Community Health

For detailed information regarding admission requirements for the School of Education graduate programs, please visit the Admissions Requirements website at https://www.uab.edu/education/studentservices/admissions.

Overview of Our Programs

The Community Health and Human Services program at UAB is designed to prepare students to work in professional health settings including national/state health organizations, clinical-based programs, and community-based non-profit agencies. In addition to studying contemporary health content, students are guided in the process of assessing, planning, implementing, and evaluating health-related programs and interventions which correspond to the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing professional standards. Students are provided numerous opportunities to practice advanced health education specialist tasks via Instructor lead community-based projects and purposefully designed service learning experiences.

Graduate Certificate in Health Education

The Graduate Certificate in Health Education is designed for students who desire to work in the community or enhance their skills in academia and seek preparation at the graduate level in community health, but not a full master's degree. The Graduate Certificate in Health Education is also designed for students wishing to obtain eligibility for the Certified Health Education Specialist Examination that have a degree in a complimentary field but do not currently have the corresponding coursework. This certificate will formally recognize UAB students and community professionals who have sought out necessary skills and training in community health education. All courses are offered online.

Master of Arts in Education (M.A.Ed.): Community Health (Online)

The Community Health and Human Services program at UAB prepares students for advanced employment opportunities beyond the bachelor's degree level (MAEd in Community Health)Work settings include public, volunteer, and private health agencies, clinics, and worksites. Students gain skills in health education program planning, implementation, evaluation, and administration. Students are provided numerous opportunities to practice advanced health education specialist tasks via Instructor lead community-based projects and purposefully designed service learning experiences. Students learn research-based protocol and may choose to complete either a thesis or an internship upon degree completion. Required courses include research design, the advanced health education/promotion specialist, program planning, evaluation, and administration, along with behavioral theory. Course work is aligned with responsibilities and competencies of advanced level health education specialists developed by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing (www.nchec.org). This program of study has been developed to include the knowledge and competencies needed to prepare students for either the Certified or Master Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES/MCHES) examination.

Masters of Arts in Education (M.A.Ed.): Community Health with a Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management (Online)

Through this joint venture between the Community Health and Human Services program and the Department of Government, students learn advanced health education programming planning, implementation, and evaluation competencies as well as nonprofit management skills such as grant writing and fund raising. The program exposes students to volunteer, private health agencies, clinics, and worksites.

M.A.Ed. Admission Process (Online)

Consideration for admission to the master’s degree program will occur each Fall and Spring term. The completed application packet must be received by the Community Health and Human Services Program from the Graduate School by the dates shown:

Entry Term Deadline
Fall April 30
Spring October 30

Admission to graduate study in Community Health and Human Services is initiated through the Graduate School and all required materials are to be submitted per specified instructions delineated by the Graduate School. M.A.Ed. applicants should have a cumulative GPA of 2.50. The M.A.Ed program does not require that student complete the MAT/GRE examination. In rare cases, applicants who do not meet aforementioned standards may be considered for admission.

In addition, applicants must address several questions in writing that reflect the applicant’s background, development, pertinent work-related experience, and professional career objectives relating to careers in Community Health. Applicants will also be required to submit a professional resume. All applications for graduate admission are reviewed by the community health and human services faculty may be given one of two decisions:  a) admit or b) not admit.

Graduate Traineeship in Pediatric Pulmonary Care (with School of Health Professions)

A Graduate Traineeship in partnership with the UAB Pediatric Pulmonary Center (PPC) is offered to a student currently trained as a respiratory therapist. Prospective students are those desiring a graduate degree in Community Health and Human Services, is interested in pediatric pulmonary care, and aspires to positions of leadership. One trainee per year is selected. The traineeship features a combination of planned coursework, hospital rounds, pulmonary clinics, patient and family education, and research experience. This interdisciplinary training program is offered to graduate students in Respiratory Therapy - Community Health and Human Services, nursing, nutrition, social work and medicine. Training is provided in each of the Maternal and Child Health Leadership Competencies. The Traineeship includes a monthly stipend (for up to 12 months) and tuition assistance (limited to U.S. citizens or to individuals with a permanent visa).

For more information go to uab.edu/medicine/peds/ppc or contact: LaShonna Stodghill, MAE, RRT, AE-C, lashonna.stodghill@childrensal.org or Dr. Laura Forbes at ltalbott@uab.edu

Student Professional Dispositions

Community Health and Human Services faculty individually review the professional dispositions (behaviors and attitudes) of students within each course in accordance with the School of Education’s policy and procedure. Additionally, faculty will collectively review student dispositions and overall progress in the program at the end of each semester. Dispositional areas identified as deficient could result in termination from the program.

