Back to search

Bachelor of Health Sciences

Degree Type Bachelor

Duration 3 years full-time or part-time equiv.

SATAC Code 314411

CRICOS 001515J

No new admissions into this program for 2017.

Students who are interested in this program please see the new Bachelor of Health and Medical Sciences degree.

The Bachelor of Health Science degree is ideal for students who enjoy and hold a curiosity in the broad study of human health.  This degree is flexible due to its diverse range of course offerings from a number of disciplines. 

Health Science students learn a number of transferable skills that are applied across engaging topics such as human structure and function, disease and infection, chemicals and drug effects on the mind and body, the function of the brain and individual, and the environmental, social and cultural influences on human behaviour. These are highly sought after skills that are useful in a wide range of careers and are not limited to health or scientific areas.

  • Entry Requirements

    No new admissions into this program for 2017.

    Choose your applicant type to view the relevant admissions information for this program.
    I am a:

    Domestic applicants

    Not a domestic applicant?

    SATAC Code 314411
    2016 CSP ATAR 65
    Adelaide Approved Score 80
    2016 CSP IB 24
    Mid-year entry? Yes
    Deferment? Yes - 2 year
    Enquiries Ask Adelaide
    Selection Criteria
    Year 12 applicants
    You must not have completed more than 2 years full time equivalent university study (48 units). You compete for a place with your Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR).

    Alternative entry pathways
    • Higher Education applicants
      You must have completed at least half a year full time equivalent university study. A Grade Point Average (GPA) is calculated for each separate program you have undertaken (apart from some double degree programs where the GPA is combined). You compete on the basis of your best GPA.
    • VET applicants
      You must have completed an AQF Certificate IV or above from a Registered Training Organisation. Your application will be ranked according to the level of the award.
    • Special Entry applicants
      You must be 18 years or over before 1 February 2017. If you have studied at higher education level in the last two years (for 2017 entry this means you were enrolled in either 2016 or 2015), you must not have accumulated more than a TOTAL of 2 years full-time (or part-time equivalent) higher education study (ie. including any study prior to 2015). If you meet this criteria, you will be ranked according to your result in the Special Tertiary Admissions Test (STAT). Your STAT result is not weighted between verbal and quantitative components. Indigenous applicants may be eligible for entry through the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Access Scheme. See Wirltu Yarlu for further information.
    • Without formal qualifications?
      You may be eligible for our special access schemes.
    • Other Entry Pathways
    How to Apply
    SATAC Code: 314411

    International applicants

    Not an international applicant?

    Not offered to international students.

  • Fees and Scholarships

    No new admissions into this program for 2017.

    Choose your applicant type to view the relevant admissions information for this program.
    I am a:

    Domestic applicants

    Not a domestic applicant?

    International applicants

    Not an international applicant?


    These scholarships, as well as many others funded by industry and non-profit organisations, are available to potential and currently enrolled students.

    Find a Scholarship.

  • Careers

    Career Readiness

    Graduates careers in health science can be both diverse and rewarding, with a flexibility to work across both public and private sectors. We support students to develop their work readiness by providing career focused activities in each year of the degree.

    Students may also elect to study a specialised course in communication for the health sciences at the end of their first year of study. Students choosing Population Health majors have the option of undertaking a work-integrated learning experience (internship) and we encourage and work with students to undertake overseas study experiences through the Global Learning program, and to undertake Vacation Scholarships offered through the Schools of Medicine or School of Public Health to explore the possibilities of a research career.

    The University of Adelaide Careers Service prepares, inspires and empowers students to achieve successful career transitions and connect with industry.

    Graduate Attributes

    The objective of this program is to produce graduates with specific attributes as outlined in University of Adelaide Graduate Attributes.
    1. Deep discipline knowledge
    2. Critical thinking and problem solving
    3. Teamwork and communication skills
    4. Career and leadership readiness
    5. Intercultural and ethical competency
    6. Self-awareness and emotional intelligence

    Potential careers

    Health Administrator, Hospital Worker, Health Educator, Health Officer, Market Researcher, Medical Physicist, Medical Research, Medical Scientist, Medical Technician, Molecular Biology, Business Representative, Neuropsychologist, Chemist, Clinical Psychologist, Occupational Health and Safety Manager, Occupational Health and Safety Professionals, Community Health Nurse, Community Psychologist, Counselling Psychologist, Pharmaceutical Scientist, Policy Adviser, Doctor / Medical Practitioner, Project Manager, ...

  • Global Learning

    A Global Learning Experience is an integral component to your academic journey at The University of Adelaide. The university is committed to offering its students the opportunity to study overseas through a range of degrees offered via the Global Learning Office, including student exchange, study tours, short study degrees, internships and placements. There are many exciting opportunities in Europe, Asia, the Americas, Africa, and Oceania ranging from a few weeks to a full academic year.

    To find Global Learning opportunities available in your study area click Global Experiences.

  • Degree Structure
    The Health Sciences degree provides a broad grounding in the sciences of human health and the health of populations. Each year students will undertake half of their courses in health sciences and may choose half of their courses from electives available to them from other schools and faculties in the University. Each student must complete at least one major in health sciences and have the option to complete a second health sciences’ major.

