This article talks about Master of Arts (M.A.) degree program in Holistic Wellness and their education requirements, coursework, career options, job and wage outlook, and continuing education options.
Master of Arts Degree Program in Holistic Wellness Overview
Students enrolled in the holistic health program learn about the ideas and concepts of alternative healing. Individuals who seek advanced education in the area of holistic health and alternative general concepts and practices can benefit from enrolling in this program. Program coursework may cover the holistic wellness area, apart from other facets of holistic health methods.
Students are given an introduction to the philosophy of health and healing in the mind-body. They are enabled to gain a grasp of integrating conventional medicine with alternative medicine. Students gain knowledge about the philosophy and science behind holistic practices. After they complete a program, individuals can expect to gain expertise in using holistic methods as a complementary medical approach. Varying by the field of practice, various holistic wellness related certifications may be pursued by students.
Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a bachelor’s degree in any major, apart from meeting a minimum grade point average standard. In some schools, courses in science may have to be completed by students within the first year before they are allowed to begin core coursework.
Several alternative healing aspects are in the program coursework; these cover practices including energy healing and herbology. Completion of a research study is also part of a program. Enrolled students can study a topic of interest in-depth. Core coursework may cover topic areas such as:
•Alternative nutritional approaches
•Health and relaxation
•Spirituality and healing
•Alternative approaches to healthcare
Program graduates may be professionals, already with employment, seeking career enhancement. A holistic studies degree may enable individuals to complement previous degrees. They may pursue possible careers in holistic health such as:
•Private practice health coach/consultant
•Holistic health teacher in a community college
The career option may hinge on the major of the bachelor’s degree, and additional preparation may be necessary for some jobs.
Job and Wage Outlook
Health educators are expected to see a job growth of 16% over the 2016-2026 decade; these professionals brought in an average annual wage of $44,390 in 2016 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Continuing Education Options
Individuals who seek continuing education may pursue voluntary certifications in holistic health. Organizations offer certifications varying by career field. For instance, doctors, nurses, and nutrition specialists may avail specific certifications. They may also consider continuing education in fields such as holistic fitness. The following are some continuing education options that graduates may have:
Certification options aimed at nurses practicing holistic care methods are offered by the American Holistic Nurses’ Certification Corporation (AHNCC). These include the Holistic Baccalaureate Nurse, Board Certified (HNB-BC), the Advanced Holistic Nurse, Board Certified (AHN-BC), and the Holistic Nurse, Board Certified (HN-BC). Students with an associate degree in nursing or diploma would qualify for the HN-BC. A bachelor’s degree would qualify individuals for the HNB-BC and a master’s degree in nursing would qualify them for an AHN-BC. Qualification norms for all certifications include 2,000 hours work experience in the past five years, one year work experience as a holistic nurse, 48 hours of holistic nursing continuing education in the past two years, and a current nursing license.
Board certification for individuals in the field is available in the form of the Holistic Nutrition Credentialing Board, a part of the National Association of Nutrition Professionals (NANP). Board certification entails meeting the NANP’s educational requirements, membership of the NANP, passage of an exam and providing proof of 500 hours of experience in holistic nutrition.
A holistic fitness specialty continuing education course covering holistic health protocols and techniques is available through the American Council of Exercise.
Board certification for doctors is offered by the American Board of Integrative Holistic Medicine (ABIHM). A doctor can obtain board certification by passing the board exam, submitting a personal essay and providing proof of a board certification or active medical license.