Online and Distance Degrees > Degree Programs > MA in Health Studies

Master of Arts (MA) in
Health Studies


Program Overview

If you enjoy leading a healthy lifestyle and wish to bring that passion to your workplace, the online Master of Arts in Health Studies may be the perfect degree to help you reach your goals in the fast-growing health education and promotion field.

  • Program Format

  • Credit Hours

  • Tuition Per Hour


Help Create a Healthier World

Whether you currently work or want to work in a corporate office, fitness facility, hospital, school, nonprofit organization or another area, the online MA in Health Studies can equip you to lead others toward a healthy lifestyle. You can help individuals, groups and communities achieve their health goals.

In this 30-hour program designed for working adults, you will learn to effectively plan, implement and evaluate health education and promotion programs.

  • Application DeadlineApplications accepted year-round
  • Other Program SpecificsEligibility to sit for either the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) exam or the Master Certified Health Education Specialist (MCHES) exam


The MA in Health Studies consists of 30 credit hours. Classes are offered in a flexible online format, and there are no campus visits required. By taking two courses a semester, you can earn your degree from The University of Alabama in less than two years.

Students will only be allowed to register for 12 hours in the fall and spring semesters. Only under extreme circumstances, as determined by the UA Graduate School and the Department of Health Science, will students be allowed to register for 15 hours in a given semester. Under no circumstances will a student be permitted to register for more than 15 hours. Students can register for a maximum of 9 hours during the summer semester.

Students may transfer 6 credit hours into the program or take a minimum of 12 credit hours of electives, independent study or fieldwork courses from UA. Transfer credits can be no older than 6 years from the date the student graduates from UA.

Please note that courses are subject to change.

  • HES 509 Research Methods
  • HHE 515 Advances in Health Promotion
  • HHE 520 Health Behavior
  • HHE 530 Health Promotion Techniques
  • HHE 565 Organization and Implementation of Health Education and Health Promotion Programs
  • HHE 566 Evaluation in Health Education

  • HHE 521 Epidemiology
  • HHE 584 Worksite Health Promotion
  • HHE 586 Environmental Health
  • HHE 587 Health Disparities
  • HHE 588 Sexuality Education: Theory and Practice
  • HHE 589 Women and Health Promotion
  • HHE 590 CHES Study Course
  • HHE 596 Independent Study in Health Education

Electives should be selected in conjunction with an advisor to support the student’s personal and professional goals.

All students are required to demonstrate competence in the content of the six required courses in order to obtain their Master of Arts degree. Students must complete all required courses with a grade of B or better before they are eligible for their comprehensive exam. Students have two options to complete an exam. Students can complete a written comprehensive exam or they can register for, take, and pass the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) exam. There is no additional cost to take the written comprehensive exam however, students are responsible for paying to register for the CHES exam. Details about the current cost of the CHES exam can be located on this website: . Please note that students will not be able to register for the CHES exam or attempt the written comprehensive exam if they have an “N” or an “I” in any required course. Details about the examination requirement are available from the MA Program Coordinator in the Department of Health Studies.

Graduates of the online MA in Health Studies with a focus in Health Promotion who do not take the CHES exam as their comprehensive exam may still sit for either the Certified Health Education Specialist exam or the Master Certified Health Education Specialist exam after graduation. The CHES is a national exam to show employers that you have met the national standards to become a health educator.  The MCHES is offered to graduates who have a minimum of five years of previous work experience in health education.


All students must apply for admission to the Graduate School at The University of Alabama. This process requires students to submit:

  • Statement of purpose
  • Application fee (if not paid previously as a non-degree student)
  • Transcripts of all college coursework
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • At least one of the following GPAs (on a 4.0 scale)
    – An overall 3.0 GPA
    – An overall 3.0 GPA in your last 60 semester hours
    – A 3.0 GPA in your graduate program
  • If your GPA is lower than recommended, you may be considered for admission with additional requirements. Please check with your prospective program for more information.

Additional materials may be required. Applications are accepted year-round.


Student Spotlight

Inspiring stories of success from students and alumni.

Take a look at some of our UA Online stories.

See All Stories

Contact Us

Program Information

Trevor McGhee
Admissions Representative

Admissions Information

UA Online