Health and Wellness Degree Online

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WHAT IS AN ONLINE HEALTH & WELLNESS DEGREE PROGRAM?

A degree program in this field studies ways to promote well being. This involves learning about the human body and how to prevent illness and manage stress. Most education programs cover both behavioral and physical health. These wellness courses deal with areas like diet, exercise and nutrition. In studying healthy lifestyle factors, you usually learn how to assess and motivate clients.

Apart from this, you may gain the skills to plan, put in place and assess health education. These things might empower you to advocate for and educate the people you serve. Grads may pursue a wide range of non clinical careers in the booming field of health care. Or, go on to study health sciences in a master’s or first professional degree program.

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TYPES OF ONLINE HEALTH & WELLNESS DEGREE PROGRAMS

Bachelor of Arts

Health & Wellness Bachelor’s Degree Completion Program

Master of Science

This program looks at the human body with regard to health and disease. Students learn about exercise science, nutrition, and ways to manage stress. They also take courses that look at health risks and chronic health issues. While learning these things other topics discuss ways to assess client lifestyle. Then, devise a wellness program for that person.This program aims to help students understand how to plan, put in place and assess health focused programs in diverse settings. To do this, they learn about aging, advocacy and disease prevention. Other courses instill an understanding of public health policies and practices.An MS may start out with a survey of all the factors that comprise mental wellness. It can then focus on methods that support clients with mental or emotional issues.
Course Examples:

  • Personal Fitness & Wellness
  • Health Psychology
  • Exercise and Physiology
Course Examples:

  • Healthcare Advocacy
  • Practices & Policies in Public Health
  • Behavioral Health
Course Examples:

  • Mental Health, Wellness and Health Care Integration
  • Ethics and Cultural Diversity in Mental Health and Wellness
  • Community Health

Course Work

Most courses teach students about ways to promote healthy living and eating on a one to one or group scale. What this means is knowing how to look at peoples’ lifestyle factors with a critical eye. Then, using evidence to support it, crafting a tailor made wellness program.

To do this, many bachelor’s programs offer a class in health psychology. In it, students may learn about the immune and other body systems. Also, how a person’s mind and body respond to medical treatment, stress and health.

Along the way, you may take a class in counseling. This may cover basic methods of speaking with clients in a therapeutic setting. Also, ways to coach or motivate people to change behavior patterns that model healthier choices. To cap off your studies, you may also need to complete a capstone. Don’t be surprised if you have to self reflect and assess your own lifestyle too. Other requirements include general education courses and electives. Each school offers unique course content though. So take a look at some examples below to get an idea of what a typical program might cover.

Some common courses include:

Stress Management: You will be introduced to the causes and effects of stress from a personal and academic lens. You'll also learn the tools and methods to identify, prevent and manage things that cause stress.

Human Body, Health and Disease: A course in human health and disease is designed to allow you to gain knowledge of basic human biology, health and disease as well as the science behind these areas. This knowledge will allow you to make better decisions on personal, ethical and political issues that deal with health.

Wellness for Special Populations: This is a topic that delves into health care services for special populations which include mental health, substance abuse and rehab. You will learn about the issues around the access, cost quality and financing factors that influence the present models of health services for special populations.

Complementary and Integrative Medicine: This course is designed to provide health care students with an evidence based program in complementary and integrative health (CIH). You will learn the theoretical basis for applying CIH practices and integrate evidence based CIH therapies such as functional nutrition.

Diet and Nutrition: Students will learn about properties, functions and important foods sources of nutrients. Also, you will be able to develop meal plans that take into account nutrient density, adequacy, balance and caloric control.

Exercise and Physiology: Exercise physiology courses look at the acute response and chronic adaptations of the body to stress in exercise. Students will gain knowledge in the performance, assessment, and understanding of basic physiological assessments such as muscular fitness.

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO EARN A HEALTH AND WELLNESS DEGREE?

A full time student might need to complete 120 credit bachelor of science degree in 4 years. That’s if you enter with a high school diploma. You’ll need less time if you have transfer credits from a 2 year degree in health and wellness. If you are able to transfer these credits, it may shave about 2 years off time to finish.

