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About NCHEC - Competencies Update Project
Competencies Update Project (CUP) MENU
Implications of the National Health Education
CUP Findings on Individual Certification

The national health educator Competencies Update Project (CUP) has resulted in the development of a three-tiered hierarchical model reflecting the generic role of the health educator.

  • The CUP model is hierarchical, rather than linear, meaning that there are three distinct levels of practice, each one building on the other in terms of the Sub-competencies incorporated into one's roles and responsibilities.
  • There are Seven Areas of Responsibility and 35 Competencies defining the role of the health educator in all practice settings studied. The Areas of Responsibility derived from the research are:

    I. Assess Individual and Community Needs for Health Education
    II. Plan Health Education Strategies, Interventions, and Programs
    III. Implement Health Education Strategies, Interventions, and Programs
    IV. Conduct Evaluation and Research Related to Health Education
    V. Administer Health Education Strategies, Interventions and Programs
    VI. Serve as a Health Education Resource Person
    VII. Communicate and Advocate for Health and Health Education

  • There are 163 Sub-competencies performed by all health educators, many of which were included in the original model and the graduate standards' model.
  • Some of the Sub-competencies are performed more frequently and are considered of greater importance based on years of experience and degree held.
  • Three levels of practice emerged from the research:
    • Entry: Competencies/Sub-competencies performed by health educators with a bachelor's or master's degree and less than five years of experience
    • Advanced 1: Competencies/Sub-competencies performed by health educators with a bachelor's or master's degree and five years or more of experience
    • Advanced 2: Competencies/Sub-competencies performed by health educators with a doctoral degree and five or more years of experience

The CUP copyright parties, comprised of the American Association for Health Education (AAHE), the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc. (NCHEC) and the Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE), jointly own the research results, and are responsible for the national distribution of materials emanating from the research. The Technical Report that resulted from the research was presented to the copyright holders in September 2004. Additionally, a user's manual and data-set with over 1.6 million data points have been prepared to provide opportunities for secondary data analyses and preparation for future research.

The significance of the CUP research relates to three essential areas of professional focus:

Professional Preparation:

  • Develop expanded frameworks for curriculum development at the entry and advanced levels of practice for health educators
  • Serve as a foundation for a clearer delineation of a career ladder for students
  • Generate refined statements of student performance expectations at each level of practice for health educators

Credentialing:

  • Explore the potential for additional certification processes for different levels of practice
  • Expand the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) exam item bank based on the new Competencies
  • Enhance the validity of various accreditation processes

Professional Development:

  • Identify new Competencies needed by health educators in the current/future job market
  • Suggest additional Competencies health educators should acquire through continuing education and professional development
  • Differentiate entry and advanced levels of practice within health education
For Additional Information, Contact:
_Gary D. Gilmore, MPH, PhD, CHES
_Chair Phone: (608) 785-8163 e-mail: gilmore.gary@uwlax.edu
_Larry K. Olsen, DrPH, CHES e-mail: LKOUMP53@msn.com
_Alyson Taub, EdD, CHES e-mail: alyson.taub@nyu.edu

 

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© 2002 The National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc.
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