Thinking about declaring an HSSP Major Degree?

Learn more about HSSP, including how to declare your HSSP major/minor, by reading our FAQ Sheet. 

Here you will learn more about major and minor requirements as well  as find a link to our HSSP Declaration Form.

Degree Requirements

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Students may choose to earn a degree in HSSP as a Bachelor of Arts (BA), a Bachelor of Science (BS), or a Minor. By undertaking this broad, interdisciplinary study of health, students prepare themselves for a variety of educational and professional opportunities. Graduates of HSSP go on to careers in the fields of medicine, dentistry, public health, clinical therapy, social work, genetic counseling, biomedical research, law, social policy, and public service, among many others.


All HSSP Majors and Minors must complete 4 Core courses. HSSP Majors must complete 2 additional Core courses.  The Elective requirements vary depending on whether you elect to pursue a BA, BS, or a Minor in HSSP.

It’s best to choose your course of study based on your interests. For an overview of HSSP requirements and electives, see the HSSP - Quick Guide to HSSP Courses.

A.  The 4 Core HSSP Courses for all Majors/Minors

1. Science: For BA & minors: BIOL 14a - Genetics & Genomics, BIOL 15b - Cells & Organisms, BIOL 16a - Evolution & Biodiversity, or BIOL 42a – Physiology.

BS students must complete BIOL 42a - Physiology. The prerequisites for BIOL 42a are BIOL 14a and BIOL 15b.

2. Society: SOC 191a - Health, Community & Society or SOC 189a - Sociology of the Body & Health.

HSSP students may now use either course to fulfill this requirement.

3. Policy: HS 104b - American Health Care or LGLS 114a - American Health Care: Law & Policy or LGLS 114aj - American Health Care: Reform as part of the Summer health-related JBS Health, Law & Justice.

HS 104b and LGLS 114a are usually offered in the Fall each year.

4. Epidemiology & Biostatistics: HSSP 100b - Introduction to Epidemiology, Biostatistics & Population Health, open to HSSP Juniors & Seniors, usually offered in fall and spring semesters, generally taken in Junior year or one of the DIS Study Abroad epidemiology courses - Epidemiology: Danish Case Studies or Epidemiology: Swedish Case Studies.

B.  For all Majors, there are 2 additional Core Courses

5.  Senior Capstone: HSSP 110a - Integrative Seminar on Health.

Open to HSSP Seniors, offered in both fall and spring semesters. Seniors may petition for SOC 199b - So You Want to Change The World - to fulfill the Capstone requirement.

6. Hands on Experience: Your “HOE” must be health-related.


C.  Electives by degrees

BA:  In addition to the 6 Core Courses for majors:  4 HSSP electives (1 from each Focal Area + a 4th from any Focal Area)

BS:  If you entered Brandeis:

- in/after the Fall of 2015, In addition to the 6 Core Courses for majors:  BIOL 14a + 18a, BIOL 15b + 18b, and BIOL 16a, 3 HSSP electives (1 from each Focal Area), + 16 credits of Additional Basic Science Courses*

- before the Fall of 2015, In addition to the 6 Core Courses for majors:  5 HSSP electives (3 from Focal Area A + 1 from both Focal Area B & C) + 24 credits of Additional Basic Science Courses*

*Additional Basic Science Courses = any BIOL, BCHM, CBIO, NBIO, CHEM, PHYS, MATH, CSCI course at or above the 10-level or PSYC 51a - Statistics.

Minor:  In addition to the 4 Core Courses:  2 HSSP electives: (1 elective from one of the 3 focal areas + 1 elective from another of the 3 focal areas)


For more information on what courses count toward HSSP credit, see the Quick Guide.