Global and Public Health Sciences (GPHS)

This major is offered through the College of Human Ecology or the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. Enrolling in this major is especially appropriate if you wish to pursue advanced study to prepare for leadership positions in governmental or nongovernmental organizations,working directly with current and emerging health concerns in the U.S. or internationally.

Learn more about the GPHS major

Public health actions often address such issues as obesity and diabetes, food security, HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases; quality of food, water and air; and health care access.

GPHS majors develop a strong background in biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemistry, and physiology. These courses provide a foundation with which to understand the biomedical basis of public health issues. GPHS students also complete several core courses, a supervised Experiential Learning Opportunity, and a range of upper-level selectives, described in more detail below.

Core Courses

  • NS 1600 Introduction to Public Health
  • NS 2600 Introduction to Global Health
  • NS 2060 Preparation for Engaged Learning in GPHS
  • NS 3600 Epidemiology
  • NS 4600 Explorations in Global and Public Health

NS 1600 and NS 2600 introduce students to the principles of public health practice and research in the U.S. and internationally. Using case studies, students learn about achievements, challenges, and controversies in the field of public health and a range of career opportunities. NS 2060 helps to prepare GPHS majors for their Experiential Learning Opportunity (described below). NS 3600 introduces students to epidemiology, often referred to as the cornerstone of public health. Epidemiology and biostatistics (preferably STSCI 2150 Introductory Statistics for Biology) should be completed within the first five semesters. Upon completion of the Experiential Learning Opportunity, seniors enroll in NS 4600 Explorations in Global and Public Health, the capstone course in the major. This course includes a reflective document and presentation connecting the experiential component with the core principles of public health as presented in core coursework.

Public health is the prevention of illness and promotion of wellness in communities both large and small. The Global and Public Health Sciences (GPHS) major teaches the tools of public health research and action and their application to population health issues in the U.S. and globally.

The work of public health professionals is distinct from the work of clinical professionals, who typically treat individuals after they have become sick or injured. Public health actions often involve educational and/or governmental approaches that influence many people simultaneously, for example, to address issues such as obesity and diabetes, food security, HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases, quality of food, water and air, and access to health care. Sustained improvement of the health of populations often requires a multidisciplinary approach involving the biomedical, behavioral, social, political and environmental sciences, and careful consideration of the importance of cultural and ethical contexts.

The GPHS major is intended for students who are interested in:

  • Health problems of communities as small as a village and as large as a country, and the actions that will protect or improve the lives of large numbers of individuals within communities
  • Advanced study leading leadership positions in governmental or non-governmental organizations that deal directly with current and emerging health concerns in the U.S. or internationally

Opportunities in public health are numerous and growing. The GPHS major provides an excellent foundation for a wide variety of careers in public health, public service, research, social entrepreneurship, medicine and other health careers both domestically and globally:

  • Public health fields such as epidemiology, biostatistics, health education and behavior, international health, health policy and management, environmental health, and many more
  • Medicine and other health careers such as physical therapist, physician’s assistant, nurse practitioner, or clinical pharmacy
  • Research including careers that use biochemical, physiological, genomic, clinical, and social science methods to improve human health and well-being domestically and globally

In many cases, these career paths will require appropriate graduate or professional training, such as a Master’s in Public Health. Students are encouraged to meet with advisors and career counselors to ensure appropriate undergraduate preparation, as specific requirements differ among the various fields.

Given the interdisciplinary nature of population health problems, students are required to take one advanced course in each of the following three areas: Social and Behavioral Health, Biological Aspects of Public Health, Environmental Health, and Health Policy & Practice. Students choose from a list of courses in each area according to their interests and course schedule. Topics include public health microbiology, public health nutrition, nutrition and disease, nutrition and global health, social inequalities in physical and mental health, the U.S. healthcare system, reproductive health, and risk analysis and management.

Transferring into the GPHS major
Freshmen and sophomores are eligible to apply to transfer into the GPHS major once they have successfully completed either NS 1600 or NS 1600 with a grade of B (NOT B-) or higher, one required natural sciences course with a grade of C (NOT C-) or higher, and a detailed course plan that meets graduation requirements. Interested students should review GPHS major requirements and contact aadns@cornell.edu for the detailed application. Students hoping to transfer into the GPHS major from another College should contact the Admissions office of their target College and/or the Cornell University Office of Internal Transfer.

Adding GPHS as a second major
The GPHS major may not be combined with a second major. An alternative to consider is the Global Health minor, which may be combined with any non-GPHS major in any college.

