Health Education and Wellness Coaching — M.P.H.

Program director
Anna Nelson

Program formats

Course work for the health education and wellness coaching program may be pursued in the following formats:

  • a traditional, on-campus program (combination of on-campus and online coursework)
  • an online program (combination of synchronous and asynchronous coursework)

The program leading to M.P.H. degree in health education and wellness coaching allows students to achieve the competencies necessary  to promote health and wellness to individuals and communities alike. The integration of health education and wellness coaching courses will provide students with a combination of cutting-edge skills in health and wellness, health education, health coaching, and whole-person care.

The health education component of the program focuses on educational, interpersonal, community, and legislative factors that promote positive health behaviors. The curriculum emphasizes interventions based on scientific data and established behavioral and learning theories that promote public health through the processes of education and community organization.

Along with the knowledge of lifestyle-related diseases, health, nutrition, and fitness, the wellness coaching component of the curriculum delivers motivational and behavioral skills needed to enable graduates to become a part of the rapidly growing field helping individuals achieve optimal wellness.

Students who complete the curriculum may function as workplace wellness coordinators, health educators, and health coaches in a variety of public and private settings. They are academically prepared to conduct community assessments; design, implement, and evaluate health education interventions; organize health promotion efforts; and assist individuals and communities to better utilize techniques of health behavior change.

Professional practice is addressed during the laboratory and field experience portions of the curriculum. Students may develop skills while working in community agencies, health care, school, and worksite settings.

Upon completion of the program, graduates are eligible to sit for the following credentialing examinations

  • CPH—offered by the National Board of Public Health Examiners, https://www.nbphe.org.
  • National Board Certified Health & Wellness  Coach (NBC-HWC)—offered by National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) and the International Consortium for Health & Wellness Coaching (ICHWC).
  • Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) or MCHES—offered by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc., <http://www.nchec.org/>.
  • Certified Personal Trainer (ACSM-CPT)—offered by American College of Sports Medicine, <https://acsm.org/>.

Program learning outcomes

By the end of the program, graduates of this program should be able to:

  1. Accurately assess individual lifestyle-related risk factors for chronic diseases in culturally diverse populations;
  2. Administer and manage health education;
  3. Plan, implement, and evaluate health intervention programs;
  4. Demonstrate empathetic coaching skills when delivering wellness counseling to clients;
  5. Conduct culturally competent wellness coaching assessment, counseling, and evaluation for individuals and groups.

Educational effectiveness indicators

Achievement of program learning outcomes will be evidenced by:

  • Signature assignments linked to course and non-course requirements
  • Comprehensive examination

Prerequisite

  • Behavioral science

Website information

For more information, please see our website at <llu.edu/public-health/online>.

On Campus

Public health core
PCOR 501Public Health for Community Resilience5
PCOR 502Public Health for a Healthy Lifestyle5
PCOR 503Public Health and Health Systems5
Major
HPRO 526Lifestyle Diseases and Risk Reduction3
HPRO 530Fundamentals of Research in Health Behavior and Health Education3
HPRO 535Health Education Administration and Leadership3
HPRO 537ACommunity Programs Laboratory—A 1, 32
HPRO 537BCommunity Programs Laboratory—B 2, 31
HPRO 537CCommunity Programs Laboratory—C 31
HPRO 538Health Education Program Development and Evaluation 23
HPRO 539Policy and Issues in Health Education3
HPRO 568Wellness Coaching I3
HPRO 569Wellness Coaching II3
HPRO 570Wellness Coaching Lab1
HPRO 573Exercise Physiology I3
HPRO 589Qualitative Research Methods 13
NUTR 529Health Aspects of Vegetarian Eating3
STAT 515Grant- and Contract-Proposal Writing3
Religion
RELR 540Wholeness and Health3
Total Units56

Online

Public health core
PCOR 501Public Health for Community Resilience5
PCOR 502Public Health for a Healthy Lifestyle5
PCOR 503Public Health and Health Systems5
Major
HPRO 526Lifestyle Diseases and Risk Reduction3
HPRO 530Fundamentals of Research in Health Behavior and Health Education3
HPRO 535Health Education Administration and Leadership3
HPRO 538Health Education Program Development and Evaluation3
HPRO 539Policy and Issues in Health Education3
HPRO 568Wellness Coaching I3
HPRO 569Wellness Coaching II3
HPRO 570Wellness Coaching Lab1
HPRO 573Exercise Physiology I3
HPRO 589Qualitative Research Methods3
HPRO 595Community Project4
NUTR 529Health Aspects of Vegetarian Eating3
STAT 515Grant- and Contract-Proposal Writing3
Religion
RELR 540Wholeness and Health3
Total Units56

Integrative learning experience

In addition to the standard integrative learning experience requirements, students will be required to pass a comprehensive exam.

