Graduate Certificate in Health Professions Education

The Certificate in Health Professions Education (CHPE) is offered through a partnership between the College of Education and Human Development (CEHD) and the School of Medicine. The program is designed for those involved in education, learning, and performance improvement in healthcare settings. The program includes faculty, future faculty, clinical educators, residents, and graduate students in health sciences fields such as medicine, nursing, dentistry, public health, clinical, and allied health professions. The program includes four graduate-level credit courses (12 total credit hours), and the certificate is an academic credential offered through the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies.

All courses are part of the CEHD graduate curriculum and may be applied to other degree programs such as a Master's degree. Each course is based on corresponding coursework taught in the CEHD but is focused primarily for healthcare educators. For example, instructional techniques include working not only in the classroom, but also at the bedside, and in the clinic. Class projects are designed for the healthcare environment.

Quick Facts

  • The certificate, awarded by UofL's School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies, includes four graduate-level courses for a total of 12 credit hours.
  • All students must submit an on-line graduate application for admission to the program – whether or not they are currently enrolled at the University of Louisville. For questions, please contact the Education Advising and Student Services Office at 502-852-5597 or gedadm@louisville.edu.
  • All courses are part of the CEHD graduate curriculum, and may be applied to other degree programs such as the Master's in Human Resource Education concentration in Health Professions Education.
  • The courses are offered on UofL's Health Sciences Campus, and are taught in the evening.
  • Tuition remission applies to all full-time and most part-time UofL employees.

For additional information about the program, contact Interim Program Director, Laura Parson.

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Courses/Schedule

The current course sequence is as follows:

ELFH 665: Foundations of Health Professions Education
This course provides a solid foundation to the profession of health education through a focus on professional roles and responsibilities, ethics and cultural competence, leadership and collaboration, and the adult learner. Additionally, as an introduction to the profession, this course includes an overview of teaching and learning in health professions education, instructional strategies, assessment, evidence-based practice, and research.

Key topics: Professional Foundations in Health Professions Education, Student Development Theories, Diversity, Helping Skills, Classroom Management


ELFH 675: Teaching and Learning in Health Professions Education
This course introduces the principles and theories of teaching and learning within health professions education. Within a health context, this course will cover planning and preparing to teach, student motivation and engagement, and assessing the teaching-learning environment.

Key topics: Planning and Preparation (learning theories, learning objectives, curriculum design, syllabi creation, lesson plan, assessment of learning), Student Motivation, Student Engagement


ELFH 676: Instructional Strategies in Health Professions Education
This course is designed to facilitate understanding of instructional strategies and their effective application in the classroom and clinical settings. Through a hands-on approach to learning, participants will learn to apply effective strategies that stimulate critical thinking and creativity, and promote cooperative learning. Teaching methods to be covered include presentation and facilitation skills, teaching at the bedside, appropriate use of instructional technology, and assessment of teaching effectiveness.

Key topics: Presentation Skills, Facilitation Skills, Active Learning Techniques, Clinical Teaching, Teaching with Technology, Formative Assessment of Learning


ELFH 685: Evidence-based Practice in Health Professions Education
Through a clinical model, this course covers evidence-based decision-making as it applies to assessment of teaching effectiveness, action research, scholarly research, and program evaluation. Coursework will be tailored to the interests and current role of the learner and culminate in a scholarly project where learners will demonstrate competence in evidence-based decision-making and Health Professions Education competencies.

Key topics: Evidence-based Decision-making, Assessment of Teaching/Instructional Effectiveness, Scholarly Writing, Action Research, Evidence-based Research, Program Evaluation

Admission Requirements

New students can begin courses in the fall, spring, or summer terms. The HROD Admissions Committee has five review cycles each year:

Admission CycleDeadline for Submission of ALL MaterialsTerm for Admission
Fall Admissions CycleJune 15thFall
Spring Admissions CycleOctober 15thSpring
Summer Admissions CycleFebruary 15thSummer

Please note: If you cannot complete the application prior to the final admission cycle deadline, contact the HPE Program Director, Dr. Laura Parson, to determine whether space remains so that you can be considered for admission.

