Undergraduate Catalog 2013-14


Public Health (PUB)

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

8 Semester Plan

120 Credit Hours

CIP Code: 51.2201

College of Public Health


Major Description

USF offers the first Bachelor's in Public Health housed in its accredited College of Public Health in Florida. The Bachelor of Science in Public Health provides the student-centered courses required for entry-level public health jobs found in government agencies, health corporations, community non-profit organizations and healthcare facilities.

Undergraduate public health students are encouraged to participate in research ranging from laboratory studies to participatory community-based research with a focus on the culturally competent aspects of healthy community development including the social, economic, educational components. This research provides entry-level student employment opportunities on a variety of specific public health projects while learning basic research skills including data collection, data entry and technical report writing. Under faculty leadership, students are mentored to achieve personal goals whether they choose employment after their bachelor's degree or admission into a graduate or professional program.

The B.S. in Public Health is a generalist degree with no concentrations, tracks or specializations.

Students completing the B.S. in Public Health will be able to:
  1. Identify and articulate the core functions of public health.
    1. Explain the basic principles of epidemiology.
    2. Assess social and behavioral interventions to improve health of populations.
    3. Identify the impact of the environment and communicable diseases on health.
    4. Explain the role that public health plays in disaster prevention and management and evaluate public policy issues with respect to access, quality and cost when understanding health disparities within vulnerable populations.
  2. Exhibit critical thinking and analytical abilities, including the capacities to engage in inductive and deductive thinking and quantitative reason, and to construct sound arguments.
    1. Identify topics pertaining to public health research.
    2. Generate research questions, analyze and present data, and interpret and discuss findings.
    3. Demonstrate awareness about current public health topics including an analysis of the societal attitudes that generate differences on current public health topics.
  3. Communicate using effective oral skills.
    1. Demonstrate an ability to contribute effectively to group discussions and presentations.
    2. Apply effective public speaking skills during classroom presentations.
  4. Develop effective written presentations.
    1. Demonstrate the use of information literacy skills such as locating and evaluating pertinent public health information.
    2. Demonstrate the ability to use library resources and scientific databases.
    3. Exhibit proper referencing secondary materials in APA format.

Total Major Hours: 78 Hours

Major Core Courses - 33 Hours

  • PHC 4101 Introduction to Public Health
  • HSC 4551 Survey of Human Disease
  • PHC 4030 Introduction to Epidemiology
  • PHC 4069 Biostatistics in Society
  • PHC 3302 Introduction to Environmental & Occupational Health
  • HSC 4211 Health, Behavior and Society
  • HSC 4537 Medical Terminology
  • HSC 4630 Understanding U.S. Health Care
  • HSC 4624 Foundations of Global Health
  • PHC 4942 Public Health Seminar (Two 3-credit hour courses)

Major Elective Courses - 45 Hours

Lower Level Electives (24 credit hours): (Suggested Lower Level Public Health Courses)
Public Health Electives (12 credit hours: Choose 4 courses)
  • HSC 3541 Human Structure and Function
  • HSC 4172 Women's Health: A Public Health Perspective
  • HSC 4580 Foundations of Food Safety
  • HSC 4504 Foundations of Public Health Immunology
  • HUN 3272 Sports Nutrition
  • HUN 3296 Nutrition and Disease
  • HSC 4579 Foundation of Maternal & Child Health
  • PHC 4031 Emerging Infectious Diseases
  • PHC 4542 Stress, Health and College Life
  • PHC 4406 Pop Culture, Vices and Epidemiology
  • PHC 4931 Health Care Ethics
  • PHC 3320 Environmental Health Science
  • PHC 3721 Research Methods in Environmental and Occupational Health
  • HSC 4213 Environmental and Occupational Risk Analysis
  • HSC 4430 Occupational Health and Safety
  • PHC 4188 Public Health Emergencies in Large Populations
  • PHC 4234 Public and Private Continuity Planning for Emergencies
  • PHC 4241 Psychology of Fear and Mental Health Issues Related to Disasters
  • PHC 4375 Community Participation in Homeland Security
  • PHC 4376 Disaster by Design: Exercise Development for Homeland Security Professionals
  • HSC 4933 Special Topics in Public Health
Upper Level Electives (9 credit hours):
  • Please contact the Undergraduate Advisor for possible elective course.

