Certification indicates your professionalism and dedication to your profession as well as a basic level of competence. One of the certifications you will be eligible for when you finish your degree (90 days before you graduate is when you become eligible), is the Certified Health Education Specialist offered by  CHES certification can also give you a "leg up" on your employment competition. 

Certified Health Education Specialists are competent in the 7 areas of responsibility which include:

  1. Assess the needs, resources, and capacity for health education/promotion
  2. Plan health education/promotion
  3. Implement health education/promotion
  4. Conduct evaluation and research related to health education/promotion
  5. Administer and manage health education/promotion
  6. Serve as a health education/promotion resource person
  7. Communicate, promote, and advocate for health, health education/promotion, and the profession

To take the CHES exam you must:

1. Have 25 college credits in health education related content.  You do NOT have to take ALL of the following courses, but these courses meet the CHES standards and will help you prepare for the exam:

a.       HS 240 - Introduction to Community Health

b.      HS 310 - Environmental Health

c.       HS 320 - Communicable and Non-Communicable Diseases

d.      HS 351 - Gerontology

e.       HS 370 - Epidemiology

f.       HS 390 - Program Planning/Implementation

g.      HS 391 - Research Methods and Program Evaluation

h.      HS 401 - Community Health Methods

i.        HS 420 - Health Behavior Theories and Models

j.        HS 430 - School Health Programs

k.      HS 460 - Drugs of Use and Abuse

l.        HS 472 - Health Communications

m.    HS 480 - International Health

2.      Apply to take the exam at

3.      Pay the exam fee.  As a student, you get a discount on the exam.  The exam is a little more than $200.00, but compared to the cost of your overall education this is a small fee.

4.      Prepare for the exam.  NCHEC has study materials you can purchase.  You can also study from some of your text books, namely the HS 390 text.