The Health Studies Certificate provides opportunities for students and faculty from across the college to explore their interests in health-related issues. Health studies faculty offer a range of perspectives on health so students can examine its complexity and connect it with the arts, the economy, ethics, politics, psychology and society. This is essential background for students with career interests in aid organizations, business and government, as well as medicine, mental health and public health.

Students should contact the HEST chair, Professor Helweg-Larsen, with any questions.

Recommended Courses and Requirements for Minors and Programs


First and/or Sophomore Year
Take HEST 201: Introduction to Health Studies. This course is normally taught every Spring semester.

Sophomore and Junior Years
Take four other HEST designated courses in at least two academic departments. Every semester students should search in Banner (using the HEST attribute) to find HEST designated classes. HEST designated courses might also be available while studying abroad (see the HEST webpage for HEST pre-approved courses). We recommend but do not require that HEST designated courses are taken between taking HEST 201 and HEST 400.

The Field Experience can be fulfilled by participating in a registered health-related internship or research project.

Senior Year
Take HEST 400: Health Studies Senior Seminar. This course is normally taught every Fall semester.

Additional Remarks


Students should declare HEST as soon as possible. HEST-declared students have priority into HEST 201 and HEST 400.  Students should look at the HEST website for information about how to declare HEST.


A number of study abroad programs offer courses related to health.See the HEST webpage for study abroad programs with pre-approved HEST elective courses. Students can also ask the HEST chair to evaluate other health-related courses taken away from Dickinson as possibe HEST designated courses. Finally, the HEST Field Experience can possibly be taken while abroad.


Students should declare their intent to pursue the Health Studies Certificate by completing the Intention to Complete a Certificate or Minor form and having it signed by the Chair of the Health Studies Program.  Students should declare as soon as possible. Students who successfully complete all of the requirements will be issued a Certificate in Health Studies which will be awarded upon graduation from the College and will be recorded on their transcript.

The certificate in Health Studies requires:

  1. Successful completion of HEST 201: Introduction to Health Studies.  This course is normally offered every spring semester.
  2. Successful completion of four other Health Studies designated courses taken in at least two academic departments.  Electives can also be taken abroad (see Study Abroad for preapproved HEST electives.)
  3. Successful completion of one of the following: a health-related internship for credit (e.g., via The Washington Center, the Dickinson-in-New York program, or some other study abroad program); a non-credit internship (Transcript Notation) that involves a health-related field experience; a lab-based independent research project on a health-related topic; or, a community-based independent research project on a health-related topic;
  4. Successful completion of a health studies senior seminar (HEST 400: Health Studies Senior Seminar). The prerequisites for this course are HEST 201 and at least two HEST electives.  This course is normally offered every fall semester.

Independent study and independent research

Students must complete a health-related field experience.