How Post-Secondary Health Education Courses Can Be Used to Enhance Job Readiness Skills

As the focus on wellness and preventative care becomes the norm in order to reduce healthcare costs, colleges and universities can also get involved by promoting health education courses that are already available on campus. Post-secondary institutions whose primary mission is to graduate students, who are workforce ready, should include a wellness component within the course of study. Many of the people investing in wellness education programs are employers seeking to reduce their own healthcare expenses for employees. Employers invest in wellness programs for their employees to boost morale and increase productivity. Workplace wellness programs not only help to increase productivity and ultimately affect a company’s revenue, but the programs also help to cut long-term healthcare costs for employers that provide healthcare benefits. One study indicated that for every $1.00 spent on wellness programs, healthcare costs are reduced by $3.37. In addition the cost of absenteeism is reduced by $2.73 for every $1.00 spent; with over 130 million individuals in the workforce, wellness programs can save employers a significant amount of money each year (Baicker et. al, 2010).

Many post-secondary institutions engage directly with business leaders and community organizations to create relevant programs based on the labor needs of the community. Health education courses can play an important role in helping to prepare students for the workforce because the classes can be used as a form of preventative care. Most health education courses are already offered on campus as part of the general curriculum requirements or as an elective option. Providing health education courses as part of a workforce readiness model can help employers save more money in addition to what they are already spending to create their own wellness programs. Offering a unique set of courses tailored to the needs of the employer that include a wellness component also provides post-secondary institutions with a unique selling point for job training programs.

Health education courses not only act as a form of preventative care, but the courses also help to promote critical thinking, health advocacy, communication skills, self-care, build self-esteem, promote self-awareness, goal setting, civic engagement, health literacy, self-efficacy, decision-making, and problem solving skills. The curriculum in health education courses provides students with diverse learning experiences on a variety of topics such as wellness as a lifestyle, stress management, mental health, sexual and reproductive health, relationship dynamics, communication skills, infection control, environmental health, and injury prevention. In addition, health education courses teach students about drug and alcohol abuse as well as prevention strategies. Currently drug and alcohol abuse costs employers $276 billion dollars a year in lost productivity (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2009). Health education courses can play a vital role in teaching students the necessary skills to function in the workplace and in everyday life.

Statistical Resources:

Baicker, K. et. al. (2010). Workplace wellness programs can generate savings. Health Aff.2010;29:304-311.

US Department of Health and Human Services. (2009). 14 short employer cost savings briefs. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Reimage Your Health Education Class

Traditional classroom instructor, Mr. Dean Sahbroo, has a great job. He gets to school every morning at 8:00 am, reboots his computer, turns on the projector, and unzips the day’s lesson plans from the mini drive he carries around on his key chain. The computer screen initiates and little icons start appearing, then after a few moments in the middle of the screen a tiny hoop shows a clockwise circulating pulse. Around and around it goes and after about a minute of this Mr. Sahbroo realizes the LED on his mini drive is not flashing. He tries unplugging it and plugging it back in again.

Nothing.

Dean concludes his computer system must be “hung up.” He grabs the mini drive out of his computer and walks over to the administration office to ask the cheerful school assistant, Ms. Dunelle Carple, if she could try loading it on her computer. She obliges. Sure enough the LED starts flashing and a folder image appears on her screen. She clicks on it and then launches a document called “Third Grade Lesson 1&2:”

MAJOR AREA: The Human Body
GRADE: Third Grade (Lesson 1&2)

TOPIC: Circulatory System
EMPHASIS: Anatomy & Physiology – Heart and blood vessels

MATERIALS:PPT. DVD. Worksheet.
CONTENT:

Power Point Lecture

  1. Description of Heart
  2. Hollow muscle
  3. Weight 11 oz.
  4. Size of

*brrympht*. The document closes unexpectedly and after a few moments in the middle of the screen a tiny hoop shows a clockwise circulating pulse.*pop*. A dialogue message box appears “Warning: Removable Drive Unreadable.” Dunelle picks up the phone and calls the help desk. She describes slowly step-by-step what happened on their computers and what she and Mr. Sahbroo have done. Suddenly the normally cheerful expression on Ms. Carple’s face turns ashen.

“Reimage?”

