Common Questions

 

What is health?

Health encompasses the physical, mental and social well-being of people, and is not just the absence of disease or injury. A healthy lifestyle varies by one's culture, gender, race, age, and many other factors. The i-Health degree encourages students to consider social and behavioral factors related to health, and expects students to select one of three concentrations: aging, behavior change, or diversity.

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What is interdisciplinary?

Universities organize knowledge based upon disciplines, such as psychology, biology, history, and so forth. Knowledge has been organized by universities and society for more a century along some unchanging lines of disciplinary boundaries. Interdisciplinary knowledge is about "thinking between the spaces" of disciplines. To be interdisciplinary is to integrate ideas from more than one discipline in ways that creates something new and distinct from any one disciplinary lens. For example, an interdisciplinary perspective on healthy aging health would be to integrate ideas from nutrition, kinesiology, and psychology to provide a holistic understanding of a healthy aging process. In contrast, multidisciplinary is to have several ways to understand something that in combination does not provide a coherent view (or single narrative) of a healthy aging process. A uniqueness of the i-Health program is to challenge students to "think outside the disciplinary boxes" and construct a holistic view of health.

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What is the difference between the i-Health and Community Health programs?

Both i-Health and Community Health programs provide courses of study connected with human health. The i-Health curriculum allows students to explore a broad array of subjects related to health from the social and behavioral sciences. Students select one of three concentrations that connects health to behavior change, diversity, or aging; and to customize a portion of their coursework to their own interests and prepares students for further graduate study or professional schools in health. The i-Health program requires students to design their own interests for health, particularly in the 24-28 free electives. Whereas the Community Health program is designed specifically for direct entrance into allied health professions and is structured for a career related to health education, health administration, and rehabilitation.

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Are there any opportunities to do interdisciplinary research through this degree?

Yes. Discuss opportunities for research with your course instructors, advisors, and other university faculty.

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As an ICT or Transfer student, how can I ensure that I am on track?

Make an appointment with the i-Health advisor, Beth Frasca. Also, check-out the website for coursework necessary for the core courses in i-Health and the one of the three concentrations: health and aging, health diversity, and health behavior change.

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What degree will be listed on my diploma?

B.S. in Interdisciplinary Health Sciences.

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Can I take a pre-medicine curriculum with the i-Health major?

Yes. Between the general education requirements and 24-28 hours of free electives, there are ample opportunities in the i-Health curriculum to fit biomedical sciences and/or other requirements for graduate study in medicine. Starting in 2015, the MCAT exams will have four sections, one of which is social and behavioral sciences. This shift in focus of the MCATS aligns with the i-Health curriculum.

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Can I choose a minor with the i-Health major?

Yes. All university minors that you earn with credit hours are applicable–see next question for the only exception.

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Can I pursue the Interdisciplinary Minor in Aging as an i-Health major?

For i-Health majors on the "health and aging" concentration, you will not be able to pursue a minor in aging–there would be too much redundancy in coursework. For i-Health students in the other two concentrations, you will be able to pursue a minor in aging.

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Will I need to take credits for gen-ed courses?

Yes, all university gen-ed requirements are necessary.

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What are the minimum requirements for inter-college transfer into this program?

We require a GPA of 3.0 and a statement of interest in interdisciplinary health sciences, including anticipated concentration in i-Health.

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Where is the department office for i-Health?

The i-Health degree is administered by the College of Applied Health Sciences, and the Director of the program is Associate Dean Bill Stewart whose office is 110 Huff Hall. The advisor for the program is Beth Frasca (bfrasca@illinois.edu), and the Assistant Director is Julie Bobitt (jbobitt@illinois.edu).

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For what career tracks does i-Health prepare students?

The i-Health degree is not specifically designed with a single career in mind. The i-Health program is meant as an exploration of health from an interdisciplinary perspective. Several career tracks related to health would fit majors from the i-Health program. In addition, the coursework that students design for themselves could serves as a basis for medical school, dentistry, various allied health programs, law school, as well as several tracks of study in graduate school. Previous graduates are pursuing the following activities: chiropractic medicine, nursing, Master of Public Health and MD degree, Physicians Assistant, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy and working in a number of health-related fields.

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