Undergraduate Degree Programs

Table of Contents:

Introduction

The College of Public Health offers the undergraduate Bachelor of Arts (BA) in public health and the Bachelor of Science (BS) in public health for first-year students. The BA and BS degrees provide students with a basic understanding of the five core public health knowledge areas: biostatistics, social and behavioral sciences, epidemiology, health policy and management, and occupational and environmental health sciences. The undergraduate public health curriculum was developed to address these competencies; students in either program will be prepared to enter the workforce or continue their education.

A uniform public health core will provide both degrees with breadth in the biological, social, economic, quantitative, geographic, and educational components of health and health disparities within and across populations. Students in both degree programs will complete a cumulative capstone experience during which they will integrate, apply, and synthesize public health knowledge outside of the typical classroom setting. As an integral part of their education, students also will be exposed to public health professionals and agencies.

The BA program is for students who have an interest in the social sciences and public health. BA students will complete additional required course work in the social sciences and humanities. Click here for a BA sample plan of study. The BS program is for students interested in the natural sciences and public health. BS students will complete additional required course work in the natural sciences and mathematics. Click here for a BS sample plan of study with a General Chemistry start or here for a BS plan of study with a Principles of Chemistry start.

For additional details about our public health majors and plans of study, please also see our plans of study.

For additional information about our degrees and certificates for undergraduates, please see the CPH section of the General Catalog.

Bachelor of Arts (BA) Bachelors of Science (BS)
Total Credits for Degree 120 120
Total Major Credits for Degree 62 62
Public Health Core Credits 27 27
BA or BS specific credits 21 25-26
Public Health Elective Credits 13-15 10-12
Total General Education Credits 35-45 35-45
Experiential Learning Requirement Yes Yes
Minimum GPA to Graduate 2.0 2.0
Honors in the Major Available Yes Yes

 

Degree Requirements for Public Health Majors

Prerequisites for Admission to the College

University of Iowa students are eligible to apply for standard admission to the public health major after they complete prerequisite courses and earn the required grade-point average, typically after their first year. All students who wish to apply, including students who wish to enter the public health major through the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences public health interest designation must complete the following requirements by the end of the semester in which they are applying. Admission is for the fall semester only and is selective.

  • Completion of at least 12 s.h. at the University of Iowa;
  • Completion of CPH:1400 Fundamentals of Public Health with a grade of B or better. Offered in fall and spring semesters.
  • Completion of CPH:1600 Public Health Science: Inquiry and Investigation in Public Health with a grade of B- or better. Offered in spring semester.
  • A minimum g.p.a. of 2.75 in all University of Iowa course work and in all college course work.

Public Health Core

CPH:1050 College of Public Health Direct Admit Seminar 1 s.h.
CPH:1400 Fundamentals of Public Health (formerly CPH:2099) 3 s.h.
CPH:1600 Public Health Science: Inquiry and Investigation in Public Health 3 s.h.
CPH:2050 Second-year Undergraduate Public Health Seminar 1 s.h.
CPH:2400 The US Health System in a Global Context 3 s.h.
CPH:2600 Introduction to Public Health Methods 3 s.h.
CPH:3050 Third-year Undergraduate Public Health Seminar 1 s.h.
CPH:3400 Health, Work, and the Environment 3 s.h.
CPH:3500 Global Public Health 3 s.h.
CPH:3700 Methods for Program Implementation and Evaluation 3 s.h.
CPH:4999 Public Health Capstone: Practice of Evidence-Based Public Health 3 s.h.

B.A. Degree Requirements (21 s.h.)

CPH:1800 Social and Psychological Determinants of Health –
Changing Behavior, Improving Health
3 s.h.
CPH:3100 Health Economics 3 s.h.
CPH:3600:0002 Applied Public Health Methods (BA) 3 s.h.
CPH:3800 Public Health Theories and Society 3 s.h.
CPH:3900 Foundations in Public Health Preparedness and Response 3 s.h.
Choose two:

  • ANTH:2100 Contemporary World Problems
  • ANTH:2164 Culture, Health, and Healing for Future Health Professionals
  • COMM:1809 Social Marketing Campaigns
  • GEOG:3110 Geography of Health
  • GEOG:4770 Environmental Justice
  • IS:2000 Introduction to International Studies
  • JMC:3116 Communication Based Approaches to International Development
  • JMC:3150 Media and Health
  • PHIL:2402 Introduction to Ethics
  • SOC:1022 Social Justice and Social Welfare in US
  • SOC:2810 Social Inequality
  • POLI:3111 American Public Policy
6+ s.h.

