James Madison University

Program History

Within the Health Sciences Bachelors of Science degree, there are three concentrations that include 1) Health Studies, 2) Public Health Education, and 3) Health Assessment and Promotion. The Health Studies concentration began in the late 1980’s and was entitled Basic Health. In 2003, the Basic Health program was renamed Health Studies.

In 1995, the Center for Pre-Health Resources (CPR) moved from the Department of Biology to the Department of Health Sciences. The CPR had focused primarily on advising for students interested in pursuing a medical degree. However, around the late 1990s the focus of the CPR grew to include advising for other disciplines including physical therapy and occupational therapy.

The Health Studies concentration was developed in response to the growing interest of James Madison University (JMU) students in Pre-Professional Health programs. During this period, most Pre-Professional Health programs at the undergraduate level such as physical therapy, physician assistant, and occupational therapy were moving to the graduate level thus requiring an undergraduate degree. When the Health Studies concentration was developed there were specific tracks based on student’s interest (i.e. physical therapy, medicine, etc.). Students were required to indicate their interest and complete that track. As the number of students increased, the Health Studies concentration was modified to allow students to select courses within the concentration to meet the requirements of the program that they were planning to pursue after graduation.


  • August 28
    First Day of Classes
  • November 17-25
    Thanksgiving Break
  • December 9-15
    Final Examinations
  • December 15-16
Learn More About JMU's Pre-Professional Programs