Public Health

Program Description

The mission of the Bachelor of Science in Public Health (BSPH) program, which is rooted in the larger University mission, is to educate students from diverse disciplines and backgrounds in core public health knowledge areas so that they are equipped to help prevent disease and promote physical and mental health and social well-being through public health practice, leadership, and research.

Program Values

The Bachelor of Science in Public Health (BSPH) program’s core values stem from the broader University’s values, including teaching excellence, the importance of community, service to the poor, and education that fosters spiritual development. Specifically, the program’s core values include the following:

  • Excellence in teaching that fosters idealism, creativity, and innovation.
  • Service to vulnerable and underserved populations that helps promote health and prevent disease.
  • Research and scholarship that engages communities as partners in improving the environmental and social conditions necessary to achieve physical and mental health and social well-being.
  • Ethical decision-making that considers social justice and health equity.
  • Respect for cultural and religious values at the individual, family, community, and societal levels.
  • Equality for individuals and communities regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, age, gender, sexual preference, or ability. 
  • Commitment to life-long professional and personal development.

Accreditation

La Salle University is accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health

Requirements to Progress to Graduation

All students in the Bachelor of Science in Public Health (BSPH) Program must meet specific academic standards for continued progression in the major. Students must maintain an overall and major GPA of 2.5 at the end of each semester in order to progress. Students not meeting the required GPA will be given one (1) additional semester to achieve the GPA of 2.5. If they are not able to meet the required GPA of 2.5 after this additional semester, the student will no longer be permitted to progress in the Undergraduate Public Health Program and will be advised to choose another major.

Continuation in the Public Health Program requires that a student majoring in Public Health receive a final grade of C or better in all Public Health courses (effective Fall 2016). A student is permitted to take a course a maximum of two times to achieve a grade of C or better.

A student must have an overall GPA of 2.5 and a GPA of 2.5 in Public Health to graduate with the BSPH degree.

Why take this major?

La Salle University’s Bachelor of Science in Public Health Program educates individuals for interdisciplinary, collaborative health care practice in local, regional, national, and global environments. Graduates plan, implement, and evaluate health programs to improve the health of vulnerable and diverse groups, with a focus on urban populations, social justice, and health education. We are committed to educating students from diverse disciplines and backgrounds in core public health knowledge areas so that they are equipped to help prevent disease and promote physical and mental health and social well-being through public health practice, leadership, and research. Graduates of the public health program are prepared for graduate study in a variety of health professional fields and for public health practice jobs.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the B.S. in Public Health program, graduates will be able to do the following:

  • Explain the history and philosophy of public health as well as its core values, concepts, and functions across the globe and in society.
  • Identify the methods, and tools of public health data collection, use, and analysis and why evidence-based approaches are an essential part of public health practice.
  • Identify the basic processes, approaches, and interventions that identify and address the major health-related needs and concerns of populations.
  • Relate the underlying science of human health and disease to opportunities for promoting and protecting health across the life course.
  • Identify the socio-economic, behavioral, biological, environmental, and other factors that impact human health and contribute to health disparities.
  • Apply the principles of project implementation, including planning, assessment, and evaluation in organizational and community initiatives.
  • Explain the fundamental characteristics and organizational structures of the U. S. health system as well as to the differences in systems in other countries.
  • Describe the legal, ethical, economic, and regulatory dimensions of health care and public health policy, and the roles, influences, and responsibilities of the different agencies and branches of government.
  • Apply public health-specific communication, including technical and professional writing and the use of mass media and electronic technology to promote public health.

Health Education Specific Competencies:

  • Assess needs, assets and capacity for health education
  • Plan health education.
  • Implement health education.
  • Conduct evaluation and research related to health education.
  • Administer and manage health education.
  • Serve as a health education resource person.
  • Communicate and advocate for health and health education.

Note: Learning Goals adapted from the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health (ASPPH [Recommended Critical Component Elements of an Undergraduate Major in Public Health]) and the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing (NCHEC [Responsibilities and Competencies for Health Education Specialists]).

The B.S. in Public Health curriculum includes general education requirements, science courses, and major courses ranging from basic concepts of public health to informatics; epidemiology; health education; behavioral health; violence prevention; race, ethnicity, and public health; health policy; community health; and a capstone in health education and program planning.