    Students can pursue pathways in one or more of the following areas of science: Anatomical Science, Biochemistry, Epidemiology, Exercise Science, Genetics, Health Promotion, Human Reproductive Health, Indigenous Health, Microbiology, Neuroscience, Nutrition, Pathology, Pharmacology and Physiology. See the full outline of these topics below in Areas of Specialisation.

    Academic Program Rules

    The Calendar is a comprehensive handbook of the University's academic program rules.


    Areas of Specialisation

    All students will choose at least one major from the following areas:
    • Anatomical Sciences
    • Biochemistry
    • Epidemiology
    • Exercise Science
    • Genetics
    • Health Promotion
    • Human Reproductive Health
    • Indigenous Health
    • Microbiology
    • Neuroscience
    • Nutrition
    • Pathology
    • Pharmacology
    • Physiology
    Anatomical Science encompasses the study of the gross and microscopic structure of the body and the relationship between structure and function.

    Biochemistry equips students with an applied understanding of cutting-edge biomedical science principles and technical advances in biochemistry research.

    Epidemiology is the study of patterns, causes and distributions of health and disease in populations. The Epidemiology major will equip students with an understanding of the essential role of epidemiology in monitoring the health of populations and responding proactively to public health problems.

    Exercise Science studies how the body responds to exercise and adapts over time with exercise training and/or physical activity. The Exercise Science major applies this knowledge to both general and athletic populations for promotion of health and improved performance, whilst also examining the role of exercise in the therapy of chronic diseases. Exercise science encompasses not only anatomy and physiology, but also the psychological and neurological processes, looking at both positive and negative impacts of exercise.

    Genetics is designed to challenge and stimulate students’ interest in the organisation, structure and mechanisms of human genetics.

    Health Promotion is the process of enabling people to increase control over and improve their health*. The Health Promotion major will build students’ understanding of key theoretical concepts and principles in health promotion, and of contemporary challenges in the practice of health promotion.

    Human Reproductive Health equips students with knowledge about aspects of human reproductive biology, function and technologies, and an understanding of human population dynamics and the contribution of developmental biology to adult health.

    Indigenous Health will support students to build their competency, particularly in cross cultural and inequitable health contexts through introducing them to the ‘real life’ politics of health and wellbeing for Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

    Microbiology aims to produce graduates with an understanding of the interactions between bacterial pathogens, viruses and immune systems.

    Neuroscience equips students with an understanding of the fundamental organisation and functional principles of the nervous system, from the biology of nerve cells and neural circuits through to the neural systems and complex behaviours.

    Nutrition aims to produce students who understand how nutrition requirements and challenges vary throughout the human lifecycle and how changes in nutritional requirements impact on human health.

    Pathology equips students with an understanding of the causes, mechanisms and consequences of diseases so that effective treatments and preventions can be developed.

    Pharmacology equips students with an understanding of the effects of drugs on human health. It includes a study of how therapeutic drugs work in the body to treat disease while providing an appreciation of the factors that can cause negative health impacts of drugs, including recreational drugs.

    Physiology is the study of how living systems work. The Physiology major focuses on the integration of multiple physiological systems that are necessary for whole-body function and their application to human health throughout the lifespan.

    New Level 1 Health Sciences Electives

    Public Health
    S1 Engaging Adelaide: Knowing your community
    S2 Flies, drains and Ebola: Human Health and Environment
    S2 Saving lives or respecting rights? An introduction to health ethics

    Medical Sciences
    S1 Introduction to Forensic Sciences
    S2 Essentials of Neuroscience
    S2 Principles of Human Health and Disease

    Example Study Plan

    The study plans given are examples of pathways through this degree.

    Indicative study plan
    Year1S1 ANAT SC 1102
    Human Biology 1A
    PUB HLTH 1001
    Public Health 1A
    Introduction to Forensic Sciences Engaging Adelaide: Knowing your community
    S2 ANAT SC 1103
    Human Biology 1B
    PUB HLTH 1002
    Public Health 1B
    Essentials of Neuroscience Flies, drains and Ebola: Environmental threats to human health
    Year2S1 PHARM 2100
    Pharmacology IIA:
    Drugs and Health
    Health Sciences
    Health Sciences Closed Electives /Open Elective Health Sciences Closed Electives /Open Elective
    S2 PATHOL 2200
    Biology of Disease
    Health Sciences
    Health Sciences Closed Electives /Open Elective Health Sciences Closed Electives /Open Elective
    Year 3S1 Health Sciences
    Health Sciences
    Health Sciences Closed Electives /Open Elective Health Sciences Closed Electives /Open Elective
    S2 Health Sciences
    Health Sciences
    Health Sciences Closed Electives /Open Elective Health Sciences Closed Electives /Open Elective


    Assessment will be based on a combination of oral presentations, practical assignments, tutorial participation and written examinations. Both face-to-face and online methodologies will be used.

  • Related Degrees
  • Further Information

    Please direct enquiries to Ask Adelaide
    Phone: +61 8 8313 7335 (toll free 1800 061 459)

    The annual Open Day and Information Night events provide an excellent opportunity to see our campus, meet with academics, and discuss your study options.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.

Last updated: Wednesday, 21 Dec 2016


Ask Adelaide

Call us +61 8 8313 7335
(Toll free) 1800 061 459
Ask Adelaide
Study Info