Health Sciences, MS

Master of Science Degree in Health Sciences

University of Nebraska at Kearney

  • Fully Online
  • 30
  • $315.00
  • $504.00

Program Overview

The online Health Sciences, MS program is designed to serve students preparing for a professional program in health science.

Students of this program gain:

  • A strengthened science foundation through an intensive health sciences curriculum
  • Increased competitiveness in the professional school application process
  • An enhanced academic portfolio for professional school

Program Formatting: 

  • Coursework is offered in cohort student groups, beginning each summer
  • Program requirements may be completed in one year, allowing for students to be eligible to apply to their desired professional program.
  • Core courses in biology will provide the necessary foundation for professional school success. 
  • Elective coursework is comprised of a variety of academic disciplines based on the student’s professional and academic goals. 

Career Outlook:

According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for healthcare occupation is expected to grow at a rate of 15%, much faster than the average for all occupations. The projected growth is mainly due to an aging population, leading to greater demand for healthcare services.

Career paths include:

  • Health Sciences Educator
  • Biomedical Researcher
  • Medical Device Sales
  • Optometrist
  • Pharmacist

Admissions and Requirements

To be accepted to this program, you must have:

  1. A Bachelor's degree

  2. Completed coursework

    General Biology (2 semesters), General Chemistry (2 semesters), Anatomy and Physiology (2 semesters), Organic Chemistry, Physics, Statistics or Biostatistics, Microbiology, Medical Terminology (recommended)

  3. A written personal statement

    Letter of intent that describes the applicant's interests, goals and plan for obtaining an MS in Health Sciences

  4. Official transcripts from all previous schools

  5. Undergraduate GPA of 3.0 in prerequisite courses. (In lieu of meeting the GPA requirement, professional school adminssion exam scores may be submitted for consideration by the admissions committee.)

To apply to this program:

  1. Complete and submit the online application for admissions
  2. Pay the $45 non-refundable application fee

Courses You’ll Take

Course Information

Students will take 18 credit hours of electives in addition to the core courses

Core Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredits
BIOL 801Principles of Immunology3
An in-depth discussion of the principles of modern immunology. Major topics of discussion will include: cellular components of the immune system; antibody structure, function and synthesis; function of cytokines and complement; MHC structure and function; and the immune system and disease. A competent background in cell biology and/or biochemistry and microbiology is strongly recommended. Offered online, every Spring.
BIOL 838Essential Human Anatomy3
Human anatomy including essential aspects of functional morphology will be covered. Topics covered may include the integumentary, skeletal, muscular, nervous, endocrine, circulatory, lymphatic, respiratory, urinary, digestive and reproductive systems. Detailed discussion of specific anatomical regions will be required. Offered online, every Fall and Spring.
BIOL 839Human Physiological Systems3
General human physiology will be studied with an emphasis on systems. The integumentary, skeletal, muscular, nervous, endocrine, circulatory, lymphatic, respiratory, urinary, digestive, immune and reproductive systems will be discussed. Salient mechanical, physical and biochemical processes of organs, tissues and cells will be covered. Anatomy will be included at a level necessary to make sense of the system's function. Offered online, every Fall and Spring.
BIOL 861PHuman Genetics3
The course focuses on contemporary human genetics with emphasis on genetic diseases. A study of the genetic basis and frequency of genetic defects in man and genetic counseling. Offered online, Fall of even-numbered years.

Elective Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredits
BIOL 812Microbial Diversity3
Microbes are the most abundant and diverse organisms on Earth. Collectively, they play critical roles in biogeochemical cycling, human health, and food production. This course will explore the evolutionary and ecological processes that generate and maintain microbial diversity. Students will also be exposed to molecular and bioinformatic approaches that are used to study microorganisms in a variety of habitats, including freshwater, marine and terrestrial. Offered online.
BIOL 813Issues in Bioethics3
Bioethics is the study of ethical controversies in both biology and medicine. Science has progressed significantly in the last century and with this progress has come ethical questions. The intent of this course is to focus on a variety of issues that have arisen, including, but not limited to, assisted reproductive technologies, sex selection, cloning, and stem cell research to name a few. Offered online, every Spring.
BIOL 830PSpecial Topics in Biology3
Topics are studied which are not assigned or covered in other courses in the department. The format of this course will vary depending on the topic of instruction and the needs of students.
BIOL 840Infectious Diseases3
This course is an introduction to medical microbiology with coverage of viral, bacterial, fungal, and protozoan disease causing microorganisms. It will cover the basic mechanisms of infection, disease progression, and immune response. It is strongly suggested that students have taken an introductory microbiology course before taking this class.
BIOL 841Virology3
An in-depth discussion of the principles of modern virology. Major topics of discussion will include: virus replication strategies, virus structure, virus infection and disease, and host resistance to disease. Offered online, every Spring.
BIOL 846Cancer Biology3
This course is designed as a survey of the current state of knowledge in the cellular and molecular biology of cancer processes. The students will also review current literature in cancer biology by analyzing and critiquing current articles. Offered online, every Fall.
BIOL 858Physiology of Stress3
An examination of how living organisms cope with short- and long-term exposure to extreme environmental conditions related to nutrient and water availability, temperature, and pressure. A basic understanding of organismal physiology is required. Offered online, every Summer.
BIOL 859Biology of the Brain3
This course will focus on the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and will include gross anatomical features and landmarks of the cerebral hemispheres, diencephalons, brainstem, cerebellum and spinal cord. Physiological aspects will include the generation and modification of action potentials as well as normal functions of the specific regions of the central nervous system. Selected abnormal functions will also be studied. The interdependency of the central nervous system to itself (various pathways between the spinal cord and within the brain) as well as to the peripheral nervous system and select organ systems will complete the focus of the course. It is recommended that students have taken anatomy and physiology before enrolling in this course. Offered online, Fall of even-numbered years.
BIOL 857Human Histology3
Histology is also called micro-anatomy. This course examines animal bodies on the tissue and cellular level. Most examples will be from human anatomy. Basic tissue types will be studied as well as organ structure and function. As a distance class, micropictographs will be used (not glass slides) from the web, as well as from an assigned textbook. No prior experience with histology is expected. Offered online, every Summer.

Tuition & Fees

Nebraska Residents

Per Credit Hour


3 Credit Hours


Out of State Residents

Per Credit Hour


3 Credit Hours

About Faculty

University of Nebraska online courses are taught by expert faculty who embody the qualities resulting from research experience and professional/field experience. Students learn from faculty with a variety of backgrounds, many of whom are published researchers in their fields. NU faculty who teach online do so in a way that optimizes learning within the online modality and because technology enables students to access education they may otherwise may not be able to pursue.

Application Deadlines
  • Fall SemesterApr 15