Program Contact Information

Degree Earned

B.S. in Public Health

Number of Courses Required for Graduation

Major:

Total:

Number of Credits Required for Graduation

Major:

Total:

GPA Required for Graduation

Major:

Cumulative:

Progress Chart

Level One - Core Courses

12 courses and 2 modules required

Universal Required Courses (4 Courses)

Students must complete the following 4 courses.

ILO 8.1: Written Communication

ENG 110 - College Writing I: Persuasion

ILO 5.1: Information Literacy

ENG 210 - College Writing II: Research

ILO 1.1: Understanding Diverse Perspectives

FYS 130 - First-Year Academic Seminar **

NOTE. The following students use Level 2 Capstone Experience in Major instead of FYS 130: Honors, BUSCA, Core-to-Core, Transfer, and Non-Traditional/Evening.

ILO 2.1: Reflective Thinking and Valuing

REL 100 - Religion Matters

Elective Core Courses (4 Courses)

Students must complete 1 course in each of the following 4 ILOs.

ILO 3.1a: Scientific Reasoning

CHEM 161- Chemistry for the Life Sciences

ILO 3.1b: Quantitative Reasoning

HSC 217- Statistics for Health Science Professionals

ILO 6.1: Technological Competency

CSC 154- Healthcare Informatics

ILO 8.1a/12.1: Oral Communication/ Collaborative Engagement

COM 150- Presentation Skills

Distinct Discipline Core Courses (4 Courses)

Students must complete 1 course in each of the following 4 ILOs. Each course must be from a different discipline. (A "discipline" is represented by the 3- or 4-letter prefix attached to each course.)

ILO 4.1: Critical Analysis and Reasoning

Choose course within ILO

ILO 9.1: Creative and Artistic Expression

Choose course within ILO

ILO 10.1: Ethical Understanding and Reasoning

Choose course within ILO

ILO 11.1: Cultural and Global Awareness and Sensitivity

Choose course within ILO

Universal Required Modules (2 Courses)

Students must complete the following 2 non-credit modules.
The Modules are not required for Transfer Students, Core-to-Core Students, or BUSCA Students. BUSCA students are required to take modules if/when they pursue a bachelor’s degree.

ILO 7.1a

Health Literacy Module

ILO 7.1b

Financial Literacy Module

Major Requirements

Major requirements include 4 Level Two ILO requirements, fulfilled through the major.

Students in this major must complete courses in total in order to graduate.

Level Two (4 Courses)

Students must complete 1 course/learning experience in each of the 4 commitments.

ILO 2.2: Broader Identity (Capstone Course/Experience)

Fulfilled within major

Choose one ILO from 3.2a, 3.2b, 4.2, 5.2, 6.2, 7.2a, or 7.2b: Expanded Literacies

Fulfilled within major

ILO 8.2b: Effective Expression (Writing-Intensive Course)

Fulfilled within major

Choose on ILO from 10.2, 11.2, or 12.2: Active Responsibility

Fulfilled within major

All Other Required Courses

NUT 165: Principles of Nutrition
PHLT 101: Essentials of Public Health
BIO 161: Anatomy and Physiology I
BIO 162: Anatomy and Physiology II
PHLT 270: Community Nutrition
PHLT 319: Epidemiology for Health Educators
PHLT 301: Theories of Social Behavioral Change in Community Health Education
PHLT 352: Program Planning and Health Education
PHLT 314: Unhealthy Urban Environments
PHLT 420: Public Health Leadership and Management
PHLT 315: Violence Prevention and Control
PHLT 356: Reproductive Health for Practitioners
PHLT 410: Public Health Education Capstone I
PHLT 411: Public Health Education Capstone II
PHLT 451: Introduction to Public Health Policy
PHLT 408: Research Methods in Public Health
PHLT 489: Race and Ethnicity in Public Health

6 Approved Public Health Supporting Courses

Free Electives

In addition to the requirements listed above, students must take enough courses to the fulfill graduation credit requirements for their School and major.

