Nutrition and health science graduate students using the Welcome Home lab in the Health Professions building.

Helping people become healthier individuals—that’s what you can expect from a career as a community health educator. Ball State’s major in health education and promotion is excellent preparation for entry into this field.

As a student, you’ll learn how to teach people about behaviors that promote wellness and encourage them to make healthy decisions. You’ll also learn to promote the application of scientific health principles to human life, primarily through health education in community health agencies, health-care facilities, and worksites.

Graduates of the Health Education and Promotion Program are eligible to sit for the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) exam. The CHES designation signifies an individual who has met required academic preparation qualification, has successfully passed a competency-based examination, and satisfies the continuing education requirement to maintain the national credential.

Society for Public Health Education

The Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE) has produced this video showcasing the valuable contributions of health education specialists to enhancing the quality of life for all.

What You Will Learn

The curriculum for our bachelor’s degree in health education and promotion is comprised of core requirements and electives in health, anatomy, and health education. Students enrolled in this program will also gain hands-on, real-world experience through an internship, to be completed prior to graduation.

Our students take courses where they learn how to perform the seven competencies of health educators:

  • Assess needs, assets, and capacity for health education
  • Plan health education
  • Implement health education
  • Conduct evaluation and research related to health education
  • Administer and manage health education
  • Serve as a health education resource person
  • Communicate and advocate for health and health education

What It’s Like to Major in Health Education and Promotion at Ball State?

Health Education and Promotion has its own student organization, Eta Sigma Gamma, a health education honorary organization. Our students create health-related programming and experiences for Ball State students and the Muncie community.

As one of their final courses, students will take HSC 495, a professional preparation course where they will learn how to apply these concepts to their professional career. Students will receive assistance with internship and job searching, resume and interview preparation, and create a professional portfolio demonstrating their professional skills.

As one of our students, you will have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience helping solve real-world problems while earning course credits through immersive learning projects. Our department’s faculty members have previously coordinated projects tailored to our own field, but you will also have the chance to work collaboratively with students and faculty from other programs around campus.

Learn More

Undergraduate Research Opportunities
with Faculty Mentors

“Early in my undergraduate studies, I began work on an extracurricular preventive science research line of inquiry focusing on key health behaviors associated with preventing or reversing chronic disease development in emerging adults. I worked alongside my primary faculty research mentor for 2 years.

Our research findings have been presented at national conferences and published in peer-reviewed scientific journals. I plan to continue this line of research inquiry as I earn my Master of Public Health degree at the IU-Fairbanks School of Public Health.”
Maurita Greene, BS, CHES®

Maurita Greene presenting her research

Maurita Greene presenting her research at the American Association of Behavioral and Social Sciences National Conference.

Major Requirements

Students will be guided by the outline of bachelor’s degrees of the Ball State Undergraduate Catalog, the University Core Curriculum, and the Health Education and Promotion Program. Please pay close attention to prerequisites—if you register for a course but have not successfully completed its prerequisite, you will be dropped from the class.

The Bachelor of Science in Health Education and Promotion is an applicant for accreditation by the Council on Education for Public Health.


Major Courses: 72

  • Required Coursework: 54
  • Electives: 12
  • Internship: 6

To graduate in four years (eight semesters), students must average 16 credits per semester and complete the internship (HSC 479) during the last semester of their senior year.


A few of the classes you will take include:

  • HSC 160 Fundamentals of Human Health
  • HSC 180 Principles of Community Health
  • HSC 210 Health Behavior Theories
  • HSC 301 Program Planning in Health Promotion
  • HSC 344 Disease Management in Health Promotion
  • HSC 387 Quantitative Methods and Epidemiology
  • HSC 482 Environmental Health
  • HSC 494 Health Communication

For a complete list of all the courses you will take and their descriptions, please see our Course Catalog.

View Catalog

A Ball State student teaches other students about health.

Public Health Minor

Interested in this field but pursuing another major? Consider our public health minor. Learn more.

Common Minors

We recommend a minor for Health Education and Promotion majors.

Our students often select minors in:


An internship with an approved community health organization, public health agency, clinical, or worksite setting is required for our majors. This professional experience takes place under the supervision of the internship coordinator and the agency administrator for a period of time commensurate with academic credit. Past internship sites have included:

  • Fransiscan Hospital
  • BSU Working Well
  • IU Health
  • National Kidney Foundation
  • Center for Pediatric Obesity and Diabetes Research
  • YMCA
  • First Choice for Women
  • Little Red Door Cancer Agency

For more information visit the Health Education & Promotion Internship webpage.

What Can You Do with a Degree in Health Education and Promotion?

Health Education and Promotion is a growing field and is growing 26 percent faster than the average for all occupations. The average income for a health educator is $44,000.

The major in Health Education and Promotion prepares students to serve as health education specialists in a variety of settings that include, but are not limited to:

  • governmental health agencies
  • community health agencies
  • health care facilities (e.g., hospitals, clinics, and nursing homes)
  • health insurance agencies
  • business and industry

Paying for Your Education

Department Scholarships

On top of the dozens of funding options offered through Ball State’s Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships, our department awards scholarships to our own students. Find a scholarship.

Ready to Apply?

Admission to Ball State is selective, and we carefully evaluate all applications on an individual basis. Applying for admission is easy. Use our convenient, comprehensive, and secure online application.

Get Started

Want to Learn More?

The best way to get a true feel for Ball State is to spend some time here, so we encourage you and your family to schedule a campus visit. Take a tour, attend an information session, meet with a professor in our area, and ask plenty of questions. Or if you’d rather speak to someone directly by phone or email, please feel free to contact us.