Normal time to complete the program

1.67 (five [5] academic quarters) based on full-time enrollment

Comparison

See the comparison of the on-campus and online tracks of this program.

Courses

HPRO 500. Stress Management. 2 Units.

Covers aspects of stress as it relates to health. Addresses definitions of stress, emphasizing the potential effect of stress on physical and mental diseases. Presents coping mechanisms, e.g., cognitive behavior therapy, music therapy, spirituality, and several other techniques. Presented in a service-learning format in which students are in direct contact with the community applying stress-prevention and coping strategies.

HPRO 501. Human Anatomy and Physiology I. 6 Units.

Systematic investigation of the form and function of human biological systems. Laboratory included. Limited to doctoral degree students.

HPRO 502. Human Anatomy and Physiology II. 6 Units.

Continues HPRO 501. Systematically investigates the form and function of human biological systems. Laboratory included. Limited to doctoral degree students.

HPRO 509. Principles of Health Behavior. 3 Units.

Introduces key health behavior-change theories and psychosocial determinants of health behaviors. Provides an overview of motivation, stress and coping, addiction, culture, and religion as related to health behavior. Laboratory emphasizes communication, leadership, and group process activities.

HPRO 515. Mind-Body Interactions and Health Outcomes. 3 Units.

Studies the effect of the neurological system on physical health, with a focus on psychoneuro-immunology. Summarizes scientific disciplines that study brain, immune system, and health behavior interactions that provide the healthcare professional with an integrative understanding of lifestyle, whole person care for immune system function and wellness.
Prerequisite: Anatomy and physiology, biochemistry.

HPRO 519. Pharmacology. 3 Units.

Basic and clinical pharmacology. Emphasizes drugs of concern to health promotion specialists. Principles of drug addiction, drug receptors and pharmacodynamics, pharmacokinetics, and practical uses for drugs.
Prerequisite: Anatomy and physiology, general chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemistry.

HPRO 524. Child and Adolescent Health. 3 Units.

Studies developmental and health problems unique to the child and adolescent periods of life. Focuses on special needs and public health programs designed to reach children and adolescents. Gives attention to special problems, such as social adaptation, juvenile delinquency, drug abuse, suicide, adolescent pregnancy.

HPRO 526. Lifestyle Diseases and Risk Reduction. 3 Units.

Discusses current lifestyle diseases, including: cardiovascular, metabolic, communicable, and nutritional. Concepts regarding risk factors, screening approaches, and risk reduction, with impact on specific health parameters.
Prerequisite: Anatomy and physiology; or consent of instructor.

HPRO 527. Obesity and Disordered Eating. 3 Units.

Explores causes and development of obesity, principles of weight management, and relapse prevention. Includes discussion of the causes and treatment of anorexia nervosa and bulimia.

HPRO 529. Preventive and Therapeutic Interventions in Chronic Disease. 3 Units.

Specific preventive care techniques dealing with lifestyle and chronic disease in the clinical environment. Multidisciplinary lifestyle interventions in the prevention and treatment of dyslipidemia, diabetes, hypertension, osteoporosis, sleep disorders, and other chronic conditions. Uses case studies and role playing to explore interventions in a variety of clinical scenarios.

HPRO 530. Fundamentals of Research in Health Behavior and Health Education. 3 Units.

Introduces research in behavioral health and health education sciences. Application of research principles and techniques to quantitative research methods and surveys in health education. Includes: reading and use of published research; development of research questions; hypotheses testing; selection of research methods; data collection; causal inference; reliability; validity; measurement; and, research ethics.

HPRO 531. Pathology of Human Systems I. 3 Units.

