When people think of health careers, they often picture doctors and nurses. To be sure, doctors and nurses play a huge role in any society’s healthcare. However, the world needs other health experts too. In fact, all kinds of health experts make a difference with their careers. With a health science degree, people can open doors into health work without having to earn a medical degree first. There’s a lot that you can do with a degree in health science. Careers include assistant jobs, research jobs, and much more.
What jobs can you get with health science degree courses under your belt? Basically, if a job deals with health, it’s a health science career. That’s why the questions of what to do with a degree in health sciences can get complicated. While having plenty of job opportunities is never a bad thing, it does mean doing some extra research on health science degree careers.
Health science degree careers can go in a few different directions. Some people go into research after earning a degree in health science. Careers in academics and other research environments can be quite fulfilling for many people. Others have more hands-on careers. With a health science degree, you might choose to apply that aforementioned research in practical ways. In any case, one can explore lots of careers with a degree in health science. The world of healthcare is a deep well, and it requires a lot of people in a lot of interdisciplinary fields.
Those who are interested in health science may have a lot of questions about how to get started, and that’s where this guide comes in. In the next several paragraphs, you can find the information that you’ll need on the following subjects and questions:
- What to do with a degree in health sciences
- How to pursue careers with a degree in health science
- How to find the right school for health science
- Professional organizations for health science experts
- What are the average bachelor’s of health science salary ranges?
- What is allied health?
Keep reading to find out how to get started.
Anyone who wants to go into health sciences will need to get the right education first, and that starts with finding an accredited school. What does accreditation mean? The US has several accrediting organizations. In fact, each region of the US has its own, which means that a school in Texas will be accredited by a different organization than a school in Maine.
When these organizations investigate schools and colleges, they look for academic challenge and relevance. If a school consistently provides worthwhile, relevant education and training, then it can earn its accreditation. Once an accrediting organization approves a school, students can know that this school is worth their time and can lead to a fulfilling career.
Accreditation matters because employers look for candidates who have the right education. Generally, employers will take candidates much more seriously if they can demonstrate that they’ve graduated from an accredited school. However, say that an employer overlooks the fact that a candidate went to a non-accredited school and hires that person anyway. There’s still no guarantee that the new employee has the education that they need for the job. They may start working only to realize that everything they know is out of date.
The best college for health science depends on what students can get out of it, but know that the best college for health science will always, without exception, be an accredited school. That said, when you look for colleges with health science major options, how do you make sure that you choose an accredited school? Most accredited schools gladly offer their accreditation information on their websites. When browsing colleges with health science majors, try the “About Us” section first. You can usually find a link to an accreditation page from there.
Types of Health Science Degrees
Thinking about an online bachelor’s in health science? What about a more traditional on-campus program? As you read in the above paragraphs, the term “health science” covers a lot of ground. Whether one looks into health science degrees online or in person, one can earn health science bachelor degrees in a wide range of subjects. Now, when it comes to health science bachelor degrees, a person can go as specific or as broad as they would like to go. When it comes to your options, you might be drawn to any number of the following:
- An online bachelor of health science degree
- An on-campus degree
- A non-allied health degree
- A certificate
First, take a look at some of the more specific options. If one wants to go into the physical health field, one could look into degree options such as:
Health science degrees, online and in person, also cover mental health topics. For a career in the mental health field, one could go into majors like:
For a career in community health, one could look into a public health degree or a degree in epidemiology.
Next, look at some more general choices. There are absolutely more general health science bachelor degree programs. When a person pursues a general health science degree, that person gets a multidisciplinary degree that covers a lot of ground. Students in these programs learn a broad overview of subjects including physical, mental, and societal health. Some of these majors offer concentrations so that students can tailor their degrees to their own goals.
A health science degree makes a good choice for those who know that they want to go into grad school later. It’s also a good choice for those who are figuring out where they want to go with their health science career, as well as those who just want a well-rounded science degree.
For those seeking a bachelor of health sciences, online options exist as well. You saw online bachelor’s in health science mentioned briefly above, but in the next couple of paragraphs, you’ll get a deeper look at how to pursue an online bachelor’s in health science. Health science online degrees have proven beneficial for a lot of students. If you earn an online degree in health science, then you can rest assured that your degree is worth just as much as it would have been worth if you had earned it on campus.