Minor Requirements

Students who choose to minor in Public Health MUST take the following courses:

  • PHLT 101 Essentials of Public Health
  • HSC 217 Statistics for Health Professionals (or equivalent)
  • PHLT 319 Epidemiology for Health Educators
  • PHLT 489 Race, Ethnicity and Public Health

Students may choose any TWO of the following seven courses:

  • NUTR 165 Nutrition
  • PHLT 301 Theories of Social Behavior Change in Community Health Education
  • PHLT 314 Unhealthy Urban Environments: Healthy Solutions
  • PHLT 315 Violence Prevention and Control
  • PHLT 350 Health Education: Principles and Practice
  • PHLT 355 Needs Assessment and Program Planning
  • PHLT 356 Reproductive Health for the Public Health Practitioner

Year

Fall

Spring

 

Freshman

FYS 130- First Year Academic Seminar (ILO 1)

NUT 165: Principles of Nutrition

REL 100: Religion Matters (ILO 2)

ILO 4 (Critical Analysis and Reasoning)

ENG 110: College Writing I: Persuasion (ILO 8)

PHLT 101: Essentials of Public Health

CSC 154: Healthcare Informatics (ILO 6)

HSC 217: Statistics for Health Science Professionals (ILO 3-M)

CHM 161: Chemistry for the Life Sciences (ILO 3-Sci)

COM 150: Presentation Skills (ILO 8/12)

 

Sophomore

BIO 161: Anatomy and Physiology I

BIO 162: Anatomy and Physiology II

ENG 210: College Writing II: Research (ILO 5)

ILO 9 (Creative and Artistic Expression)

PHLT 319: Epidemiology for Health Educators

ILO 10 (Ethical Understanding and Reasoning)

ILO 11 (Cultural and Global Awareness and Sensitivity)

PHLT 301: Theories of Social Behavioral Change in Community Health Education

General elective

Supporting elective

 

Junior

PHLT 352: Program Planning and Health Education

PHLT 314: Unhealthy Urban Environments

PHLT 270: Community Nutrition

PHLT 420: Public Health Leadership and Management

Supporting elective

PHLT 315: Violence Prevention and Control

Supporting elective

PHLT 356: Reproductive Health for Practitioners

General elective

Supporting elective

 

Senior

PHLT 410: Public Health Capstone I

PHLT 411: Public Health Capstone II

PHLT 451: Introduction to Public Health Policy

PHLT 408: Research Methods in Public Health

PHLT 489: Race and Ethnicity in Public Health

General elective

General elective

General elective

Supporting elective

Supporting elective

Course Descriptions

PHLT 101 - Essentials of Public Health

This course provides a basic introduction to public health concepts and practice by examining the philosophy, purpose, history, organization, functions, tools, activities, and the results of public health practice at the national, state, and local levels. Healthy People 2020 is reviewed. The impact of the Affordable Care Act on health disparities in urban communities is discussed. The function of the Bureau of Health Professions of the Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA) is studied. The course aims to stimulate interactions among students around important problems and issues facing the health of the nation and the world.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Fall, Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

PHLT 200 - Community Nutrition

This course allows students to explore and begin to understand how complex and multifaceted public health nutrition programs enhance the health and nutrition of the U.S. population through education, emphasis on health promotion and disease prevention, integrated community efforts and government leadership. Emphasis is placed on policymaking, assessment and intervention methods, special populations, food security and program management. Students will gain understanding of course concepts and ideas presented in the classroom through readings, written assignments, presentations, class discussions, case studies and exams.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: NUT 165

PHLT 250 - Global Health

This course explores world health issues and policies by examining selected threats to global health. Students ascertain the global interconnectedness of humanity and investigate the effect of economic globalization on health issues. Global warming, cross border pollution, the spread of infectious diseases, and international crime are considered. Current health threats, global health indicators, ethical considerations of global initiatives, and solutions are evaluated.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Summer

How Offered: Hybrid

ILO Met: ILO 11.1 - Cultural and Global Awareness and Sensitivity

PHLT 270 - Special Topics in Public Health Nutrition

This course allows students to explore and begin to understand how complex and multifaceted public health nutrition programs enhance the health and nutrition of the U.S. population through education, emphasis on health promotion and disease prevention, integrated community efforts and government leadership. Emphasis is placed on policymaking, assessment and intervention methods, special populations, food security and program management. Students will gain understanding of course concepts and ideas presented in the classroom through readings, written assignments, presentations, class discussions, case studies and exams.  

