Online Bachelor’s in Health Science Programs (BSHS Degree)

The healthcare industry and allied health-related fields continue to grow. As people live longer, the demand for qualified health professionals also increases. A bachelor of science in health science (BSHS) degree can prepare medical professionals for various roles in healthcare management, research, and education. Health science is a class of applied science embracing various disciplines, including anatomy, microbiology, physiology, neurophysiology, epidemiology, immunology, microbiology, and clinical practices. Research, experimentation, and analytical skills are especially helpful.

While the convenience and flexibility of an online degree program may be attractive to many, it’s important to note that online BSHS programs typically are bachelor’s completion programs, and require applicants to have a qualifying associate degree, generally in a medical technology field. Therefore these distance-based degree programs best suit students with the hands-on clinical experience that comes from earning an associate degree.

For example, Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) offers a standout online BSHS degree “designed exclusively for professionals with an associate degree in the allied health field.” In sum, a distance-based BSHS degree may be a stepping stone for nurses, EMTs, technicians, and other healthcare workers to gain a bachelor’s degree and move into more advanced roles with leadership or managerial potential.

Health scientists research and discover information that helps healthcare professionals to provide effective, safe healthcare and health promotion. Professionals apply this knowledge to private clinical practice, hospitals, care homes, colleges, or public clinics. Some in-demand career specializations in health sciences include healthcare administration, marketing, management, and communications roles and research and education positions.

Read on to discover online BSHS programs and three exceptional educators in the field.

Admissions Requirements to Online BSHS Programs

Admissions standards vary by institution, but here is a list of common admission requirements for online BSHS degree programs derived from the programs below:

  • An associates degree in an allied health-related field
  • A satisfactory grade point average in previous coursework, usually at least a 3.0 GPA, but in some cases, the requirement is higher
  • A background check or proof of immunization
  • First aid and CPR certification
  • Completion of approved college-level math and science coursework
  • Statement of purpose


The primary benefit of an accredited program is that an independent body reviews the curriculum, facilities, standards, faculty, student outcome, and other variables. Therefore, human resource professionals, graduate and medical school program admissions officers, and employers tend to trust an accredited degree more than one that is not accredited. Numerous bodies accredit colleges and universities and most tend to be either regional or subject-specific. Most of the featured universities hold multiple accreditations.

Specific health-related specialties have their own accreditations. For example, the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) is the gold standard for health science program evaluation, while the Association of University Programs in Health Administration (AUPHA) awards accreditation to healthcare administration programs. Some of these colleges have allied nursing, physical therapy, or medical school programs and are accredited within those subject areas. While the accreditation may not be directly relevant, it may indicate the credibility and quality of the college, its faculty, and its programs.

There are also various regional accreditation bodies, such as the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). Overall, prospective students should ensure that their accreditation bodies are recognized by the Department of Education’s Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

Featured Online Health Sciences Bachelor’s Degree Programs

The following section highlights twelve accredited colleges or universities that offer online Health Sciences bachelor’s degree programs. Remember that online degree programs change and evolve as distance learning grows. Visit the college’s website for the most up-to-date information for each degree program.

Kettering College

Kettering College offers an online bachelor of science in health sciences program, providing students with a values-based, high-quality education in health-related fields with the spirit of Christian caring and service. The program empowers graduates to expand their career paths and become well-positioned to work in health care management, acute care, and community and primary care settings.

This bachelor’s completion program is designed for those who already obtained an associate degree or its equivalent in a healthcare field. Topics covered in the program include an emphasis on specific healthcare disciplines like sonography, education, advanced imaging, management, and respiratory care.

The core curriculum of the program includes courses such as health care economics and finance; introduction to health professions research; legal and ethical considerations in health care; concepts of management and leadership in health care; community health perspectives; an introduction to the health sciences program; and a capstone or senior project.

  • Location: Kettering, OH
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two years, post-associate degree
  • Estimated Tuition: $611 per credit

Indiana University

Indiana University’s School of Health & Human Sciences offers an online BSHS degree. The university prides itself on providing a stimulating interactive learning environment, even from a distance. The health sciences faculty help prepare students to help reach academic, professional, and career goals. 80 to 99 percent of the program can be completed online. The program prepares students for roles such as insurance analysts, behavior support technicians, medical sales representatives, medical research coordinators, nurses, family care providers, health program coordinators, and hospital administrators.

