BA Program

The Public Health Studies Program offers undergraduates a major that links them to the world of public health through core courses taken on the Homewood campus, as well as electives taken at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHSPH).

See this video for an overview. This checklist is intended for planning purposes. Course offerings may change from year to year. All courses must be taken for a grade and not S/U, unless the course is not offered as a graded course. You must earn a C- or higher to count courses toward your Public Health Studies degree.

Foundation Courses

Quantitative: You must take one semester of calculus. This requirement can be fulfilled using AP credits accepted by JHU.

Natural Science: You must take two semesters of biology and one corresponding lab. While students typically fulfill this requirement with introductory biology classes, upper-level classes can also count. This requirement can be fulfilled using AP credits accepted by JHU.

Social Science: Choose two introductory social science courses from this list. Other courses may apply with advisor approval. These courses must be taken from two different departments.

  • AS.060.155 Introduction to the Research Paper-Controversies in Adolescence
  • AS.070.132 Invitation to Anthropology
  • AS.140.105 History of Medicine
  • AS.140.106 History of Modern Medicine
  • AS.140.146 History of Public Health in East Asia
  • AS.150.219 Introduction to Bioethics
  • AS.180.101 Elements of Macroeconomics
  • AS.180.102 Elements of Microeconomics
  • AS.190.220 Global Security Politics
  • AS.190.284 Classics of Political Theory: Political Freedom
  • AS.200.101 Introduction to Psychology
  • AS.200.110 Introduction to Cognitive Psychology
  • AS.200.132 Introduction to Developmental Psychology
  • AS.200.133 Introduction to Social Psychology
  • AS.200.209 Personality
  • AS.200.212 Abnormal Psychology
  • AS.200.222 Positive Psychology
  • AS.230.101 Introduction to Sociology
  • AS.230.150 Issues in International Development
  • AS.271.107 Introduction to Sustainability
  • AS.360.247 Introduction to Social Policy: Baltimore and Beyond
  • EN.570.108 Introduction to Environmental Engineering
  • EN.570.110 Introduction to Engineering for Sustainable Development

Public Health Studies Core Courses

All six courses are required. With advisor approval, other JHU statistics courses can substitute for AS.280.345 Public Health Biostatistics. Otherwise, no substitutions are allowed. All courses must be completed before taking any courses at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Semesters these courses are offered are indicated for each.

  • AS.280.101 Introduction to Public Health (fall and spring)
  • AS.280.240 Research Methods in Public Health (fall and spring)
  • AS.280.335 The Environment and Your Health (fall and spring)
  • AS.280.340 Fundamentals of Health Policy and Management (spring)
  • AS.280.345 Public Health Biostatistics (fall)
  • AS.280.350 Fundamentals of Epidemiology (fall and spring)

Intermediate Public Health Courses

Choose one course at the 200-400 level focusing on social and behavioral aspects of health from this list. (Another course may apply with advisor approval.)

  • AS.230.341 Sociology of Health and Illness

Choose three additional courses at the 200-400 level from this list. (Other courses may apply with advisor approval.) Courses must be at least 3 credits each. No more than two Gordis Teaching Fellowship (GTF) courses can be used to fulfill this requirement.

  • AS.140.311 Ecology, Health, and the Environment
  • AS.180.289 Economics of Health
  • AS.180.390 Health Economics and Developing Countries
  • AS.190.405 Food Politics
  • AS.230.324 Gender and International Development
  • AS.230.335 Medical Humanitarianism
  • AS.230.341 Sociology of Health and Illness
  • AS.270.360 Climate Change: Science and Politics
  • AS.280.225 Population Health and Development
  • AS.280.312 Media, Politics, and Evidence in the History of Public Health
  • AS.280.320 Seminar on Baltimore Health and Wellbeing
  • AS.280.329 The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Scientific Writing in Public Health
  • AS.280.360 Clinical Public Health Behavior Change
  • AS.280.380 Global Health Principles and Practices
  • AS.280.399 Practicum in Community Health Care
  • AS.280.4XX GTF Course

Applied Experience

The applied experience requires at least 80 hours of field work experience with one program, organization, or researcher in a professional public health setting. There are a variety of ways to fulfill this requirement. Talk to Keri Frisch, the Experiential Learning Specialist, and see the Applied Experience page for guidance. Your work must be approved before you begin.

Advanced Courses at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

15 credits must be taken at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHSPH).

  • Core courses and the academic ethics module must be completed before you register for JHSPH courses. Additionally, you must be in your final year of study.
  • Each JHSPH credit is equivalent to 0.67 Homewood credits.
  • Blended courses may count for this requirement. Independent research, special studies, and online courses do not. You may take such courses and opportunities. Credits will count toward your total number of credits needed to graduate, but they will not count toward the 15 credits needed to fulfill this specific requirement.
  • These courses may not be taken S/U, unless the course is not offered as a graded course.
  • 8 JHSPH credits must create a focus area that is related to a particular topic or taken in a single department.

Honors in Public Health

Departmental honors in public health are conferred on students who graduate with a minimum 3.30 grade point average within the major and who complete an honors thesis based on an autonomous research project conducted under the mentorship of a faculty member in a department associated with the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, or the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Students must complete the honors in public health courses (AS.280.495 and AS.280.499) and present their research findings in a poster session, research symposium, or scientific conference.

Departmental honors is seen as going above and beyond your PHS degree requirements. Honors requirements do not count for other PHS courses or degree requirements. Talk to your PHS academic advisor and see the Honors page for guidance.