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Department of

Health, Behavior and Society

We discover and apply ways to change human behavior to improve public health.

Health, Behavior and Society Headlines

What We Do in the Department of Health, Behavior and Society

Our Department is dedicated to research, education, and practice on public health issues rooted in human behavior and social conditions—from smoking and substance use to diabetes and HIV and more. We develop and evaluate individually targeted interventions, work with communities to address social factors that affect health, and improve  public policy and other structural factors to improve the health of millions at a time.

Learn how the Department of Health, Behavior and Society partners with communities to change behaviors, eliminate health disparities, and improve the health of their citizens.

Health, Behavior and Society Highlights


professional publications by HBS faculty as of August 2020


full-time HBS faculty


HBS faculty members named to the WHO Technical Advisory Group on Behavioural Insights and Sciences for Health


full-time HBS master's and doctoral students

Health, Behavior and Society Programs

We offer three master's degrees, one PhD, and seven certificate programs focused on behavioral and societal impacts on public health.

We also offer two combined bachelor's/master's degrees to Johns Hopkins University undergraduate students of all majors. 

Master of Health Science (MHS) in Social Factors in Health

Onsite | Full-Time | 1.5 years - 2 years

The MHS in Social Factors in Health is an advanced research degree for students with undergraduate exposure to social and behavioral sciences and/or public health who are interested in further training in the theory and methods in this area.

Master of Science (ScM) in Genetic Counseling

Onsite | Full-Time | 2.5 years

The ScM in Genetic Counseling is designed to prepare graduates to provide genetic counseling with an emphasis on clients’ psychological and educational needs.

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Onsite | Full-Time | 3 years - 5 years

Our doctoral program is designed for individuals seeking training for careers as social and behavioral scientists, health educators, and health promotion or communication specialists in the public health arena.

Health, Behavior and Society Faculty Spotlight

Rajiv Rimal, PhD, MA,

chairs the Department of Health, Behavior and Society. He works globally on social and behavior change interventions with a focus on gender norms.



Headshot of Rajiv Rimal, PhD, taken against a blurred background

Department News

Support Our Department

A gift to our department can help to provide student scholarships and internships, attract and retain faculty, and support innovation.