Fundamental mechanisms of disease, including degenerative changes and physical and chemical injury. Reviews diseases by organ system: endocrine, biliary, hepatic, respiratory, digestive, urogenital, skeletal, and central nervous. Limited to doctoral degree students.

HPRO 532. Pathology of Human Systems II. 3 Units.

Introduces micropathological organisms. Surveys tissue changes in infectious diseases. Growth disorders, including: basic genetic problems and neoplasia; cardiovascular, circulatory, and inflammatory systems. Limited to doctoral degree students.
Prerequisite: HPRO 531.

HPRO 534A. Research Methods. 2 Units.

Philosophy of scientific research, sources of research invalidity, quantitative and qualitative literature review techniques, setting research goals and objectives, quasi-experimental and experimental design, research ethics. Requires presentation and critique of published research and literature review. Taken over the course of two quarters for a total of 4 units (HPRO 534A, 2 units Winter Quarter; and HPRO 534B, 2 units Spring Quarter). Doctoral students only.
Prerequisite: STAT 509.

HPRO 534B. Research Methods. 2 Units.

Philosophy of scientific research, sources of research invalidity, quantitative and qualitative literature review techniques, setting research goals and objectives, quasi-experimental and experimental design, research ethics. Requires presentation and critique of published research and literature review. Taken over the course of two quarters for a total of 4 units (HPRO 534A , 2 units Winter Quarter; and HPRO 534B, 2 units Spring Quarter). Doctoral students only.
Prerequisite: HPRO 534A.

HPRO 535. Health Education Administration and Leadership. 3 Units.

Analyzes the managerial and leadership roles of the health education specialist in both public and private health organizations. Emphasizes organizational structure and health communication; as well as managing, supervising, marketing, decision making, and other administrative roles.

HPRO 536. Program Planning and Evaluation. 2 Units.

Introductory course that utilizes the planning cycle to address public health problems. Analyzes trends in health-care planning. Applies planning cycle to selected topics. Provides overview of evaluation design, methodology, and instrument development for health education programs. Laboratory included.

HPRO 537A. Community Programs Laboratory—A. 2 Units.

First in a three-course sequence operationalizing qualitative research methods. Includes: conducting observational assessments, windshield surveys, and personal interviews; participating in focus groups; and, compiling secondary data for a community-needs assessment. Preparation for implementation and evaluation of health education programs.

HPRO 537B. Community Programs Laboratory—B. 1 Unit.

Student-designed marketing and evaluation plans for community-based health education program. Student implements and evaluates programs developed during HPRO 537A.
Prerequisite: HPRO 537A.

HPRO 537C. Community Programs Laboratory—C. 1 Unit.

Students continue their marketing plan while implementing and evaluating their programs in the community. Students write a plan for program sustainability with community organizations as stakeholders.

HPRO 538. Health Education Program Development and Evaluation. 3 Units.

Uses program-planning theories, models, and diagnostic techniques to design, deliver, and evaluate health promotion and education programs in community, occupational, educational, and health care settings. Presents steps in the health educational planning process. Includes: assessments; goals and objectives; intervention strategies; behavioral and educational theories; instructional delivery and designs; evaluation; and, reporting.

HPRO 539. Policy and Issues in Health Education. 3 Units.

Examines and discusses policy issues, trends, and strategies relating to health education—including but not limited to HIV/AIDS, women's health, injury prevention and control, tobacco and other drug issues, and health issues in ethnically diverse populations. Provides opportunities to develop and improve presentation skills. Project included.

HPRO 543. Writing for Health Professionals. 3 Units.

Writing by health professionals for popular, lay, or professional publications. Student selects journal or magazine, writes query letter, and prepares abstract and manuscript in final form for submission. Includes preparation of camera-ready art. Preparation of two publishable papers. Limited to doctoral degree students.

HPRO 544. Health Education Evaluation and Measurement. 3 Units.

Student selects and develops health education and psychosocial measurement instruments, determines validity and reliability of evaluation tools, provides overview of data-collection methods and protocols, analyzes and interprets results, and communicates evaluation findings. Limited to doctoral degree students.

HPRO 553. Addiction Theory and Program Development. 3 Units.

