Health and Wellness

University of California, Berkeley

About the Program

The goal of the interdisciplinary minor in health and wellness is for students to have concentrated study in the area that can complement their major with a series of courses from outside their discipline. The minor centers on a three-course core, covering the cultural, psychological, and physiological aspects of health and wellness, respectively, and two upper-division electives, selected from a list of chosen courses from various disciplines across campus for students to tailor a focused course of study in human well-being. After completing the minor, students shall be able to:

  • Analyze health and wellness via a cultural lens with sociocultural factors such as race, class, sex, and gender.
  • Apply different research methods for examining health and wellness issues.
  • Identify the strengths and weaknesses of quantitative and qualitative methods in health and wellness research. Develop sound research skills to be able to read, to interpret, and to implement research in health and wellness.
  • Evaluate cultural systems that give rise to inequities in health and wellness and assess how health and wellness can be constructed culturally and may be potentially biased.
  • Gain knowledge in the dimensions of wellness — physical, occupational, social, spiritual, intellectual, and emotional — and develop strategies within each dimension of wellness to modify lifestyle and to learn, to implement, and to adopt healthy behaviors.
  • Make behavior changes that promote health and well-being, and identify and implement healthy behaviors that enhance the quality of life throughout the lifespan.
  • Promote health and wellness through the implementation of behavioral change and lifestyle medicine.
  • Explore career options in health and wellness, including allied areas such as fitness- and sports-related endeavors.

Declaration to Pursue the Health and Wellness Minor:

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Minor Requirements

General Guidelines

  1. All minors must be declared before the first day of classes in your Expected Graduation Term (EGT). For summer graduates, minors must be declared prior to the first day of Summer Session A. 

  2. All upper-division courses must be taken for a letter grade. 

  3. A minimum of three of the upper-division courses taken to fulfill the minor requirements must be completed at UC Berkeley.

  4. A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 is required in the upper-division courses to fulfill the minor requirements.

  5. Courses used to fulfill the minor requirements may be applied toward the Seven-Course Breadth requirement, for Letters & Science students.

  6. No more than one upper division course may be used to simultaneously fulfill requirements for a student's major and minor programs.

  7. All minor requirements must be completed prior to the last day of finals during the semester in which the student plans to graduate. If students cannot finish all courses required for the minor by that time, they should see a College of Letters & Science adviser.

  8. All minor requirements must be completed within the unit ceiling. (For further information regarding the unit ceiling, please see the College Requirements tab.)

Lower Division Required Courses

NUSCTX 10Introduction to Human Nutrition3
PHYS ED 32Fitness for Life: Physical Adaptations to Exercise3
Choose two of the following:
Physical Education Activities [0.5]
Physical Education Activities [0.5]
Physical Education Activities [0.5]
Physical Education Activities [0.5]
Physical Education Activities [0.5]
Choose one of the following:
General Psychology [3]
General Psychology [3]
Principles of Psychology [3]

Upper Division Required Core Courses

Three core courses are required; two courses are electives.

A minimum of five, upper-division courses must be completed that total at least 15 units. Three of the courses must be taken from UC Berkeley. Some courses may have additional prerequisites or require the permission of the instructor.

PHYS ED 121Health, Wellness, and Culture: A Critical Perspective3
PHYS ED 177Wellness for Life3
PSYCH 162Human Happiness3
or PSYCH C162 Human Happiness

Upper Division Elective Courses

Select two elective courses, for a minimum of six units. The courses may be counted in any semester they are offered. One course may be replaced by completing a minimum of three units of thesis, internship (field study), group study, or independent study and research (i.e., 196 Thesis, 197 Field Study, 198 Directed Group Study, or 199 Supervised Independent Study and Research; these courses normally would have a prefix of PHYS ED or PSYCH, but prefixes from other departments are allowed with written approval from the program’s director).

For a full list of elective courses, visit the program web page:

Contact Information

Physical Education Program

200 Hearst Memorial Gymnasium

Phone: 510-642-3288

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Director, Physical Education Program

Dr. Steven Ross Murray

207 Hearst Memorial Gymnasium

Phone: 510-664-5393

Administrative Coordinator (Student Services)

Katharine Heida

200 Hearst Memorial Gymnasium

Phone: 510-642-3288

Program Office Hours

Monday through Thursday: 9am-12pm and 1pm-4pm

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