Health science is the application of scientific principles to human health and the study of disease processes and patterns. It involves the process of studying health from a scientific perspective, whereas the application of health science can be applied to the daily operations of people at all ages and from all walks of life. A bachelor’s degree in healthcare science provides necessary skills and education needed by health care employers, including critical thinking, problem-solving, leadership, communication, information literacy, organization, data analysis, and information technology.
There are many types of bachelor degrees in health science available through online schools, universities and colleges. Students can obtain a two-year associate’s degree or a four-year bachelor’s degree. Associate degrees typically take two years to complete. For students planning on entering the health care professions, an Associate’s degree program may be the easiest way to get started. However, a Bachelor’s degree can take four years or more depending on the number of credit hours required and the type of coursework completed.
If one is interested in obtaining additional training beyond an Associate’s degree or prior to enrolling in a Bachelor’s program in health science, a master’s degree is the next step. A master’s degree is typically longer than a bachelor’s degree and requires more credit hours. Typically, a master’s degree takes four years or more, depending on the number of credit hours required and the length of the course. In a typical four-year master’s program, students will learn about the physical sciences, including anatomy, diagnostic techniques, pharmacology, physiology, biochemistry, medical terminology, statistics, diagnostic testing and therapeutic procedures. Students will also learn about administrative and managerial practices in the clinical setting.
The field of medicine often has a concentration in one of several areas of concentration. The prerequisites for entering into a specialty degree program are typically a bachelor’s degree and completion of an approved associate’s degree or bachelor’s and a master’s degree in a scientific discipline. Some concentrations currently available at colleges and universities include: clinical studies, human biology, geriatrics, medical informatics, nursing, nutritional science, microbiology and pathology. Students may choose a specific concentration after completing their general degree. For example, those who completed a bachelor’s degree in business may opt for a concentration in marketing or in accounting.
For individuals who wish to further their education and careers but who do not have a Bachelor’s degree, an online degree or non-degree program may be the best option. An online health science degree allows those with current work schedules to pursue higher education in a flexible format that suits their personal needs. Online programs can be completed in as little as eight weeks. Some online programs even offer financial aid for those students wishing to pursue a full-time degree.
Those pursuing an online bachelor’s in health science, however, should be aware that they will not receive the same amount of credit that those students who complete a traditional college program will receive. In order to qualify for a grant or scholarship, the online student must demonstrate a financial need. The lack of on-campus housing means that online students will not be able to live in a dorm and use the facilities that traditional students will be able to use. Because online bachelor’s degree programs are generally considered electives, students are not required to enroll in a specific course or to take it before obtaining their degree.