers in the pharmaceutical industry, medical centers, clinics, government health departments, the health insurance industry, and fitness and wellness centers.
15. University of South Dakota
The University of South Dakota’s Bachelor’s degree in Health Sciences is available both online and on-site at their Sioux Falls and Rapid City campuses.
The degree program has three optional tracks which prepare students for either graduate school, an entry-level position in a healthcare related field, or educational mobility for those looking to advance their current careers.
For students interested in preparing for a graduate degree, the Pre-professional Studies track requires students to take Health Science major courses in addition to any prerequisite coursework needed for entry into the student’s chosen graduate program.
The second track, Health Care Studies, prepares students for a career in the healthcare industry through classes such as humanities, math, science, and healthcare delivery.
Finally, the track for Health Care Advancement Studies is specifically for students who have already earned an A.A., A.S., or A.A.S., and want to complete a Bachelor’s degree in order to advance their career or pursue a graduate degree.
U.S. News & World Report ranked University of South Dakota #190 among national universities in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
16. Hawaii Pacific University
Hawaii Pacific University offers an on-campus Bachelor in Health Science program through their College of Nursing and Health Science. The degree provides students with a solid foundation for pursuing careers in public health and other healthcare-related fields.
Like all other majors at Hawaii Pacific University, the degree in Health Science includes a core curriculum based on the liberal arts. To satisfy the requirements of the major, students take classes in health promotion, wellness management, health education, epidemiology, and health policy analysis, among others. In order to complete the degree, students are also required to complete both a capstone seminar and a co-requisite internship.
In addition to incoming freshmen and transfer students, this Health Sciences degree is appropriate for those already working in the healthcare industry and those who seek to expand their knowledge base or complete their education.
U.S. News & World Report ranked Hawaii Pacific University #71 among regional universities (West) in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
Nova Southeastern University offers an online post-professional Bachelor of Health Science degree.
Students who have already completed an associate’s degree, diploma, or certificate are eligible to earn this online bachelor’s degree in preparation for careers as military healthcare technicians, radiology technicians, ultrasound technicians, respiratory therapists, dental hygienists, physician assistants, and more.
Students can complete the online degree entirely online. The curriculum builds upon the existing knowledge of the healthcare professional.
Required general education courses include classes on written composition, humanities, social and behavioral sciences, and mathematics. Students then complete a series of health-related core courses and elective courses to complete the Bachelor’s online degree in Health Science.
18. University of Mississippi Medical Center
The University of Mississippi Medical Center’s School of Health Related Professions offers a Bachelor of Health Sciences degree which prepares students for healthcare leadership positions. Students can choose from two tracks, depending upon previous coursework or their experience in the healthcare industry.
Students who have already earned an associate’s degree pursue Track One, which includes higher-level classes such as Leadership Development, Legal and Ethical Issues in Health Care, and Disease and Health.
Students beginning work for the Bachelor’s degree with no prior experience take Track Two, which consists of twice the number of credits and includes classes such as Survey of Health Care Delivery, Effective Writing in the Work Place, and Introduction to Statistics.
Regardless of track, all students complete one semester of Senior Directed Study.
19. Northern Kentucky University
Northern Kentucky University’s Bachelor in Health Science degree is offered through the College of Health Professions. It is an interdisciplinary program divided into two tracks, depending upon the student’s ultimate career goals.
The Clinical Track provides healthcare professionals who have an associate’s degree with the opportunity to complete a bachelor’s degree. The school aims the Non-clinical Track at students with no prior clinical skills or credentials who seek a career not involved in direct patient care. Each track has a set curriculum designed to prepare students to reach their academic goals.
Students can also choose from a wide variety of electives, which include psychology, human services, health informatics, advanced imagery, respiratory care, and communication.
In addition to completing their bachelor’s degree, students can also use this program as a stepping stone into graduate school. Northern Kentucky University offers an online Bachelor in Health Science degree and an on-campus degree.
U.S. News & World Report ranked Northern Kentucky University #77 among regional universities (South) in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges.
