This fall, The University of South Dakota will begin offering an interdisciplinary health sciences major. The University of South Dakota is the only state institution to offer this major, which was created to build upon The U's already recognized leadership in health-related education. Students majoring in health sciences will be able to complete courses and electives designed to meet the professional degree programs already available in the School of Health Sciences, including occupational therapy, physical therapy and physician assistant studies.

The new health sciences major was developed at USD with input from the health care industry. Admissions representatives have stated that a health major at the undergraduate level is one of the most requested, so it comes as no surprise that with the three sections of the very first class being offered in the program this fall are almost full. Students will be able to "catch up" in the spring when more sections will be available.

"The health sciences major prepares students for multiple careers in the health care workforce, especially those students who are interested in a career in health care but undecided about which profession or position," said Brian Kaatz, dean of the School of Health Sciences. "This new major allows them an opportunity to explore their options while obtaining the most comprehensive health sciences education in the state."

Currently, USD's School of Health Sciences offers degrees in eight academic programs, including bachelor’s degrees in alcohol and drug studies, clinical laboratory science, dental hygiene, and social work; associate’s degrees in nursing; master’s degrees in occupational therapy and physician assistant studies; and a physical therapy clinical doctorate.

For additional information about the health sciences major, including academic tracks and a complete listing of academic programs offered by the School of Health Sciences, please visit or call (605) 677-6572.

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