Health Science - Related Programs

Students interested in health science-related areas are often uncertain which major to choose. The following descriptions focus on a sample of BGSU’s health science majors. Individual sheets are available.

Applied Health Science

The applied health science degree program is unique in that it offers a strong emphasis on problem-solving skills and critical thinking while providing a firm foundation in basic and health-related sciences. Graduates of the health science specialization are qualified to enter master’s programs in almost any allied health profession, such as physical or occupational therapy or physician assistant, and can also meet the admissions requirements for medical, dental and veterinary schools. Five separate specializations exist: allied health, applied microbiology, community health, health care administration, and health science. Students in the health science specialization are eligible to apply for entry into physical therapy, occupational therapy and physician assistant programs at the University of Toledo Health Science Campus, which offers a select number of admissions seats to BGSU graduates each year.


Dietetics is an interdisciplinary study that focuses on the principles of human nutrition and foods. Various career opportunities are available to the registered dietitian in hospitals, nursing homes, outpatient clinics, public health agencies, home health care, the food industry and food service management, restaurants and schools. BGSU’s dietetics curriculum meets the requirements of the American Dietetic Association (ADA). Practicum experiences are an integral part of many professional courses. Graduates must complete a post-graduate dietetics internship. The final step in becoming a registered dietitian (R.D.) is to pass the national registration examination.

Exercise Specialist

BGSU’s exercise specialist major represents an undergraduate degree program in exercise physiology. Students complete exercise testing and prescription in a wide variety of settings: health and wellness centers, sport medicine clinics, senior/retirement centers, research laboratories, recreation centers, training and exercise facilities, hotels and resorts, and military and federal agencies.

Students complete courses in human anatomy and physiology, exercise testing and prescription, biomechanics, movement analysis, nutrition, athletic conditioning, designing and directing exercise programs, legal aspects of sport and recreation, and event promotion and management. The program provides outstanding field- based experiences.


The gerontology degree program offers a long-term care administration specialization. Students who choose gerontology receive a strong interdisciplinary background in aging studies. Cognates provide additional specialization in biology, health, human resource management, nutrition, psychology, recreation and service planning. The final component of the program is a practicum experience which blends theory from the classroom and practical experience in an agency serving older adults. Students completing their specialization in long-term care administration are qualified to sit for licensure in the state of Ohio. Students pursuing gerontology are employed at senior centers, governmental agencies, assisted-living facilities and a host of social service agencies.

Human Movement Science

Human movement science (HMS) is a health science-related major that provides students with an in-depth understanding of the scientific aspects of human movement. HMS is a unique major for students with career aspirations in the health and human movement sciences fields such as medicine, nursing, rehabilitation, kinesiology, physical education or exercise and sport science.

The curriculum integrates knowledge from the various parent disciplines (biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics and psychology) and the subdisciplines of kinesiology. Students complete a foundation of core courses in kinesiology, biological sciences and sport management and individually select an appropriate minor or two to three cognates. The culminating experience for HMS students is the Senior Project.

Medical Laboratory Science

Medical laboratory scientists are clinical laboratory scientists who play a vital role in detection, diagnosis and treatment of disease. They study cells of the blood for structural and functional abnormalities, identify disease causing bacteria and other microbes, and match compatible blood for transfusion. In addition they perform tests in hematology, clinical biochemistry, toxicology and other specialized areas, often using computerized and highly technical instruments. Medical laboratory scientists must also make decisions regarding the accuracy and validity of laboratory results. There is an immediate demand for well-trained, certified medical laboratory scientists that is expected to increase steadily over the next decade.


The nursing degree program prepares graduates to help people of all age groups care for themselves in diverse kinds of environments and in a wide range of health and illness states. The nursing program involves two years of liberal arts coursework at BGSU and two years of nursing theory and practice at the University of Toledo Health Science Campus. Admission is competitive. Students will be involved in clinical practice in hospitals, local health agencies, long-term care facilities and other health-related agencies as part of the educational program. BGSU also has a program for registered nurses who wish to earn a baccalaureate degree.

Nutrition Sciences

The nutrition sciences major is science-oriented and emphasizes the intensive study of physical and biological sciences. Core course requirements feature human nutrition and food science. Students in this program will earn minors in both biology and chemistry. Dietetics majors who are interested in graduate school or research may choose to double major in nutrition sciences. Graduates are prepared to pursue advanced degrees in nutrition and other life sciences, apply for entrance into professional schools of medicine or enter laboratory research careers in the food or pharmaceutical industry.

Pre-Physical Therapy

Physical therapy provides a career for students who want to work with other health care professionals in restoring maximal functional capabilities of individuals of all ages with movement dysfunction. Physical therapists work in hospitals, public health agencies, rehabilitation and extended care facilities, public schools, governmental agencies or independent practice. A graduate-level degree (Doctor of Physical Therapy - DPT) is required for licensure. The applied health science degree program at BGSU articulates with the admission requirements for many professional PT programs. However, students can follow any degree program of their choice. The DPT program at The University of Toledo Health Science Campus offers a preferred admission to graduates of BGSU.


Dependent upon individual backgrounds and interests there are many ways students can prepare for medical school through BGSU’s pre-medicine program. Usually in the spring of the junior year, students complete the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). Common majors for students interested in pre-medicine (not an offered major) are applied health science, biochemistry, biology, chemistry, microbiology and psychology. Students should also consider pursuing opportunities to observe, volunteer or work in a hospital or nursing home environment. BGSU has an early entry arrangement with the University of Toledo Health Science Campus.

Natural and Health Sciences Residential Community

BGSU offers a unique living option in the Natural and Health Sciences Residential Community. Students who share similar interests in health science-related areas live together, study together and socialize together in an environment that combines the traditional benefits of residence life with special programming, academic support and interaction with faculty. NHSRC housing is available in Offenhauer and McDonald Halls

Students interested in the areas on this curriculum guide as well as the following are eligible: applied microbiology, athletic training and clinic management, biology, chemistry, communication disorders, geology, health education, physical education teacher education, physics, and pre-professional programs in dentistry, mortuary science, occupational therapy, optometry, osteopathic medicine, pharmacy and veterinary medicine.

Preparation for College

Completing the requirements for high school graduation is necessary for admission to BGSU, but only finishing the minimum coursework will leave you unprepared for college. Consider taking four years of mathematics instead of the three that are required. Two, three or even four years of the same foreign language is excellent preparation for college. You will also benefit from competency in computer use. Courses that provide exposure to or training in the visual and performing arts are excellent choices.

Internet Access

BGSU's website for future students contains University highlights, admissions procedures, financial aid information and many department profiles. It can be accessed at

The University

Bowling Green State University is a vibrant university that engages, challenges and prepares students for meaningful futures. At BGSU, students enjoy an education that integrates personal growth, academic excellence and an environment that expands their thinking and potential. A mid-size residential university, BGSU has an enrollment of approximately 20,000 and a full-time faculty of more than 900 on its main campus. More than 200 undergraduate majors and programs are offered as well as master's and doctoral level programs.

NOTE: Information in this guide is subject to change without notice. To learn more about the official program of study for Health Science - Related Programs, please check the undergraduate catalog online at: