What is a Health Science Degree?

Health Science DegreeA health science degree encompasses a broad range of study that allows students to embark on careers in a variety of fields within the healthcare industry. Students with an interest in medical fields and the organization and management of medical institutions will find this degree useful for future advancement in their careers. Individuals with a health science degree can serve in a number of different areas of management within the healthcare industry, dentistry and veterinary practices.

Many students begin their studies with pursuit of an associate degree in health information or specific medical fields and use this as a basis for additional study. Often previous credits can be transferred for more advanced degrees.

The Bachelor’s degree offers the most flexibility for positions in health science. Coursework usually includes science-related classes such as biology, chemistry, physics and environmental health, as well as general subjects such as organizational management, healthcare policy, community health and medical terminology. Master’s programs in health science require selection of a health specialty for continued study. Doctorate programs generally lead to advanced clinical positions in specific fields in clinical research and in teaching positions at the post-secondary level.

How To Find the Top Health Science Degree Programs

Johns Hopkins University has one of the best health science degree programs in the country, with a consistent ranking in the top 10 schools in this area of study. The program encompasses a dozen areas of focus, including environmental health, epidemiology and international health studies. Northwestern University in Chicago, Illinois offers students a part-time format with interdisciplinary studies. A post-doctoral fellowship program is also available. Northwestern also offers health outcomes research studies as part of its health science department. The University of Washington, located in Seattle, is another top school for health science degree programs, with both master’s and doctorate degrees. Research into healthcare policies is one of this school’s specialties. Some schools offer online classes for those who are already employed in health-related fields. Potential students must research these schools to ensure that the program is properly accredited.

The best online Health Science degree programs offer online classes in conjunction with traditional class work, allowing students a full range of opportunities to learn the specifics in their field of study.

Careers and Salaries For Individuals With a Health Science Degree

A degree in health science can provide individuals with skills necessary to become elder care coordinators, health educators, and community nutrition coordinators, as well as to be managers in many different medical specialties, including radiology, histology, nuclear medicine, substance abuse, dentistry and veterinary practice. Careers in accounting and finance in medical institutions often use individuals with health science degrees. Human resources, quality control, community health, information technology and other specific areas also use health science majors for the normal day-to-day operations of health-related facilities and offices.

Health science degree salaries can vary widely within this career major, depending on the type of work and duties performed.