Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences

The  Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree in Health Sciences incorporates multidisciplinary approaches to the study of health, illness, and disease in communities and provides a focus on population and public health.

A group of health and disease courses and a large number of basic science courses (e.g., Biology, Chemistry, Molecular Biology, and Statistics) comprise the lower-division curriculum. Students may choose either the Life Sciences stream or the Population Quantitative Health Sciences (PQHS) stream which focuses on areas such as biostatistics, epidemiology, and geographic information systems (GIS) in health.

The BSc in Health Sciences will be of interest to students wishing to pursue careers that require detailed knowledge of the cellular, molecular and behavioural mechanisms that underlie health and disease, as well as to students who are considering post-graduate studies in applied health research and professional health programs.

The BSc in Health Sciences is unique in its interdisciplinary approach to the scientific and social determinants of health and disease, especially infectious and environmental diseases. Graduates will have laboratory skills comparable to those from basic biomedical science programs, and have strong interdisciplinary experience in social science settings. They will exhibit employable skills such as group problem solving, medical statistical and computational skills, communication and organizational skills, honed within the practical framework of knowledge and concepts in molecular biology, immunology, toxicology, epidemiology, and public and population health. Those desiring leadership roles or research positions in health will likely use the degree as a stepping-stone to further education. Goals might include research-based graduate programs at the Master's and PhD level in any area of the biomedical sciences, focused graduate programs, professional development programs for teaching or higher education, or entry into medical schools and other health professions.

Core courses span the following areas:

  • Social, environmental, behavioural, and biological determinants of health
  • Measurement of health, illness, and disease, as well as genetics
  • General biology, cellular, biology, and molecular biology
  • General chemistry and biochemistry
  • Pathophysiology, toxicology, epidemiology
  • Virology and immunology
  • Bioethics
  • Statistics and research methods (qualitative and quantitative)
  • Health promotion and disease prevention
  • Health policy and health care systems
  • Evidence-based decision making
  • Health technology