Health and Wellness Coaching & Health Promotion

Health and wellness coaches and health promotion professionals both promote health and wellness by concentrating on long-term behavior change. Although the underpinning scientific theories and principles of human behavior change are shared by both fields, each works with different groups of people, in different settings, and by using different approaches.

Health and Wellness Coaching Health Promotion
Focus Individual health and wellness behavior change Population health and the ‘big picture’ in healthcare
Clients Individuals and small groups of individuals reached via private practice, in integrative health clinics, fitness/wellness centers, and organizations Small to large groups of individuals reached via community, school, and workplace programs
Approach Facilitate introspection, goal setting, behavioral change, accountability, and goal achievement for individuals and small groups Plan and deliver community and workplace health education programs, and/or identify community health barriers and advocate for community health initiatives, and social and policy change
MUIH Programs M.A. Health and Wellness Coaching (30 cr)

PBC Health and Wellness Coaching (15 cr)

M.S. Health Promotion (35 cr)

PBC Workplace Wellness (13 cr)

Delivery Format M.A. and PBC can be completed in the online, on-campus, or hybrid formats. Format availability varies by program start date. M.S. and PBC can be completed in the online format.
External Professional Credentialing International Coach Federation (ICF)

National Board for Health & Wellness Coaching (NBHWC)

National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES)
General Description Health and wellness coaching is a human behavioral service informed by biological, environmental, psychological, physical, social, and health-related sciences. The purpose of health and wellness coaching is to partner with clients (one-on-one or in small groups) who seek self-directed, lasting behaviors change, aligned with their values. These changes promote the clients’ health and wellness, thereby enhancing their well-being. Health and wellness coaches display unconditional positive regard for their clients and believe in their capacity for change, honoring that the clients are experts in their own lives. MUIH’s Master of Arts in Health and Wellness Coaching prepares students to be uniquely prepared to fill the growing demand for coaches with advanced knowledge and skills to help people take charge of their own health and create sustainable change, thereby enhancing their well-being. Health promotion is a behavioral social science informed by biological, environmental, psychological, physical and medical sciences. Health promotion professionalspromote health and prevent disease, disability and premature death through behavior change at the public health and population level, through activities aimed at groups, organizations, communities, systems and policies. Health promotion professionals achieve these goals by planning and developing programs for groups and advocating for policy change. These activities enhance health literacy, attitudes, skills and behaviors. With its emphasis on population health, health promotion considers and addresses both health improvements and the elimination of disparities. MUIH’s Master of Science in Health Promotion prepares students to play a critical role in this movement and enables them to contribute to the national transformation from disease-focused healthcare to a wellness-based model predicated on promoting healthy lifestyles, disease prevention and health education.