Public Health - Health Promotion & Behavioral Science (PHPB)

Subject-area course lists indicate courses currently active for offering at the University of Louisville. Not all courses are scheduled in any given academic term. For class offerings in a specific semester, refer to the Schedule of Classes.

500-level courses generally are included in both the undergraduate- and graduate-level course listings; however, specific course/section offerings may vary between semesters. Students are responsible for ensuring that they enroll in courses that are applicable to their particular academic programs.

Course Fees

Some courses may carry fees beyond the standard tuition costs to cover additional support or materials. Program-, subject- and course-specific fee information can be found on the Office of the Bursar website.


PHPB 300. Social and Behavioral Foundations of Public Health3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Prerequisite(s): Must be a Public Health major or a Public Health minor.

Description: This course examines social, cultural, and behavioral factors and the relationships among them as they impact health and well-being.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 301. Health Equity - SB, D13 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Description: Health equity is a goal of public health as seen in Healthy People 2020. Race or ethnicity, gender, sexual identity, age, disability, socio-economic status, and geographic location (or some combinations of these factors) contribute to an individual's ability to achieve good health. Understanding health disparities involves a critical analysis of circumstances that produce differences in health outcomes among groups.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 305. Public Health Education Principles and Strategies3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Prerequisite(s): Must be a Public Health major.

Description: Upon completing this course, students will have introductory knowledge and skills that characterize the work of public health educators. The course provides an overview of a wide range of practice issues encountered in the routine work of health educators.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 310. Power, Oppression & Liberation in Social Systems3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall Only

Description: This course will provide students a foundation in understanding major theories of power, economics, oppression, and liberation that undergird social justice issues globally. The course will trace how these theories have influenced the development of societal structures and link those structures to contemporary understandings of social ecology, contexts, and relations.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 311. Policy and Systems of Power3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Spring Only

Description: This course will deconstruct societal organization into systems of power that use policy and practice to enact special interests. The intent of the course is for students to understand the broader systems at work in creating and perpetuating distinct and interrelated health equity and social justice issues. Through a socio-ecological lens, students will learn how arts & culture, economics, education, food, health, housing, justice, environmental, and political systems can be harnessed to address health equity and social justice issues.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 312. Social Justice Practice in Public Health3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall Only

Description: This course provides an applied perspective to social justice in public health, exploring how a social justice framework influences public health issue definition and prioritization, resource allocation, interventions and practical approaches, as well as evaluation. Students will be introduced to a variety of jobs and roles that influence health equity across multiple sectors.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 313. Strategies for Social Action3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall Only

Description: This course will focus specifically on theories, processes, models, and examples of social action for social change and how those are applied to a variety of issues. Students will engage in critical praxis and apply these in developing a strategy for social action around a selected health equity-related issue.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 321. Social Justice Youth Development3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall Only

Description: This course provides an overview of how youth and young adults shift and transform their communities through social and political activism to address the social and structural determinants of health. The course specifically explores theoretical perspectives and the historical and contemporary events related to youth's engagement in social justice and activism. Presented through the lens of the social justice youth development framework, the first half of the course is dedicated to understanding historical events and theoretical perspectives and underpinnings of youth's engagement in social justice and activism. The second half of the course will focus on contemporary youth-centered and youth-led social justice movements.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 322. Climate Change, Social Justice, and Healthy Equity3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Spring Only

Description: In this course students will learn about climate change and how it disproportionately and adversely affects certain communities globally and in the U.S. Students will work on a community-engaged learning activity, and through this, learn about how specific policies affect the environment and climate change, with a particular focus on indigenous populations. They will apply a social justice lens to policies related to climate change and environmental justice, and observe strategies public health professionals and activists employ to advocate for equitable policy change.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 401. Public Health Communication Theory and Practice3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall, Spring

Prerequisite(s): Must be a Public Health major and have completed PHPB 300 or PHPB 501.

Description: Thoughtful, evidence-based communication is necessary to respond to public health challenges. Effective communication in health campaigns can inform, empower, or persuade individuals and communities to adopt healthier lifestyles as well as foster public debate and policy change. Ineffective communication can hamper public health efforts and contribute to the chaos of a disaster, emergency, crisis, or disease outbreak. In this course, students explore communication theory and learn to use public health communication methods.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 410. Community Mobilization & Organization 13 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall Only

Prerequisite(s): PHPB 312 and PHPB 313 completed or concurrent.

Description: This is the first of a two-course sequence intended to build students' practical organizing skills. The course examines the history of community organizing in the U.S., explores grassroots organizing theories and approaches, and supports students in their development of organizing skills to launch an advocacy campaign or participate in an established advocacy campaign. The course will allow students to engage with community organizers in Louisville to learn the strategies and tactics they employ to organize and mobilize communities on a range of local issues.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 411. Community Mobilization & Organization 23 Units

Term Typically Offered: Spring Only

Prerequisite(s): PHPB 410.

Description: This is the second of a two-course sequence intended to build students' practical organizing skills. Students will participate in an active learning experience on campus or with a local community organization to practice skills such as strategic analysis of a social problem, engage with communities, mobilize resources, and participate in thoughtful advocacy.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes

PHPB 501. Introduction to Public Health Behavior3 Units

Term Typically Offered: Fall Only

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the School of Public Health and Information Sciences.

Description: This course reviews theoretical constructs of the causation of health-related behavior, including preventive, early diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitative behavior.

For class offerings for a specific term, refer to the Schedule of Classes