New online degree in Health Studies

The Faculty of Health Sciences will be introducing a new, entirely online degree for its Bachelor of Science Honours (BScH) program beginning in September 2016.

The program, called ePre-Health, aims to give students the necessary competencies and skills to apply to a variety of healthcare careers — including medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, veterinary medicine and occupational therapy along with a variety of other careers. 

The proposal was discussed at the Nov. 11 and Nov. 16 Senate Committee on Academic Development (SCAD) meetings. 

In a report to Senate for the meeting on Dec. 1, SCAD stated that students seeking careers in healthcare often select programs they believe can be applied to professional healthcare programs. 

“However, science-centric undergraduate Life sciences and Biochemistry curricula currently do not prepare learners for the competencies that health professional programs demand,” the report stated.

The new curriculum will focus on professional healthcare skills and practices as opposed to a broader scope of scientific studies.  The program was reviewed by SCAD and approved by Senate at the Dec. 1 meeting.

The Journal reached out for comment from the University on the program, but they were unable to comment by deadline.  

The program was developed based on a mixture of redesigned existing courses and 25 new courses specific to the program.

Student evaluation will be conducted through small group learning, discussions and debates, written assignments, online midterms and final exams, according to the report.

The online medium is meant to improve accessibility to courses and attract more distance-studies students from across Canada and the world. Students can complete the program as part-time or full-time students.

According to the SCAD report to Senate, Queen’s Business Consulting conducted an environmental scan and market analysis for the program. Their findings, according to the report, suggested that the number of students pursuing an online education is growing worldwide.

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