B.S. Degree Requirements (25-26 s.h.)

CHEM:1110 Principles of Chemistry I 4 s.h.
BIOL:1411 Foundations of Biology 4 s.h.
BIOL:1412 Diversity of Form and Function 4 s.h.
Choose one:
MATH:1460 Calculus for the Biological Sciences (4 s.h.)
MATH:1850 Calculus I (4 s.h.)
4 s.h
Choose one:
CS:1110 Introduction to Computer Science (3 s.h.)
CS:1210 Computer Science I: Fundamentals (4 s.h.)
3-4 s.h.
CPH:3600:0001 Applied Public Health Methods (BS) 3 s.h.
Choose one:

  • CS:2110 Programming for Informatics
  • ENVS:1085 Fundamentals of Environmental Science
  • GEOG:3110 Geography of Health
  • GEOG:4150 Health and Environment: GIS Applications
  • GEOG:4770 Environmental Justice
  • IS:2000 Introduction to International Studies
  • MICR:2157 General Microbiology
  • PHIL:2402 Introduction to Ethics
3+ s.h.

Public Health Electives

B.A. students must complete at least five elective courses in the College of Public Health, including at least three elective courses numbered 2000 or above.

B.S. students must complete at least four elective courses in the College of Public Health, including at least two elective courses numbered 2000 or above.

See below for a list of available public health elective courses.

CPH:2200 Climageddon: A Crisis for Public Health 2
CPH:2220 Building a Healthier Tomorrow: Public Health Methods to Minimize Disease and Pollutant Exposures 3
CPH:2230 Finding Patient Zero: The Exploration of Infectious Disease Transmission and Pandemic Threats 3
CPH:3200 Death at Work: Case Studies of Workplace Safety and Health 3
CPH:3210 Nutrition in Public Health 3
CPH:3220 Public Health as a Public Good: Economics and Decision Making in Public Health Systems 3
CPH:3230 Human Genetics and Public Health 3
CPH:4200 Agriculture and the Environment 3
CPH:4210 Making a Difference: Public Health Policy and Advocacy 3
CPH:4220 Global Road Safety 3
CPH:4230 Injury and Violence Prevention 3

Experiential Learning Requirement

All College of Public Health undergraduate students must successfully complete at least one of these experiences—research, internship, global learning, or service learning course. Students must follow the specific criteria and procedures established for the selected experience as outlined by the Undergraduate Program Office. Students must successfully complete at least one of these experiences from the following. Second Year Undergraduate Public Health Seminar (CPH:2050) must be completed prior to enrollment in any of these courses. Students must complete this requirement by completing a course from one of the four lists below:

  • Research
    • CPH:4900 Undergraduate Research Experience in Public Health (ARR, 0-3 s.h.)
    • CPH:4990 Mentored Independent Undergraduate Research in Public Health (ARR, 0-3 s.h.)
  • Internship
    • CPH:4850 Public Health Internship (ARR, 0-3 s.h.)
  • Global Learning
    • CPH:4750 Global Learning in Public Health (ARR, 0-3 s.h.)
  • Service Learning
    • CPH:3750 Undergraduate Service Learning in Public Health

General Education Requirements

The College of Public Health’s general education requirements are different from the University’s:

 

RHET:1030 Rhetoric 4
ENGL:1200 The Interpretation of Literature 3
World Languages 0-10
Natural Sciences 7
Quantitative or Formal Reasoning 3
Social Sciences 3
Historical Perspectives 3
Diversity and Inclusion 3
International and Global Issues 3
Literary, Visual, and Performing Arts 3
Values and Culture 3

Option one: attain fourth-level proficiency in a single world language, usually by completing four years of that language in high school or four semesters in college or an equivalent combination of high school and college course work; or pass an achievement test or evaluation at fourth-level proficiency.College of Public Health students may complete the World Languages requirement using one of two options. One year of high school language study is generally equivalent to one semester of college language study.

Option two: attain second-level proficiency in each of two world languages, usually by completing two years of each language in high school or two semesters of each language in college or an equivalent combination of high school and college course work; or pass achievement tests and/or evaluations at second-level proficiency in each language. Option two does not fulfill the World Languages requirement for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences or qualify students to earn credit under the Furthering Language Incentive Program (FLIP).

Students may count courses taken to fulfill General Education Program requirements toward other degree requirements.

Undergraduate Certificate in Public Health

Please see our Certificate in Public Health page.


Questions or comments? Contact Katie McCullough. This page was last reviewed on September 1, 2017.