Health Sciences

The Department of Health Sciences provides a comprehensive foundation in natural sciences, public health, the health care system and social sciences to prepare students for successful careers in health services. Students will be introduced to a broad spectrum of health issues including sociocultural influences on health, health behavior and management, the systems of health care, legal and ethical concerns, health promotion, environmental influences on health, nutrition, mental health, life cycle health, alternative/complementary medicine, epidemiology and more.

Faculty and staff in the Department of Health Studies bring extensive experience in healthcare from previous roles as health administrators, pharmacists, nurses, community educators, researchers, and clinicians. Faculty engage in research in Alzheimer's Disease, behavioral health, health policy, public health, health systems, and other topics. Faculty are dedicated to helping students learn and grow into competent health professionals.

Department of Health Sciences Faculty & Staff

Undergraduate Majors

Undergraduate Minor

HSC 110 Intro Health Prof Practice (3 credits)

This course introduces students to the use of models and theories in the health professions as they apply to evidence-based programs and practices. Students selects and explore an acute or chronic health issue, investigate the problem from an epidemiological perspective, apply a relevant health behavior model or theory, and develop suggestions for practice. Course content includes the medical and public health models, Health Belief Model, Stages of Change, Diffusion of Innovations, Social Cognitive Theory, Health Communications, and ecological theories of health behavior. Staff from the Career Development Center present information on career exploration and internships.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 111 Health Sci Orientation II (1 credit)

Overview of interprofessional healthcare professions with specific emphasis on the disciplines of PT, OT, HS and EXP. Topics will include IPE team building, ethical issues, the healthcare team concept, current healthcare issues, professional behaviors, confidentiality, communication, and department/profession specific information.

Prerequisites: HS 110 or HSC 110

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 150 First Year Seminar (3 credits)

Seminar subjects vary.

Restrictions: Enrollment is limited to students with a major in Health Science or Undecided Health.

Attributes: First-Year Seminar, Undergraduate

HSC 190 CPR & First Aid Certification (3 credits)

This course will train students to act in emergency situations, to recognize and care for life-threatening cardiac and respiratory emergencies in adults, children, and infants. Students will also learn how to protect themselves and others from disease transmission through preventative measures from blood-borne pathogens, utilize two-rescuer cardiopulmonary resuscitation, and handle oxygen delivery, bag valve mask resuscitation, asthma inhalers, and epinephrine auto-injection. This course will satisfy the requirements for American Red Cross Professional Rescuer Adult, Child, and Infant Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation/Automated External Defibrillation/First Aid Certification.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 211 Health Care Systems (3 credits)

An introduction to public health and the organization and structure of the health care delivery system in the United States. This course will focus upon the various types of health care services, where these services are provided, ways to assess and keep track of diseases and public health care needs, health policies, and administration of these services. Also included will be a discussion of how legal, economic, psychological, cultural, political, ethical, and technological forces affect health care and the people who provide it. An introduction to managed care including current and evolving models, terminology, and differences among insurers and payer types will be included. Staff from the Career Development present information on resume writing, internships, and other experiential learning opportunities.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 216 Alcohol, Drugs and Society (3 credits)

This course explores substance use from the neurological, biological, and social perspectives. Content covers individual and social factors related to substance abuse and evidence-based policies and programs to treat and prevent the disorder. Examples of topics discussed include opioid addiction, adolescent substance abuse, and binge drinking.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 217 Soc Determinants Mental Health (3 credits)

This course examines the connections between mental health and society. What are the major forms of mental and behavioral health and illness? How widespread are mental disorders and what predicts their occurrence? What impact do they have on society and institutions such as health care and criminal justice? How does mental illness relate to social norms? What roles do psychiatric diagnoses play in society and how do diagnoses affect individuals relative to society?

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 220 Disability & Social Participat (3 credits)

This course will provide students with an opportunity to learn about the lived experience of persons with disabilities and their participation in society. In addition, students will study the role of the social, cultural, and physical environment in providing opportunities and/or barriers to participation of all persons. Students will participate in service-learning experiences to enhance their knowledge through interactions with people with disabilities during sports and leisure activities.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 240 Stress Management & Resilience (3 credits)

The goal of this course is to discuss stress and its effect on health and wellness and explore stress management and resilience-enhancing strategies from physical, cognitive, emotional, social, and spiritual perspectives. Students will define stress and explore theories of stress adaptation, understand the empirical basis of stress management interventions, experiment with physical, cognitive, emotional, social, and spiritual stress management strategies, and explore responses to failure and trauma.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 244 Health Information Technology (3 credits)

