Medical Humanities Major (B.A.)

Director: Jefferson Gatrall

The Medical Humanities major offers a broad and flexible curriculum, drawing on the humanities, social sciences, the arts, biomedical sciences, and the caregiving disciplines. Majors take core courses in Bioethics, Medical Anthropology, and Literature and Illness and fulfill further requirements through a choice of offerings in psychology, history, sociology, religious studies, child advocacy, and biology. Majors also pursue personal academic and career goals through coursework in 4 tracks of electives. In their final year, all Medical Humanities majors work one-on-one with a faculty supervisor to create a capstone experiential learning project, one that may involve placement in healthcare institutions or health­-related organizations in New Jersey and New York City.
The Medical Humanities major gives students a competitive edge in the healthcare industries, the fastest growing sector in the economy today. Medical Humanities majors acquire a knowledge base in diverse healthcare fields as well as the transferable job skills that employees value highly: writing, oral communication, critical thinking, and ethical decision-making. Medical Humanities graduates find employment opportunities in hospitals, insurance carriers, universities, pharmaceutical companies, nursing facilities, physicians’ offices, retirement communities, and outpatient centers. They also continue their studies at the postgraduate level, from medical and law school to a range of interdisciplinary PhD programs in the humanities and social sciences.

Program Requirements Overview

General Education Requirements29
World Languages and Cultures Requirements3-9
Major Requirements40
Free Electives48-42
Total Credits120

Major Requirements

Core Requirements
MEDH 101Introduction to the Medical Humanities3
ANTH 180Health and Healing in Cross Cultural Perspective3
PHIL 204Philosophical Issues in Biomedical Ethics3
MEDH 301Medicine, Literature and Illness3
MEDH 491Capstone Project in the Medical Humanities3
Human Biology Requirement
Complete 1 course from the following:4
Physical Anthropology
The Biology of Human Life
Principles of Biology I
Social Sciences Requirement
Complete 1 course from the following:3
Child Abuse and Neglect
Introduction to Psychology
Sociology of the Family
Humanities Requirement
Complete 1 course from the following:3
History of Public Health in the United States
Death, Dying and Afterlife
Language, Power, and Medicine: The Spectrum of Health
Complete 15 credits from the list below.15
Total Credits40


Caregiving, Aging Studies and Disability Studies
ANTH 105Introduction to Disability Studies, Rights, and Culture3
ANTH 205Disability in US Popular Culture3
ANTH 350Anthropology of Aging and the Aged3
ARTH 280Introduction to Art Therapy3
MUTH 100Introduction to Music Therapy2
NURS 330Nursing Care and the Aging Patient3
RELG 218Death, Dying and Afterlife3
RELG 232Body and Soul3
PSYC 268Psychological Aspects of Aging3
Communication and Advocacy
CHAD 201Literacy in Child Advocacy and Policy3
CMST 160Introduction to Health Communication3
CMST 367Health Communication Theory3
FREN 121Intermediate French3
NURS 420Transprofessional Communication Collaboration3
NURS 450Nursing Scholarship3
SPAN 101Spanish I3
WRIT 351Language, Power, and Medicine: The Spectrum of Health3
Human Biological and Psychological Well-Being
ANTH 101Physical Anthropology4
BIOL 110The Biology of Human Life4
BIOL 111Emerging Diseases3
BIOL 112Principles of Biology I4
BIOL 113Principles of Biology II4
PSYC 227Psychological Aspects of Human Sexuality3
PSYC 302Health Psychology3
PSYC 320Developmental Psychology I3
PSYC 332Psychological Foundations of Personality3
PSYC 354Clinical Psychology3
PSYC 402Systems of Psychotherapy3
Community and Public Health
ANTH 330The Anthropology of Food and Nutrition3
ANTH 423Community and Health3-4
ANTH 440Medical Anthropology3
CHAD 202Cultural Competencies in Child Welfare3
CHAD 210Child Abuse and Neglect3
HLTH 102Introduction to Public Health3
HLTH 204Social and Behavioral Aspects of Health3
NURS 4303
SOCI 104Sociology of the Family3
SOCI 240Statistics for Social Research4
SOCI 309Sociology of Health and Illness3

General Education Requirements

Click here for a list of courses that fulfill General Education categories.

A. New Student Seminar
Complete a 1 credit New Student Seminar course.1
C. Communication
1. Writing 3
2. Literature3
3. Communication3
D. Fine and Performing Arts
Complete a 3 credit Fine and Performing Arts course.3
F. Humanities
1. Great Works and Their Influences3
2. Philosophical and Religious Perspectives 3
G. Computer Science
Complete a 3 credit Computer Science course.3
H. Mathematics
Complete a 3 credit Mathematics course.3
I. Natural Science Laboratory
Fulfilled in the major.
Physical Anthropology
The Biology of Human Life
Principles of Biology I
J. Physical Education
Complete a 1 credit Physical Education course.1
K. Social Science
1. American and European History 3
2. Global Cultural Perspectives
Health and Healing in Cross Cultural Perspective (Fulfilled in the major.)
3. Social Science Perspectives
Fulfilled in the major.
Child Abuse and Neglect
Introduction to Psychology
Sociology of the Family
L. Interdisciplinary Studies
Introduction to the Medical Humanities (Fulfilled in the major.)
Total Credits29

World Languages and Cultures Requirements

Click here for a list of courses that fulfill World Languages and Cultures categories.

World Languages
Based on language placement exam, complete one or two sequential courses in the same language.3-6
World Cultures
Requirement may be fulfilled by course selected in General Education - Social Science: Global Cultural Perspectives.0-3
Total Credits3-9

Recommended Roadmap to Degree Completion

This recommended four-year plan is provided as an outline for students to follow in order to complete their degree requirements within four years.  This plan is a recommendation and students should only use it in consultation with their academic advisor.

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
GENERAL EDUCATION: (A) New Student Seminar 1
GENERAL EDUCATION: (C2) Literature 3
GENERAL EDUCATION: (C3) Communication 3
 Total Credits10