Throughout 2020, the world has experienced a global pandemic not seen since 1918. The Coronavirus spread across the globe in record time and has, at last count, infected over 354 million people, with 5.58 million in the U.S. alone.
This virus has put Community Health Promotion and Education front and center in an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19. Communities are looking to these professionals for education, recommendations, and health options.
Even in normal times, Community Health Promotion and Education professionals play an important role in the safety and health of communities through healthcare programs, health screenings, disease prevention, and more.
Best Health Degrees has researched some accelerated doctoral programs in the field and provided general information including estimated tuition costs (not including fees and other charges).
Our Method: Ranking the 10 Fastest Online Community Health Promotion and Education PhD’s Degrees
To rank the 10 Fastest Online Community Health Promotion and Education PhDs Degrees, Best Degrees editors researched accredited, trusted programs of all kinds. From our initial pool, we ranked programs according to price, accreditation, reputation, and salary potential, using data from IPEDS and Niche, U.S. News and World Report, and other higher education rating publications.
1. Thomas Jefferson University
This hybrid PhD in Population Health Science degree from the Jefferson College of Public Health offers five specialization areas (Health Policy, Healthcare Quality & Safety, Health Behavior Science, Applied Health Economics & Outcomes Research or Population Health Intelligence).
You’ll need at least a master’s degree to apply to this program. Core courses include study in statistical methods, epidemiology and research and design. Additionally, you’ll study population health, bioethics, health insurance economics, teaching, as well as U.S. healthcare organization, and more. Specialized coursework is dependent on the concentration you choose. Of course, a comprehensive exam and dissertation are required for this PhD.
Beyond the master’s degree, admission requires you to submit GRE scores, letters of recommendation, resume/CV, and personal statement. Tuition cost is $1,190 per credit hour, not including fees and other student charges.
Fast Fact: U.S. News and World Report ranks this university #63 in Best Value Schools
2. Arizona State University
Here’s a Doctor of Behavioral Health online degree that will prepare you to assume a health education leadership role.
The program plan calls for 84 credit hours (14 classes) that will review population based health, healthcare systems, measurement of health program performances and improvements, legal and ethical considerations, as well as a 240 hour internship. Completing the program requires you to complete a quality improvement project.
Applicants must have at least a 3.0 GPA in the last 60 hours of their undergraduate or master’s degrees, letters of recommendation, and a current resume/CV. Tuition runs between $543–$1,343 per credit hour.
Fast Fact: ASU ranks #42/676 in the Top Public Universities in America by Niche
3. Trident University
You can earn an online PhD in Health Sciences from Trident University with either a Global Health or Health Policy and Administration concentration.
The 54 credit hour program requires you take courses in research and theory in health sciences. Depending on your specialization, you’ll take classes in Health Equity, Current Issues in Global Health Research, Epidemiology, Current Issues in Health Administration Research, etc. This doctorate will develop the necessary skills to become a health educator, scholar, or leader. The program calls for a comprehensive exam and dissertation.
You can apply for this program with either a conferred master’s degree or a bachelor’s degree (in a related field). A 3.0 GPA is required, GRE or GMAT scores, and other documents. Standard tuition is $990 per credit hour, with military tuition ranging from $800-$885, depending on status.
Fast Fact: Washington Monthly named Trident University one of its Best Affordable Elite Colleges in 2019
4. Indiana State University
The Doctor of Health Sciences (D.H.Sc) at Indiana State University is an online degree program which is interdisciplinary in design.
You’ll complete 48 credit hours in core studies in Health Care Systems, Epidemiology, Organizational Informatics, Health Behavior Theories, etc. Additionally, you’ll be required to complete courses in teaching, including Teaching in the Health Professions, Measurement and Evaluation in Education, Curriculum Fundamentals, as well as Instructional Design. Studies also include Research Methods, Proposal and Grand Writing, statistics, and more. You can expect to complete an internship along with a dissertation.
Tuition for online Indiana State University students is $554 per credit hour, plus additional miscellaneous fees and charges.
Fast Fact: Indiana State University was established in 1865 and was named one of U.S. News and World Report’s 2020 Most Innovative Schools
5. University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill
If you’re currently working in healthcare and want to become a public health influencer, you’ll want to look at this Executive Doctoral Program in Health Leadership (DrPH) from UNC-CH’s Gillings School of Global Public Health.
A total of 46 credit hours are needed for this hybrid program which covers research and analytical methods, as well as professional development. Courses focus on studies in health policy and management, including a seminar in teaching policies and management in healthcare. PhD students are also required to complete a health policy course of study in Public Health Policy, Migration and Health, Health Reform, or others. A dissertation culminates the degree.
The PhD tuition cost from 0-2.9 credit hours is estimated at $2,052 for NC residents and $4,173 for non-residents. Funding assistant is available for qualifying students. A master’s degree is required for admission.
Fast Fact: U.S. News and World Report ranks UNC-CH #2 in Public Health
6. University of North Dakota
This PhD in Indigenous Health is one of the more population specific PhDs on our list.
Sixty-credit hours are required for this evidence based program which will prepare you to become a leader and educator in indigenous health from a tribal to global platform. You can choose between two professional tracks in academia or working in indigenous communities.
Topics covered in this PhD include studies in research, health policy, ethics, leadership, and evaluation, etc. A publication ready dissertation or portfolio is also required.
Among other admission requirements, a master’s degree with a 3.0 GPA is needed. Online tuition cost is estimated at $461 per credit hour regardless of residency.
