Public Health

The Bachelor of Health Sciences (Honours in Public Health) is a diverse programme and will enable higher qualifications in the field of public health for students interested in that career path.


This programme is located in the School of Public Health and is intended to equip graduates with knowledge, skills and competencies necessary for undertaking a Master of Science in Epidemiology and Biostatistics or a Master of Public Health after gaining some work experience. The Honours in Public Health programme is fairly new and designed with the intention to create a pathway into public health for interested students. Students will be exposed to a number of different areas of public health including epidemiology, biostatistics and research through conceptualizing and operationalising a small study. Other areas students could be exposed to through a number of electives that focus on implementation science, demography, health equity, social and behaviour change among others.

Career Opportunities

Following completion of the Bachelor of Health Sciences (Honours in Public Health) program students will be able to:

  • Apply for the Masters of Science in Epidemiology and Biostatistics or Master of Public Health after gaining some relevant work experience in one of the fields offered
  • Build a career in public health. Examples include monitoring and evaluation and research positions


This programme includes both coursework and research components. The coursework consists of 3 core modules and 2 elective modules.


  • Principles of Epidemiology (core)
  • Principles of Biostatistics (core)
  • Research Essay (core)
  • Introduction to Implementation Science (elective)
  • Health equity and the Social Context (elective)*
  • Gender Based Analysis in Infectious Diseases and Climate Change (elective)*
  • Planning Health Communication Programmes (elective)*
  • Approaches to Social and Behaviour Change (elective)*
  • Basic Demographic Methods (elective)
  • *Elective modules will run in alternate years. These modules are subject to change every year (contact the course coordinator for final elective modules for the year of study). 

Entry Requirements

Students will be considered from a range of undergraduate programmes including Bachelor of Health Sciences, Social Sciences or Economics. Students with a degree in Humanities may be considered as well as Law or Management. A minimum of 65% average is required for applicants throughout their undergraduate degree. Please note that meeting the minimum entry requirements does not guarantee students a place in this programme. Applications must include academic results, a CV, motivation and two reference letters (one must be from an academic mentor or advisor).

Note: Meeting the minimum entry requirements for the programme does not guarantee students a place in this programme.

University Application Process

  • Applications are handled centrally by the Student Enrolment Centre (SEnC). Once your application is complete in terms of requested documentation, your application will be referred to the relevant School for assessment. Click here to see an overview of the Wits applications process.
  • Please apply online. Upload your supporting documents at the time of application, or via the Self Service Portal.
  • Applicants can monitor the progress of their applications via the Self Service Portal.
  • Selections for programmes that have a limited intake but attract a large number of applications may only finalise the application at the end of the application cycle.

Please note that the Entry Requirements are a guide. Meeting these requirements does not guarantee a place. Final selection is made subject to the availability of places, academic results and other entry requirements where applicable.

International students, please check this section.

For more information, contact the Student Call Centre +27 (0)11 717 1888, or log a query at

University Fees and Funding

Click here to see the current average tuition fees. The Fees site also provides information about the payment of fees and closing dates for fees payments. Once you have applied you will be able to access the fees estimator on the student self-service portal.

For information about postgraduate funding opportunities, including the postgraduate merit award, click here. Please also check your School website for bursary opportunities. NRF bursaries: The National Research Foundation (NRF) offers a wide range of opportunities in terms of bursaries and fellowships to students pursuing postgraduate studies. External bursaries portal: The Bursaries South Africa website provides a comprehensive list of bursaries in South Africa.