Graduate Program Policies 

No individual course grade below “C” will be accepted. Each course with an earned grade below “C” must be repeated. Repeating a required health education course more than twice is not permitted. If a student receives a grade lower than a “C” after their second attempt, he or she will be dismissed from the Community Health and Human Services program and not allowed readmission.

Non-Degree Seeking Graduate Students

Following admission to the UAB Graduate School, students may enroll in elective Community Health and Human Services courses as "non-degree seeking" students with the permission of the instructor. Non-degree seeking students are limited to 12 hours of coursework. It is essential for non-degree seeking students to make an advising appointment with a faculty member prior to enrolling in elective courses as some elective courses have pre-/co-requisites. Non-degree seeking students are not permitted to take "core" health education courses prior to admission. Enrolling and passing non-degree seeking coursework does not guarantee admission into a masters or doctoral degree program. Admission criteria (cumulative GPA, recommendations, and written statement) are the primary factors considered when reviewing student suitability for admission to a program.

Graduate Certificate in Health Education

The last decade has seen significant emphasis being placed on the ability of professionals in non-profit, governmental and agency settings to have the skills and training needed to effectively plan, implement and evaluate health related policies and programs. Skills such as grant writing, budgeting, assessing needs of the service population, and using an ecological lens to develop meaningful interventions are only a few of the needed competencies in today’s job market. This certificate is for students who have a desire to work in the community or enhance their skills in academia and want some preparation at the graduate level in health education, but not a full master’s degree. This certificate is also appropriate for those already working in community agencies who want advanced skills and knowledge of how to conduct successful health-related interventions using a community based participatory research approach.

The Graduate Certificate in Health Education is designed for students who have a desire to work in the community or enhance their skills in academia and want some preparation at the graduate level in community health, but not a full master's degree.  This certificate will formally recognize UAB students and community professionals who receive the necessary skills and training in community health education. All courses are offered online.

RequirementsHours
CHHS 631Applied Planning and Implementation of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
CHHS 632Advanced Administration of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
CHHS 642Applied Behavioral Theory and Health Education/Promotion3
CHHS 697Community-Based Approaches to Evaluation and Grantsmanship of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
Choose One of the Following Options3
Advanced Issues of Disease Prevention in Health Education/Promotion
The Advanced Health Education/Promotion Specialist
Health Communications & Health Coaching
Intervention Strategies for Health Education/Promotion
Total Hours15

M.A.Ed. in Community Health

Designed to prepare individuals for advanced health education and promotion careers in agencies, schools, worksites, and allied health care settings. All courses are offered online.This program is aligned with the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing standards and prepares students to sit for the Certified Health Education Specialist or the Master Certified Health Education Specialist examination. CHES/MCHES provides evidence of competency of the knowledge, skills and application of the Areas of Responsibilities defining the role of an entry or masters-level health educator. Program options allow students to select a thesis, internship, or course work completion option based on approval of the Graduate Program Director and prior professional work experience of the individual student.

Master of Arts in Education in Community Health (Online)

Admission Requirement and Prerequisites

In addition to the general admission requirements of the Graduate School, it is preferred that applicants have passed an undergraduate or graduate level BY or CH course. Undergraduate level Chemistry, Anatomy, and Physiology courses are preferred program prerequisites. 

Plan I - 39 hours and Thesis

This is an online program.

RequirementsHours
Major Courses
EPR 594Introduction to Educational Research Design3
CHHS 606Advanced Issues of Disease Prevention in Health Education/Promotion3
EPR 609Statistical Methods and Research in Education: Intermediate3
CHHS 610The Advanced Health Education/Promotion Specialist3
CHHS 621Health Communications & Health Coaching 3
CHHS 631Applied Planning and Implementation of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
CHHS 632Advanced Administration of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
CHHS 642Applied Behavioral Theory and Health Education/Promotion3
CHHS 689Intervention Strategies for Health Education/Promotion3
EPR 696Qualitative Research: Inquiry and Analysis3
CHHS 697Community-Based Approaches to Evaluation and Grantsmanship of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
Thesis (6 hours of CHHS 699)6
Thesis Research (Responsible Conduct of Research Training Must Be Completed Prior to Advancement to Candidacy)
Total Hours39

Plan II - 39 hours and Internship

This is an online program.