Requirements for GPHS majors

  • The requirements listed below pertain to all students matriculating in August 2019 and January. See also the College of Human Ecology Curriculum Sheets. All of the following sections (1-19) are required to be completed to graduate.
  • Courses taken to fulfill requirements 1-16 must be taken for a Letter Grade. DNS students may not use courses to fulfill more than one requirement.
     
Credit requirements for the GPHS major
Total Human Ecology Human Ecology, outside the major:
120 credits 43 credits 9 credits (from DEA, FSAD, HD, PAM any level, or HE at the 3000-4000 level)

 

1. Introductory Chemistry (4+ credits)
Choose one of the following:
    (a) CHEM 2070 General Chemistry I 1, 2  (Fall, 4 cr) AND CHEM 2080 General Chemistry II (Spring, 4 cr) (two-course sequence required for pre-health)
    (b) CHEM 2070 General Chemistry I 1, 2 (Fall, 4 cr) (single course not adequate for pre-health)
    (c) CHEM 1560 Introduction to General Chemistry 1 (Fall/Summer, 4 cr) (not for pre-health)
    (d) CHEM 2150 Honors General and Inorganic Chemistry 2, 3 (Fall/Summer, 4 cr) (not for pre-health)

1 Students may use an AP Chemistry score of 5 to place out of CHEM 2070. However, GPHS students must take at least one semester of chemistry at Cornell, i.e., students who use AP credit toward their chemistry requirement must take an additional chemistry course (i.e., CHEM 2080, CHEM 2150, or other, but not CHEM 1560). Students interested in the pre-health track should take two semesters of chemistry at Cornell.

2 Students who take CHEM 2070 forfeit AP credit. Students who take CHEM 2150 may keep AP credit.

3 Students should only select option (d) if they are very strong in chemistry and are not considering a pre-health (e.g. pre-med) track.

2. Introductory Biology (8 credits)
Choose one of the following labs:
    (a) BIOG 1500 Investigative Lab (Fall/Spring, 2 cr) OR
    (b) BIOSM 1500 Investigative Marine Biology Lab (Summer, 3 cr)
AND choose two out of the three lecture options
    (e) BIOMG 1350 Cell and Developmental Biology (Fall/Spring, 3 cr)
    (f) BIOG 1440 Comparative Physiology (Fall/Spring, 3 cr) OR*
        BIOG 1445 Comparative Physiology (autotutorial) (Fall/Spring, 4cr)
    (g) BIOEE 1610 Ecology and the Environment (Fall/Spring, 3 cr) OR*
       BIOEE 1780 Evolution and Diversity (Fall/Spring, 3 cr)

    * Cannot take both to fulfill this requirement.

3. Organic Chemistry Lecture (3-8 credits)*
Choose one of the following:
    (a) CHEM 1570 Elementary Organic Chemistry (Spring only, 3 cr, not for pre-health) OR
    (b) CHEM 3530 Principles of Organic Chemistry (Fall only, 4 cr, not for pre-health) OR
    (c) CHEM 3570-3580 Introductory Organic Chemistry (Fall and Spring, 3 cr each, must take both, CHEM 3570 alone will not fulfill the requirement) OR
    (d) CHEM 3590-3600 Organic Chemistry (Spring and Fall, 4 cr each, must take both, CHEM 3590 alone will not fulfill the requirement)

* Students interested in pre-health tracks should take a two-course sequence of organic chemistry lectures (option c or d above), in addition to an organic chemistry lab.

4. Physiology (3-4 credits)
Choose one of the following:
    (a) NS 3410 Human Anatomy and Physiology (Spring, 4 cr) OR *
    (b) [BIOG 1440 Comparative Physiology (Fall/Spring, 3 cr) OR **
         BIOG 1445 Comparative Physiology (autotutorial) (F/S, 4cr)] OR
    (c) NS 1150 Nutrition, Health, and Society (Fall, S and summer online, 3 cr)

*  Pre-health students should also consider taking NS 3420 Human Anatomy and Physiology Lab (S, 2 cr).
** Cannot take both to fulfill this requirement. Can only be used to fulfill physiology requirement if not used to fulfill introductory biology requirement.

