Public Health - Minor

Program Contacts

Program Director

Sara Wilensky

Undergraduate Program Advisor

Meaghan Wilson


GW's Milken Institute School of Public Health offers a Minor in Public Health.  Through this minor, students are introduced to a wide range of issues in areas of public health such as health epidemiology, health management, health policy, health behavior, environmental and occupational health, and global health. The Public Health Minor consists of at least 18 credits (9 credits of required public health courses and 9 credits of public health elective courses).   The minor provides a strong foundation in public health in preparation for professional schools including: law school, medical school, physician assistant school, allied health professional school, public health and health services school.

Minor fields of study have been established within the University to provide opportunities for formal inter-school study. Students must be enrolled in a degree program and must be in good standing to be eligible to take a Minor Field of Study in another school. Upon successful completion of all requirements, the Minor Field of Study and the courses taken in support of the Minor are entered on the student’s transcript. 


To applyfor the minor, students must have a 2.8 GPA. There is currently a waitlist for the Minor in Public Health minor.  To be placed on the waitlist, fill out the form found here

Download Minor in Public Health 2016-2017 (PDF) 

Please contact the Undergraduate Program Advisor if you have questions about the minor, including selection of elective courses, petitions to amend the requirements, dropping the minor, and other questions.  New declarations will not be processed during the registration period.  All transactions require the Minor in Public Health form for the apropriate academic year and the signature of the Undergraduate Program Advisor.  Submit all forms to electronically to Meaghan Wilson.

Click here for FAQ's about applying.


In general, we do not allow students to double count courses toward their Public Health minor and any other program. We have one exception, the Elliot School of International Affairs students with a major in International Affairs and concentration in Global Public Health may count PUBH 3133 (Global Health & Development) toward both programs.  Other courses will not be counted toward both programs. Please see the Milken Institute SPH Undergraduate Advisor with questions. 


Required Courses (9 credits)

PUBH 1101 Intro/Pub Health & Health Svcs 3 credits
PUBH 3131 Epidemiology: Measuring Health and Disease 3 credits
PUBH 3133 Global Health & Development * 3 credits

Courses toward the minor in Public Health continue to be open for all undergraduate students based on availability in each course section.

Click here for Frequently-Asked-Question's about advising

Elective Courses

Students may fulfill the elective requirement by taking any PUBH course (excluding PUBH 4140W- Senior Seminar) or any course on the approved Public Health Elective Course List from the Bachelor of Science in Public Health.  In addition, students may take up to 3 elective credits from the approved Study Abroad course list or the approved non-GW course list as long as they comply with all rules regarding courses taken outside of GW.  See the link for previously approved and denied courses below under Transfer Approval Credits. 

Non-Study Abroad courses taken outside of GW must meet the following requirements to be considered for approval: 1) they must be offered by an accredited school; 2) they must be related to public health as determined by the Program Director; 3) they may not be taught by graduate students; 4) while courses may be taken on-line, they may be open access, on-line courses (e.g., MOOC or Coursera); and 5) the class must be graded. If you would like a new course approved, please submit a complete syllabus and appropriate petition to the program director.


Elective Courses Title Credits
HLWL 1106 Drug Awareness 3 credits
HLWL 1109 Human Sexuality 3 credits
HLWL 1110 Issues in Alternative Medicine 3 credits
EXNS 1114 Community Nutrition 3 credits

EXNS 2119

Basic Nutrition 

3 credits

EXNS 2122 Food Systems in Public Health 3 credits
HIST 3363 Race, American Medicine, & PH: African-American Experiences 3 credits
ANTH 3504 Illness, Healing, & Culture 3 credits
ANTH 3513 Human Rights & Ethics 3 credits
ANTH 6302 Issues in Development 3 credits
BIOC 3560 Diet, Health, and Longevity 3 credits
GEOG 2137 Environmental Hazards 3 credits
HSCI 2101 Psychosocial Aspects of Health and Illness 3 credits
PUBH 2113 Impact of Culture Upon Health 3 credits
PUBH 2114 Environment, Health, and Development 3 credits
PUBH 2115 Health, Human Rights, and Displaced Persons 3 credits
PUBH 2116 Global Delivery of Health Systems 3 credits
PUBH 2117 Service-Learning in Public Health 3 credits
PUBH 3136 Health Law 3 credits
PUBH 3137 Global Public Health Nutrition 3 credits
PUBH 3150 Sustainable Energy and Environmental Health 3 credits
PUBH 3151 Current Issues in Bioethics 3 credits
PUBH 3199 Various Topics in Public Health 1-3 credits

Past Program Guides

This is the current program guide for this program. Students should follow the course requirements from the year in which they entered the program. Prior to August 4th, 2014 the Minor in Public Health was categorized as a Secondary Field of Study.

Past Guides:
Guides that are not available online can be accquired from the Academic Affairs Program Coordinator in the Dean's Office.

Transfer Approval Credits

See previously approved and denied courses here