RequirementsHours
Major Courses
EPR 594Introduction to Educational Research Design3
EPR 596Introduction to Qualitative Methods in Educational Research3
CHHS 606Advanced Issues of Disease Prevention in Health Education/Promotion3
CHHS 610The Advanced Health Education/Promotion Specialist3
EPR 608Statistical Methods and Action Research3
CHHS 621Health Communications & Health Coaching 3
CHHS 631Applied Planning and Implementation of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
CHHS 632Advanced Administration of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
CHHS 642Applied Behavioral Theory and Health Education/Promotion3
CHHS 689Intervention Strategies for Health Education/Promotion3
CHHS 697Community-Based Approaches to Evaluation and Grantsmanship of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
CHHS 693Advanced Field Experience in Community Health Education6
Total Hours39

Comprehensive Examination (Non-Thesis and Course Work Options Only)

Student with at least one year of full time work (Non-Thesis Option Only) Students in the health education/promotion field approaching degree completion may opt to complete six additional hours of advisor approved CHHS coursework rather than an internship. Non-Thesis M.A.Ed. Examples of course work may include but are not limited to: CHHS 598, 601, 602, 608, 611, 621, 623, 640, 692, or 742.

Students with less than one year of full time work in the health education/promotion field approaching degree completion will be required to complete an internship experience. The level of work experience will be determined by the CHHS Graduate Program Director.

program must complete a supervised internship at a pre-approved community health education/promotion site.Student must also complete the comprehensive examinations during their last semester of coursework.Those The examination is an opportunity for students completing to demonstrate the program with additional course work or the internship option must also complete the comprehensive examination during their last semester of coursework. The examination is an opportunity for students to demonstrate the appropriate aptitude for advanced level health education competencies. The comprehensive exam is a culminating task that encompasses the content knowledge and critical thinking skills that a Health Education/Promotion Specialist should possess. A student cannot attempt the internship and comprehensive examination more than twice. Those who cannot complete the internship and examination with a passing score during the second attempt will be dismissed from the program and not allowed readmission. Please contact the CHHS Graduate Program Director for additional information about examination scheduling.  information. 

Master of Arts in Education in Community Health (Online) with a Non-Profit Management Graduate Certificate

The M.A.Ed. degree requires a minimum of 45 credit hours for the Community Health with a Non-Profit Management Graduate certificate.

Plan I - 45 hours with Thesis

RequirementsHours
EPR 594Introduction to Educational Research Design3
CHHS 606Advanced Issues of Disease Prevention in Health Education/Promotion3
EPR 609Statistical Methods and Research in Education: Intermediate3
CHHS 610The Advanced Health Education/Promotion Specialist3
CHHS 631Applied Planning and Implementation of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
CHHS 642Applied Behavioral Theory and Health Education/Promotion3
MPA 671Marketing and Fundraising3
MPA 672Nonprofit Management3
CHHS 689Intervention Strategies for Health Education/Promotion3
EPR 696Qualitative Research: Inquiry and Analysis3
CHHS 697Community-Based Approaches to Evaluation and Grantsmanship of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
Graduate Level Elective (choose two)6
GIS for Managers
Strategic Planning
Grants Management
Thesis (6 hours of CHHS 699)6
Thesis Research (Pre-requisite GRD 717)
Total Hours45

Plan II - 45 hours with Comprehensive Exam

RequirementsHours
EPR 594Introduction to Educational Research Design3
EPR 596Introduction to Qualitative Methods in Educational Research3
CHHS 606Advanced Issues of Disease Prevention in Health Education/Promotion3
EPR 608Statistical Methods and Action Research3
CHHS 610The Advanced Health Education/Promotion Specialist3
CHHS 631Applied Planning and Implementation of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
CHHS 642Applied Behavioral Theory and Health Education/Promotion3
MPA 671Marketing and Fundraising3
MPA 672Nonprofit Management3
CHHS 689Intervention Strategies for Health Education/Promotion3
CHHS 697Community-Based Approaches to Evaluation and Grantsmanship of Health Education/Promotion Programs3
Graduate Level Elective (choose two)6
Grants Management
GIS for Managers
Strategic Planning
CHHS 693Advanced Field Experience in Community Health Education (OR 6 Hours of Additional CHHS Advisor Approved Course Work)6
Total Hours45

 Comprehensive Examination

Student with at least one year of full time work in the health education/promotion field approaching degree completion may opt to complete six additional hours of advisor approved CHHS coursework rather than an internship. Examples of course work may include but are not limited to: CHHS 598, 601, 602, 608, 611, 621, 623, 640, 692, or 742.

Students with less than one year of full time work in the health education/promotion field approaching degree completion will be required to complete an internship experience. The level of work experience will be determined by the CHHS Graduate Program Director.

Those students completing the program with additional course work or the internship option must also complete the comprehensive examination during their last semester of coursework. The examination is an opportunity for students to demonstrate the appropriate aptitude for advanced level health education competencies. The comprehensive exam is a culminating task that encompasses the content knowledge and critical thinking skills that a Health Education/Promotion Specialist should possess. A student cannot attempt the internship and comprehensive examination more than twice. Those who cannot complete the examination with a passing score during the second attempt will be dismissed from the program and not allowed readmission. Please contact the CHHS Graduate Program Director for additional information about examination scheduling. 