5. Biochemistry (4-6 credits)
Choose one of the following * :
    (a) NS 3200 Introduction to Human Biochemistry (Fall, 4 cr) OR
    (b) BIOMG 3300 Principles of Biochemistry (Fall/Spring, 4 cr) OR
    (c) BIOMG 3310 Principles of Biochemistry: Proteins and Metabolism (Fall, 3 cr) AND BIOMG 3320 Principles of Biochemistry: Molecular Biology (Spring, 2 cr) OR
    (d) BIOMG 3310 Principles of Biochemistry: Proteins and Metabolism (Fall, 3 cr) AND BIOMI 2900 General Microbiology (Fall/Spring, 3 cr) OR
    (e) BIOMG 3330 Principles of Biochemistry: Proteins, Metabolism, and Molecular Biology (Summer, 4 cr) OR
    (f) BIOMG 3350 Principles of Biochemistry: Proteins, Metabolism, and Molecular Biology (Spring, 4 cr)

* Students who take only one semester of introductory chemistry should talk with faculty advisors and biochemistry instructors as early as possible to determine which biochemistry course is best for them and how they may access resources for the best chance of success.

6. Global & Public Health Core Courses (14 credits)
     NS 1600 Introduction to Public Health (Fall, 3 cr)
     NS 2060 Preparation for Engaged Learning (Fall, 2 cr)
     NS 2600 Introduction to Global Health (Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 3600 Epidemiology (Fall, 3 cr)
     NS 4600 Explorations in Global and Public Health (Fall, 3 cr)

7. Supervised Experiential Learning in Global & Public Health (variable credits)
    Approval required. May be completed anytime from spring semester sophomore year onward.
    Must be largely completed before the fall semester of senior year.
    This experience may be obtained through one of several options, including (but not limited to):

  • Global Health Summer Programs (India - NS 4060, Tanzania - NS 4630, Zambia - NS 4631)
  • Cornell in Washington (NS 4997)
  • Public Health Research and Internship (NS 4060)
  • Cornell Cooperative Extension - Tompkins County and others (NS 4060)
  • Weill Cornell Clinical & Translational Science Center (NS 4060)
  • Study abroad programs with a public health focus/internship (NS 4060)

8. Social & Behavioral Health Selective  (3-4 credits)
    Choose one course from the following options:

     NS 2450 Social Science Perspectives on Food and Nutrition (Fall, 3 cr)
     ANTHR 2468 Medicine, Culture, and Society (Spring, 3 cr)
     COMM 4760 Population Health Communication (Spring, 3 cr)
     DSOC 2200 / LSP 2200 Sociology of Health and Ethnic Minorities (Fall, 3 cr)
     DSOC 3020 Political Ecologies of Health (alt even Spring, 3 cr)
     PAM 3280 / DSOC 3280 Fundamentals of Population Health (Fall, 3 cr)
     PAM 4280 / ECON 3710 The Economics of Risky Health Behaviors (Spring, 3 cr)
     SOC 4120 Health and Social Context (Spring, 4 cr)

9. Biological Aspects of Public Health Selective (3-4 credits)
    Choose one course from the following options:

     NS 3030 Nutrition, Health and Vegetarian Diets (Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 3060 Nutrition and Global Health (alt odd Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 3150 Obesity and the Regulation of Body Weight (alt even Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 4200 Diet and the Microbiome (Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 4300 Proteins, Transcripts, and Metabolism: Big Data in Molecular Nutrition (Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 4410 Nutrition and Disease (Fall, 4 cr)
     BIOMG 4390 Molecular Basis of Disease (Spring, 3 cr)
     BIOMG 4870 Human Genomics (Fall, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 2600 Microbiology of Human Contagious Diseases (Spring, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 2950 Biology of Infectious Disease: From Molecules to Ecosystems (Fall, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 3210 Human Microbes and Health (Fall, 3 cr)

10. Environmental Health Selective (3-4 credits)
      Choose one course from the following options:

     DEA 2700 Healthy Places: Design, Planning and Public Health (Fall, 3 cr)
     DSOC 3020 Political Ecologies of Health (alt even Spring, 3 cr)
     DSOC 3400 Agriculture, Food Systems and Society (Fall, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 2500 Public Health Microbiology (Fall, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 2950 Biology of Infectious Disease: From Molecules to Ecosystems (Fall, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 4310 / BIOMS 4310 Medical Parasitology (Fall, 2 cr)
     CEE 5970 / TOX 5970 Risk Analysis and Management (Fall, 3 cr)
     COMM 2850 / STS 2851 Communication, Environment, Science and Health (Spring, 3 cr)
     ENTOM 2100 / BSOC 2101 Plagues and People (Spring, 2-3 cr)
     ENTOM 3070 / TOX 3070 Pesticides, the Environment, and Human Health (even Fall, 2 cr)
     FDSC 3960 Food Safety Assurance (Spring, 2 cr)
     PLBIO 2100 Medical Ethnobotany (Spring, 3 cr)