Fast Fact: This is the world’s first health program concentrating solely on indigenous people
7. SUNY Brockport
While not a PhD program, the MSEd in Education in Community Health Education from SUNY Brockport is a program that will specifically train you to serve as a community health educator.
The 42 credit hour curriculum covers a wide range of public health education core topics. You’ll study environmental health, communication, community organization, health behavior, epidemiology, philosophy and principles in public health education, etc. Additionally, you’ll participate in a community health education internship and study research methods in health education. On completion, you’ll conduct a capstone project.
Academic year tuition ranges between $11,540-$23,560 depending on state of residency.
Fast Fact: Ranks in the top 25 of U.S. News and World Report’s Top Public Schools
8. University of South Dakota
You’ll choose from four concentrations (teaching, scholarship, leadership, or advanced practice) with this online PhD in Health Sciences from USD.
As an example, let’s look at the curriculum for the teaching specialization. With this track, you’ll study Adult Learning Theories, Advanced Instructional Design, Instructional Strategies for Adult Learners, and Healthcare Professional as Academic and Clinical Educator, Practicum Experiences, and a Dissertation. If you’re unable to complete a dissertation, you can earn a M.S. in Health Sciences as a program option.
The minimum admission requirement for this degree is a bachelor’s with a 2.7 GPA. Tuition ranges from $337-$648 depending on state residency.
Fast Fact: USD is considered #148/676 in Top Public Universities in America by Niche
9. Radford University Carilion
This Doctor of Health Science at Radford University Carilion in Virginia is 100% online and will prepare you for a career in education or academia.
With this program, you’ll cover subjects in communication, healthcare economic policy, research methods, ethics, population health, epidemiology, and more. You’ll also cover educational theory, curriculum design, assessment and evaluation. A capstone project is required as well as a complete an oral presentation of the project and findings. This is a 42 credit hour degree program.
Virginia residents pay an estimated $371 per credit hour and out-of-state students are charged $727 per hour.
Fast Fact: Among accolades for Radford University Carilion is its Best Colleges for Your Money recognition by Money
10. Loma Linda University
The Loma Linda University School of Public Health has an online DrPH in Health Education program which emphasizes community health education.
Working with an advisor, this is an individually planned degree that’s ideal if you have a master’s in public health or related field and are currently working in the profession. You’ll learn to conduct public health research, develop educational material and curricula, apply theories and methods to educational programming, and evaluate the success of such programming.
The degree requires 62-64 credits and takes approximately 3 years for completion. Tuition is published as $975 per credit.
Fast Fact: Loma Linda University has offered Public Health education and training since 1948
1. What is Community Health Promotion and Education?
Information and education is key in maintaining the health and well being of any community. We have only to look at the COVID19 global pandemic to witness Health Promotion and Education professionals in action.
The nation, states, cities, and towns turned to public health experts to learn the latest information on the spread of the COVID virus and ways to mitigate the chance of infection (wearing masks, washing hands, social distancing, etc.).
Community Health promotion draws from a variety of disciplines to educate and promote healthy lifestyles. Health educators are behavioral social science experts who strive to change behaviors by promoting physical, psychological, medical, biological, and environmental sciences.
The role of public, community health promotion in America dates to the 18th century when laws were written to isolate and quarantine smallpox patients, in an attempt to stop the disease. In the 19th century, the promotion of sanitary living conditions was key in stemming diseases such as cholera, typhoid, and infection.
Today, we have access to a wide range of education and promotion designed to keep communities healthy. Community Health Educators play a vital role in organizing outreach programming, advocating for, and developing, health campaigns, consistently evaluating the success of public health programs, etc.
Health Educators encourage individuals to take control of, and improve, their health by developing programs offered through community health agencies, schools, churches, businesses, and more.
A Community Health Promotion and Health degree can lead to professional opportunities in academia, healthcare administration, community health promotion, wellness and fitness, disease prevention, and more. It’s also an excellent stepping stone for individuals wanting to pursue clinical careers.
2. What Does a Community Health Educator Do?
Community Health Educators (CHE) work in a variety of environments such as community health agencies, outpatient centers, hospitals, businesses and industry, and colleges and universities. The key word is educator. These health professionals teach behaviors that encourage and promote wellness and healthy living in communities or organizations.
Using collected data, CHEs assess community health needs, create health programs, develop educational materials, teach people management of health issues, and evaluate the effectiveness of the education. Beyond the educational component, CHE professionals can assist people in finding additional health information or services as needed.
Health Educators develop and manage outreach programs, serve as a liaison between the community and healthcare providers, promote the importance of health activities such as health screenings, vaccinations, and available health programs.
Effective health educators will have strong verbal and written communication skills, adept at problem solving, interpersonal communication abilities, analytical skills, etc.
3. How Much Can I Make with a Doctorate in Community Health Promotion and Education?
Salaries for Community Health Promotion and Education professionals will vary depending on where you live, your educational level, and where you work.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, health educators can expect a job growth of 11%, much faster than average, between 2018-2028. Salaries ranges for educators with a bachelor’s or master’s degree, can earn between $42,710-$64,680, as reported by the bureau.
PayScale.com, an Internet business survey company, suggests those holding a doctorate degree can earn between $60,000 to $100,000 annually, depending on employment. Those with doctorates can work as teachers/professors, program directors, or training directors.
Indeed.com displays employment opportunities with salaries topping out at $118,000 per year (in a regional medical center). Cities with the highest salaries include Atlanta, Houston, NYC, Pittsburgh, etc.
In determining salary, you should always include additional compensation in benefits. Adding benefits such as paid time off, sick leave, retirement benefits, daycare options, sign-on bonuses, etc., can significantly raise your overall compensation.