Health care increasingly engages in the use of information technology to collect, maintain, and analyze clinically relevant health data. This course is designed to present students with several real life scenarios with a focus on practical and applied uses of health information technology. Students will utilize a simulated electronic health record (EHR) to enter data, recall clinically relevant information for the purpose of analyzing data, and gain an understanding of how health care is transitioning to a focus on quality and outcomes utilizing information technology. Upon completion of the course, students should understand terminology related to technology commonly used in the health care setting, analyze and evaluate health data to draw conclusions, and apply technology focused solutions to support outcomes focused patient care.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 248 Health of School Aged Children (3 credits)

This course explores the specific health needs of children and opportunities for health promotion and disease prevention in schools and communities. Course content covers the health issues of infectious diseases, chronic illnesses, injuries, and adverse childhood experiences and the use of evidence-based programs and practices in improving children's health.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 251 Healthcare Law and Ethics (3 credits)

This course provides an overview of legal and ethical issues central to the health care delivery system and their impact on individual institutions and professionals. The relationships among biomedical and technology, societal changes, court rulings, and governmental legislation within the context of the healthcare system will be examined. During the regular fall and spring semesters, this course fulfills the overlay requirement of an ethics intensive course.

Prerequisites: PHL 154

Attributes: Ethics Intensive, Justice Ethics and the Law , Undergraduate

HSC 252 Health Policy (3 credits)

This course will explore health care policy issues (such as Medicare, Social Security, Medicaid, Long-Term Care, AIDS/HIV programs) and lead to a general understanding of the health care policy process. Focus will be placed on examining the various factors that lead to health care policy at the state and national level, and how health care policy impacts health care professionals' ability to deliver care and consumers' ability to utilize care in an ever-changing environment. The role of the political process to address issues revolving around cost of health care, access to and quality of that care will be addressed.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 253 Nutrition: Health & Disease (3 credits)

Nutrition: Health & Disease introduces the basic concepts of nutrition, the functions of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, minerals, and water in the body, and the role of diet in health and disease. Health topics include heart disease, obesity, hypertension, diabetes, protein energy malnutrition, disordered eating and food safety. The content material of HSC 253 Nutrition: Health and Disease overlaps with the content of CHM 110 Food Chemistry I, CHM 111 Food Chemistry II and CHM 112/112L, EPH 360 and BIO 219 Basic Nutrition (USCI Legacy BS 219).

Restrictions: Students cannot enroll who have a major in Food Marketing.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 256 HIV/AIDS (3 credits)

The HIV/AIDS course offers students the opportunity to explore one of the most critical public health issues facing the world today. Topics include epidemiology of HIV/AIDS, pathogenesis, the social and political history of the disease, modes of transmission, opportunistic infections, ethical issues, and global responses. This class will include site visits to local agencies in the Philadelphia area as well.

Prerequisites: PHL 154

Attributes: Ethics Intensive, Undergraduate

HSC 276 Health of the Aging Adult (3 credits)

This course will focus on the demographic, political, economic and biopsychosocial issues of aging adults from community-based services to home care, hospice, hospital and nursing home settings. The course will focus on the interventions that health providers can use to maximize safety, function and social stability in the community, deferring or delaying institutionalization. Specific topics include fall prevention, medication safety, telemedicine applications, HIV prevention, cognitive function, nutrition, quality of life and the quality of care.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 285 Med Terminology & Health Comm (3 credits)

Ongoing advancement in the allied health professions dictates the need for students to understand proper medical and anatomical terminology to include its source language, evolution and application in the field of medicine and allied health. The need to understand proper medical and anatomical terminology is imperative as this language provides proficient communication between members of the same profession, minimizing the potential for misinterpretation in such a highly critical field. This course will introduce and educate students to a substantial medical vocabulary comprised of prefixes (location of an organ, the number of parts, or time involved), word roots (body part) and suffixes (condition, disease process, or procedure) which are utilized by health care practitioners as a devoted language. This course will describe the human body, coupled components, conditions, processes and medical treatments; providing the proper medical vocabulary for each.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 310 Ethics in Sports (3 credits)

This course will provide students with the opportunity to examine personally held ethical beliefs as well as the ethical dilemmas in past and current sporting events including legal repercussions of participant actions. This course will assist students in defining and understanding legal, ethical, and professional judgment in sport. Students will study and apply the various theories and models of sportsmanship and ethics in sports.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 323 Health and Society (3 credits)

Health and health care are of central concern in a post-industrial society. This course examines sociological issues in health and health care, with special focus on the contemporary United States. This course will examine key social factors (known as the social determinants of health) that influence physical and mental health including race, gender, and social class. Also examined are ways in which health and health care become major social problems, and what are the prospects for major social change in society's response to health issues? During the regular fall and spring semesters, this course fulfills the overlay requirement of a diversity, non-western or globalization course.

