Below is a sample of how a Boston University student might meet the Bachelor of Science in Behavior and Health (BSBH) requirements.  Typical registration is 16-18 credits (full-time study) each semester, and a minimum of 128 credits is required for graduation. Students who participate in a Study Abroad program will need to modify this sample schedule in order to meet requirements.

Freshman Yr – Fall

Principles of biology; emphasis on cellular structure, genetics, microbiology, development, biochemistry, metabolism, and immunology. This course is appropriate for non-majors and students in the health and paramedical sciences (Sargent College). Students may not receive credit for CAS BI 105 if CAS BI 108 has already been passed. Three hours lecture, two hours lab. Carries natural science divisional credit (with lab) in CAS. (Credits: 4)

MA 113 may not be taken for credit by any student who has completed any MA course numbered 300 or higher. Students may receive credit for not more than one of the following courses: CAS MA 113, MA 115, or MA 213. Basic concepts of estimation and tests of hypotheses, ideas from probability; one-, two-, and multiple-sample problems. Applications in social sciences. Primarily for students in the social sciences who require a one-semester introduction to statistics; others should consider CAS MA 115 or MA 213. Carries MCS divisional credit in CAS. (Credits: 4)

Basic introduction to field of psychology; topics include theories and findings governing learning, memory, perception, development, personality, social and abnormal psychology. Three hours large lecture and one hour discussion section or three hours of small lecture class with no discussion sections. Requirements vary. Students are required to participate as subjects in psychology studies. Carries social science divisional credit in CAS. (Credits: 4)

Topic-based seminar in academic reading and writing. Attention to reading and analyzing primary and secondary sources, argumentation, prose style, revision, and citation. Significant writing and individual conferences. (Credits: 4)

This course is designed to provide an orientation to freshmen about the college experience. Expectations, guidelines and resources will be made available to aid freshmen in making informed decisions about the quality of their education while clarifying and enhancing the students' experiences with the Boston University community. Interaction with faculty advisors and peer mentors is provided. (Credits: 0)

  • We recommend students take statistics during their Freshman year as it is a prerequisite for SAR-HP225 Critical Inquiry (Sophomore Fall). Statistics requirement could be fulfilled by CAS-MA113, MA213, or PS211.

Freshman Yr – Spring

Intensive preprofessional course for students whose programs require anatomy. Not for biology major or minor credit. Gross structure of the human body; skeletal, muscular, nervous, respiratory, circulatory, digestive, urinary, and reproductive systems. Three hours lecture, two hours lab (lab requires dissection). Carries natural science divisional credit (with lab) in CAS. (Credits: 4)

Topic-based seminar in academic reading, writing, and research. Continuing attention to argumentation, prose style, revision, and citation, with additional emphasis on college-level research. Significant writing and individual conferences. (Credits: 4)

Freshmen Seminar. Exploration of the roles and functions of the health and rehabilitation disciplines. Introduction to the health care system and its impact on society. Sargent students only. (Credits: 2)

Behavioral sciences course or General elective (eg SAR-HP220):

General elective:

Exploration of the factors that influence how people spend their time, including their choice of activity and their ability to perform important and meaningful activities, and of the impact of these occupations on health and well-being across the life course. (Credits: 2)

Sophomore Yr – Fall

Some knowledge of chemistry and anatomy assumed. Not for biology major or minor credit; Biology majors/minors should take CAS BI 315. Introduction to principles of systemic mammalian physiology with special reference to humans. Three hours lecture, three hours lab. (Credits: 4)

This course provides foundation skills in effective and efficient search of information resources relevant to the study of behavior and health, including on-line databases (e.g., PubMed, PsychInfo, CINAHL, NARIC), government sites, and other web sources. Students will learn basic skills to critically evaluate these information sources and to evaluate published research using quantitative and qualitative methods as needed to write a research-based paper. (Credits: 2)

Overview of healthy development across the lifespan followed by an examination of common conditions that typically begin in certain stages. Each condition will be examined for its individual, group and systemic impacts. (Credits: 4)

Survey of theory, research, and therapeutic interventions related to the rehabilitation of persons with psychiatric disabilities. Presents an overview of maladaptive problems in living from personal, biological, social, and environmental perspectives. Emphasizes issues of special relevance to health and rehabilitation professionals. 4 credits, 1st semester (Credits: 4)

Behavioral sciences course or General elective

  • SAR-HP225 Critical Inquiry replaces SAR-HS210.
  • SAR-HP252 or CAS-PS241 Developmental Psychology. NOTE: As of September 2015, students may select either SAR-HP252 or CAS-PS241 to meet the requirement for a course in human development. If students are planning to apply to graduate school, it is recommended that they take PS241 as that is a better recognized course. Otherwise, we recommend SAR-HP252 because it has a more applied focus.

