Graduate Certificate in Community Health and Development
Educational objectives and rationale for the certificate program
The Department of Applied Behavioral Science (ABS) has established a one-year Certificate Program in Community Health and Development. The certificate program offers advanced training and University-based certification to those involved in building healthy communities. The focus is on training in core aspects of community work—from community assessment and strategic planning to intervention, evaluation, and sustainability.
Educational objectives include:
- Promoting an understanding of the processes and methods of promoting community health and development (drawing on models and methods of related disciplines)
- Developing core competencies in this work (e.g., creating partnerships, community assessment, analyzing problems and goals, strategic planning, intervention, advocacy, evaluation, planning for sustainability)
- Enhancing experience and competence through supported practice in addressing issues in community health and development (e.g., substance abuse, prevention of chronic diseases, independent living, violence and injury prevention, youth development, neighborhood development)
The program draws from the knowledge and practice areas of behavioral science (e.g., behavioral psychology, anthropology, community psychology), public health, and community development. Practicum experiences with community-based organizations and partnerships provide opportunities to apply competencies for promoting community health and development issues in real-world contexts.
Requirements and course sequence associated with the certificate program
Students will enroll in three (3) three-hour graduate-level courses. The requirements include the following:
- ABSC 710 (3 hrs – typically Fall semester) Community Health and Development — Provides an introduction to concepts, methods, and related core competencies in this work (e.g., creating partnerships, community assessment, analyzing problems and goals, strategic planning, intervention, developing logic models, evaluation, advocacy, cultural competence, planning for sustainability). [Taught Fall semester only, typically Tuesdays 2:30 – 5:00 p.m.]
- ABSC 876 (3 hrs – typically Fall semester) Practicum in Community Development — Enhances experience and competence in core competencies through supported practice in implementing and evaluating community development projects (e.g., evaluating a youth development initiative). [Typically, Mondays 3:30–5:00 p.m. for a common meeting, with fieldwork (5-6 hours per week) by agreement with the practicum site.]
- ABSC 875 (3 hrs – typically Spring semester) Practicum in Community Health Promotion — Enhances experience and competence in core competencies through supported practice in implementing and evaluating community health promotion projects (e.g., developing a strategic plan for prevention of chronic diseases). [Typically, Mondays 3:30–5:00 p.m. for a common meeting, with fieldwork (5-6 hours per week) by agreement with the practicum site.]
Intended audiences - those who might benefit
Potential audiences or markets for the curriculum program include a) University students in related disciplines (e.g., applied behavioral science, preventive medicine and public health, architecture and urban design, social welfare, public administration, anthropology, education), b) practitioners in the fields of community and public health (e.g., from public health departments and community health partnerships), c) practitioners in child and youth health and development (e.g., from United Way agencies and regional prevention centers), d) practitioners in community development (e.g., from community-based organizations), and e) practitioners in global health and development (e.g., from non-governmental organizations).
Students who are drawn to the certificate course as a preliminary step could subsequently, if accepted into these programs, pursue a Master's Degree or Ph.D. in a related department of school at KU (e.g., MPH in Preventive Medicine and Public Health, Social Welfare, Education; joint Ph.D. degree in Applied Behavioral Science - MPH degree).
Faculty associated with or contributing to the certificate program include:
- Jomella Watson-Thompson, PhD, Assistant Professor of Applied Behavioral Science and Associate Director of The Center for Community Health and Development (a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre), firstname.lastname@example.org
- Vincent Francisco, PhD, Kansas Health Foundation Professor of Applied Behavioral Science and Co-Director of The Center for Community Health and Development (a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre), email@example.com
Student Eligibility and Administration of the Program
- Eligibility criteria for admission to the Certificate Program include a B.A. degree from an accredited institution.
- Students admitted for the certificate program may be enrolled either as a regular graduate student or admitted to the Graduate School as a non-degree seeking student.
- The total credit hours earned from a certificate and transferred into a graduate degree program cannot exceed six hours, eight hours if the student holds a baccalaureate degree from KU.
- As with other graduate programs, student records will be handled by the Department's COGA Advisor.
- Awarding of certificates will be handled consistent with guidelines and timing of degree awards of the Graduate School. Students that have completed the coursework for the certificate will apply for graduation through Enroll and Pay.