The program is made up of 120 credits. Students may be able to transfer an associate degree or up to 64 credits from a regionally accredited two-year college and up to 90 credits from a regionally accredited four-year college or university.

Some of the courses in the curriculum include scientific foundations of human nutrition; a survey of the US healthcare system services; aging and the older person; health and rehabilitation systems across the world; disability and society; legal and regulatory aspects in rehabilitation; diversity issues in health and rehabilitation services; and research in health and rehabilitation sciences, among others.

  • Location: Indianapolis, IN
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two to four years (depending on previous coursework)
  • Estimated Tuition: In-state ($299.05 per credit); out-of-state ($1046.99 per credit)

Northern Arizona University

Northern Arizona University’s online BSHS degree program requires an associate’s degree in an allied health field. This program is tailored for returning college students to help expand healthcare career opportunities. It presents an overview of multiple specializations in different fields, including allied health; diagnostic medical imaging and therapy; medical assisting; physical therapy assisting; respiratory care; surgical technology; and paramedic care. All these programs are degree completion programs where students may transfer up to 90 credits and must complete a minimum of 30 credits of upper-division classes at Northern Arizona University.

Notably, Northern Arizona University also offers an online BSHS program in public health which is not a degree completion program and does not require an associate’s degree for admission.

Program learning objectives include gaining a knowledge of public health, project implementation, health communication, the role and importance of data in public health, and health policy, law, ethics, and economics.

  • Location: Flagstaff, AZ
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two to four years (depending on previous coursework)
  • Estimated Tuition: $425 to $465 per credit

Northern Kentucky University

Northern Kentucky University’s online bachelor of science in health science program is also for professionals with an associate degree in a healthcare discipline. This 100 percent online degree completion program prepares students for career mobility in several positions in health-related organizations. The curriculum blends technical and humanistic theories to provide students with a foundation for pursuing advanced positions while also preparing them for graduate studies.

Students in this 120-credit program must complete at least 33 credits at Northern Kentucky University. The curriculum includes courses such as healthcare management; aging in today’s society; healthcare research; global perspectives of healthcare; issues in chronic disease management; ethical and legal issues in healthcare; current trends and cultural issues in healthcare; health informatics; and leadership development.

  • Location: Highland Heights, KY
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two years, bachelor’s completion (33 credits)
  • Estimated Tuition: $275 per credit

Ohio State University

Offered by the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Ohio State University’s online bachelor of science in health sciences program is an introduction to the healthcare field, including an in-depth science background. The program is taught by Ohio State’s distinguished College of Medicine members. The flexible environment allows students to prepare for career success and to explore options.

The curriculum of this professional health science program is typically just two years in duration, and students can enter in the autumn semester of the third year. However, qualified students can also be considered for freshman-level direct admission or sophomore-level admission. In either case, students must complete a minimum of 120 credits, including prerequisites, general education courses, program requirements, and transfer credits.

In the first and second years, students will complete general education coursework and admission prerequisite requirements that include sociology, psychology, medical terminology, math, physiology, anatomy, economics, statistics, chemistry, and biology. Third and fourth-year students will complete health sciences core coursework, minor coursework, and any required prerequisite coursework.

Sample some of the courses in the curriculum: health promotion disease prevention; ethical decision making in healthcare; management and human resources in healthcare; health sciences research; US healthcare policy and delivery system; and an introduction to epidemiology.

  • Location: Columbus, OH
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two to four years (120 credits total)
  • Estimated Tuition: $4858.80 for 12 to 18 credits per semester

Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) offers an online bachelor of science degree exclusively to students with an existing associate’s degree in an allied health-related field. SNHU’s faculty enter education with a wealth of real-world experience.

Graduates of this program will be ready to take up leadership roles in fields such as cardiovascular technology, dental hygiene, clinical laboratories, diagnostic medical technology, neurodiagnostic technology, occupational therapy assistant, nuclear medicine technology, radiography, and respiratory therapy, among many others. It is important to note that this program only provides non-clinical management skills in several allied health fields and does not lead to licensure in any allied health field.

The curriculum includes courses such as healthcare economics; healthcare delivery systems; healthcare reimbursement; healthcare finance; ethical and legal considerations of healthcare; healthcare quality management; and a health sciences capstone.