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Health and Wellness Bachelor Degree Program Examples

School# of Credits RequiredStart DatesMinimum Months to Complete
Ashford University120Multiple48
Rasmussen College91 to 181Multiple18
Purdue University Global180448

THE AVERAGE COST OF AN ONLINE HEALTH & WELLNESS DEGREE PROGRAM

The cost of earning a degree in this field varies. One factor that impacts tuition is where you live in relation to the college you want to go to. An average in state tuition is $7,014, while out of state tuition is $27,725.

Many online schools charge by the credit hour. Compare cost per credit for these schools that offer bachelor’s in health & wellness programs.

School# of Credits RequiredCost Per CreditTotal Tuition Cost
Ashford University120$485$58,200
Rasmussen College91$310$28,210
Purdue University Global180$371$66,780

TOP SCHOOLS FOR ONLINE HEALTH & WELLNESS DEGREE PROGRAMS

According to the data, there were 164 schools that offer health and wellness degrees or programs. From those schools there were 4,013 health and wellness degrees or programs awarded to students. Most of these programs were bachelor’s degrees.

School2017 Degrees awarded2019/20 Undergrad Tuition
Purdue University Global – Davenport Campus720N/A
Texas A & M University  College Station394N/A
University of Nevada-Reno273$23,086
University of Houston168$21,749
Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania129$14,615
Towson University127$24,334
University of Rhode Island114$31,686
American College of Healthcare Sciences111$11,280*
Bowling Green State University Main Campus102$19,305
South University, Online Programs95$13,594*
Texas Woman’s University77$18,055
Washtenaw Community College68$5,688
The University of Texas at San Antonio68$20,263

CHOOSING A HEALTH & WELLNESS DEGREE ONLINE ACCREDITED PROGRAM

Many schools with regional accreditation offer health and wellness degree programs. To get to this status, a school needs to undergo a review by an outside agency. The review assesses the school against specific standards.

There are 6 regional agencies who assess schools in their geographic area. If one of these agencies accredits a school, it makes it possible to apply for federal aid.

Also, there are transfer policies in place between some of these schools. This means a lot if you have credits from an associates degree that you want to try and apply to a bachelors. Or, let’s say you want to apply to grad school. You will have to furnish transcripts from one of these colleges with your application.

The status ‘accredited’ is not forever. After a period of time, the school needs to petition for renewal. To check whether a school is current, you can visit the Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs (DAPIP).

Within these colleges, some programs may also undergo a similar process. At the program level, accreditation speaks to the course content. Separate agencies set norms for what students should learn.

One accreditor of undergraduate programs in wellness and health promotion is the NWI. National Wellness Institute uses a wellness promotion model. This is to help steer course work so that grads leave with certain skills.

WHAT CAREERS CAN YOU GET WITH A HEALTH AND WELLNESS DEGREE?

The number of health grads in the United States work force has been growing at a rate of 4.06%, and now totals about 4.28 million. The average age of a person in the work force is 42.8 years and female employees are more likely to hold health degrees than men.

TOP SALARIES BY STATE FOR HEALTH AND WELLNESS DEGREE HOLDERS

The following information is for Exercise Physiologists. Salary and employment numbers will differ for other career paths.

StateEmploymentAnnual Mean Wage
District of Columbia1,790$112,540
California14,380$92,320
Washington3,040$85,870
Virginia3,270$85,660
Colorado2,420$84,690

HEALTH & WELLNESS CAREER PATHS AND POTENTIAL SALARIES

HEALTH EDUCATORS

A health educator may go by the title ‘community health worker’. This person manages programs that promote health. To do this, they first identify group needs. Then plan, put into place and assess programs that promote healthy life styles.

Median Salary: $46,080

Job Growth Through 2028: 11% (Much faster than average)

Typical Entry level Education: Bachelor’s degree

DIETITIANS AND NUTRITIONISTS

Dietitians and nutritionists are experts in the use of food and nutrition to promote health and manage disease. They advise people on what to eat in order to lead a healthy life style or achieve a specific health related goal.

Median Salary: $60,370

Job Growth Through 2028: 11% (Much faster than average)

Typical Entry level Education: Bachelor’s degree

EXERCISE PHYSIOLOGISTS

Exercise physiologists develop fitness programs that help patients recover from chronic diseases and improve cardiovascular function, body composition, and flexibility.

Median Salary: $49,270

Job Growth Through 2028: 10% (Faster than average)

Typical Entry level Education: Bachelor’s degree

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Sources for school statistics is the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics.

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