How do I choose between health sciences and life sciences?

Waterloo offers a variety of Bachelor of Science programs related to living things. These programs are similar in some aspects, but offer different benefits and opportunities.


Health sciences

Life sciences


Human health

All living things

Degree granted

Bachelor of Science (BSc)

Bachelor of Science (BSc)

Offered by Faculty of Health Faculty of Science
Co-op available?


Yes (except Biomedical Sciences and Honours Science)


Health Sciences

Focus on preventing illness, not simply treating people once they get sick. Bring together the science and the social aspects of health and prepare for health professional schools and careers in health.



Study the science of human movement through courses in anatomy, physiology, neuroscience, biomechanics, and social sciences, which provide a solid foundation for many health professional schools.

Not sure which Faculty of Health program is right for you?


Build a strong foundation in both biology and chemistry, prepare for careers in both fields.


Learn about the workings of living organisms, where they come from, evolve, and how they function.

Biomedical Sciences

This program includes courses required for entry into most health professional schools. Enjoy the flexibility of the program by choosing many of your electives to meet professional school pre-requisites.

Biological and Medical Physics (under the Physical Sciences entry program)

If you enjoy both biology and physics, this is a rare program that will prepare you for health-related professions that harness the power of physics, such as radiation oncology (designing radiation treatments for cancer patients) and medical imaging (e.g., ultrasounds).


Learn why people do what they do along with a strong background in science and math. Prepare for professional training in medicine, particularly neurology, psychology, or pediatrics.

Honours Science

If you'd like maximum flexibility within your program or just haven't decided which life sciences discipline to focus on, Honours Science allows you to explore multiple subjects.

Do you have further questions?