PHLT 301 - Theories of Social Behavioral Change in Community Health Education

Students analyze the contribution of social factors to health and illness status, including risk behavior and health inequities. Health behavior programs and interventions are explored. Theories of health promotion, health behavioral change, and health education are examined and applied to a health promotion project focusing on health disparities in urban communities.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: PHLT 101

PHLT 314 - Unhealthy Urban Environments: Healthy Solutions

This course integrates earth sciences, geology, environmental sciences, and health initiatives in the urban communities aimed at identifying, managing, and eliminating environmental threats to health. Environmental problems, including lead poisoning of children, radon, asbestos exposure, urban brown fields, toxic waste, urban pollution, and other environmental hazards, are examined through the lens of social justice and health equity. Students explore urban environments identified as high risk for disease and illness from environmental pollutants and geographic or climactic problems. The impact of natural disasters on public health is also examined.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

PHLT 315 - Violence Prevention and Control

Students review theories of violence causation and epidemiologic patterns of violence in urban settings. An ecological framework is used to guide critical thinking about risk and protective factors regarding violence. Students explore secondary data sources important to public health practitioners working in the area of violence prevention and control. Programs aimed at preventing violence and injury in urban settings will be examined and critically evaluated.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

PHLT 319 - Epidemiology for Health Educators

This course introduces basic concepts of epidemiology and biostatistics applied to public health problems. The principles and methods of epidemiologic investigation, summaries and displays of data, and the use of statistical approaches for describing the health of populations are emphasized. Various epidemiologic designs for investigating associations between risk factors and disease outcomes are also introduced. The importance of ethics in epidemiologic research underpins the course.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: HSC 217, PHLT 101

PHLT 350 - Health Education: Principles and Practice

This course provides a comprehensive overview of health education strategies for urban community health settings. This course will focus on: instructional planning, behavior change interventions and methods, unit plan development, the use of technology and media, health disparities, special challenges and controversial topics. The topics covered in this course are aligned with the most recent competencies identified by the Health Educator Job Analysis Project conducted by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: PHLT 101

PHLT 352 - Program Planning and Health Education

This course provides a comprehensive overview of health education strategies for urban community health settings. This course focuses on: needs assessment and program planning, health education delivery, behavior change interventions and methods, and health disparities. Students will evaluate and compare evidence-based programs as they develop health promotion programs for vulnerable populations. Strategies to conduct individual-level and group-level needs assessments are explored.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: PHLT 101

PHLT 355 - Needs Assessment and Program Planning

In this course, students explore needs assessment and program planning processes used to address public health problems faced by vulnerable populations. They investigate strategies to involve stakeholders in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of health promotion programs. Students evaluate and compare evidence-based programs as they develop health promotion programs for vulnerable populations. Strategies to conduct individual-level and group-level needs assessments are explored.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: PHLT 101

PHLT 356 - Reproductive Health for The Public Health Practitioner

Course content emphasizes theories of reproductive health, sexual development and factors influencing sexual behavior within the continuum of health and illness. Common sexual practices and reproductive health issues of people are studied within the context of lifestyle and situational life crises. Concepts of normal sexual function and dysfunction are examined. Contemporary sexual health and reproductive issues, obstetrical care in the United States and abroad, gender based violence, maternal morbidity and mortality, family planning, and reproductive health policy are explored. Theoretical foundations of the medical, psychological, socio-cultural, political, and biological determinants of human sexual behavior and reproductive health are examined. Issues of biology related to sex, gender identity, social sex role, and sexual orientation are discussed. Contemporary issues of sexual risk behaviors, sexually transmitted infections and safer sex practices will be investigated in addition to those issues of chronic illness, disability, and sexual coercion.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

PHLT 357 - Women, Gender, And Public Health

This course will focus on constructions of gender and sex and their implications for understanding determinants of population health and creating healthy public policy. It will consider how different frameworks of addressing gender and biological sex shape questions people ask about, and explanations and interventions they offer for societal patterns of health, disease, and well-being. The course will demonstrates ways of conceptualizing gender in relation to biology and health using case examples. In all cases, issues of gender will be related to other social determinants of health, including social class, racism, and other forms of inequality. Implications of diverse approaches will be debated, as part of developing useful strategies for improving physical, mental, and social well-being. This course is an elective and is not offered every year, based on demand. 