Attributes: Diversity Course, Undergraduate

HSC 331 Health Sciences Research (3 credits)

This course teaches critical thinking and writing skills by introducing students to research methods in health and medicine. The course covers human participant protections, research designs, instrumentation, quantitative and qualitative data analyses, and communication of study findings. Students are responsible for selecting a health problem of interest, gathering and critiquing current research, writing a literature review and developing a research proposal. Throughout the course, students will review research articles investigating health disparities and other social justice issues. This course fulfills the overlay requirement of a writing intensive course. Students are taught to write in the technical report format.

Prerequisites: ENG 101 and PHL 154

Attributes: Ethics Intensive, Faith Justice Course, Undergraduate, Writing Intensive Course- GEP

HSC 345 DyingWell:The Hospice Movement (3 credits)

This course examines how people across cultures and throughout history have responded to the challenge of dying. It will examine cultural practices relating to treatment of the death and to care of the dying, as well as the process of confronting one's own death from a psychological perspective. After describing the limitations of the traditional medical (curative) model's approach to death, the course will study the hospice movement: its history, philosophy, and practices of caring. In addition to specific models and essential components of hospice care, administrative issues (legal, reimbursement, human resources) will be addressed. This course will include presentations by and interviews with hospice workers, as well as a survey of hospices in the metropolitan area. This course includes a weekly service-learning requirement.

Attributes: Faith Justice Course, Undergraduate

HSC 348 Foundations of Kinesiology (3 credits)

Foundations of Kinesiology introduces students to the basic physiological, psychological, sociological, and mechanical principles of human movement. Students will explore careers that involve kinesiology, which include physical education, physical therapy, nursing, athletic training, and sports nutrition.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 354 Diversity Ldrship in Hlth Care (3 credits)

The impact of valuing diversity and multiculturalism is profound in the healthcare field. Research has long suggested that health outcomes and health services delivery are improved when caregivers and managers integrate genuine valuing of diversity in their operations. This course offers students the means to develop effective awareness, knowledge and sensitivity concerning diversity and multiculturalism. It provides strategies and insights allowing students to build their leadership skills in this critical area and then apply such knowledge and competencies in the field itself.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 359 Health Program Planning (3 credits)

Community health education programs are a cost effective way to prevent injuries and diseases. This course takes students through the process of health promotion planning including theoretical foundations, needs assessment, program development, and evaluation. Development and implementation of a health promotion project is a core component of the course. Emphasis is placed on evidence-based programs and practices.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 360 Animal Therapy (3 credits)

This course is designed to give students an understanding of animals in formal roles of support within society. Various levels of animal-assisted interventions and their legal implications, including Emotional Support Animals, Animal-Assisted Activities, Animal-Assisted Therapy, and Service Animals will be reviewed. The role of animals providing services to people with autism spectrum disorders, children with cancer, individuals with psychiatric disorders, the elderly, and individuals with physical disabilities will be discussed. The history of Animal-Assisted interventions leading up to their current status will be addressed.

Prerequisites: PSY 208 or SOC 217

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 368 Just Hlth Care Dev Nations (3 credits)

An investigation of adequate health care as a fundamental human right. The course will proceed from the premise that socially induced needs are a result of historical development of material and social conditions, coupled with a social consensus that some things are necessary for happiness, social life, or some other goal. It will consider the inability of many societies to supply adequate health care as an issue of basic personal dignity, a claim against society, and as a matter of justice. The course will examine the issue of just health care for all peoples from both public health and ethical perspectives.

Prerequisites: PHL 154

Attributes: Ethics Intensive, Globalization Course, Health Care Ethics Course, Justice Ethics and the Law , Latin American Studies Course, Undergraduate

HSC 370 Special Topics Health Sciences (3 credits)

Special Topics in Health Services explores a specialized area of health care or an emerging or re-emerging health issue. The topic for a given semester will be announced prior to registration. This course may be taken more than once with permission of the Health Studies Chair.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 390 Medical Terminology (2 credits)

This course is designed to teach medical terminology to all majors to assist students in the transition to the professional program or graduate school. This course will explore terminology and abbreviations by body systems to enable students to recognize, interpret and utilize medical terminology and abbreviations when reading medical literature, documenting in patient/client charts and working in the healthcare environment.

