Health Protection major: Bachelor of Science

Sarah Lawton
Student Profile – Sarah Lawton

Sarah Lawton is part of a team tasked with protecting the health of the public. Working as an environmental health officer for the Auckland Council, it’s the variety Sarah enjoys the most. Read more of Sarah’s story.

Health protection is an exciting and growing area in New Zealand. With this major you will gain the skills and knowledge required in this profession.
Are you interested in protecting people and communities from environmental hazards such as pollution, unsafe food, infectious diseases and poor living conditions? Health protection is a growing industry and health protection and environmental health officers are in high demand throughout New Zealand – our students generally secure employment before they graduate. Through this major you will learn about environmental health, pollution control, food safety, environmental and public health law, risk assessment, toxicology and communicable disease control.

Bachelor of Science: degree outline


Below is a summary only. For a comprehensive overview of this qualification, please refer to the academic calendar.

You will study the following compulsory papers:

Year 1

Level 5

775205 General Chemistry
555301 Knowledge, Enquiry and Communication
555401 Health and Environment
775318 Plants and Animals
775617 Epidemiology
775111 Microbiology
BIOL501 Biological Sampling and Interpretation

Plus at least one paper from:

775102 Biological Chemistry
775317 Ecology and Evolution
775611 Biophysics
ENVS521 Physical and Human Geography
775411 Food Science

Year 2 and 3

Level 6

776113 Environmental Microbiology
776317 Environmental Risk Assessment
776318 Environmental Health
776319 Communicable Diseases
776412 Food Microbiology
ENVS621 Geographic Information Systems
Plus 2 electives

Level 7

ENVS721 Geospatial Analysis
777413 Food Industry Legislation
BIOL712 Health Protection
Plus 5 electives OR 3 electives and 777003 Research Project.

Other majors or pathways, such as Environmental Sciences, Food Science, Food Safety, or Microbiology can be completed along with Health Protection within 3 years without doing more than the standard 8 papers (120 points) per year.

For more information please contact:

Debra Spinetto
Programme Information Advisor
Telephone: +64 9  921 9735

Career opportunities

  • Communicable disease investigation
  • Environmental health enforcement
  • Food safety
  • Pollution control
  • Resource management
Graduates and students of science


The School of Applied Sciences offers competitive fee-only scholarships for the first year of the Bachelor of Science (one for every major). Some of these scholarships are for the full 3 years and are co-funded by external institutions, such as the Department of Conservation. For more information visit the scholarships website.

Other majors and pathways in the Bachelor of Science

Other courses you may be interested in

Last updated: 31-Aug-2016 1.51pm

The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.