Optional Accelerated Program

Bachelor's and Master's Public Health

Undergraduate students who are seeking a career in public health can select to major in a broad range of Bachelor degree programs including engineering, business, social sciences, biological sciences, nursing, social work, pre-medicine, other allied health specialties or interdisciplinary degrees in order to be prepared for graduate work in the College. Pre-medical students seeking admission to medical school may want to consider completing a Master's degree in public health prior to application or admission tomedical schools or as an alternative to clinical degrees. The College offers several programs that allow students to complete their undergraduate and Master's degrees in an accelerated format including the Undergraduate Accelerated Entry Program for Master's Degree in Public Health Education, Fast Track for Honors BMS, ISS and INS Students, and (4 + 1) Environmental and Occupational Health.

Undergraduate (3+2) Master's Degree in Public Health Education

The Department of Community and Family Health in the College of Public Health offers an accelerated entry program that enables qualified undergraduate students to enter the Master of Public Health (MPH) degree program with a concentration in Public Health Education. Applicants must have attained a grade point average of at least a 3.0 on a four-point scale, or received a minimum Verbal GRE score of 500 and a minimum Quantitative GRE score of 550. Applicants must have completed 90 undergraduate semester hours in a program related to the field of public health such as social sciences, natural sciences, behavioral sciences, pre-medicine, pre-dental, nursing, or education. Interested students are encouraged to contact the advisor upon completing 60 undergraduate semester hours. Contact: Annette Strzelecki (813) 974-9135; email: amanson@health.usf.edu or Kenneth Griffin 813-974-9372 email: kgriffi3@health.usf.edu.

Fast Track for Honors BMS, ISS, and INS Students

This program provides opportunities for Honor students to enroll in a Masters in Public Health program at the beginning of their senior year. Eligible seniors complete up to 20 graduate credits in public health that count toward the bachelor's degree as well as an Master of Public (MPH) or a Master of Science in Public Health (MSPH). The MPH is considered a professional degree and is appropriate for student wishing to be prepared to work in a public health career. The MSPH is considered a research oriented degree.

(4 + 1) Environmental and Occupational Health

This program provides opportunities for students to enroll in a MPH or MSPH program in the College of Public Health at the beginning of their senior year. Eligible seniors complete up to 20 graduate credits in public health that count toward the bachelor’s degree as well as an MPH or MSPH. Admission requirements include minimum verbal score of 450 and minimum quantitative score of 550 on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) General Test, or a mean MCAT of 8, good academic standing in the undergraduate program, senior status at the start of the program, two letters of recommendation from undergraduate faculty, transcripts from all institutions of higher learning, a one-page career goal statement, approval by the Departmental Student Affairs and Admission Committee; and approval by the College and Graduate School. Contact: Annette Mason, (813) 974-9135; email: amason@health.usf.edu.

Admission and Application Process for Enrollment

Students are encouraged to apply early and applications will be accepted starting in the fall of the student's junior year. Applicants must complete the Accelerated Graduate Program Application form and submit the completed form to Graduate Admissions. The form is available at: http://www.grad.usf.edu/inc/linked-files/Accelerated_Program_Application.pdf Admission is for fall semester and applications must be received by July 1 for guaranteed consideration. Applications received after July 1 will be processed for fall admission although there is no guarantee that processing will be completed in time. Spring and summer admissions will be considered on an individual basis. Applicants are also required to complete the SOPHAS application (see http://health.usf.edu/publichealth/degreereqs.html) for application procedures.While SOPHAS is required, the USF Graduate School application does not need to be completed if the Accelerated Program Application is used.

Admission Requirements
  • Minimum Verbal score of 150 (450 on GRE tests taken prior to Fall 2011) and minimum quantitative score of 146 (550 on GRE tests taken prior to Fall 2011) on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) or a mean MCAT of 8. (Helpful Hint: Take the General GRE exam, not a specialized one.)
  • Good standing in the Honors program.
  • Senior status.
  • Two letters of recommendation from undergraduate faculty.
  • One letter from the Honors advisor noting GPA of 3.2 or better.
  • Desire for a public health career as documented in a one page goal statement.
  • Approval by appropriate department admission committee.
  • Approval by the College and Graduate School

  More About this Major

  Accelerated Program

This major has an accelerated track that confers an undergraduate and graduate degree upon completion.


  Research Opportunities

There are research opportunities associated with this major.

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  Additional Requirements

There are additional requirements for this major such as grade, GPA, foreign language, and/or general education requirements.

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  Additional Information

There is more information available for this major such as faculty, advising, and/or accreditation information.

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