Behavioral Health and Wellness is an interdisciplinary program addressing health issues, and how they are communicated, at the individual, institutional and societal levels. Graduates will have a broad understanding of how lifestyle choices impact health, and how health professionals design programs to promote healthy lifestyle choices.
The nature of health care is changing. Lifestyle change is now widely considered an integral and cost effective method for both the prevention and management of chronic illness (e.g., obesity, diabetes, coronary heart disease, and HIV/AIDS) and disability. Unhealthy behavior is costly, not only in terms of direct health care, but also in terms of lost time and suboptimal productivity in the workplace. Behavioral health and wellness professionals work with individuals, organizations, and communities to reduce the incidence of illness before it occurs, and to aid people is adapting to life with chronic illness.
Optional specialty track are available in either health psychology or nutrition.
Employment opportunities include jobs in employee wellness programs, patient education, behavioral health coaching, or assisting psychologists and other health professionals involved with direct patient care, policy analysis, or advocacy.
The program will also prepare graduates to be competitive for a wide range of graduate training programs at the masters and doctoral levels, including: health psychology/behavioral medicine, counseling and rehabilitation psychology, public health administration, social work, and nutrition.
The interdisciplinary curriculum integrates psychology, sociology, political science and nutritional science provides diverse perspectives on health promotion at the individual, institutional and societal levels.
You will develop an understanding of:
- Principles for designing and implementing behavior change programs, including programs to reduce tobacco and substance abuse, promote physical activity and healthy diet, and increase utilization of health care services.
- Theories of behavior change, counseling techniques, and the use of technology to facilitate behavior change.
- The value of cultural and community-specific tailoring of health interventions.
- The fundamentals of public health policy and advocacy.
Gain Professional Experience
You will complete a capstone project designed to integrate and apply the concepts and skills learned throughout the curriculum. The capstone will be an individually tailored project, which will typically involve a field placement and may include a research component.