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Creating healthy people and communities

Grounded in the basic sciences with an emphasis on population health, the B.S. in Public Health (BSPH) degree prepares students for positions in fields such as health education, epidemiology, and environmental health, across nonprofit, industry, and government sectors. Prehealth students who seek a medical or health professions degree can broaden their experience with a multidisciplinary public health curriculum (BSPH Curriculum).

Thinking about earning your Master of Public Health (MPH)? The Parkinson School also offers a five-year, dual-degree to earn both your bachers and masters degree with the BSPH/MPH. Learn more.

Our commitment to you

BSPH graduates will possess the knowledge, skills, and professional values required to be a well-informed and engaged citizen on public health matters, begin a career in public health, and pursue graduate study.

Knowledge

As a multidisciplinary, practiced-oriented major, the BS in Public Health program is designed to build knowledge across a broad array of domains to prepare students for entry-level public health jobs, graduate work, or lifelong learning. Foundational domains include:

  • Scientific knowledge in biological, life, social and behavioral sciences
  • Basic concepts of human health and disease
  • History, philosophy, values, and functions of public health
  • Determinants of health and health disparities
  • Role of data and application of quantitative reasoning
  • Health systems in the U.S. and abroad
  • Identifying and addressing population health problems
  • Project planning, implementation, and evaluation
  • Health policy, law, ethics, and economics
  • Health communications and professionalism

Skills

Students who complete the BS in Public Health program will be able to:

  • Discuss the history, characteristics, roles, functions, structures, and core concepts of public health and the U.S. health system
  • Debate the socioeconomic, behavioral, biological, and environmental factors that influence human health and disease and perpetuate health disparities
  • Describe the legal, regulatory, ethical, and economic dimensions shaping public health policy and practice
  • Locate, use, evaluate, and synthesize public health information
  • Use basic statistics and perform statistical analysis in SAS, a widely-used statistical software program, to identify and describe populations’ health concerns
  • Communicate public health information, in both oral and written forms, through a variety of media and to diverse audiences
  • Identify the basic tools for project management as well as population health assessment, planning, and evaluation
  • Advocate for health equity, especially on behalf of vulnerable and marginalized populations
  • Take a stand on a controversial public health issue and support it with evidence
  • Craft evidence-based solutions that take account of the community dynamics and cultural contexts in which public health practitioners work
  • Engage in sound ethical practice while exhibiting a high degree of professionalism

Professional Values

The BS in Public Health program seeks to instill and reinforce the public health profession’s core values:

  • An obligation to promote health and prevent harm
  • A commitment to social justice
  • A focus on communities and community-wide outcomes
  • A belief in evidence-based practice underpinned by scientific reason
  • An adherence to the highest standards of professionalism
  • A celebration of diversity and respect for the rights, dignity and worth of individuals
  • A preference for cooperation and collaboration
  • A drive toward solutions

Curriculum

The BSPH program draws on courses in ethics, environmental sciences, biology, mathematics, healthcare administration, social sciences, and the humanities alongside epidemiology, biostatistics, health behavior and promotion, health communication, policy, and global health.

Credit Hours

The four-year BSPH program requires 71 credit hours towards the 120 credits needed for graduation. Students complete remaining credits in the University Core, minors, and general electives. Several Knowledge Areas within the University Core are waived for BSPH students as they are already included in the major (Quantitative, Scientific Literacy, etc.).

Courses

Public Health courses include:

  • Introduction to Public Health
  • Environmental Health
  • Introduction to Epidemiology
  • Health Behavior and Health Promotion
  • Critical Thinking in Public Health
  • Foundations of Public Health Policy
  • Global Health
  • Capstone

The BSPH Curriculum illustrates course requirements. For students considering a pre-health track within the BSPH major, please review the following curriculum: BSPH with Pre-Med Requirements.

For more information on the BSPH Program policies, procedures, and services, please see the Parkinson Undergraduate Student Handbook 2021-2022.

Admission

For more information on Loyola Univerity Chicago as an undergraduate student, visit Undergraduate Admission. If you have questions regarding the B.S. in Public Health program, please contact Keith Kramer, BSPH Senior Program Advisor.

LUC Internal Transfer/Major Change

We invite current Loyola undergraduate students to apply to the Bachelor of Science in Public Health Program and join a field dedicated to making a difference in the lives of whole communities through health promotion and health equity, and a commitment to social justice. Loyola undergraduate students with a minimum of a 2.5/4.0 GPA may apply to transfer into the Public Health Program by submitting a completed Internal Transfer Application Form.

Current Loyola undergraduate students wishing to connect to learn more about the BSPH major may complete this BSPH Interest Form or email kkramer4@luc.edu

Tuition and fees

The Parkinson School of Health Sciences and Public Health and Loyola's Financial Aid Office are committed to helping students secure the necessary financial resources to make their education at Loyola affordable.

 

FAQs

What is Public Health? 

Public health looks at population health holistically and how factors such as where individuals and families live, work, and play; socio-economic and educational status; availability of healthy foods, and built environments (i.e., sidewalks, bicycle and walking trails, etc.) influence overall health.   For example, a doctor may prescribe medicine to treat a patient with heart disease and prescribe an exercise regimen.  Yet if the patient does not have access to a gym or a safe area in her community to walk, a public health professional might help create policies or work within a community to help provide access to safe recreational areas.    

What can I do with a Bachelor of Science in Public Health?

Given the many facets of public health, BSPH graduates can enjoy a wide variety of job options, including:

  • Public Health Educator
  • Community Health Worker
  • Research Analyst / Research Assistant
  • Clinical Research or Data Coordinator
  • Environmental or Occupational Health Specialist
  • Health Care Consultant or Administrator
  • Health Advocate
  • Project Manager
  • Outreach Coordinator
  • Public Health Inspector
  • Data Science Research Professional and Software Developer
  • Public Health Engineer
  • Quality Compliance and Improvement Specialist
  • Emergency Response or Preparedness Specialist
  • Health Communications Specialist or Public Health Journalist
  • Pre-Health (undergraduate major for pre-med, pre-pharmacy, pre-denistry, etc.)

Find more information about the possibilities of a public health career:

How are classes offered?

All classes are taught in-person at Loyola’s Lake Shore Campus.   

What is the minimum GPA requirement?

A minimum GPA of 2.5 is required to apply.

Can the BSPH degree help towards earning a MPH degree at Loyola University Chicago?

Yes. Thinking about earning your Master of Public Health (MPH)? The Parkinson School also offers a five-year, dual-degree to earn both your bachers and masters degree with the BSPH/MPH dual-degree program.

Is there a minor in Public Health?

No. However, if space is available, non-majors may enroll in public health courses.

Are there concentrations with the BSPH in which students can focus their coursework?

No. However, students may use their elective coursework to pursue other public health topics of interest, such as health care administration, global health, biostatistics, and environmental health.

Accreditation

Loyola University Chicago Public Health Programs are accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH). In March 2021, CEPH Board of Councilors acted to renew our BSPH and MPH programs' accreditation for a seven-year period. For a copy of our final self-study and/or the CEPH report, please email Dr. Ruth Kafensztok.