11. Health Policy & Practice Selective (3-4 credits)
      Choose one course from the following options:

     NS / AEM 4450 Toward a Sustainable Global Food System: Food Policy for Developing Countries (Fall, 3 cr)
     NS 4500 Public Health Nutrition (S, 3 cr)
     NS 4570 / ECON 3910 Health, Poverty and Inequality (even Fall, 3 cr)
     NS 4800 Implementation and Impact in Global and Public Health (Spring, 4 cr; restricted to students in the Cornell in Washington program)
     AMST 2225 / GOVT 2225 / DSOC 2220 / ILROB 2220 / PAM 2220 / SOC 2220 / PHIL 1950 Controversies about Inequality (F, 4 cr)
     ANTHR 4458 / EDUC 4458 / FGSS 4458 Women, Girls and Gender in Education (Fall, 4 cr)
     CRP 3430 Affordable Housing Policy and Programs (Fall, 3 cr)
     DSOC 2050 International Development (Spring, 3-4 cr)
     DSOC 2090 / PAM 2208 / SOC 2208 Social Inequality (Spring/Summer, 4 cr)
     DSOC 3020 Political Ecologies of Health (Spring, 3 cr)
     DSOC 3700 / SOC 3710 Comparative Social Inequalities (Spring, 3 cr)
     DSOC 4230 Gender and Health: Concepts, Data, Theories and Evidence (Fall, 3 cr)
     ECON 3740 / PAM 4140 Global Health Economics and Policy (Fall, 3 cr)
     GOVT 3032 Politics of Public Policy in the U.S. (Spring, 4 cr)
     PAM 2030 Population and Public Policy (Spring, 3-4 cr)
     PAM 2350 The US Health Care System (Fall, 3 cr)
     PAM 3110 Pharmaceutical Management and Policy (Fall, 3 cr)
     PAM 3780 Sick Around the World? Comparing Health Care Systems Around the World (Spring, 3 cr)
     PAM 3870/5870 Economic Evaluations in Health Care (Spring, 3 cr)

12. First Year Writing Seminars (6 credits)
      Note: The 2 required first year writing seminar courses must be completed during the first two semesters at Cornell.

13. Social Sciences (6 credits)
      Choose one course in any two of the following four areas:

     Anthropology
ANTHR 1400 The Comparison of Cultures (Fall, 3 cr)

     Economics
ECON 1110
Introductory Microeconomics (Fall/Spring/Summer/Winter, 3 cr)    *Counts for Human Ecology credit
ECON 1120 Introductory Macroeconomics (Fall/Spring/Summer/Winter, 3 cr)   *Does not count for Human Ecology credit

     Psychology
HD 1150
Human Development: Infancy and Childhood (Fall, 3 cr)
HD 1170 Adolescence and Emerging Adulthood (Spring, 3 cr)    
PSYCH 1101 Introduction to Psychology (Fall/Summer, 3 cr)

     Sociology
DSOC 1101
Introduction to Sociology (Fall/Spring, 3 cr)
SOC 1101 Introduction to Sociology (Fall/Spring/Summer, 3 cr)

14. Humanities (3-4 credits)
      Choose any course with the Course Distribution HA, LA, or CA.

15. Statistics (3-4 credits)*
      STSCI 2150 Introductory Statistics for Biology (Fall/Spring, 4 cr)
* Must be taken at Cornell; AP Statistics is not accepted.

16. Additional Requirements (10-12 credits)
      Any course with the Course Distribution PBS, SBA, KCM, MQR, LA, CA, or HA. Language courses may count here. For example, students interested in pre-health tracks (e.g. medicine or physical therapy) could fulfill this requirement by taking required pre-health courses such as CHEM 2080 General Chemistry II, an organic chemistry lab, and two-course sequences in both organic chemistry and physics. 

17. Electives (Variable)
      Any courses that are not taken in Areas 1-16 above, count as Electives

18. Physical Education Requirement (2 courses)
      Physical Education must be completed in order to graduate. However, physical education does not count toward college and university minimum credit requirements for full-time status, nor does it count towards the 120 credits required for graduation.