Applies addiction process theory in a practical way to program development. Emphasizes alcohol, tobacco, and other drug (ATOD) problems, using case studies and extensive reading as part of a problem-solving approach. The epidemiological, pathological, physiological, psychological, and spiritual bases for prevention and treatment of addictions. Laboratory included.

HPRO 556. High-Risk Infants and Children: Policy and Programs. 3 Units.

Examines development of at-risk infants and children, and evaluates interventions that may modify cognitive and social outcomes. Includes, medical and social risk factors, and efficacy of early-intervention and survival strategies globally and locally. Examines legal, regulatory, and ethical issues.

HPRO 559. Lactation Management. 3 Units.

Analyzes the managerial and leadership roles of the health education specialist in both public and private health organizations. Emphasizes organizational structure and health communication; as well as managing, supervising, marketing, decision making, and other administrative roles.

HPRO 565. Tobacco Use: Prevention and Interventions. 3 Units.

Second of three courses providing an overview of the underlying pathophysiology of the health impact of tobacco use on individuals, families, and society. Includes: smoking behavior; pharmacodynamics of nicotine delivery; mechanisms of nicotine addiction; and, individual, group, systems, and public intervention strategies. Incorporates principles of epidemiology, anatomy, physiology, immunology, endocrinology, and biochemistry.

HPRO 568. Wellness Coaching I. 3 Units.

Reviews the wellness-coaching process. Introduces students to effective methodology of motivational interviewing. Explores the techniques and theories associated with this coaching method. Covers in detail the skills needed to successfully motivate patients toward healthier lifestyles. Gives attention to practical information needed to be a successful health professional. Includes overview of positive psychology methods and theory.

HPRO 569. Wellness Coaching II. 3 Units.

Covers the fundamentals of the coaching structure and process, from coach preparation to program termination--including the legal and ethical implications. Explores specific components of the coaching process, with special attention given to coach/client relationship, empathetic communication skills, importance of client reflections, and goal setting. Introduces the Wellness Mapping 360 tool to lay the foundation for the coaching plan.

HPRO 570. Wellness Coaching Lab. 1 Unit.

Provides a review of the wellness coaching process and introduces students to direct client interaction. Requires fifty sessions of wellness coaching practice in the field, offering students the creative opportunity to apply and integrate skills and knowledge gained in the preceding terms of the program. Requires students to use the learned skills and knowledge to schedule, coach, and educate individuals in client-centered individual sessions.

HPRO 573. Exercise Physiology I. 3 Units.

Basic preparation for development and leadership of exercise programs. Includes exercise physiology, training, acute and chronic effects of exercise, simple assessment of fitness, role of exercise in prevention of common health problems, and management of selected risk factors. Discusses endurance, strength, flexibility, and aerobic exercises. Laboratory included.

HPRO 578. Exercise Physiology II. 3 Units.

Physiologic basis of the normal body function during exercise. Emphasizes the training effects of aerobic exercise. Noninvasive laboratory methods of the study of the circulatory and respiratory systems. Laboratory included.
Prerequisite: HPRO 573; and basic physiology.

HPRO 580. Preventive Care Management. 3 Units.

Prepares students for careers in preventive care. Covers three areas of preventive care: teaching, worksite wellness, and clinical practice. Enhances skills and tools needed in preventive care practice. Limited to doctoral candidates in preventive care.

HPRO 586. Introduction to Preventive Care. 1 Unit.

Provides overview of preventive care's role within public health. Orientation to doctoral program, with attention to professional portfolio preparation. Limited to doctoral degree students in preventive care.

HPRO 587. Preventive Care Practice Management. 2 Units.

Provides overview of issues and challenges in the operation of a preventive care practice. Emphasizes billing and reimbursement issues, and legal and ethical responsibilities of the preventive care specialist. Limited to doctoral degree students in preventive care.

HPRO 588. Health Behavior Theory and Research. 4 Units.

Analyzes factors contributing to health behavior decisions. Theory and research relevant to individual, family, organization, and community behavior. Emphasizes critical-thinking, professional writing, and oral presentation. Application of theory to development of a basic research proposal. Limited to doctoral degree students. Consent of instructors for nondoctoral degree students.
Prerequisite: HPRO 509; or equivalent.