Sophomore Yr – Spring

Examines applications from the social and behavioral sciences and allied health professions as they are integrated in the practice of traditional medicine. Examples of interventional strategies, treatments, and procedures, including biofeedback and hypnosis. (Credits: 4)

An introduction to the major theories and basic principles of sociological analysis. Explores culture, media, socialization, race and ethnicity, globalization, capitalism, gender and sexuality, inequality and poverty, power in American society, and health and medicine from a sociological perspective. Carries social science divisional credit in CAS. (Credits: 4)

The course is designed to improve the student's cultural competence, interpersonal and human relations skills. Through lecture, experiential activities and class discussions, students explore the meaning of helping/healing and identify the factors that facilitate counseling and professional relationships. These skills are also fundamental for health promotion programs. (Credits: 4)

Behavioral sciences course or General elective

Junior Yr – Fall

The focus of this interdisciplinary course is on increasing the student's understanding of the health care system, the social, environmental, and behavioral factors that affect health care, and on increasing the student's ability to work in interdisciplinary teams. The student will actively engage in individual work, group discussion and teamwork through written, oral, and web site assignments. (Credits: 4)

Behavioral sciences courses or General electives

Junior Yr – Spring

This course provides students with an introduction to the principles of health promotion and an overview of strategies used to promote health at both the individual and population levels.  The course will develop students’ understanding of public health principles, health promotion and human behavior change models, as well as social determinants of health, and will explore how interactions among these factors impact health interventions and outcomes.  Students will learn about methods to identify and assess the health needs of individuals across various contexts (health care facilities, schools, worksites, and communities); factors to consider when planning interventions tailored to the unique needs of specific populations (i.e. individuals with disabilities, male adolescents and young men, and communities of color); current evidence-based strategies to improve health outcomes and reduce the prevalence of chronic disease; and the effectiveness of select health promotion programs and strategies aimed at helping people make lasting healthy choices wherever they live, learn, work, and play. (Credits: 2)
Prerequisite: SAR-HP225 or HS210 or equivalent course in critical inquiry.

What is morality? What does morality require of us in our daily lives? We look both at theories that specify what morality requires of us and at specific moral issues to which these theories apply. Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS. (Credits: 4)

Overview of medical and psychosocial aspects of selected chronic diseases, with a particular focus on the impact of the disease and its management on the person's daily life. (Credits: 4)

Behavioral sciences course or General elective

  • Ethics requirement could be fulfilled by CAS-PH150 or PH251.

Senior Yr

Practical experience in a health or social service related setting related to the student's specialization area. Includes participation in weekly seminar. (Credits: 4)

Courses related to specialty (12 credits total)

Behavioral sciences course or General elective

  • Each student will identify an individual specialty area of focus related to his or her interests and anticipated career track. The specialty requires completion of SAR-HP405 Practicum and Seminar in Behavior & Health plus 12-credits in specialty courses (may be counted as electives).
  • Internships completed during Study Abroad do not fulfill the practicum requirement and cannot substitute for SAR-HP405 Practicum and Seminar; however, courses from study abroad (including the internship) may apply toward other requirements.

Specialty Areas

The specialty focus and relevant courses are developed individually in consultation with the student’s Advisor.  The student meets with his/her Advisor each semester (usually before registration), and by the end of the BSBH Junior year, each student will identify an individual specialty area of focus related to:

  • his/her interests and
  • anticipated career path

Specialty focus and courses are identified in consultation with the Advisor to provide a strong foundation for this future path. The specialty requires completion of SAR-HP405 Practicum and Seminar in Behavior & Health plus three additional related courses.

For a list of Advisors, please visit the BSBH Faculty webpage.

BSBH Career Fair

The BSBH program and the Boston University Center for Career Development will host an annual Career Fair for BSBH students during the Fall semester.  The BSBH Career Fair in conjunction with our senior seminar (SAR-HP405 Practicum and Seminar in Behavior and Health) will assist BSBH students in their search for a job related to their field, future career path, or graduate school.

The BSBH Career Fair will feature faculty representing different disciplines (such as clinical psychology, rehabilitation counseling, social work, and public health).  The faculty will outline where to look for their first job, benefits of informational interviews, the licensure and certification process for their field, and follow up with a Question & Answer session.


Please visit BU Undergraduate Admissions or contact an Academic Counselor at BU Sargent College’s Academic Services Center (room SAR-207, email, or phone 617-353-2713).