The School of Public Health offers an undergraduate degree in Public Health Science, which combines a robust curriculum in the natural sciences with training in the basic fields of public health. The Public Health Science major provides students with interdisciplinary training that is essential to recognizing and addressing public health issues at the state, national and global levels. The degree can be obtained on the campus at College Park or at the Universities at Shady Grove.

For more details, current students should view the full PHSC website.

Explore Program Details


The Bachelor of Science in Public Health Science at the University of Maryland, College Park consists of 120 credit hours. The program includes undergraduate courses in public health and science and culminates with a 3-credit capstone experience. There is a recommended sequence for completing the Public Health Science bachelor’s degree that considers a student’s year in the program in course scheduling.


Upon completion of the Public Health Science degree requirements, all students are expected to demonstrate their ability to:

  • Discuss the history and philosophy of public health as well as its core values, concepts, and functions across the globe and in society.
  • Use basic public health concepts, methods, and tools for data collection and analysis.
  • Identify the major health-related needs and concerns of populations and formulate basic processes, approaches, and interventions as possible solutions.
  • Describe the underlying science of human health and disease including opportunities for promoting and protecting health across the lifespan.
  • Examine the socio-economic, behavioral, biological, environmental, and other factors that impact human health and contribute to health disparities.
  • Demonstrate the fundamental concepts and features of project implementation, including planning, assessment, and evaluation.
  • Compare and contrast the fundamental characteristics and organizational structures of the health systems of the United States and other countries.
  • Characterize the basic concepts of legal, ethical, economic, and regulatory dimensions of health care and public policy.
  • Illustrate the basic concepts of public health-specific writing and communication.
  • Interpret and synthesize scientific knowledge to propose evidence-based approaches and solutions to public health problems..


The Public Health Science curriculum requires 120 credits for graduation. The courses comprising these 120 credits can be categorized into five areas:

  • Scientific Foundation
  • Public Health Science Foundation
  • Public Health Science Options
  • General Education Requirements
  • General Electives

Scientific Foundation (31 credits)

Certain mathematical techniques and scientific principles serve as a foundation for future study in Public Health Science. These courses cover the scientific concepts essential to advanced study in the field and are instructed through the following:

Course ID Course Title Credit
MATH120 Elementary Calculus I 3
BSCI170/171 Principles of Molecular and Cellular Biology 3/1
BSCI201 Human Anatomy and Physiology I 4
BSCI202 Human Anatomy and Physiology II 4
CHEM131/132 Chem 1- Fundamentals of General Chemistry/General Chemistry I Lab 3/1
CHEM231/232 Organic Chemistry I/Organic Chemistry Lab I 3/1
BSCI222 Principles of Genetics 4
BSCI223 General Microbiology 4

Public Health Science Foundation (31 credits)

In addition to the scientific foundation courses, the major also studies discipline specific courses that lead to advanced study in the field. These courses include, but are not limited to, the five core disciplines of public health (behavioral science, biostatistics, epidemiology, environmental health, and health services administration) as well as kinesiology and are instructed through the following:

Course ID Course Title Credit
SPHL100 Introduction to Public Health 3
HLTH366 Behavioral and Community Issues in Public Health  3
EPIB301 Epidemiology for Public Health Practice  3
EPIB315 Biostatistics for Public Health Practice 3
MIEH300 Introduction to Environmental Health  3
MIEH400 Introduction to Global Health 3
KNES320 Physiology of Exercise 4


Introduction to Health Policy and Services  3
PHSC415 Essentials of Public Health Biology: The Cell, The Individual, and Disease  3
PHSC497 Public Health Science Capstone 3

Public Health Science Options (12 credits)

The Public Health Science option courses build upon the Scientific and Public Health Science Foundation courses.  The option courses are 300 and 400 level courses offered within the major. By choosing from these courses, students have an opportunity to customize their program. Students are encouraged to specifically choose courses that best align with a particular career goal. The most current list of PHSC option courses can be found here.

General Education Requirements

All University of Maryland graduates are required to complete the University's general education requirements. Through the General Education program, students experience the University’s many resources while acquiring additional knowledge and skills that result in a more well-rounded graduate. The equivalent of twenty-seven (27) of these credits can be satisfied by simply completing the requirements of the major.

General Electives

Public Health Science majors can choose several elective courses to complete their 120 credit graduation requirement. These elective are in addition to the Public Health Science Option courses.