Health Sciences Courses

Studying overseas in Health helps you graduate on time and gives you that competitive edge! Experience different healthcare systems while learning from experts in your field of study. Gain experience in areas such as Exercise and Sports Science, Nursing, Nutrition, Public and Community Health and more!
Program Types:
  • January Study
  • July Study
  • Language Study
  • Australia
  • Cambodia
  • Canada
  • China & Hong Kong
  • Costa Rica
  • England
  • Fiji
  • France
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands
  • New Caledonia
  • New Zealand
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Scotland
  • Singapore
  • South Africa
  • Spain
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • USA
  • Zambia
Area of Study:
  • Health Sciences
    • Clinical / Lab Technician
    • Exercise / Sports Science and Sports Management
    • Medical / Pharmaceutical
    • Nursing
    • Nutrition and Food Studies
    • Occupational and Speech Therapy
    • Public and Community Health

Need a recommendation? Contact us and we can assist you in finding the right program.

Available Courses by Program
CREDITS: 3 US credits / 45 contact hours
OFFERED: July Sessions: 4, B

This course examines the ethics of medical practices and issues in contemporary society. Coursework will pose questions regarding areas that affect human life and death. Topics include practices such as euthanasia, birth control and abortion, cloning, genetic engineering, and biomedical research. Students will analyze the ethical nature of covered practices, how they affect humans on individual and social scales, and the relationship between patients and physicians and medical structures in terms of information, consent, and responsibility. Case studies from local European as well as non-European countries will be closely considered for discussion and study.

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CREDITS: 3 US credits / 45 contact hours
OFFERED: July Sessions: 4, B

This course examines the practice and basic principles of addiction to drugs of abuse such as heroin, alcohol, tobacco, cannabis or cocaine. Course topics will cover the epidemiology of drug abuse, the experimental models used in brain research, and the pathological consequences of drug addiction (including heavy drinking and smoking). The course will extend the concept of addiction to pathological behaviors such as compulsive consumption of palatable food, physical exercise dependence, compulsive shopping, sexual hyperactivity, internet abuse, and gambling. The neurochemical mechanisms that are shared and lead from reward to positive reinforcement, loss of control, and dependence will be examined. The symptomatological and neurochemical similarities and differences between drug and behavioral addiction will be addressed, along with the self-destructive behaviors, tolerance, craving, and withdrawal symptoms that both types of dependence produce.

The course traces also the basic aspects of human biology and physiology that are needed to fully comprehend the topics at hand, including the neuronal circuits and neurotransmitters that are altered by both natural and artificial rewards. Students will also learn how to analyze scientific data and correctly interpret the information that is published in peer-reviewed international scientific journals. Finally, students will gain an understanding of the social and ethical implications of drug and behavioral addiction and of the peculiar features of this problem in different countries, with an emphasis on the European and Italian approach as compared with other areas of the world.

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CREDITS: 4 US credits

Epidemiology is interdisciplinary science with goal of identifying and describing patterns of disease occurrence, identifying determinants of disease, and evaluating disease prevention and health care treatment efforts. With its focus on human populations, epidemiology is directly linked with public health research, policy, and practice. Introduction to fundamental definitions, concepts, methods, and critical thinking used in epidemiologic study. Designed to lay foundation for future study to evaluate factors related to health outcomes in human populations using epidemiologic principles.

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CREDITS: 4 US credits

Impact of environment and lifestyle on individual health examined from geographical perspective, with examples from both developed and developing countries.

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CREDITS: 4 US credits

Designed for juniors/seniors. Examination of Chicano/Latino health status through life expectancy, causes of death, reportable diseases, services utilization, provider supply, and risk behaviors within demographic/immigration changes. Binational review of health effects in U.S. and Mexico.

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CREDITS: 4 US credits

Limited to students in Public Health minor and graduate students.

Introductory course to provide non-Community Health Sciences M.P.H. students and qualified undergraduate students with broad and comprehensive overview of concepts, empirical research, and public health practice in community health sciences, with emphasis on social context and determinants of population health and principles of planning interventions to protect and improve public health. Ways to define and measure health and illness, social construction of illness, social and behavioral determinants of health, and health disparities, including socioeconomic status, race/ethnicity, gender, and age. Social and behavioral theories of health-related behavior change, health promotion strategies and methods, and public policy. Case studies of evidence-based health promotion programs provided.

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CREDITS: 4 US credits

Structure and function of American healthcare system; issues and forces shaping its future.

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CREDITS: 4 US credits

Areas of health, illness, treatment, and delivery of treatment that can be elucidated by understanding of psychological concepts and research, psychological perspective on these problems, and how psychological perspective might be enlarged and extended in medical area.

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CREDITS: 4 US credits

Genealogy of autism as diagnostic category and cultural phenomenon from its historical roots as new, rare, and obscure condition in early 1940s to its current contested status as minority identity and/or global epidemic. Examination of material sourced from various fields and disciplines invested in autism, including psychology, neuroscience, arts and humanities, popular media, anthropology, activism, and critical autism studies. Students encounter and analyze multiple perspectives on autism and put them in conversation with one another. Attention paid to way people on spectrum define, explain, and represent their own experiences of autism and discussion of what ramifications of these multiple framings are in context of autism intervention strategy and disability policy today.

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CREDITS: 4 US credits

Exploration of young but quickly growing profession of music therapy in health care industry. Students gain comprehensive understanding of music therapy, what it takes to become board-certified music therapist, and standards of practice and research. Students gain ability to define music therapy and advocate its services within community, and general understanding of how to assess and carry out music therapy session. Students participate in classroom activities that include simple songwriting, lyric analysis, instrumentation, and discussion. Prior music training not required. Includes homework, research assignments, and quizzes. In final group project, students work together to assess hypothetical client and create two session plans with clearly stated objectives.

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CREDITS: 3 CAD credits

What makes people healthy or unhealthy? The health of individuals is not only shaped by lifestyle choices or medical treatments, but also, to a large extent, by social conditions. This course offers an introduction to the social determinants of health and the social advantages and disadvantages that people experience based on their social position and social circumstances and how these influence their health and wellbeing. This course is designed to provide participants with an introduction to and appreciation of theoretical perspectives and empirical research on the social determinants of health.

This intensive interprofessional course provides participants with opportunities to develop and strengthen their understanding of the social determinants of health using local, regional, national and global perspectives. Participants critically examine social inequities, root causes and subsequent health consequences in diverse populations, particularly indigenous and/or marginalised populations.

The course is jointly administered by the VIU Faculty of International Education and the VIU Faculty of Health and Human Services. Students will be provided with a total of 42 hours of public health instruction, 4 hours of intercultural studies workshops, and a number of related field trips. Half-day trips include visits to the Canadian Mental Health Association, the Nanaimo Regional General Hospital (NRGH), the Tillicum Lelum Friendship Centre (indigenous health), and Kiwanis Village (assisted living for older people).

Upon successful completion of the program, students will receive a certificate of completion, and will be awarded 3 CAD credits by VIU.

Prerequisite: Second year standing in an undergraduate degree program

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