Admission is competitive. Meeting the GRE and GPA minimums does not guarantee acceptance into the program. The HROD Admissions Committee requires the following materials to make a decision about admission:

  • Complete the online application to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies.
  • Transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate work. Unconditional admission requires a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 for all coursework taken AND a minimum GPA of 2.75 for coursework at the undergraduate degree-granting institution.
  • For applicants without a terminal degree (e.g., M.D., D.D.S., Ph.D.), you must submit GRE scores.

    --GRE scores prior to August 1, 2011 must be a minimum of 800 (combined verbal and quantitative) for consideration for unconditional admission.
    --GRE scores under the current exam must be a minimum of 146 (verbal) and 140 (quantitative) for consideration for unconditional admission.
    Please note: when submitting GRE scores through ETS, have scores sent to the general University of Louisville code, 1838.
    Need help preparing for the GRE? Sign up for a GRE Information Session.
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score for international students from countries where English is not the native language. Students holding a baccalaureate or advanced degree from an accredited institution in the U.S. are exempt from this requirement.
  • Two letters of recommendation [PDF]. If you have studied at a college or university in the last five years, the admissions committee prefers to see at least one letter from a faculty member. Other references can include work supervisors. Personal references (e.g. family, friends) are not accepted.
  • Goal Statement Sheet [PDF]. The Admissions Committee evaluates applications based on how an applicant's goals, professional experiences, and commitment to education are an appropriate fit with this program.
  • Current Resume

If you have questions about applying to the program, please email gradadm@louisville.edu or call Education Advising and Student Services at 502-852-5597.

Frequently Asked Questions

I have some credit hours from another program/university. Can the credit be transferred?

Once you are admitted to the program, you may request to transfer up to 6 credit hours, if the HPE Program Committee approves the request. Courses can be transferred only if they cover the same content as a course in our program. After approval, transfer requests are submitted to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies..

Who can apply for the Certificate in Health Professions Education Program?

The Certificate in Health Professions Education Program is aimed primarily at healthcare professionals who are currently educators in a healthcare environment and would like to become better educators. The Certificate program is especially beneficial for physicians, dentists, nurses, researchers, dental hygienists, and others interested in teaching, education, and training careers.

What is the estimated cost of the program?

For information about tuition/fees, please visit the Bursar's Office website and go to their tuition/fees page.

Tuition remission is available to all full-time and most part-time University of Louisville employees. Books and/or other course materials must be purchased by participants.

When and where are the Certificate courses held?

Classes are held on the University of Louisville Health Sciences Campus. All courses are taught face-to-face and meet for two and one-half hours per week from 5:30 - 8:00 p.m., usually on Thursday evenings.

Are any courses in the Certificate in Health Professions Education Program offered solely on-line?

Courses in the Certificate in Health Professions Education program are taught face-to-face. However, the other seven courses in our Master’s Concentration in Health Professions are offered online or face-to-face.

How long does it take to complete Certificate in Health Professions Education Program?

The program consists of four graduate level courses, one course is taught each semester over a two-year cycle, a total of 12 hours of academic course credit.

Is this Certificate associated with a master's degree program?

Yes, this program is associated with a Master’s concentration in Health Professions Education. The four courses in this certificate can be applied to our master’s concentration. You can be concurrently enrolled in the master’s program and the graduate certificate programs

Is the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) required?

If you have a terminal degree, (e.g., M.D., D.D.S., Ph.D.) you do not need to take the GRE.

Does the Certificate in Health Professions Education program follow the University of Louisville calendar?

Yes, the courses in the Health Professions Education program follow the University of Louisville Belknap semester schedule.

How do I apply for admission?

Applications must meet the standards of general admission to the University's Graduate School. Please follow the admission information to apply to the graduate school.

Will the courses taken in the certificate program apply to a Master's or Doctoral program outside the College of Education and Human Development?

Yes, two of the Certificate program courses could be considered as electives, but are subject to the approval of your advisor if you want them to count toward a masters or doctoral program.