Public Health Minor (Undergraduate)

Major Related to Minor
  • This minor is for undergraduate students. This minor would be appropriate for most undergraduate degrees

Number of hours required: 18 hours

  • 12 hours offered by the School of Public Health
  • 6 Selectives - The selective may be from any school within the University (i.e biology, business, education, sociology, communications, engineering, education, journalism and African American Studies, etc.)

Required Grade

  • A grade of C or better is required in all undergraduate Public Health courses attempted.

Minor Requirements

Complete the following courses:
*PUH 301- Origins of Epidemics

The intellectual tools of public health describe diseases from cholera and pandemic avian influenza to obesity and diabetes that threaten the integrity of organized societies. This course explores the richness of public health through its disciplines and its stories to demonstrate how the understanding of the origins of epidemics determines the progress of civilizations.

*PUH 302 - Epidemiology: Beyond the Outbreak

The course will provide students with a basic understanding of epidemiology history, methods, and practice. The history of epidemiology will focus on major historical events such as John Snow and the 1854 Broad Street cholera outbreak. The course will also cover basic epidemiologic methods such measures of disease occurrence (e.g., prevalence and incidence) as well as basic study designs such as case-control and cohort studies. Later in the term, students will utilize actual epidemiologic investigations in order to learn how these methods are put into practice. The coursework will focus mostly on discussion for the first part of the course focused on the history of epidemiology. The section on methods will primarily be problem-based, performing basic analysis of epidemiologic data through calculation of prevalence/incidence and measures of association (e.g., prevalence ratio, incidence rate ratio). This work will lead to students to prepare a document on how they would respond to an outbreak in a situation described by the course master. The entire coursework will take place in a lecture format, with the class meeting twice a week.

*PUH 303 - Introduction to Global Health

This course is designed to provide students with an appreciation of the interdisciplinary nature of global health, its history, successes to date, and current challenges. Students will be introduced to basic concepts of health disparities, major causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide and determinants of health. Students will be introduced to challenges of health care organization and delivery and will discuss health as a human right. Finally students will discuss key 'players' in global health and how partnerships are essential for addressing health needs worldwide, Lectures, discussion, and case studies will be integral teaching elements of the course.

*PUH 400 – Milestones in Public Health (Coming Soon)
You must also complete 6 hours of approved electives. The electives may be from any school within the University (i.e. biology, business, education, sociology, communications, engineering, education, journalism and African American Studies, etc.)


Other Undergraduate Courses


ENH 400 - Our Global Environment: Issues and Challenges 

This course will consider how biological, chemical, and physical agents in the environment impact human health. Sources, routes of exposure, human health impacts, and risk reduction will be discussed for each topic. Topics include indoor air pollution, medical radiation, noise, food and water contaminants, pests and pesticides, hazardous and solid waste treatment, natural disasters, biological and chemical terrorism, regulatory agencies and legislation, risk awareness and reduction.  For additional information, contact Dr. Dale Dickinson at dadickin@uab.eduCourse Syllabus.


ENH 405 - Nature vs. Nurture: Genes, Environment and Health

Using contemporary examples we will study how the environment and a person’s genetic background interact to determine disease susceptibility. Topics include violence and aggression, cancer, alcoholism and addiction, asthma and allergies, intelligence, diabetes, obesity, neurodegenerative disorders, vaccines and autism, and sexually transmitted infections. For additional information, contact Dr. Dale Dickinson at


PUH 602 - Narrative Public Health

The purpose of this course is to develop communication skills primarily through written exercises directly relevant to public health. Each exercise will explore and teach students different formats and techniques for communicating complex public health information to different audiences, such as colleagues, the lay public, public officials, or potential future public health students.

NOTE: This course is only available to Public Health degree-seeking students.

*To add program as a minor, please contact your undergraduate advisor.