Global Public Health (BSc)

Society, biomedicine and health promotion

Student Alexandra doing fieldwork in the Philippines

Student Alexandra doing fieldwork in the Philippines

In the Global Public Health programme of Leiden University College you learn to make a difference in the health and well-being of populations. The main goal of this major is to learn skills to develop health education programmes for socially deprived  groups and perform research to study main biomedical, social and environmental factors that can affect population health. 

Although, the world has made tremendous progress in medicine, education and public sanitation and hygiene, global public health challenges such as socioeconomic inequality in child health, sexual and reproductive health and nutrition exist. Are you concerned with health challenges connected with social and cultural inequality, epidemics and the impact of environmental and biomedical factors on population health? Global Public Health might be the right major for you.

Make a healthy change

The goal of the Global Public Health major at LUC is to foster both an applied and critical theoretical understanding of the risk factors and potential interventions associated with public health challenges that range from the individual, community, and societal level. A practitioner of Global Public Health, for example:

  • determines the cultural beliefs about HIV in Sub-Saharan Africa

  • identifies successful interventions to prevent female genital mutilation

  • studies the public health impact of tax policies on fatty foods

  • assesses the role of air pollution on cardiovascular health

Programme structure

After a broad, interdisciplinary first year programme concerned with the Global Challenges, this two-year Major provides you with a strong grounding in health sciences. The courses revolve around three major themes (tracks): Biomedical sciences, Health & Development and Health, Behavior & Society. You are provided with the key practical and theoretical tools to go out and contribute to the improvement of public health, trough:

  • classes, eg. about physiological mechanisms of diseases as malaria and cancer
  • applied coursework, eg. developing a public health intervention to tackle obesity in children of low socioeconomic background
  • capstone thesis projects, e.g. about social  factors contributing to the Ebola epidemic in Liberia
  • internships, e.g. public health internships in Ghana, Nepal or India in collaboration with IFMSA-NL or research internships in collaboration with the Municipal Health Services (GGD) in The Hague or ErasmusAge in Rotterdam 
  • study abroad, for example a summer course on International Community Health at University of Oslo
  • external minors, for example the minor ‘Human Evolution’ at the Leyden Academy on Vitality and Ageing

These courses include required foundational and thematically oriented coursework within health sciences including biology, chemistry, epidemiology, medical anthropology, human geography, and psychology. You will also learn about methodology courses in biostatistics and geographic information systems for health-data analysis. Students are also encouraged to take advantage of the resources of The Hague through an internship with a health care agency.

Read more about the full study programme in the Public Global Health e-prospectus.

Nutritional assessment at the laboratory of the Haagse Hogeschool

Nutritional assessment at the laboratory of the Haagse Hogeschool

Career in Global Public Health

Our broad interdisciplinary BSc major Global Public Health prepares you for a future career in global health practice, as well as further post-graduate studies in Health Sciences. For example students can work as:

  • health education officer
  • health policy maker
  • prevention worker

Also, students can enroll in MSc programmes such as:

LUC's other BSc Majors

Read more about the other Bachelor of Science Majors we offer at LUC:



Last Modified: 08-09-2015