Restrictions: Enrollment is limited to Undergraduate Day Division level students.

HSC 410 Fieldwork (3 credits)

Fieldwork provides current or prospective health care students a chance to observe healthcare professionals in a workplace setting. The shadowing experience is designed to be an observation only experience lasting 45 hours. Students will contact their chose organization(s) to shadow a professional in their chosen career field(s). Students are NOT placed in a specific location. Students responsible for contact, organization, and documentation of their shadowing hours. Students may choose to shadow one or more professionals at one or more locations.

Restrictions: Enrollment is limited to students with a major in Exercise Physiology or Health Science. Enrollment is limited to Undergraduate Day Division level students.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 441 Complementary & Alt Med (3 credits)

This course introduces students to the history and practice of complementary medicine and non-traditional therapies. Included will be an overview of the debate between eastern and western societal approaches to medicine, the relationship between mind and body in health and illness, how cultural issues affect the way individuals feel about and comply with their medical treatment, some of the non-traditional therapies used in the treatment of physical and psychological illness such as art and music therapy, and the overall emphasis on wellness promotion.

Attributes: Globalization Course, Non-Western Studies (GEP), Undergraduate

HSC 458 Public Health & Epidemiology (3 credits)

This course introduces the basic principles and methods of epidemiology. Topics include historical perspectives of epidemiology, measures of disease occurrence and association, clinical epidemiology, disease screening, causal inference, and study designs. Students will apply epidemiological principles to public health practice using critical thinking and analytical skills.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 490 Internship in Health Sciences (3 credits)

Internship in Interdisciplinary Health Studies permits students to focus on a particular area of interest within the Health Studies Department. Students choose from a range of interesting topics and interests to provide a deeper level of understanding. This course requires 112 hours of work at the internship site, regular journal reporting, clear learning objectives, and completion of a final project. Students benefit from both the academic side as well as the practical side by gaining hands-on experience for future employment.

Restrictions: Enrollment limited to students with a class of Junior or Senior. Enrollment is limited to students with a major in Health Science or Inter. Health Studies.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 493 Independent Study (3 credits)

Students who have completed four regular semesters with an overall grade point average of 3.0 (or cumulative average of 3.4 or higher for courses in the major field) may, with the prior approval of the chairs and Dean's office concerned, register each semester for one upper division course in the major field (or a closely related field) to be taken in the Independent Study/Directed Readings or Research/Tutorial format. Such courses are offered to enrich the student's major program and not as a special arrangement to facilitate a student's fulfillment of course or credit requirements. Additional conditions are described in Guidelines for Directed Readings, Independent Study, and Similar Courses issued by the appropriate Dean's Office.

Restrictions: Enrollment is limited to students with a major, minor, or concentration in Health Science or Inter. Health Studies.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 494 Independent Study (3 credits)

Students who have completed four regular semesters with an overall grade point average of 3.0 (or cumulative average of 3.4 or higher for courses in the major field) may, with the prior approval of the chairs and Dean's office concerned, register each semester for one upper division course in the major field (or a closely related field) to be taken in the Independent Study/Directed Readings or Research/Tutorial format. Such courses are offered to enrich the student's major program and not as a special arrangement to facilitate a student's fulfillment of course or credit requirements. Additional conditions are described in Guidelines for Directed Readings, Independent Study, and Similar Courses issued by the appropriate Dean's Office.

Restrictions: Enrollment is limited to students with a major, minor, or concentration in Health Science or Inter. Health Studies.

Attributes: Undergraduate

HSC 495 Seminar in Health Sciences (3 credits)

This course is offered as one of the final courses in the Health Sciences major to provide students with a solid platform in leadership, professionalism, career development, and community outreach. Course content is based upon two overarching educational goals. The first major goal is to synthesize key themes and information that constitute the Health Sciences curriculum, allowing students to review critical concepts and material. The second major goal is to help students transition from their undergraduate environment to the world of professional careers in health care; professional education in various clinical fields; or graduate education in health administration, public health, or health education. This course partners with Career Development Center staff to offer best practices in resume writing and a panel presentation of alumnae. All students are expected to develop a community-based service/research project for presentation.

Prerequisites: (IHS 110 or HSC 110) and (IHS 211 or HSC 211) and (IHS 323 or HSC 323 or SOC 323)

Restrictions: Enrollment is limited to students with a major, minor, or concentration in Health Science or Inter. Health Studies.

Attributes: Undergraduate