You are here: American University College of Arts & Sciences Health Studies BS in Health Promotion

Health Promotion BS

The BS in Health Promotion provides rigorous academic preparation in the scientific and clinical knowledge of human anatomy and physiology, nutrition, exercise physiology, and health psychology combined with aspects of health communication and programming.  Drawing upon behavior change theory and health sciences, health promotion is a discipline dedicated to supporting healthy lifestyles. This curriculum prepares students for a health promotion position in a corporate, community, commercial, or school environment, or for graduate work in a health-related field.
Are you interested in:
  • Establishing and managing wellness programs for employees and their families?
  • Developing effective media campaigns for emerging health issues?
  • Helping clients achieve fitness and nutrition goals?
  • Researching health policy and establishing state and national programs?
  • Integrating health promotion and disease management activities into the healthcare system?
  • Instituting innovative community-outreach programs?
  • Advocating for health issues and promoting wellness in communities?

Students can choose either the Health Promotion BS or minor. Learn more about the Health Promotion minor.

At the heart of the BS and minor are sets of core courses that ensure that students gain both foundational knowledge and practical skills in the field of health promotion. Through their electives, students can learn about more specific issues related to their health interests.

View a list of classes in the course catalog.

Upon completion of this program,

  • LO1: Students will be able to demonstrate a sound understanding of scientific and clinical knowledge of human anatomy and physiology, nutrition, exercise physiology, and health psychology.
  • LO2: Students will be able to translate research and apply concepts of health program planning models, behavior change theories, and health communication strategies to design evidence-based health promotion efforts.
  • LO3: Students will be able to explain the concept of health equity and discuss the impact of health disparities on health as well as health promotion efforts.
  • LO4: Students will be able to conduct research and create a multi-pronged monitoring and evaluation strategy for assessing health promotion program effects.

Complete your MS Degree in 1 Year!

Health Studies students now have the opportunity to complete a combined Bachelor’s/Master’s program in 5 years (4 years for Public Health Scholars).

Students are eligible to apply if they meet the following requirements:

  • Cumulative 3.0 GPA or higher
  • Have earned 75 – 90 academic credits
  • Students are not required to take Graduate Record Examination (GRE).

If accepted into the combined program, graduate regulations permit 500 and 600 level approved courses to be shared between the BA/BS in Public Health or Health Promotion and the MS programs.

  • Health Promotion Management is a 30-credit MS program and permits 12 approved credits to be shared between degrees.
  • Nutrition Education is a 30-credit MS online program and permits 9 approved credits to be shared between degrees.

Students must apply for the Bachelor’s/Master’s option when they have earned between 75 – 90 credits; therefore, early planning is essential!

See our Combined Bachelors/MS page for more details.

The DC area is the top paying regions in America for health workers and educators, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (2018).

Top employers for AU undergraduates with a degree in Health Promotion

  • American Heart Association
  • Aquila Fitness
  • CORE Physical Therapy
  • Nirschl Orthopaedic Center for Sports Medicine and Joint Reconstruction
  • Vanderbilt University Medical Center

See more about Health Promotion alumni career outcomes.

Matthew Barressi

Alumni ·

Where Are They Now? Alumnus Matthew Barresi

Read More

A person does yoga

Student Life ·

Coping Tips from AU Health Promotion Students

Read More


Allied Health

  • Physical Therapy Assistant, Tucker Rehabilitation Hospital: Montvale, NJ
  • Occupational Therapy Assistant, National Rehabilitation Hospital: Washington, DC
  • Rehab Aide, Schneider Regional Medical Center: St Thomas, VI
  • Assistant to the Athletic Specialist, Riekes Center for Humans Enhancement: Menlo Park, CA
  • Physical Therapy Aide, Metro Orthopedics and Sports Therapy: Silver Spring, MD
  • Assurance and Patient Safety Intern, Mercy Medical Center: Baltimore, MD

Corporate Health Promotion

  • Minority Health Intern, Kaiser Permanente: Rockville, MD
  • Lifeworks and Diversity Intern, Discovery Channel: Silver Spring, MD
  • Fitness Instructor, World Bank Fitness Center: Washington, DC
  • Health and Fitness Intern, L&T Fitness: Washington, DC

Health Promotion in Different Settings (school, university, non-profit)

  • Health Promotion Specialist, Bradley Wellness Center: Bethesda, MD
  • Assistant Teacher, Appletree Early Learning Center: Washington, DC
  • Research Assistant in Neurology Lab, University of California, Irvine, School of Medicine: Irvine, CA
  • Health and Wellness Intern, Adventist HealthCare Health and Wellness: Rockville, MD
  • Educational Policy Intern, Urban Education Leaders Internship Program, DCPS: Washington, DC
  • Assistant Coach and Researcher, Infinity Wellness Foundation: Washington, DC
  • Client Relations Intern, A Wider Circle: Washington, DC
  • Assistant to the Partnership Program Manager, DC Central Kitchen: Washington, DC
  • Strength and Conditioning Coach, Georgetown University: Washington, DC