19. Swim Test Requirement
      A successful swim test must be completed in order to graduate.

College Polices:

  • 120 Overall Credits
  • Students must complete 120 credits toward graduation.
  • A maximum of 15 credits of AP credit and in absentia credit can count towards the 120 total credits.
  • 15 credits of Study Abroad/Exchange, Cornell-In-Washington, or Capital semester can count towards total electives.
  • A course can only count towards the 120 total credits required once.
  • Students who exceed the above parameters (i.e., by taking more than 15 credits in cases (a), (b), and (c), or taking a course more than once) will have their total required credits increase by the same amount, and all credits will be counted toward their GPA. For example, a student who takes a 3-credit course twice to improve their grade will then be required to complete 123 total credits, and will have both grades factored into their GPA.
  • 43 HE Credits
  • Students must complete a minimum of 43 HE credits.
  • HE non-departmental courses at the 2000-level and below do not count toward the 43 HE credits.
  • Students must complete 5 HE credits by the end of the freshmen year and 12 HE credits by the end of the sophomore year.
  • 9 HE Credits outside the major
  • Students must complete a minimum of 9 HE credits outside of NS. These credits are given for any Human Ecology course outside your major (except 4030). These can be taken S/U only if course is NOT used to fulfill a curriculum requirement.
  • Pass/Fail Courses [S/U]
  • S/U grading option may NOT be used for any required course [Areas 1-16] unless it is the only grade option offered for those courses.  
  • S/Us MAY be used for the 9 HE Credits outside the major and for electives in Area 17.
  • Students may apply no more than 12 credits of S/U towards graduation requirements. If a required course is only offered S/U, it will not count towards this limit. Students may take more S/Us if they choose, but the additional credit will not be applied towards graduation.
  • The deadline for changing grade options is the 57th calendar day of the semester, the same as the “drop” deadline.
  • Special Study Courses [4000, 4010, 4020, 4030]
  • A maximum of 12 credits of special study course work from Human Ecology or other colleges will count towards the 120 overall credits (e.g. DNS special studies course work includes NS 4000, 4010, 4020, and 4030). Courses will be indicated on the class roster with a Component of either IND or RSC. [Additional credits can be taken but will not be applied.]
  • A maximum of 12 credits of 4000-4030 may count toward the 43 HE credit requirement.
  • A maximum of 3 credits of 4000-4020 (not including 4030) may count towards the 9 credits outside the major requirement as long as the special study is in a department outside the student’s major.
  • Students cannot TA (4030) the same course for credit more than once or take and TA the same course simultaneously.  4030 does not fulfill any requirements towards the major.  Registration for 4030 may not exceed 5 credit hours per semester.
  • Students who wish to take NS Special Studies Courses must have taken and passed at least 2 S/U credits of the same course.
  • The requirements listed below pertain to all students matriculating in August 2019 and January 2020. See also the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Degree Requirements. All of the following sections  (1-19) are required to be completed to graduate.
  • Courses taken to fulfill requirements 1-16 must be taken for a Letter Grade. DNS students may not use courses to fulfill more than one requirement, even though DUST indicates otherwise for CALS students.
Credit requirements for the GPHS major
Total CALS CALS, outside the major:
120 credits 55 credits 9 credits from anything but NS courses

 

1. Introductory Chemistry (4+ credits)
Choose one of the following:
    (a) CHEM 2070 General Chemistry I 1, 2  (Fall, 4 cr) AND CHEM 2080 General Chemistry II (Spring, 4 cr) (two-course sequence required for pre-health)
    (b) CHEM 2070 General Chemistry I 1, 2 (Fall, 4 cr) (single course not adequate for pre-health)
    (c) CHEM 1560 Introduction to General Chemistry 1 (Fall/Summer, 4 cr) (not for pre-health)
    (d) CHEM 2150 Honors General and Inorganic Chemistry 2, 3 (Fall/Summer, 4 cr) (not for pre-health)

1 Students may use an AP Chemistry score of 5 to place out of CHEM 2070. However, GPHS students must take at least one semester of chemistry at Cornell, i.e., students who use AP credit toward their chemistry requirement must take an additional chemistry course (i.e., CHEM 2080, CHEM 2150, or other, but not CHEM 1560). Students interested in the pre-health track should take two semesters of chemistry at Cornell.

2 Students who take CHEM 2070 forfeit AP credit. Students who take CHEM 2150 may keep AP credit.

3 Students should only select option (d) if they are very strong in chemistry and are not considering a pre-health (e.g. pre-med) track.

2. Introductory Biology (8 credits)
Choose one of the following labs:
    (a) BIOG 1500 Investigative Lab (Fall/Spring, 2 cr) OR
    (b) BIOSM 1500 Investigative Marine Biology Lab (Summer, 3 cr)
AND choose two out of the three lecture options
    (a) BIOMG 1350 Cell and Developmental Biology (Fall/Spring, 3 cr)
    (b) BIOG 1440 Comparative Physiology (Fall/Spring, 3 cr) OR*
         BIOG 1445 Comparative Physiology (autotutorial) (Fall/Spring, 4cr)
    (c) BIOEE 1610 Ecology and the Environment (Fall/Spring, 3 cr) OR*
         BIOEE 1780 Evolution and Diversity (Fall/Spring, 3 cr)

    * Cannot take both to fulfill this requirement.