20. Idaho State University
Idaho State University designed its Bachelor’s in Health Science program, which is offered through the College of Technology, specifically for students currently training at an associate’s level to complete their bachelor’s degree and pursue careers or graduate work in medicine, dentistry, hospital administration, medical terminology, physical therapy, and occupation therapy.
Throughout the degree program, students work closely with an academic adviser to ensure they take the most appropriate classes for their desired career.
Students begin with a series of core requirements, which includes classes such as Evidence-Based Research, Promoting Wellness, Medical Ethics, and U.S. Health Services. Students then begin to tailor their courses with options such as Chemistry labs, Physics labs, AIDS, Epidemiology, Introduction to Pulmonary Disease, and a number of others.
To enroll in the program, students must be enrolled in, or have graduated from, a recognized associate’s degree program.
21. Cleveland State University
Cleveland State University’s B.S. in Health Sciences prepares students for either graduate school or an entry-level position in a health-related field.
Students can choose from the following four tracks: Associate’s Degree Completion Track (does not result in a Bachelor degree), Pre-physical Assistance Science Track, Pre-podiatry Track, and Pre-therapy Track. The tracks help graduates enter a specific healthcare field or to develop knowledge and skills which prepare them for work in the healthcare field.
Students complete a 128-credit curriculum tailored towards their concentration. Students completing the Health Science Bachelor’s degree must also complete one of two offered capstone courses.
Cleveland State encourages engaged learning experiences, including internships at numerous healthcare facilities and community agencies in northeastern Ohio, as well as international experiences relevant to healthcare.
Grand Canyon University (GCU) offers healthcare professionals who have graduated from an accredited certificate or associate’s degree program an online Bachelor’s degree program in Health Sciences. The online degree places an emphasis on Professional Development and Advanced Patient Care.
GCU’s in-depth curriculum explores topics such as advanced patient care, transcultural care, risk management and health care regulations, applied statistics, ethics, and research application in health care.
The flexible online Bachelor in Health Science degree program takes 48 months to complete. The online Bachelor degree program in Health sciences emphasizes current issues and trends affecting health policy and professional practice.
The online degree program includes courses such as Professional Dynamics and Allied Health Professions, Safety, Quality, and Interdisciplinary Approaches to Care, Applied Statistics for Health Care Professionals, Transcultural Health Care, Communication and Application of Research in Practice, Leadership and Vocation, and more.
23. South University
South University’s online Health Science Bachelor’s degree prepares students for entry-level positions within the healthcare industry.
Students can choose to pursue either a General Study track or a specialization in Public Health. Regardless of focus, the program emphases the importance of professionalism in healthcare delivery.
The 182-credit online Bachelor in Health Sciences degree consists of general education courses (including two required classes in Professional Development), four foundational courses, and a number of courses specific to their chosen track.
Students are also required to round out their degree with electives, choices for which include Economics of Healthcare, Medical Informatics, Human Resource Management, and Healthcare Law, among others.
24. Northern Arizona University
Northern Arizona University offers an online Bachelor in Health Sciences degree aimed at busy students looking to prepare for a graduate degree, change careers into the health care industry, or advance their current healthcare-related career.
The online degree provides students with a solid foundation of health promotion, policy, ethics, communication, and healthcare management.
Students seeking to enroll in the online Bachelor’s degree program in Health Sciences must have an associate’s degree in a health-related subject from an accredited community college, as well as evidence of registration in a health profession.
25. Armstrong Atlantic State University
Armstrong Atlantic State University offers a Bachelor’s of Health Science degree through the College of Health Professions. Designed to teach both incoming freshmen and current health professionals, students develop expertise in the health sciences while also focusing on applied health-related areas.
Students in the Bachelor’s degree in Health Sciences program choose between three tracks of study: Health Administration track, Public and Community Health track, and Fitness Management (Pre-sports Medicine) track. All students, regardless of track, complete a series of general education courses. The curriculum then focuses on the student’s chosen track.
Potential classes include Health Care Economics and Health Policy Issues (Health Administration track), Health Promotion and Health Theory (Public and Community Health track), and Musculoskeletal Basis of Exercise and Prevention and Care of Sports Injuries (Fitness Management).