What Is the Study of Public Health?
Grand Canyon University’s Bachelor of Science in Public Health degree prepares students to work as public health practitioners in various health-related settings, including community-based organizations, government agencies, behavioral health agencies, primary care centers and global or domestic nonprofit organizations. The coursework is designed to ensure that graduates of this program can carry out day-to-day tasks of public health organizations, such as data collection and analysis, program planning, community outreach, communications and program support. The BS in Public Health degree program also integrates the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing (NCHEC) Seven Areas of Responsibility for Health Education Specialists, addressing fundamental skills in community assessment, program planning, implementation and evaluation.
This public health degree provides the knowledge, resources and tools needed to design and implement effective health promotion programs—including health education interventions and policies for specific populations within the larger community. Public health practitioners focus on the prevention of communicable and chronic diseases, as well as health education and promotion and reducing the impact of environmental hazards.
Students will learn skills such as:
- Culturally appropriate communication
- Locating and using public health information and data
- Addressing social determinants of health
- Advocating for health promotion and community engagement
This field emphasizes promoting health and wellness, tracking disease outbreaks, preventing injury and disability and creating healthy communities.
Earn Your Public Health Bachelor’s Degree at GCU
This degree is beneficial for those interested in improving the health and wellness of communities. Students will learn fundamental skills in data collection and analysis, communication, community assessment, program planning, implementation and evaluation. This degree provides foundational knowledge and broad training skills to prepare graduates for entry-level career opportunities in public health or for further study in public health.
As a Christian university, GCU programs are values-oriented and based on a Christian worldview, so students can develop personal ethics and servant leadership practices that are relevant to public health practice. This program empowers students to lead with empathy, kindness, compassion and social justice in order to make the greatest difference in the health of communities.
What You’ll Learn With a Public Health Degree
In this online and campus public health degree program, you’ll learn about:
- The history and philosophy of public health
- The structure of the U.S. health system and the regulatory dimensions of health policy
- Global health, the science of human health and the factors that impact health disparities
- Health promotion and disease prevention
- Environmental and occupational health and safety
- Community assessment and planning, as well as implementation and evaluation of public health interventions
- Public health data systems and informatics
- Ethics and communication in public health
The BS in Public Health degree program includes a capstone course that gives students the opportunity to integrate and apply their public health knowledge and skills either through a 30-hour volunteer service learning opportunity in the field of public health, or through a research based project developing a proposal to address a public health issue.
Careers in Public Health:
With a Bachelor of Science in Public Health, graduates may prepare for public health careers such as:
- Health educator
- Health promotion specialist
- Community health worker
- Program coordinator or program analyst
Employment settings common for graduates include:
- Government (local and state health departments)
- Domestic or global community health nonprofit organizations
- Social service organizations
- Behavioral health organizations
- Faith-based organizations
- Healthcare coverage/health insurance companies
This degree is an ideal option for those interested in a health care career focused on advancing strategies that promote and protect health.
General Education Requirements
General Education coursework prepares Grand Canyon University graduates to think critically, communicate clearly, live responsibly in a diverse world, and thoughtfully integrate their faith and ethical convictions into all dimensions of life. These competencies, essential to an effective and satisfying life, are outlined in the General Education Learner Outcomes. General Education courses embody the breadth of human understanding and creativity contained in the liberal arts and sciences tradition. Students take an array of foundational knowledge courses that promote expanded knowledge, insight, and the outcomes identified in the University's General Education Competencies. The knowledge and skills students acquire through these courses serve as a foundation for successful careers and lifelong journeys of growing understanding and wisdom.
* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Program subject to change.