3. Organic Chemistry Lecture (3-8 credits)*
Choose one of the following:
    (a) CHEM 1570 Elementary Organic Chemistry (Spring only, 3 cr, not for pre-health) OR
    (b) CHEM 3530 Principles of Organic Chemistry (Fall only, 4 cr, not for pre-health) OR
    (c) CHEM 3570-3580 Introductory Organic Chemistry (Fall and Spring, 3 cr each, must take both, CHEM 3570 alone will not fulfill the requirement) OR
    (d) CHEM 3590-3600 Organic Chemistry (Spring and Fall, 4 cr each, must take both, CHEM 3590 alone will not fulfill the requirement)

* Students interested in pre-health tracks should take a two-course sequence of organic chemistry lectures (option c or d above), in addition to an organic chemistry lab.

4. Physiology (3-4 credits)
Choose one of the following:
    (a) NS 3410 Human Anatomy and Physiology (Spring, 4 cr) OR *
    (b) [BIOG 1440 Comparative Physiology (Fall/Spring, 3 cr) OR **
         BIOG 1445 Comparative Physiology (autotutorial) (F/S, 4cr)] OR
    (c) NS 1150 Nutrition, Health, and Society (Fall, S and summer online, 3 cr)

*  Pre-health students should also consider taking NS 3420 Human Anatomy and Physiology Lab (S, 2 cr).
** Cannot take both to fulfill this requirement. Can only be used to fulfill physiology requirement if not used to fulfill introductory biology requirement.

5. Biochemistry (4-6 credits)
Choose one of the following * :
    (a) NS 3200 Introduction to Human Biochemistry (Fall, 4 cr) OR
    (b) BIOMG 3300 Principles of Biochemistry (Fall/Spring, 4 cr) OR
    (c) BIOMG 3310 Principles of Biochemistry: Proteins and Metabolism (Fall, 3 cr) AND BIOMG 3320 Principles of Biochemistry: Molecular Biology (Spring, 2 cr) OR
    (d) BIOMG 3310 Principles of Biochemistry: Proteins and Metabolism (Fall, 3 cr) AND BIOMI 2900 General Microbiology (Fall/Spring, 3 cr) OR
    (e) BIOMG 3330 Principles of Biochemistry: Proteins, Metabolism, and Molecular Biology (Summer, 4 cr) OR
    (f) BIOMG 3350 Principles of Biochemistry: Proteins, Metabolism, and Molecular Biology (Spring, 4 cr)

* Students who take only one semester of introductory chemistry should talk with faculty advisors and biochemistry instructors as early as possible to determine which biochemistry course is best for them and how they may access resources for the best chance of success.

6. Global & Public Health Core Courses (14 credits)
     NS 1600 Introduction to Public Health (Fall, 3 cr)
     NS 2060 Preparation for Engaged Learning (Fall, 2 cr)
     NS 2600 Introduction to Global Health (Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 3600 Epidemiology (Fall, 3 cr)
     NS 4600 Explorations in Global and Public Health (Fall, 3 cr)

7. Supervised Experiential Learning in Global & Public Health (variable credits)
    Approval required. May be completed anytime from spring semester sophomore year onward.
    Must be largely completed before the fall semester of senior year.
    This experience may be obtained through one of several options, including (but not limited to):

  • Global Health Summer Programs (India - NS 4060, Tanzania - NS 4630, Zambia - NS 4631)
  • Cornell in Washington (NS 4997)
  • Public Health Research and Internship (NS 4060)
  • Cornell Cooperative Extension - Tompkins County and others (NS 4060)
  • Weill Cornell Clinical & Translational Science Center (NS 4060)
  • Study abroad programs with a public health focus/internship (NS 4060)

8. Social & Behavioral Health Selective  (3-4 credits)
    Choose one course from the following options:

     NS 2450 Social Science Perspectives on Food and Nutrition (Fall, 3 cr)
     ANTHR 2468 Medicine, Culture, and Society (Spring, 3 cr)
     COMM 4760 Population Health Communication (Spring, 3 cr)
     DSOC 2200 / LSP 2200 Sociology of Health and Ethnic Minorities (Fall, 3 cr)
     DSOC 3020 Political Ecologies of Health (Spring, 3 cr)
     PAM 3280 / DSOC 3280 Fundamentals of Population Health (Fall, 3 cr)
     PAM 4280 / ECON 3710 The Economics of Risky Health Behaviors (Spring, 3 cr)
     SOC 4120 Health and Social Context (Spring, 4 cr)