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Summer

How Offered: Hybrid

PHLT 358 - Adolescent Health: Public Health Issues, Programs, And Policies

This course focuses on the major public health issues of adolescents in the United States and the programs and policies that improve the health and well-being of this population. The students examine the prevalence and etiology of health and wellness indicators for youth and explore a variety of aspects of adolescence and adolescent health. They will analyze adolescent health concerns through conceptual frameworks and recommend effective solutions through interventions. This course is an elective and is not offered every year, based on demand. 

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

PHLT 408 - Research Methods for Public Health

This course investigates research methods and multidisciplinary research applied to health care systems.  An overview of research designs and reporting is presented.  Quantitative data analysis is explored using data analysis software.  Qualitative methods, including the use of focus groups, are also explored.  Evidence-based public health practice is emphasized.  The importance of ethics in public health research is woven throughout the course.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Restrictions: Public health and/or Nutrition majors only

Prerequisites: HSC 217

PHLT 410 - Public Health Education Capstone I

Part one of this two-part course allows students to begin to link public health concepts and ideas presented in the classroom to real world experiences in the public health practice setting. Emphasis is placed on needs assessment, data collection and program planning. Students discuss actual case studies illustrating the practical challenges of data collection and program development.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Restrictions: Public health majors only

Prerequisites: PHLT 101, 301, 319, 350 and 355

PHLT 411 - Public Health Education Capstone II

Part two of this two-part course allows students to continue to link public health concepts and ideas presented in the classroom to real world experiences in the public health practice setting. Emphasis is placed on program implementation and program evaluation. Students discuss actual case studies illustrating the practical challenges of program implementation and evaluation. As one of the final courses of the Bachelor of Science in Public Health program, students focus on public health workforce development, leadership, professional development, and preparation for entry into the public health education workforce.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Restrictions: Public health majors only

Prerequisites: PHLT 101, 301, 319, 350, 355, 410 and 451

Corequisites: PHLT 408 and 420

PHLT 420 - Public Health Leadership and Health Education

In this course, one of the final courses taken in the Bachelor of Science in Public Health curriculum, students explore the leadership role of public health professionals, especially leaders working in urban public health and health education. Public health leadership concepts addressed in this course include: principles of leadership and management, team building, ethics and professionalism, strategic planning, networking, budgeting and finance, and continued professional development.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Restrictions: Public health majors only

Prerequisites: PHLT 101, 319, 350, 355

PHLT 451 - Introduction to Public Health Policy

Students explore key health policy issues in the United States health care system and the outcomes of policies for public, private, and not-for-profit settings. They examine steps of policy analysis and apply these strategies to evaluate health issues and health care. The legislative process and the structure and financing of the health care system in the United States are investigated as are influences of politics and interest groups on health policy formulation. The effect of health policy on the health of urban communities is analyzed along with the interplay of policy on infectious diseases, bioethical issues, and globalization. 

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Fall

How Offered: Face-to-Face

Prerequisites: PHLT 101

PHLT 454 - Public Health, Aids, And Society

This course provides an in-depth study of the most critical public health issue facing society. Topics include current HIV/AIDS information and an exploration of issues including the history of HIV, transmission and risk factors for infection, local and global disparities in HIV infection, trends in research programs, international/political implications of research and prevention efforts, and the experiences of people living with HIV/AIDS. This class is typically offered as a 1-week winter intersession class before the spring semester. 

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Spring

How Offered: Face-to-Face

PHLT 489 - Race, Ethnicity, And Public Health

This course provides students with an understanding of racial and ethnic influences on health status and the societal factors that shape them. During the course, students examine the concepts of race and ethnicity, and distinguish between categories of biological and social constructionist perspectives. Students define and describe racial and ethnic health inequities, discuss mechanisms underlying inequities, and think critically about existing health research on health inequities.  Students will explore theoretical frameworks for interpreting inequities in health and examine approaches for elimination of racial and ethnic health disparities.

Number of Credits: 3

When Offered: Fall, Summer

How Offered: Face-to-Face, Online

Prerequisites: PHLT 101