Reimage is a term used in association with computers. Essentially it means your operating system has slowed down or crashes too often because some software became damaged, corrupted or plagued with ‘bugs.’ During the re-imaging process everything on your computer system is removed and then reinstalled or better yet replaced with an upgraded version. Most people are deathly afraid of re-imaging and opt to simply reboot their system by turning it off and on again.

A quality health education class requires more than a simple rebooting process. The above hypothetical scenario of loading a prepackaged health lesson to be taught by someone not professionally prepared to teach health illustrates just one obvious pitfall of over-reliance on one form of technology (for a few more pitfalls see “Death by PowerPoint” from Don McMillan). Technology can certainly help with instruction, but up to this point it has been a great unrealized hope in educational reform.

Other repetitive routines including outdated lectures, recycled worksheets, and over copied quizzes need to be replaced with authentic or lifelike activities and assessments that engage the students. Students do learn what they live. Health topics relate most intimately with a student unlike other traditional class subjects. Leave it those other classes to describe the heart as a ‘hollow muscle.’ Students in health class can feel their own pulse and talk about what it means to “have a heart.”

Once the static lifeless instruction is removed, then the lessons can be resuscitated with the students themselves breathing life into the learning activities. How this sense of authenticity extends beyond words can be found in the lyrics “Unwritten” by Natasha Bedingfield, “No one else can feel it for you, Only you can let it in.” Through in class activities students record their own comprehensive health textbook with an inner voice.

Topics such as eating disorders, alcohol related problems, harmful ways of relating, and childhood obesity to name a few can be discussed in small groups then shared with the whole class. So a student is not alone reading a textbook but supported by peers in a skit creation, a game, a Socratic seminar, or a project. Sometimes the work created can also serve as the assessment. This style also lends itself well to treatment of emerging current wellness topics such as new allergies or diseases.

In review it should be noted that over reliance on power point slides should be avoided, health should be taught by those who were professionally trained to do so, and lessons must include authentic activities in which each student can relate to their own personal health and wellbeing. Unlike traditional lectures the life-like activities can be fun! Once you reimage health education is in this manner students will retain more of the information because the way in which it was learned made it more memorable and enjoyable enough to last a lifetime.

Natural Health Education – Popular Courses

Find Natural Health Education in the United States and Canada. Natural health education courses vary in field of specialty, and afford students with academic opportunities to achieve certificates, diplomas and/or degrees.

As an example, students enrolled in a natural health education program can earn a diploma in acupressure. In this particular field of study, students are trained to administer specific pressure applications, using the hands, fingers, knuckles and thumbs, on meridians of the body.

A natural health education course in aromatherapy teaches candidates how to combine and blend essential oils in the use of massage therapy. Common subject matter in this program includes training in anatomy and physiology, essential oils – and properties, and uses thereof; as well as aromatherapy massage techniques.

Other popular natural health education programs include instruction in color therapy, crystal healing, flower remedies, herbalism, ear candling, homeopathy, hypnotherapy, iridology, life coaching and reflexology.

For instance, if you enroll in a natural health education course in iridology, you have the opportunity to earn a certificate in this unique healing art. In an iridology program, students gain essential skills and knowledge in the study of the iris; and learn to determine specific markers and colorations of the eye that are used to discover potential health disorders and conditions. Natural health education classes in iridology are often combined with herbology and kinesiology studies.

Natural health education programs in massage therapy are also quite popular. Individuals who like the idea of a “hands-on” education find that massage programs are perfect training for those desiring careers as professional massage therapists. In this natural health education course, students are taught about anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, and first aid and CPR; with practical lessons in deep tissue massage, Swedish massage and sometimes, sports massage. In most cases, candidates who have completed all required massage therapy courses will either receive a certificate or diploma, and are often required to become licensed in the state in which they reside.

Overall, there are multiple natural health education programs in which one can enroll. Whether you opt to participate in a degree program to become a natural health doctor or a certificate program to become an herbal practitioner, it is always wise to examine various aspects of the profession, and potential outlook in the field.

If you (or someone you know) are interested in finding natural health education, let professional training within fast-growing industries like massage therapy, cosmetology, acupuncture, oriental medicine, Reiki, and others get you started! Explore career school programs near you.

Natural Health Education: Popular Courses
© Copyright 2007
The CollegeBound Network
All Rights Reserved

NOTICE: Article(s) may be republished free of charge to relevant websites, as long as Copyright and Author Resource Box are included; and ALL Hyperlinks REMAIN intact and active.