health behavior science students

The Department of Behavioral Health and Nutrition offers four undergraduate majors: Health Behavior Science, Nutrition and Medical Science, Nutrition and Dietetics, and Nutrition as well as minors in Public Health, Nutrition, Health and Wellness, Physical Activity & Disability, and Medical Social Services. Please see below for more information about the majors and minors offered in the Department of Behavioral Health and Nutrition. 

Our students also have the opportunity to work collaboratively with faculty on leading-edge research projects in state-of-the-art labs and with community partners in collaborative internship and practicum experiences. Our goal is to provide students with opportunities to learn, both inside and outside of the classroom.

Behavioral Health & Nutrition Majors

Behavioral Health & Nutrition Minors

This minor will help students develop a personal coaching philosophy, an understanding of the body, how it performs, injury and injury prevention, teaching of skills and progressions, sport psychology, and a variety of team responsibilities.  A practicum or field experience will be required in the student’s chosen sport to further enhance the development of coaching skills and philosophy.  If a student chooses a sport that is a winter sport, i.e., basketball, the student is required to register for winter session. The same requirement applies for a practicum experience done during the summer.  The Coaching Science Minor requires 19 credits.

Enrollment in the minor for at least three semesters is required due to sequencing of course work.  A minimum grade of C- is required in all courses for completion of the minor.

Please contact the minor advisor with any questions.
Minor Advisor: John Hayman (hayman@udel.edu)

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A minor in dance is available for students who have an interest in dance and want a concentration of study in this area to complement their career goals. The minor provides students with the opportunity to study a variety of coursework including, but not limited to, technique, composition and choreography, and elective choices in the historical, cultural, pedagogical, and somatic areas of dance. Additionally, dance minors complete an introductory seminar course exploring career options in dance as well as a variable credit capstone experience project at the end of the minor course of study.  The Dance Minor is a joint program between the College of Arts & Sciences and the College of Health Sciences.

Please contact the minor advisor with any questions.
Minor Advisor: Jan Bibik (pirwet@udel.edu)

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The Health and Wellness minor is for students who have an interest in expanding their knowledge of health and wellness issues.  Courses will provide students with the knowledge, skills and experiences necessary to understand the role culture, gender, environment and behavior play in personal and community health.  The minor will provide students with the opportunity to complement their major course of study by expanding and applying health knowledge and concepts to their chosen profession and personal life.  Students in the Health Behavior Science major are not eligible to take this minor. A grade of C- or better in all required courses is necessary for successful completion of the minor.  A maximum of nine credits may be from the student’s major or another minor.

Please contact the minor advisor with any questions.
Minor Advisor: Steve Goodwin (goody@udel.edu)

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This program provides undergraduate students with a theoretical base and quality field-based experiences to appropriately serve individuals with disabilities across the lifespan in a variety of settings that promote health and wellness.  The minor is open to students in any major but is particularly suited for students who are planning careers in health and exercise sciences such as health promotion, fitness, occupational therapy, physical therapy, therapeutic recreation, health and physical education, special education, sports medicine and coaching.  A grade of C- or better in required courses is needed for successful completion of the minor.  A maximum of six credits may be from the student’s major or another minor.

Please contact the minor advisor with any questions.
Minor Advisor: Sean Healy (healys@udel.edu)

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Medical social services provide assistance to patients and their families with accessing available community resources. Professionals in this field connect people to appropriate social and/or medical services. Typical employment settings include hospitals, schools, hospice, and nursing home facilities.

Open to all students in all majors, the minor introduces the intersection of social services and public health within an interdisciplinary context. Although the minor provides background content for students interested in pursuing a master’s degree in medical social work, this minor alone does not qualify students for professional licensure in social work.

The minor requires 18 credit hours that include a combination of required core courses and courses selected from a list of recommended electives. Human Services majors may count only HDFS230 for both this minor and their major. Health Behavior Science majors may not count more than one course toward both this minor and their major. All courses included in the minor must be completed with a C- or better.

Please contact the minor advisor with any questions.
Minor Advisor: Marc Lodyga (mlodyga@udel.edu)

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A minor in Nutrition provides students in a variety of degree programs with a fairly intensive level of understanding of nutritional science.  This minor is for students interested in the field of nutrition who believe that good nutrition and healthy lifestyle choices are important for the overall well-being of individuals.  The program includes three core nutrition courses, two nutrition electives and requires four semesters of chemistry and, as such, is well suited for students in Biology, Chemistry and Food Science, as well as other majors.  It is not available to students in the majors of Nutrition, Nutrition and Dietetics or Nutrition and Medical Sciences due to the extensive amount of course overlap.

A minimum of 15 credit hours with a minimum grade of C- is required.

Please contact the minor advisor with any questions.
Minor Advisor: Sandra Baker (bakers@udel.edu)

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Public Health is the scientific field of study focused on preventing disease, promoting health, and prolonging life.  This is achieved through the conduct of scientific research, implementation of health education programs and the organized efforts and informed choices of society, communities and individuals.  A joint program between the Department of Behavioral Health and Nutrition and the School of Public Policy and Administration, the Public Health minor provides an interdisciplinary opportunity to develop practical skills in program development and increase knowledge in the areas of social systems, policy, and leadership.  This minor offers a greater appreciation for the application of public health concepts to the student’s field of study.

The minor, available to students of all disciplines, requires 18 credit hours distributed as follows: Three required core courses (9 credits), and three elective courses (9 credits).  At least six of the nine elective credits must be chosen from outside your major.  All courses in the minor must be completed with a C- or better.