9. Biological Aspects of Public Health Selective (3-4 credits)
    Choose one course from the following options:

     NS 3030 Nutrition, Health and Vegetarian Diets (Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 3060 Nutrition and Global Health (alt odd Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 3150 Obesity and the Regulation of Body Weight (alt even Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 4200 Diet and the Microbiome (Spring, 3 cr)
     NS 4410 Nutrition and Disease (Fall, 4 cr)
     BIOMG 4390 4390 Molecular Basis of Disease (Spring, 3 cr)
     BIOMG 4870 Human Genomics (Fall, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 2600 Microbiology of Human Contagious Diseases (Spring, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 2950 Biology of Infectious Disease: From Molecules to Ecosystems (Fall, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 3210 Human Microbes and Health (Fall, 3 cr)
     FDSC 3960 Food Safety Assurance (Spring, 2 cr)
     ILRIC 3342 Workplace Health and Safety as a Human Right (Spring, 4 cr)

10. Environmental Health Selective (3-4 credits)
      Choose one course from the following options:

     DEA 2700 Healthy Places: Design, Planning and Public Health (Fall, 3 cr)
     DSOC 3020 Political Ecologies of Health (Spring, 3 cr)
     DSOC 3400 Agriculture, Food Systems and Society (Fall, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 2500 Public Health Microbiology (Fall, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 2950 Biology of Infectious Disease: From Molecules to Ecosystems (Fall, 3 cr)
     BIOMI 4310 / BIOMS 4310 Medical Parasitology (Fall, 2 cr)
     CEE 5970 / TOX 5970 Risk Analysis and Management (Spring, 3 cr)
     COMM 2850 / STS 2851 Communication, Environment, Science and Health (Spring, 3 cr)
     ENTOM 2100 / BSOC 2101 Plagues and People (Spring, 2-3 cr)
     ENTOM 3070 / TOX 3070 Pesticides, the Environment, and Human Health (even Fall, 2 cr)
     ENTOM 3520 Medical and Veterinary Entomology (odd Fall, 3 cr)
     FDSC 3960 Food Safety Assurance (Spring, 2 cr)
     PLBIO 2100 Medical Ethnobotany (Spring, 3 cr)

11. Health Policy & Practice Selective (3-4 credits)
      Choose one course from the following options:

     NS / AEM 4450 Toward a Sustainable Global Food System: Food Policy for Developing Countries (Fall, 3 cr)
     NS 4500 Public Health Nutrition (S, 3 cr)
     NS 4570 / ECON 3910 Health, Poverty and Inequality (even Fall, 3 cr)
     NS 4800 Implementation and Impact in Global and Public Health (Spring, 4 cr; restricted to students in the Cornell in Washington program)
     AMST 2225 / GOVT 2225 / DSOC 2220 / ILROB 2220 / PAM 2220 / SOC 2220 / PHIL 1950 Controversies about Inequality (F, 4 cr)
     ANTHR 4458 / EDUC 4458 / FGSS 4458 Women, Girls and Gender in Education (Fall, 4 cr)
     CRP 3430 Affordable Housing Policy and Programs (Fall, 3 cr)
     DSOC 2050 International Development (Spring, 3-4 cr)
     DSOC 2090 / PAM 2208 / SOC 2208 Social Inequality (Spring/Summer, 4 cr)
     DSOC 3020 Political Ecologies of Health (alt even Spring, 3 cr)
     DSOC 3700 / SOC 3710 Comparative Social Inequalities (Spring, 3 cr)
     DSOC 4230 Gender and Health: Concepts, Data, Theories and Evidence (Fall, 3 cr)
     ECON 3740 / PAM 4140 Global Health Economics and Policy (Fall, 3 cr)
     GOVT 3032 Politics of Public Policy in the U.S. (Spring, 4 cr)
     PAM 2030 Population and Public Policy (Spring, 3-4 cr)
     PAM 2350 The US Health Care System (Fall, 3 cr)
     PAM 3110 Pharmaceutical Management and Policy (Fall, 3 cr)
     PAM 3780 Sick Around the World? Comparing Health Care Systems Around the World (Spring, 3 cr)
     PAM 3870/5870 Economic Evaluations in Health Care (Spring, 3 cr)

12. Communications (9 credits)
     Complete 9 credits of courses in written and oral expression, at least 6 of which must be written expression. Select courses from First-year Writing Seminars and COMM or ENGL classes as per CALS distribution requirements. Note: Potential courses to fulfill this and any CALS distribution requirement may be found in “DUST.”

