Students can learn how to research and market health education topics for a diverse group of audiences. Depending upon the program, students may learn how to work in one-on-one, group and community settings. The capstone requirement for graduation varies by program, but typically consists of a project, internship or thesis.
It typically takes two years to complete this degree. Graduates can pursue voluntary certification upon completion of school.
Master's Degree in Health Education
The core courses in these programs typically focus on the development of health education programs and their implementation. Elective courses address specific issues related to the field, such as drug education or stress management. Topics of study could include:
- Health education curriculum planning
- Educational statistics
- Health education techniques
- Health psychology
- Health education program management
- Evaluation of health education
Popular Career Options
In 2012, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the majority of health educators worked in healthcare, social assistance or governmental organizations (www.bls.gov). Health educators may cover a variety of topics or specialize in a particular issue. Depending on their place of employment, they may work with clients on an individual basis. Possible career options within health education include:
- Public health educator
- Community health consultant
- Health promotion specialist
- Education coordinator
- Clinical nurse educator
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
The BLS projected a 10% increase in jobs for health educators from 2018-2028. The median annual salary for these professionals was $54,220 in May 2018.
Continuing Education and Certification Information
Health educators may earn voluntary certification through the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc. This organization offers the Certified Health Education Specialist and the Master Certified Health Education Specialist credentials (www.nchec.org). Individuals interested in these credentials must meet eligibility requirements and pass a certifying exam. Once certified, health educators must meet continuing education standards.
Beyond the master's degree level, health educators may choose to obtain a Ph.D. in Health Education. Such programs may be offered in conjunction with a related topic, such as health promotion, typically culminate in a dissertation, and can lead to a career in academia or research.
When students earn a master of health education, they will focus on courses such as educational statistics, health psychology and evaluation of health education. When students are done school, they have the chance to earn voluntary certification through a professional organization.