  • Location: Manchester, NH
  • Accreditation: New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two years
  • Estimated Tuition: $320 per credit, discounts available for U.S. service members and their spouses

Liberty University

Liberty University offers an online bachelor of science in health sciences program that can be completed entirely online. With eight different start dates each year, this program allows students to transfer up to 75 percent of credits to this program.

The curriculum of the program includes courses such as legal & ethical issues in healthcare; research & evidence-based practice in healthcare; environment & sustainability; environmental science & policy; applied human anatomy & physiology; human nutrition; principles of epidemiology & biostatistics for business; and medical terminology, among others.

Students learn to evaluate, use, and access evidence-based research appropriately and effectively, integrate ethical and legal principles into professional decision-making, use critical thinking strategies to identify and address issues within the health sciences profession, evaluate the role and nature of health from a biblical worldview, and demonstrate correct knowledge of medical terminology.

Graduates will be ready to take up roles in research laboratories, hospitals, clinics, private offices, government agencies, and rehabilitation facilities. Some of the positions they may qualify for include health journalists, medical administrative assistants, community health or public health workers, medical staff relations specialists, patient care services workers, patient care advocates, and pharmaceutical sales representatives.

  • Location: Lynchburg, VA
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: 3.5 to four years
  • Estimated Tuition: $390 per credit

Arizona State University

Arizona State University offers an online bachelor of applied science in health sciences program that allows students to tailor their studies to relevant areas of professional and personal interest.

This online program is intended for those who hold an associate of applied science degree related to health and health technology and are interested in earning their bachelor’s degree in a shorter time frame. With a BAS in health sciences, students will gain the experience and knowledge needed to advance their careers. Also, those who do not have an associate degree in a related field can pursue ASU’s online’s BSHS program.

Students can customize their degree based on their area of interest by focusing on topics such as health and aging, health legislation, integrative care, Spanish and health, or community-based health outcomes. Students can transfer 60 to 75 credits from their associate degree upon admission.

Some of the courses in the curriculum include legal issues in health care; social determinants of health and health behavior; the impact of violence on health; complementary health care; population health management; health communication; supporting the health of older adults; health theory; health issues in later life; and global health care systems, among others.

Graduates can take up positions such as community health workers, healthcare professors, high school teachers, medical and health services managers, office managers, public relations specialists, and social services directors.

  • Location: Phoenix, AZ
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two to four years
  • Estimated Tuition: $700 per credit

University of West Florida

University of West Florida’s online bachelor of science in health sciences degree prepares students to excel as health professionals providing services to communities and individuals. As students acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote positive health outcomes for the population they serve, they will learn from faculty members who are experienced in the field.

The program’s 120-credit curriculum includes courses such as career essentials for healthcare; medical terminology; legal fundamentals of healthcare; current topics in health informatics; human physiology; gerontology; data analysis in the health sciences; epidemiology of infectious disease; health ethics and professionalism; and medical disaster management, among others. As part of the program, students will complete a capstone course focusing on modern health science research, including research ethics, data collection, and the scientific method.

Graduates will be prepared to take up roles such as assisted living facility administrators, medical group practice office managers, and medical records technicians, among many other such roles.

  • Location: Pensacola, FL
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Four years
  • Estimated Tuition: $218.98 per credit

Northwestern University

Northwestern University offers an online bachelor of science in health sciences degree completion program equipping students with the cultural, communication, leadership, and management competencies needed for making a positive impact within the healthcare industry. Students in this degree completion program complete eight core courses and choose a major concentration in either strategic management, public health, or biology for health sciences. Students also select an elective certificate comprising four courses from outside of the major.

The curriculum includes courses such as healthcare principles; communication in health science professions; culturally responsive healthcare; managing financial resources in healthcare organizations; healthcare quality management; data management and analytics in healthcare; and research methods in health sciences.

Elective certificate options include artificial intelligence; corporate communication and branding; business essentials; data science; human resources; health, science, and society; human resources; leadership; research and analytics; programming; strategic communication; and social justice.

  • Location: Chicago, IL
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two years
  • Estimated Tuition: $2,179 per credit

University of Missouri

The University of Missouri’s online bachelor of health science program prepares students for a spectrum of non-clinical roles. It helps them fulfill prerequisite requirements for professional and graduate programs. This fully online program is geared toward working professionals and supports their aspirations through hands-on learning and easily accessible content.