13. Social Sciences and Humanities (12 credits)
      Complete 12 credits, including four courses of at least 3 cr each:

  • The four chosen courses must include at least 3 different categories from the following list: Cultural Analysis (CA), Human Diversity (D), Foreign Language (FL), Historical Analysis (HA), Knowledge, Cognition, and Moral Reasoning (KCM), Literature and the Arts (LA), and Social and Behavioral Analysis (SBA).
  • At least one course must be in Human Diversity (D).

14. Statistics (3-4 credits)
      STSCI 2150 Introductory Statistics for Biology (Fall/Spring, 4 cr)
* Must be taken at Cornell; AP Statistics is not accepted.

15. Additional Requirements (10-12 credits)
      Any course with the Course Distribution PBS, SBA, KCM, MQR, LA, CA, or HA. Language courses may count here. For example, students interested in pre-health tracks (e.g. medicine or physical therapy) could fulfill this requirement by taking required pre-health courses such as CHEM 2080 General Chemistry II, an organic chemistry lab, and two-course sequences in both organic chemistry and physics. 

16. Electives (Variable)
      Any courses that are not taken in Areas 1-16 above, count as Electives

17. Physical Education Requirement (2 courses)
      Physical Education must be completed in order to graduate. However, physical education does not count toward college and university minimum credit requirements for full-time status, nor does it count towards the 120 credits required for graduation.

18. Swim Test Requirement
      A successful swim test must be completed in order to graduate.

College Polices:

  • 120 Overall Credits
  • Students must complete 120 credits toward graduation.
  • A maximum of 15 credits of AP credit and in absentia credit can count towards the 120 total credits.
  • 15 credits of Study Abroad/Exchange, Cornell-In-Washington, or Capital semester can count towards total electives.
  • A course can only count towards the 120 total credits required once.
  • Students who exceed the above parameters, i.e., by taking more than 15 credits in cases (a), (b), and (c), or taking a course more than once, will have their total required credits increase by the same amount, and all credits will be counted toward their GPA. For example, a student who takes a 3-credit course twice to improve their grade will then be required to complete 123 total credits, and will have both grades factored into their GPA.
  • 55 CALS Credits
  • Students must complete a minimum of 55 CALS credits.
  • 9 CALS Credits outside the major
  • Students must complete a minimum of 9 CALS credits outside of NS. These credits are given for any CALS course other than NS courses or those cross-listed with NS courses. These can be taken S/U only if the course is NOT used to fulfill a curriculum requirement.
  • Pass/Fail Courses [S/U]
  • S/U grading option may NOT be used for any required course [Areas 1-16] unless it is the only grade option offered for those courses.  
  • S/Us MAY be used for the 9 HE Credits outside the major and for electives in Area 17.
  • Students may apply no more than 12 credits of S/U towards graduation requirements. If a required course is only offered S/U, it will not count towards this limit. Students may take more S/Us if they choose, but the additional credit will not be applied towards graduation.
  • The deadline for changing grade options is the 57th calendar day of the semester, the same as the “drop” deadline.
  • Special Study Courses [4000, 4010, 4020, 4030]
  • A maximum of 12 credits of special study course work from Human Ecology or other colleges will count towards the 120 overall credits (e.g. DNS special studies course work includes NS 4000, 4010, 4020, and 4030). Courses will be indicated on the class roster with a Component of either IND or RSC. [Additional credits can be taken but will not be applied.]
  • A maximum of 12 credits of 4000-4030 may count toward the 43 HE credit requirement.
  • A maximum of 3 credits of 4000-4020 (not including 4030) may count towards the 9 credits outside the major requirement as long as the special study is in a department outside the student’s major.
  • Students cannot TA (4030) the same course for credit more than once or take and TA the same course simultaneously.  4030 does not fulfill any requirements towards the major.  Registration for 4030 may not exceed 5 credit hours per semester.
  • Students who wish to take NS Special Studies Courses must have taken and passed at least 2 S/U credits of the same course.

GPHS major requirements checklist: downloadable form

This document is meant as a tool for tracking progress toward completing requirements for the HBHS major. It does not account for College-level requirements, such as humanities, social sciences, communication courses, and the required number of CHE or CALS credits. These are described in detail in the DNS Roadmap.

Contact us at aadns@cornell.edu

Nicole Cunningham '20, discusses the wonderful research opportunities that she enjoyed during her time in the Division of Nutritional Sciences, Global & Public Health Sciences program