Saint Louis University

Department of Behavioral Science & Health Education

SLU's behavioral science and health education programs

"The greatest pleasure which a person can have in this world is to discover new truths; and the next is to shake off old prejudices." Federick the Great (1620-1688) Elector of Brandenburg

In the Department of Behavioral Science & Health Education at the College for Public Health & Social Justice, we are committed to improving global health and eliminating health disparities through our teaching, research and service.


Behavioral science examines the decisions people make about their health in order to understand these behaviors and design programs to address them. We are focused on helping people and communities to make good decisions to promote better public health.

We build on a solid foundation of established expertise in behavioral science theory, community engagement, program planning, health communication, and evaluation. We also recognize that to be effective in our efforts, this expertise must be adapted in ways that are informed by the local community and the context in which they live and work on a daily basis.

We have a set of competencies developed to prepare students to face current challenges in public health. We place a strong emphasis on community work so students can make connections in their field and gain professional experience. We want to ensure that any student who graduations from our program will have the specific knowledge and skills they need to design, implement and evaluate interventions to improve health.

Our program positions students to take leadership roles in their fields; after graduation, our students are immediately able to apply their skills in their areas of interest, such as children's hospitals, county health departments, schools, rural communities, or federally-qualified health care centers.

We are also committed to excellence in our teaching and to small class sizes. We put great importance on strong connections among our students and between our students and our faculty. Our faculty's doors are always open, and they serve as mentors as well as teachers to their students.

Faculty Research

Each of our faculty has active research in areas including: physical activity, nutrition, maternal child health, injury prevention, community development, health communication, health literacy, HIV/AIDS prevention, health disparities, men's health, and social determinants of health. We have on-going funding from numerous agencies including the National Institutes of Health, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Missouri Foundation for Health.

Mission and Service

We are committed to the improvement of the public's health and reducing health disparities.
Our research and service activities reflect this commitment. Much of our work is focused in underserved communities and we work toward reducing death and disability of the leading causes of death in our society.

We are committed to the community.
We work closely with community organizations and members of the community to help reduce disease, death, and disparities. We respect and honor their expertise and have developed several continuing relationships.

We are committed to our students.
We look forward to working with you and sharing our passion and commitment to public health. We provide an exceptional educational experience, opportunities to work with and in the community, and a social justice grounding, all elements of the Jesuit tradition.


  • Master of Public Health in Behavioral Science and Health Education 
  • Master of Science in Public Health with a concentration in Behavioral Science and Health Education 
  • PhD in Public Health Studies with a concentration in Behavioral Science and Health Education 

Dual Degrees

Higher purpose. Greater good.
© 1818 - 2016  SAINT LOUIS UNIVERSITY   |   Disclaimer   |  Mobile Site
St. Louis   |   Madrid