Bachelor of Public Health
Become a public health practitioner through real-world learning
Broaden your focus beyond the individual to improve the health and wellbeing of populations. Explore current services and policies and think about how to improve them. Use data. Consider social and environmental factors. Graduate work-ready.
Australian Higher Education Loan Program (HELP)
The University of South Australia, UniSA, is ranked in the top 10 universities nationally and amongst the very best young universities in the world. They offer over 200 world-class degrees that are informed by industry and delivered with a highly practical approach to teaching and learning. In fact, they are South Australia’s number one university for graduate careers. They are a valuable partner with Open Universities Australia.
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Your public health degree applies a multidisciplinary approach, exploring areas such as health promotion, health law and ethics, human biology, epidemiology, as well as Aboriginal, national and global health issues. Throughout your degree, you’ll learn about policy development, data analysis and reporting, media and advocacy, public events, and community-based education and interventions, and how these strategies can be used to improve the health of populations.
Practical, real-world learning is at the heart of your degree. As a student, you’re encouraged to think just as a public health practitioner would. You’ll evaluate current health services, programs or policies and develop recommendations that take into account Australia’s policy environment and political landscape. In your research project, you’ll also use epidemiological data to investigate how the environment impacts health and specific population groups.
Courses within your first year will develop your foundational knowledge in core areas of public health practice. Your second year focuses on applying your knowledge to simulated real-world scenarios and case studies. In your final year, you’ll gain critical employment skills to develop your career as a leading-edge public health practitioner.
Some of the subjects you will study include:
- Evaluation of Public Health Practices
- Building Healthy Public Policy
- Science and Politics of Preventative Health
- Research Methods for Public Health
You have the option of selecting two electives and tailoring your degree to your interests – which will broaden your career prospects.
Careers in health are on the rise. In fact, the Australian Government’s National Health and Medical Industry Growth Plan is a $1.3 billion investment aimed at driving a new era of better health care, as well as fueling jobs and growth in new firms and industries through research*.
Careers to consider include:
- Public health research officer
- Health promotion planner
- Epidemiologist / Data analyst
- Wellness and lifestyle coordinator
- Community development officer
- Women's health officer
- Aboriginal health officer
- Clinical trials coordinator
- Public health manager
*Australian Government Department of Health 2018
As a graduate, you’ll meet the six areas of practice outlined in the national competency framework, which has been produced by the Council of Academic Public Health Institutions of Australia (CAPHIA). These competencies are a minimum prerequisite that can be expected of any Australian public health graduate in the industry. These areas include:
Health Monitoring and Surveillance
Disease Prevention and Control
Health Policy, Planning and Management
Evidence-based Professional Population Health Practice
This UniSA Online degree is currently available for Commonwealth supported students.
Applicants are required to fulfil at least one of the following requirements with a competitive result and meet any other academic requirements for the program:
- successfully completed equivalent to a minimum of half a year of full-time study of a higher education program at a recognised higher education provider
- completed an award from a registered training organisation at Certificate IV level or above
- passed a UniSA Online literacy and numeracy test and have relevant work experience
- completed a secondary education qualification equivalent to SACE, such as an interstate year 12 or international qualification
- completed a UniSA Foundation Studies Program or equivalent
- qualified for Special Entry
Students who do not meet these criteria can start studying now by enrolling in the subjects below. Students will be eligible to apply upon successful completion of four subjects and all subjects will be credited towards the degree.
- HUMS1059 Contemporary Aboriginal Issues
- HLTH1051 First Peoples' Health
- BIOL1052 Foundations of Human Biology 1
- HLTH2034 Health Promotion
- HLTH1056 Health Systems and Services
- HLTH1057 Introduction to Public Health Practice
- HLTH1058 Research Methods for Public Health
For more information please contact an OUA Student advisor on 1300 729 424.
Information regarding credit can be found here:
Study On Demand – this is a 100% online public health degree designed specifically for online learning. With UniSA Online you can take full control over your study, access support seven days a week, plan your study to fit around your life, view learning resources 24/7, and log into the interactive online environment anywhere, any time and on any device.
This degree goes beyond the treatment of individuals and aims to improve the health and wellbeing of populations. Public health encompasses areas as wide-ranging as chronic disease, the science of aging, mental health, disaster response, refugee health, injury prevention, and tobacco control.
You’ll explore social and environmental factors that lead to illness or poor health in order to prevent disease, prolong life and improve the health and wellbeing of populations and communities. Along with addressing determinants of poor health, you’ll cultivate the skills to promote and maintain health and wellbeing in populations over a person’s lifespan.
Graduates will enter the workforce with the skills to plan, implement, evaluate and monitor public health functions and activities in a variety of settings. Your public health degree opens up a wide range of employment opportunities within grass-roots community agencies, all levels of government, as well as international aid organisations such as the World Health Organisation, UNICEF, UNIAID and the Red Cross.
Recommended Study Pattern
Note: The program structure is subject to change at any time. (Information correct as at August 2019)
- Critical Approaches to Online Learning (CURR 3021)* *This subject is common to all UniSA Online degrees and will be offered multiple times each year to enable students to commence their program of study at any time. Students who are studying part-time must take this subject first before they study any other subjects in their chosen degree. Students who are studying full time may take this subject and one other subject in the same study period.
- Introduction to Public Health Practice and Research (HLTH 1057)
- Foundations of Human Biology 1 (BIOL 1052)
- Health Systems and Services (HLTH 1056)
- Foundations of Human Biology 2 (BIOL 1053)
- Contemporary Aboriginal Issues (HUMS 1059)
- First Peoples' Health (HLTH 1051)
- Research Methods for Public Health (HLTH 1058)
- Marketing for Health and Wellbeing (MARK 2037)
- Evaluation of Public Health Practices (EDUC 2080)
- Health Promotion (HLTH 2034)
- Sociological Perspectives in Public Health (HLTH 1059)
- Health Law, Ethics and Policy (HLTH 2030)
- Building Healthy Public Policy (HLTH 2043)
- Aboriginal Public Health Practice and Research (HLTH 2042)
- Fundamentals of Disease Control (HLTH 3074)
- Epidemiological Principles and Methods (HLTH 3073)
- Elective 1
- Project Management for Health and Wellness (HLTH 3065)
- Science and Politics of Preventive Health (HLTH 2044)
- Public Health Practice Project 1 (HLTH 3075)
- Public Health and Wellbeing Practice (HLTH 3077)
- Public Health Practice Project 2 (HLTH 3076)
- Elective 2
Students must complete 24 subjects including 2 electives.