Undergraduate Catalog 2016-17


Behavioral Healthcare (BHC) with a concentration in Aging and Behavioral Health (AGBH)

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

8 Semester Plan

120 Credit Hours

CIP Code: 44.0000

College of Behavioral & Community Sciences


Major Description

Behavioral health problems, such as mental illness and substance abuse, are among the greatest public health challenges facing our communities. New, scientifically-based approaches are available to treat and prevent many behavioral health problems. Students will be exposed to treatment approaches as well as to issues in the organization, financing, delivery, and outcomes of behavioral health services. The emphasis of the curricula is on practices that have been scientifically validated and the delivery of services within the context of current funding, policies and trends.

Students must also demonstrate behaviors that are congruent with the professional standards and values of the profession. Students desiring a career in this field should be aware that fingerprinting, a background check, and drug screen may be required to work in this field. Failure to pass one of these checks would be cause to terminate a student from the major. Students may be responsible for any associated costs.

Concentration Description

The concentration is designed to provide students with the skills and background to work in the growing older adult behavioral/long-term healthcare system.

State Mandated Common Course Prerequisites

Students wishing to transfer to USF should complete an A.A. degree at a Florida College System institution. Some courses required for the major may also meet General Education requirements thereby transferring maximum hours to the university.

If a student wishes to transfer without an A.A. degree and has fewer than 60 semester hours of acceptable credit, the student must meet the university’s entering freshman requirements including ACT or SAT test scores, GPA, and course requirements.

Transfer students are also required to comply with the immunization, foreign language, and continuous enrollment policies of the university.

Students should complete the following prerequisite courses at the lower level prior to entering the university. If these courses are not taken at a Florida College System institution, they must be completed before the degree is granted.

Unless stated otherwise, a grade of C is the minimum acceptable grade in prerequisite courses.

  • PSY X012 Introduction to Psychological Science
  • STA XXXX Any level Statistics course or PSY X204 Psychological Statistics
  • SYG X000 Introduction to Sociology or SYG X010 Contemporary Social Problems

Total Major Hours: 37 Hours

Major Core

The B.S. in Behavioral Healthcare prepares students for entry-level positions in agencies that provide a variety of treatment services for individuals with diagnosed mental health, substance use and/or behavioral issues. Other students may be preparing for graduate programs in human services and/or research. The program provides students with six options for specialization in (1) Adult Community Services, (2) Children’s Mental Health, (3) Applied Behavior Analysis, (4) Addictions and Behavioral Healthcare, (5) Aging and Behavioral Health, and (6) Behavioral Health Research. The curriculum emphasizes evidence-based practices utilizing a recovery-focused, holistic and strength-based approach to behavioral healthcare.

Major Core Courses - 22 Hours

  • MHS 3411 Multidisciplinary Behavioral Healthcare Services*
  • PSY 3213 Research Methods in Psychology
  • MHS 4022 Adult Psychopathology in the Community or MHS 4490 Behavioral Healthcare Issues for Children
  • MHS 4408 Exemplary Practices in Behavioral Healthcare Treatment
  • MHS 4002 Behavioral Health Systems Delivery
  • MHS 4452 Co-Occurring Disorders
  • MHS 4703 Legal, Ethical & Professional Issues in BHC

*MHS 3411 should be taken during student's first semester of major coursework; a minimum grade of "B-" is required.

Concentration Core Courses - 12 Hours

  • GEY 4322 Care Management for Older Adults or GEY 4608 Alzheimer's Disease Management
  • GEY 4612 Psychology of Aging
  • MHS 3062 Behavioral Healthcare Services for Older Adults
  • MHS 4425 Field Experience in Behavioral Healthcare

Students must apply to take MHS 4425 Field Experience in Behavioral Healthcare two semesters before taking this course. This course also has three prerequisites: MHS 3411, MHS 4002, and MHS 4408. The application, application deadlines, and additional information about the course can be found on the Field Experience webpage: http://mhlp.fmhi.usf.edu/academics/Behavioral_Healthcare_Major_Field_Experience.cfm.

Concentration Elective Courses - 3 Hours

Students must choose one course from the following list or consult an advisor for other options:

  • GEY 4101 Aging in Special Populations
  • GEY 4231 Elder Abuse and Neglect
  • GEY 4322 Care Management for Older Adults(if not taken above)
  • GEY 4608 Alzheimer's Disease Management (if not taken above)
  • GEY 4628 Health, Ethnicity and Aging
  • GEY 4629 Women and Aging
  • GEY 4641 Death and Dying
  • MHS 4931 Selected Topics (Pro Seminar)

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