Health and Society (BGM) / BSc


The BSc programme Health and Society addresses health in the sense of physical, social and mental well-being. The study specifically focuses on the interaction between health, lifestyle and the social and physical environment. It studies health from a comparative perspective and as constituted within the context of society and the socio-economic, cultural and political factors that influence health at various analytical levels. As health is related to a diversity of interrelated factors like housing, neighbourhood, work, education, recreation, the development of intersectoral policy is essential. Several disciplines are therefore presented and discussed varying from social psychology, sociology, health promotion, economics, demography, environmental studies and life sciences. The relevance of the study domain is growing as a consequence of increasing health inequalities, diseases (e.g. heart disease, diabetes, HIV/Aids) and health costs. Among policy makers awareness of the impact of health (policy) and health promotion is increasingly recognized in recent national and international policy documents. The study prepares students for professions such as social researchers, health promoters, health policy advisors or managers of health oriented organisations.

Learning Outcomes

After successful completion of this BSc programme graduates are expected to be able to:
- apply the theoretical approaches of sociology, social psychology and communication to the interaction between health, lifestyle and the social and physical environment; including its effects at various levels (micro, meso and macro) focusing on health care and prevention and can infer the theoretical underpinnings of empirical research;
- explain the governance of public health while applying economic, management and policy-oriented concepts;
- interpret basic physical and environmental factors of health and explain the interrelation between social, physical and environmental factors of health (multi-disciplinary);
- explain the need for a critical analysis of public health issues, can independently analyse basic issues, reflect on his/her understanding and acquire new knowledge and skills;
- choose and apply the appropriate qualitative and quantitative social science research methods for data collection and analysis in empirical research under supervision;
- define health issues, translate research outcomes into advice, and evaluate policies and programmes for health promotion in various fields of practice and at various levels, under supervision;
. - effectively contribute to the design, organisation and management of interventions in the field of public health and can collaborate and communicate with (multiple) experts as well as other stakeholders; - communicate information, ideas, problems and solutions to health professionals as well as to the general public, orally as well as in writing;
- explain the ethical issues that may arise when working as experts in the field of public health;
- can compare the multiple interpretations and applications of health across time and place.

Programme Director

Ir G.C. van Nieuwenhoven
Phone: 0317- (4)82500

Study Adviser(s)

- Ir G.C. van Nieuwenhoven
Phone: 0317- (4)82500
- Ir J. de Jong
Phone: 0317- (4)84633

Programme Committee

Chair: Dr ir L.I. Bouwman
Secretary: Ir G.C. van Nieuwenhoven


Study Association

Mercurius Wageningen, Hollandseweg 1, 6706 KN Wageningen

Unconditional Admission to the MSc

MCS Applied Communication Science
MID International Development Studies
MME Management, Economics and Consumer Studies