Please contact the minor advisor with any questions.
Minor Advisor: Laura Lessard (llessard@udel.edu)

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One-Credit Wellness/Activity Courses

  • Badminton
  • Barre - Mix of pilates, yoga, and ballet in a low-impact class focusing on small isometric movements. Props include Pilates ball, resistance bands, a yoga mat, and a ballet barre.
  • Beginning Ballroom Dance - Learn to ballroom dance starting with the basic steps!
  • Beginning Swimming - For the pure beginner with little swimming experience. Learn a variety of strokes and safety around the water.
  • Cardio Dance Mix - Designed for all skill levels, learn different cardio dance routines while burning calories and staying fit!
  • Exercise and Conditioning - A variety of cardiovascular, muscular, and flexibility activities designed to improve overall fitness and well-being. Understand how to minimize injury risk and maximize results.
  • Fitness Boot Camp - High intensity class utilizing body weight and equipment to develop speed, endurance, strength, coordination, and power.  Blocks of strength moves and cardio drills will challenge the student to their max.
  • Ice Skating I - Basic ice skating skills (forward and backward skating, stopping & turning). Beginners welcome.
  • Indoor Cycle Spin - Cross train, increase muscular and aerobic endurance. Reach a new level of fitness with hill climbs, sprints, interval races and drills. Great for all fitness levels.
  • Jump Start Fitness - Course provides building blocks for a long term fitness plan.
  • Lower Body Blast - Mix of classic and new exercises sequenced to keep the fat burning and muscles responding. Intense exercises to shape and tone your lower body.
  • Pilates - Core-centered training requiring the mind to master the muscles. Use high quality movements to strengthen your core musculature, enhance mobility, and gain flexibility.
  • Pump and Plyo - Work out alternates a quick burst of energy (a plyometric move using bands, gliders, stability balls, benchtops, etc.) with a weight training move (using weights, bands, bodyweight for resistance). High energy workout yet suitable for all fitness levels
  • Scottish Country Dance - Scottish heritage not required! Social dance with choreographed steps to lively, fun music. Beginners very welcome!
  • Strength & Conditioning - Theory and best practices for developing muscular strength and endurance with a variety of strength training techniques to maximize performance.
  • Team Sports - Conditioning and training strategies for playing indoor/outdoor sports.
  • Total Body Tone - Intense exercises sequenced to keep the fat burning and muscles responding while shaping and toning your entire body.
  • Walking/Jogging - Explore UD’s beautiful campus by exercising and participating in various walking/jogging activities, while learning proper technique to reduce risk of injury.
  • Yoga - Breathing techniques, sun salutations, and basic poses. Meditation and relaxation techniques will also be included.
  • Cook It Healthy - Basic principles of food preparation, including an understanding of food and kitchen safety and sanitation, basics of healthy cooking methods, and recipe adaptation to improve nutritional value and health.  
  • Cooking Around the World - This course is designed as an introduction to various cultures around the world with an emphasis on their respective cuisines. The principles of food preparation, including an understanding of food and kitchen safety and sanitation, will also be reviewed. Note: this is a hands-on cooking class.
  • Death and Dying - Introduction to topics of grieving, funerals, afterlife, leaving a legacy, comforting others, and creating a bucket list in order to help students live life to their fullest potential.
  • Destress for Health - Understand the positive and negative impacts of stress, identify the major causes of stress, and learn how to effectively manage day-to-day stressors.
  • Financial Wellness - Introduction to finances including a budget, credit cards, student loans, and how stress related to finances may impact your health.
  • Happiness and Health - Explore the basics of positive psychology, and various philosophies of happiness, and the many factors which contribute to it.  Identify thoughts and behaviors and practice a number of exercises designed to better understand, foster, and spread happiness.
  • Health and Religion - Religious and spiritual themes are examined as a way to contribute to the health and wellness of oneself and others.  The world’s traditional religions are used as a backdrop to explore spiritual topics of lifestyle, prayer, meditation, and fasting.
  • Healthy Weight for Life - Overweight and obesity are national health problems.  Learn how to prevent weight gain and maintain a healthy weight for life.  Please be aware that this is not a diet or weight loss class.
  • Personal Relationships - Examine different types of relationships – significant other, sibling, parent, friends – and identify “tools” for strengthening relationships including character strengths and weaknesses, communication, and boundaries.
  • Plant-based - Examine the history and health of plant-based eating patterns such as vegetarianism and veganism. With a brief introduction to basic nutrition, students will learn how to plan and prepare a healthy well-balanced plant-based diet. Note: this is a hands-on cooking class.
  • Spice Kitchen - Explore the flavors and health properties of herbs and spices, assist in the preparation of recipes, and complete sensory evaluations of the prepared foods.  Note: this is a hands-on cooking class.
  • Sustainability and Food - Introduction to the use of local/seasonal produce and sustainable cooking, including an understanding of food cultivation at the UD Farm, strategies, and tips for eating seasonally and getting the most out of local produce year-round, and how to use a variety of cooking methods and store-bought ingredients to transform local produce into meals at home. Note: this is a hands-on cooking class. Note: this is a hands-on cooking class.
  • Takeout Makeover - Learn how to transform popular prepared and restaurant food into healthy and easy-to-make items that can be cooked at home, including an understanding of basic healthy cooking methods and recipe adaptation to improve nutrition value and health.  Note: this is a hands-on cooking class. 
  • Vegetarianism: Is It For You? - Examine the history, health, ecological benefits, and potential risks of vegetarianism.  With a brief introduction to basic nutrition. learn how to plan a healthy well-balanced vegetarian diet.