Health Science Studies Major


We frequently receive questions about the Health Science Studies major in Baylor’s School of Education.  It should come as no surprise, since approximately one-third of Baylor freshmen indicate that they are on a pre-med track.  If you are interested in a career in healthcare, pre-med or otherwise, please take a few moments to learn some basics about this popular major.

The Health Science Studies major is offered on a Bachelor of Science in Education degree plan.  Be aware that this does not automatically mean that you will be prepared for teacher certification with this program, though some students choose to include teacher education classes in their courses of study.  Students in this major have a choice of four options:

  • Pre-Physical Therapy Option
  • Pre-Medical/Pre-Dental Option
  • Secondary General Science Education Option
  • Health Professions Option

Obviously, the first two options are intended for students who plan on applying to a professional school in physical therapy, medicine, or dentistry.  The programs include the prerequisites needed for admission to the professional schools.  Students in these two options should note the following requirement, taken directly from the Baylor University Undergraduate Catalog (2011-2012):

“Students in Health Science Studies (HSS) Premedical/Predental and Pre-Physical Therapy majors will be required to have a 3.0 or beter cumulative GPA after 60 hours are completed (with at least 15 hours at Baylor). These 60 hours will include but not be limited to BIO 1305-1105, BIO 1306-1106, CHE 1301, 1302, 1316, HP 1420, and required math coursework. If a student does not have the 3.0 GPA after completing the required 60 hours, the student will be placed on probationary status for one term.  At the end of the one probationary ter, (two summer sessions count as one term) if the GPA is still not at a 3.0 and/or the above coursework is not completed, the student will not be allowed to continue in this major. Students may appeal the GPA requirement only in very unusual circumstances. Appeals must be made in writing to the director of the HSS program within 15 days of the end of any semester after 60 hours when a student’s GPA falls below 3.0.”

Students in the latter two options must maintain a 2.6 GPA or higher, meaning that some students who are not able to continue in the Pre-Physical Therapy or Pre-Medical/Pre-Dental Options are able to change to the Secondary General Science Education Option or Health Professions Option as a back-up plan.

The Secondary General Science Education Option has Health Science Studies students to take courses that would make them eligible to apply for teacher certification, while the Health Professions Option gives students the choice of a minor in Business Administration or Community Health.

Many students find appealing the professional field experience or internship that is built into this major.  Also, students are quick to notice that the Health Science Studies major does not require students to take a foreign language, a significant difference from a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts degree plan.

We hope this summary whets your appetite for information on the Health Science Studies major.  Stay tuned, as we plan to add an interview with Dr. Barbalee Symm about this major to our Meet the Majors podcast series soon!

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