Online health education degree programs can open doors for people who are passionate about health, working with youth and the community, and who are eager to explore new ways to teach others about healthy living. A degree in health education can lead to a variety of careers in the education system, local, state, and federal programs, and independent health centers and facilities. Online health education degree programs provide students with the knowledge and skills to serve as health advocates and educators, either in the public or private sectors. Even as health information evolves, health educators are responsible to remain knowledgeable about current health issues, trends, and concerns, and know how to present health-related topics in an accessible way.
Online Associate Degree Programs for Health Education
An associate degree in health education is ideal for students who plan to ultimately transfer to another program, in order to complete a four-year bachelor’s degree in the field. While an associate degree in health education does not meet the minimum education requirements for most health education occupations, students gain a solid foundation in health education concepts at this level. Associate degree programs are helpful to students who want to explore the field before committing to four full years of study, need to save on education costs, or plan to boost their academic record before transferring to a more prestigious program in health education. Should they decide to transfer credits, students may want to confirm that the required associate degree course credits will transfer to a bachelor’s degree program before finalizing their plans.
Online Bachelor’s Degree Programs for Health Education
A bachelor’s degree in health education typically takes four years to complete and includes general education courses as well as health education classes. At the bachelor’s degree level, students participate in a broad range of health, wellness, and fitness related courses through the school’s kinesiology, exercise science, or public health programs. They also study education, and learn to design health awareness programs, write health-related curricula, and develop teaching techniques. After completing online health education degree programs at the undergraduate level, students should be eligible for entry-level health education positions at schools and colleges, hospitals, health and wellness clinics, nonprofit organizations, or even private businesses and corporations.
Online Master’s Degree Programs for Health Education
A master’s degrees in health education provides a thorough analysis of health education topics. The master’s degree is a blend of education, skills, and knowledge that can be applied directly in a professional setting, and also covers research and theory that could lead to additional graduate work in health education. Online health education degree programs at the master’s level often include advanced courses in curriculum and instruction with an emphasis on program management. For example, students might learn how to develop and coordinate a school health program and design a program from scratch for a class project. Some programs allow students to work directly with real health education programs in the community for projects and research. Students also examine cultural and societal issues that influence health and healthy living, including environmental and cultural influences. Master’s degree students in online health education degree programs typically complete a thesis incorporating their original research, as well as possible field work or internship.
Online Doctoral Degree Programs for Health Education
A doctoral degree in health education prepares students for careers in academics, like teaching, research, advocacy, or policy. Health education doctoral students perform detailed research with the goal of presenting an original concept or discovery at the end of their program. Most health education doctoral programs include at least two years of course work. Once students have completed their courses, they are expected to focus on academic research, and may be eligible to participate in an on-campus teaching project to fulfill residency requirements, which are required of most online health education degree programs at the doctoral level.
Online Degree Programs in Health Education in the Work Place
Online health education degree programs can lead to careers in a variety of fields. Many health educators work in schools or on college campuses. In this capacity, they develop health education programs and campaigns for students and faculty, and make health information readily available to the campus community. Health educators are also employed by businesses and corporations. An increasing number of companies are recognizing the benefits of promoting a healthy lifestyle among their employees. Health educators develop programs and initiatives that motivate employees to live healthier. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), health educators earn approximately $45,000 per year on average, depending on the local cost of living, industry demand, and individual experience and qualifications. Health education professionals working in the private sector may be eligible to earn more. Master’s degree holders often have more diverse employment opportunities than those with undergraduate degrees.