HPRO 589. Qualitative Research Methods. 3 Units.

Applies qualitative methods to instrument design, sampling, and data collection. Focuses on public health issues, ethics, and theory-building. Supervised needs assessment in a selected community.

HPRO 590. Worksite Wellness. 3 Units.

Prepares students to enter the field of corporation wellness as leaders not only in developing, implementing, and evaluating wellness work-site programs; but also in decreasing the burden on corporation health, morale, budget, and performance caused by lifestyle-related diseases.

HPRO 595. Community Project. 1-4 Units.

Provides the student with an individual, hands-on experience to apply the principles learned in the didactic courses of the health education program. Students plan, implement, and evaluate a health education intervention based on the findings of the needs assessment. Programs consist of several sessions, individually planned and taught by the student. Minimum of thirty hours required for each unit of credit. A maximum of 4 units applicable.
Prerequisite: Consent of instructor.

HPRO 604. Research Seminar. 2 Units.

Student develops and critiques doctoral project proposals, with peer review of research protocols. Limited to doctoral degree students.
Prerequisite: PHCJ 600; consent of program director.

HPRO 606. Motivational Interviewing. 2 Units.

Introduces students to the effective methodology of motivational interviewing. Explores the techniques and theories associated with this treatment method. Covers in detail the skills needed to successfully motivate patients toward healthier lifestyles. Gives attention to practical information needed to be a successful health professional. P.H. (preventive care) degree.
Prerequisite: Minimum of 90 units of course work toward Dr.

HPRO 608. Advanced Seminar in Health Education. 2 Units.

Studies current issues in health promotion and education from the standpoint of historical setting. Explores emerging challenges to professional preparation in health promotion and education, and the place of professional health educators in the practice of public health. Must be taken for a total of 6 units. Limited to health education doctoral degree students.

HPRO 685. Preliminary Research Experience. 2 Units.

Experience gained in various aspects of research under the guidance of a faculty member and by participation in an ongoing project. Must be completed prior to beginning dissertation/research project. Limited to doctoral degree students.

HPRO 696. Directed Study/Special Project. 1-4 Units.

Individual arrangements for advanced students to study under the guidance of a program faculty member. May include reading, literature review, or other special projects. Minimum of thirty hours required for each unit of credit. A maximum of 4 units applicable to any master's degree program.
Prerequisite: Consent of instructor and of program advisor.

HPRO 697. Dissertation Proposal. 1-10 Units.

Doctoral student develops the written dissertation proposal and collaborates with doctoral dissertation committee chair on mutually agreed-upon objectives, which will serve as the basis for evaluation. Culminates in a written and oral dissertation proposal defense and advancement to candidacy.
Prerequisite: Successful completion of comprehensive exams.

HPRO 698. Dissertation. 1-14 Units.

Student prepares a manuscript presenting results of the doctoral research study. Limited to doctoral degree candidates.
Prerequisite: Advancement to Candidacy.

HPRO 704A. Internship. 2 Units.

Training and supervised experience (minimum of 100 clock hours) with other health professionals in applied settings. Opportunity to work with individuals, families, and groups in assessing health and building relationships conducive to health-promoting behavior changes. Limited to doctoral (preventive care) degree students. May be repeated for a total of up to 12 units.

HPRO 704B. Internship. 4 Units.

Training and supervised experience (minimum of 200 clock hours) with other health professionals in applied settings. Opportunity to work with individuals, families, and groups in assessing health and building relationships conducive to health-promoting behavior changes. Limited to doctoral (preventive care) degree students. May be repeated for a total of up to 12 units.

HPRO 704C. Internship. 6 Units.

Training and supervised experience (minimum of 300 clock hours) with other health professionals in applied settings. Opportunity to work with individuals, families, and groups in assessing health and building relationships conducive to health-promoting behavior changes. Limited to doctoral (preventive care) degree students.

HPRO 704D. Internship. 8 Units.

Training and supervised experience with other health professionals in applied settings. Opportunity to work with individuals, families, and groups in assessing health and building relationships conducive to health-promoting behavior changes. Limited to doctoral (preventive care) degree students. A ten-week (40 hours/week) field internship.