Examine the Curriculum

WesternU’s Master of Science in Health Sciences (MSHS) graduates are regularly tapped to assume leadership roles in health professions and community education. We attribute the success of our students to our faculty and student’s commitment to teaching and learning, the program’s flexibility and innovation, and our outstanding reputation.

Although courses are primarily offered on campus in the late afternoons and evenings, we currently offer a few web-based courses as well, and more are in development. You may choose one of two areas of focus: Health Professions Education (HPE) or Community Health Education (CHE). Most students elect to declare their focus area before the end of the first year. Additionally, NMM/OMM Fellows in the College of Osteopathic Medicine may earn their MSHS degree while in the Fellowship by participating in a track designed specifically for them. Students admitted to the College of Podiatric Medicine may complete the Research in Podiatric Medicine Track of the MSHS program.

The HPE Track is designed for clinicians who engage in educational programs. They may teach in a variety if settings to many audiences: patients, staff, residents, med students on rotation. All these circumstances require a different teaching approach. For example, how does one teach a patient and residents at the same time? How does a clinician correct a resident in front of a patient without deflating the resident and without scaring the patient? HPE students are good candidates for becoming faculty. They study program design and evaluation as well as research and grant writing. HPE graduates teach others to do what they are doing.

The CHE Track is a Public Health profession where students are preparing to work with local communities to empower the communities to take charge of their health and make healthy changes. It is about Public Health! Students learn to assess the needs in a community and create programs to address those needs. They work with local communities cities to build the capacity of the communities to make changes for themselves. Graduates of the CHE Track often work for non profit agencies, governments, and hospitals.

Flexible Scheduling
You can complete your degree in two to three years, though we do allow you up to five years to complete the 34-unit degree. If you have taken graduate level courses at another institution you may transfer up to six units toward the 34 required for graduation. Read what a typical week might look like as a full- or part-time MSHS student.

Review the Course Listing in our Catalog For more detail regarding the curriculum, please review the course descriptions (PDF) in our University catalog.

Profession-Relevant Coursework
For both the CHE and HPE tracks, the program offers core courses in foundations of the U.S. health-care system, educational leadership, human resources and finance, teaching and learning theories, among many others. Coursework promotes the knowledge, values, and skills essential for competence in the following four domains:

  • Basic statistical analysis and research methodologies
  • Didactic curriculum design, implementation, and evaluation
  • Clinical and community-based program design, implementation, and evaluation
  • Executive skills for health professions education leaders

Health Professions Education (HPE) Track

Many clinical providers choose this track to enhance their skills in teaching colleagues, teaching health-care students, and educating patients. The curriculum is also appropriate for those wishing to teach in a traditional educational environment. If you have a clinical license (a PA-C, for example), you may be able to submit hours from the MSHS curriculum for continuing education credit. In the HPE track, you can choose a concentration in instructional design or clinical teaching.

  • Grant Proposal Writing
  • Learning Theories & Student Behaviors
  • Principles of Instructional Design
  • Applied Statistics
  • Instructional Media
  • Writing for Publication
  • Foundations of the U.S. Health Care System
  • Human Resources & Fiscal Operations
  • Educational Leadership
  • Research & Program Evaluation Methods
  • Clinical Teaching
  • Thesis/Special Project I
  • Thesis/Special Project II

For complete details visit the University Catalog

The HPE Track is designed for clinicians who engage in educational programs. They may teach in a variety if settings to many audiences: patients, staff, residents, med students on rotation. All these circumstances require a different teaching approach. For example, how does one teach a patient and residents at the same time? How does a clinician correct a resident in front of a patient without deflating the resident and without scaring the patient? HPE students are good candidates for becoming faculty. They study program design and evaluation as well as research and grant writing. HPE graduates teach others to do what they are doing.

Community Health Education (CHE) Track

This track prepares you to work as a health educator in community settings, such as nonprofit organizations, managed-care settings, or workplaces. It allows health educators to complete the master’s degree necessary for certification and offers those already working in related areas, such as dietetics or nursing, an opportunity to share their expertise in a community setting. In the CHE track, you can choose a concentration in community health education and competencies.

  • Community Health Principles, Policy and Advocacy
  • Epidemiology and Population Health
  • Community Health Education
  • Community Needs Assessment
  • Program Planning
  • Competencies for Community Health Educators
  • Program Implementation
  • Grant Proposal Writing
  • Applied Statistics
  • Instructional Media
  • Foundations of the U.S. Health Care System
  • Research and Program Evaluation Methods
  • Thesis/Special Project I
  • Thesis/Special Project II

For complete details visit the University Catalog

CHE is a Public Health profession where students are preparing to work with local communities to empower the communities to take charge of their health and make healthy changes. It is about Public Health! Students learn to assess the needs in a community and create programs to address those needs. They work with local communities cities to build the capacity of the communities to make changes for themselves. Graduates of the CHE Track often work for non profit agencies, governments, and hospitals.

NMM/OMM Teaching Fellowship Track & Health Professions Education and Research in Podiatric Medicine Track

For additional admission requirements for these two tracks, please visit the University Catalog

  • Grand Proposal Writing
  • Learning Theories and Student Behavior
  • Principles of Instructional Design
  • Applied Statistics
  • Instructional Media
  • Writing for Publication
  • Research and Program
  • Evaluation Methods
  • Clinical Teaching
  • Evidence-based Educational Research
  • Executive Skills and Curriculum Delivery
  • Leadership for Clinicians
  • Thesis/Special Project I
  • Thesis/Special Project II

 

To finalize your program, you will choose a culminating project that might include field work, a thesis, or independent studies. In the final phase of the curriculum, you will be eligible to apply for certification by the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing (NCHEC).Learn more about this non-profit agency, NCHEC (PDF), in credentialing excellence in health education.

Please join us for an information session where you can tour the facilities, chat with faculty & students, and learn more about WesternU’s MSHS curriculum and admission requirements.