Health science online degrees use the same classes and materials that on-campus programs use. The only difference is that an online degree in health science can be earned anywhere. As long as one has a reliable internet connection, one can access their classes and materials.
Health science online degrees are designed for working adults or otherwise nontraditional students. Students pursuing an online degree in health science usually, for one reason or another, don’t have the time or flexibility in their lives to attend all of their classes on campus. By pursuing a health sciences degree online, these students can attend classes in between taking care of their other responsibilities.
However, depending on the type of degree you’re pursuing and the type of career that you want to achieve, you may have to organize some in-person work as well. To be clear, you can still earn your health sciences degree online, but some careers and certifications do require hands-on experience. Some health science degrees, online or otherwise, require students to arrange clinical work with local hospitals or healthcare organizations.
Furthermore, when earning an online bachelor’s degree in health science, keep in mind that you’ll have to have a strong amount of self-discipline to get your work done, especially if your classes have no set login times. An online bachelor’s of health science degree is a great choice for a lot of people, but it does lack some of the structure that the campus format provides. If you work better with structure in your life, try to find ways to build that structure and accountability into your online learning experience.
While pursuing a bachelor of health sciences online, make sure that you put just as much thought and care into choosing your school as you would for a campus learning experience. When it comes to getting an online bachelor of health science degree, accreditation matters just as much as it does for on-campus programs.
Certifications/Licenses for Health Science Professionals
Depending on the career that you pursue, you may also need a license to practice once you graduate. For example, social workers, doctors, and nurses all need licenses to do their work legally. If your intended career does require a license, keep that in mind when you look for programs of study. Some programs specifically prepare their students for licensure exams.
Health science certifications are also an option for certain careers. If you don’t want a career that requires a license and full bachelor’s degree, you can earn a health sciences certificate in less time than it would take to earn a full bachelor’s degree. Careers that you can get with a health sciences certificate include things like assistant jobs and medical billing jobs. You can also find a health science certificate online.
Just like with a bachelor’s degree, however, you should put time and research into choosing health science certifications. Look for programs that have a reputation for relevance and excellence.
Careers in Health Science
What can you do with a health science major? What jobs can you get with a health science degree? Once again, when it comes to jobs you can get with a health science degree, the possibilities are seemingly endless, and once again, job possibilities depend on the specific type of health sciences degree. As stated a couple of times above, bachelor of health science degree jobs cover different types of health.
Before you dive into the jobs for a health science major or a list of allied health careers, it’s important to clarify one question: What is a health science major? There is a bit of confusion surrounding that question, which is part of the reason why careers with a health science major are so broad. So, what is a health science major? That question has two answers:
- Somebody who is literally majoring in health sciences. Their diploma will have the words “health sciences” printed on it, and they will likely seek an allied health career after graduation.
- Somebody who’s major technically falls under the health sciences umbrella. For example, if a person is a nursing major, that person’s career goals are technically health sciences.
This article focuses on both types. Below, there’s a list of jobs you can get with a health science degree. Some of these degrees are specifically “major in health science” jobs, or a health science major’s careers. In other words, they fall under the list of allied health careers. (More on allied health career information, including the answer to “What is an allied health professional?” later.)
However, other jobs are not specifically careers with a health science major. Some of these careers, such as nursing, are not jobs you can get with a health sciences degree in general. They require one of those more specific degrees that fall under the health science umbrella but have a more narrow focus.
First, take a look at some of the jobs you might consider if you’re interested in physical health. The following are just a few examples out of many health science bachelor degree jobs that a person might consider. Keep in mind that some of these do require a specific degree in that field, not a general health sciences degree.
- Nurse – Nursing falls under the umbrella of health sciences bachelor degree jobs, though it does specifically require a nursing degree.
- Physical therapist – Among health sciences bachelor degree jobs, physical therapy is also a top choice.
- Phlebotomist – Phlebotomists draw blood from patients in different medical settings. Phlebotomists can work with just a certificate. However, a bachelor’s degree in health sciences certainly doesn’t hurt.
Next, there are health science bachelor degree jobs that focus specifically on mental health. Once again, not all of these fall specifically into the “jobs with a health science degree” category. Some do require a different degree that, while technically falling under the health science umbrella, are more narrow than degrees that focus on the health sciences in general. This include:
- Social worker
- Life coach
Then, of course, there are jobs with a health science degree that focus on community-wide health. Public health advisors and epidemiologists fall into this category.