Health Education/Health Promotion

For detailed information regarding admission requirements for the School of Education graduate programs, please visit the Admissions Requirements website at https://www.uab.edu/education/studentservices/admission-requirements.

Health Education/Health Promotion (PhD)

Graduate Program Director: Dr. Retta Evans, rrevans@uab.edu

Ph.D. Health Education/Health Promotion

The PhD in Health Education/Health Promotion is a UA System degree jointly administered by three units: UAB School of Education and College of Arts & Sciences, UAB School of Public Health, and UA College of Human Environmental Sciences. Students draw upon the expertise and resources of a diverse and highly qualified faculty. Faculty members strive to create a rigorous scholarly and supportive atmosphere for students to develop intellectually with the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to be ethical and responsible health education professionals. 

Ph.D. Admission Process

Consideration for admission to graduate study in health education will occur each Fall for acceptance to start the following Fall term. The completed application packet must be received by the Community Health and Human Services Program from the Graduate School by the dates shown:

Entry Term Deadline
Fall October 30

Candidates for admission must have completed a bachelor’s or master’s degree from an accredited institution in health education or a health-related field. Admission to doctoral study is initiated through the Graduate School. Applicants will: (a) request official transcripts of all college coursework to send to UAB Graduate School; (b) submit (3) letters of recommendation from professors or others who are qualified to judge your ability to complete doctoral coursework; (c) complete the GRE indicating UAB as the recipient of your scores; and (d) submit writing sample(s), such as an essay describing your academic training, professional experiences and career goals.  Admission to the program is competitive.

Ph.D. applicants should have a cumulative GPA of 3.00/4.00 or greater for prior college coursework and preferred GRE scores of 312 or greater. Faculty consider GRE scores as one indicator of an applicant’s potential success in the doctoral program.

Ph.D. Health Education/Health Promotion Program of Study

Students may enter the program with either a bachelor's or master's degree in health education, or a master's degree in a closely related health field. Prerequisite coursework includes Foundations of Health Education, Health Education Planning and Evaluation, and Research Design and Statistics. These requirements may be corequisite components in the program.

Students entering the program with a master’s degree may transfer appropriate coursework to this program; however, this will not reduce the number of courses required. Students will not be required to retake coursework already completed but may be required to complete prerequisites as part of their planned course of study.

A required review of student credentials prior to admission will identify strengths and needs. This review will provide students with a blueprint for their course of study and will be conducted by the program director and faculty advisor.

The PhD degree program will require students to complete a minimum of 72 credit hours: 42 hours of coursework, 12 hours of research internship, and 18 hours of dissertation research. Students will meet regularly with a faculty advisor to plan course enrollment. 

Research and Statistics Prerequisites: Students are required to have completed the following courses (or equivalents) BEFORE enrolling in the Advanced Research and Statistical Methods Core.

RequirementsHours
EPR 594Introduction to Educational Research Design3
EPR 596Introduction to Qualitative Methods in Educational Research3
EPR 608
EPR 607
Statistical Methods and Action Research
and Microcomputer Applications to Statistical Analysis
4
EPR 609Statistical Methods and Research in Education: Intermediate3
Total Hours13

The specific components of the PhD program in health Education and Health Promotion are outlined below.

Ph.D. through the School of Education

RequirementsHours
I. Health Education and Promotion CORE Courses12
Advanced Theoretic/Scientific Basis of Health Education/Promotion
Advanced Planning and Implementation of Health Education/Promotion Programs
Evaluation of Health Education/Promotion Programs
Health Education Seminar I
Health Education Seminar II
Health Education Seminar III
II. Advanced Research and Statistical Methods Core12
Principles of Epidemiologic Research
Qualitative Research: Inquiry and Analysis
Computer Applications and Advanced Statistical Methods
Graduate Research Design 1
Survey Methods in Educational Research
Mixed Methods Approaches in Action Research
III. Coursework in the Social and Behavioral Sciences 218
IV. Research Internship (Pre-requisite GRD 717)12
V. Dissertation18
Total Hours72


Comprehensive Examination

A written comprehensive examination is required of all candidates for the Ph.D. degree. Your preparation will include studying course content, core competencies for the profession, and related literature of the discipline. Prior to taking the exam, students must have completed their core course requirements. Students must register for a minimum of 3.0 hours of graduate work during the semester in which the comprehensive exam is taken.

The Comprehensive exam will be offered twice each year and is written and graded by the graduate faculty in the joint doctoral program. The examination will be a synthesis of the core coursework as well as core competencies in the field of Health Education and Health promotion. Grading of the comprehensive exam is done blinded, and by consensus. Students who fail to achieve passing scores will have one attempt to remediate within a calendar year. If a student fails a section for the second time, they will be dismissed from the program.