The curriculum includes courses such as contemporary health issues; introduction to the health professions; introduction to the research process and evidence base; health care in the United States; clinical ethics; an introduction to applied statistics; and healthcare organization and leadership. The curriculum also includes an internship in health sciences. Freshman students complete 120 credits, and transfer students complete 64 credits.

Graduates will be prepared to work in medical care management, human services, corporate wellness, medical sales, hospitals and private practices, pharmaceutical manufacturing and distribution, long-term care facilities, government organizations, and health clinics. They can take up roles such as health educators, sales representatives, healthcare IT consultants, patient representatives, and clinical data managers.

  • Location: Columbia, MO
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two to four years
  • Estimated Tuition: Freshman students ($52,248); transfer students ($28,364)

University of Cincinnati

The University of Cincinnati offers an online bachelor of science in health sciences degree completion program providing students with an in-depth science background and preparing them for work in fields such as medicine, physical therapy, exercise science, dentistry, public health, occupational therapy, physician’s assistant, health administration, medical dietetics, and nurse practitioner. This program is for applicants who already hold an allied health associate degree and are looking to advance to a bachelor’s degree.

The curriculum includes courses such as personal nutrition; introduction to statistics; physics for allied health; introduction to biomechanics and kinesiology; pharmacology for health sciences; mid-collegiate interprofessional touch point conference; nutrition and exercise; lifecycle nutrition; research methods in health sciences; medical terminology; exercise considerations and application for special populations; and physical conditioning and testing.

  • Location: Cincinnati, OH
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC)
  • Expected Time to Completion: Two to four years
  • Estimated Tuition: Resident ($556 per credit); non-resident ($571 per credit)

Professors to Know in Schools with Online BSHS Programs

Shannon Alexander is an assistant professor and health science program director at Northern Kentucky University. Before coming to Northern Kentucky University, she worked for several years in healthcare management as the chief radiation therapist for Oncology Hematology Care. Shannon also taught in the Allied Health Department as an adjunct professor at the University of Cincinnati. Her research and academic interests include digital radiography, pathology, healthcare management and leadership, and ethical-legal issues in healthcare.

Currently teaching in the BSHS program, Shannon Alexander teaches courses such as healthcare management; issues in chronic disease management; medicolegal issues in healthcare; applied healthcare management; strategic planning services for health science; and writing in the health sciences. She completed her MBA from Ohio University, a BS from the University of Cincinnati, and an AAS from Xavier University.

Dr. Crystal Dunlevy serves on the BSHS faculty as an associate professor at Ohio State University. She teaches or has taught courses such as critical phases in life; individual differences in patient/client populations; pharmacologic aspects of practice in health & rehabilitation sciences; and service learning in vulnerable C. Her research and publications focus on teaching, community health, and healthcare disparities, and her peer-reviewed publications touch on topics such as providing care to underserved populations and smoking cessation programs.

Notably, she received OSU’s College of Medicine faculty award and the Sphinx/Mortar Board outstanding educator award. She holds an associate degree in respiratory therapy, a bachelor of arts in biology, and a master of science in technical education from the University of Akron. She completed her doctorate in educational theory, policy, and administration at Rutgers University.

Dr. Stephen Palmer is a professor and an associate dean of Northern Arizona University’s College of Health and Human Services. He has taught and published peer-reviewed research papers in the fields of physical education, online health programs, and education. He teaches or has taught courses such as effective teaching of physical activity; physical education in an adventure setting; foundations of effective teaching in physical education; methods of promoting physical activity; and foundations of teaching middle school physical education.

He has received numerous awards, including the NAU Department of Health Promotion teacher of the year. He holds a bachelor of arts in physical education with a teaching certification and a master of arts in physical education pedagogy from California State University. He completed his doctorate in curriculum and instruction from Virginia Tech, where his dissertation work explored the impact of a web-based health intervention on fifth graders’ physical activity knowledge and behaviors.

Farheen Gani
Farheen Gani Writer

Farheen Gani has immense knowledge about medical technology schools, having researched topics such as medical billing and coding, health information management, nursing informatics, and biotechnology degree programs since 2018. She is a freelance writer, marketer, and researcher. She writes about healthcare, technology, education, and marketing. Her work has appeared on websites such as Tech in Asia and Foundr, as well as top SaaS blogs such as Zapier and InVision. You can connect with her on LinkedIn and Twitter (@FarheenGani).