Now, if you look specifically into jobs with a health science degree – that is, jobs that one can get specifically with a degree in health sciences, you’ll notice a lot of options. As a matter of fact, this degree comes with too many potential job pathways to list in this article. When you major in health science, jobs abound virtually everywhere. Here are just some of the many health science bachelor degree jobs that a person might pursue:
- Dental hygienist – What jobs can you get with health science degree experience? Becoming a dental hygienist is a popular choice. Hygienists clean patients’ teeth and provide cleaning advice before the dentist comes in to check for cavities and do other dental work.
- Physician’s Assistant – If you’re pursuing a bachelor degree in health science, jobs like physician’s assistant have probably crossed your radar. That’s because physician’s assistant careers are very popular among those who have earned a bachelor of health science degree. Jobs for PAs involve working closely with a doctor to diagnose patients and administer the correct treatment.
- Nutritionist – Becoming a nutritionist is a great option for those who are looking for bachelor of health science degree jobs. Nutritionists work for individuals and organizations, providing coaching and meal plans that emphasize healthy eating.
Again, those are just a few of the most popular bachelor of health science degree jobs, but the field is quite diverse.
Most people who obtain jobs with a bachelor of health science degree are allied health workers. Allied health matters enormously to the healthcare world as a whole, but what is allied health? And what is an allied health professional? Those who go into medical careers without becoming doctors, nurses, dentists, or pharmacists specifically are called allied health professionals. Allied health careers are the reason why there are so many jobs for a health science degree. When you ask “What jobs can a health science degree get?” Most of the answers will be allied health careers. All of the careers listed above, for example, are allied health careers.
What are the best allied health careers? Well, that depends on the person. Since the jobs you can get with a health science degree are so numerous, the best allied health careers for you are simply the ones in which you can see yourself thrive. That said, the highest paid allied health careers are physician’s assistants (over $84,000 per year) and dental hygienists ($68,000). Those two careers as well as most other allied health career options are growing fast. In any case, for those who have a bachelor degree in health science, job prospects look good. Other job markets may rise and fall, but society will always need medical health experts.
Still, when there are so many options available, that “What can you do with a health science major?” question suddenly gets very complicated. Knowing that there are so many jobs for a health science major, how does a person choose from all of these career options? For health science majors, careers can take a lot of different directions, so it’s important to start with passions and priorities. You might start by googling “What job can you get with a health science degree?” but don’t just choose randomly from a list of jobs for a health science major. When you major in health science, jobs shouldn’t just be about the money, either. Start by asking yourself: “What do I want to get from this career? What are my specific priorities? What will make me happy to go into work every day?” Then, as you explore the different jobs you can get with a health sciences degree, ask yourself whether these jobs line up with what you really want.
With a degree in health science, salary ranges are consistently high. As a matter of fact, if you have a health science degree, salary may be very low on your list of worries. Health science salaries tend to be higher than average because health science experts are in such high demand.
Health science salaries average in the $70,00 range. Keep in mind, however, that this is the mid-range average. A salary for health science can get higher or lower depending on the situation. For example, if a person has only recently earned their degree in health science, salary ranges will probably look a bit smaller at first. However, many years after earning a health science degree, salary options can get much bigger, assuming that this person stays in the field.
A salary for health science can also look larger or smaller depending on the specific focus. For a physician’s assistant with a bachelor’s in health science, salary ranges can get quite a bit higher than for some others with a health sciences degree. Salary shouldn’t be the only factor in choosing your career path, however. Again, look for careers that best fit your needs and interests.
What else can influence a health sciences degree salary? Location. A bachelor’s in health science salary can be much larger for those who work in cities than those who work in rural areas.
Overall, though, for those who have a bachelor’s of health science, salary ranges are definitely competitive.
Finally, look into some professional organizations. Professional organizations provide great opportunities for networking and getting to know the job market. Plus, some of these organizations may offer continuing education credits for those who want to expand their knowledge and salary potential. Organizations for health professionals include:
- National Society of Allied Health
- American Medical Association
- American Society of Radiologic Technologists
- National Healthcareer Association
- Joint Commission on Allied Health in Ophthalmology