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Health Educators Career Overview

Promote, maintain, and improve individual and community health by assisting individuals and communities to adopt healthy behaviors. Collect and analyze data to identify community needs prior to planning, implementing, monitoring, and evaluating programs designed to encourage healthy lifestyles, policies and environments. May also serve as a resource to assist individuals, other professionals, or the community, and may administer fiscal resources for health education programs.

Salary for Health Educators

Select a State



 25th
Percentile
75th
Percentile
Mean
U.S. $33,170
($15.95)
$60,810
($29.23)
$48,590
($23.36)
Annual figures are on top. Hourly figures are below in parentheses.
N/A = Information not available


Majors for this Career


Career Outlook for Health Educators

Employment of health educators is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations, and job prospects are expected to be favorable.

Employment change. Employment of health educators is expected to grow by 18 percent, which is faster than the average for all occupations through 2018. Growth will result from the rising cost of healthcare.

The rising cost of healthcare has increased the need for health educators. As healthcare costs continue to rise, insurance companies, employers, and governments are attempting to find ways to curb costs. One of the more cost-effective ways is to employ health educators to teach people how to live healthy lives and avoid costly treatments for illnesses. There are a number of illnesses, such as lung cancer, HIV, heart disease and skin cancer, that may be avoided with lifestyle changes. Health educators are necessary to help the public better understand the effects of their behavior on their health. Other illnesses, such as breast and testicular cancer, are best treated with early detection, so it is important for people to understand how to detect possible problems on their own. The need to provide the public with this kind of information will result in State and local governments, hospitals, and businesses employing a growing number of health educators.

Demand for health educators is expected to increase in most industries, but their employment may decrease in secondary schools. Many schools, facing budget cuts, ask teachers trained in other fields, such as science or physical education, to teach the subject of health education.

Job prospects. Job prospects for health educators are expected to be favorable, but those who have acquired experience through internships or volunteer jobs will have better prospects. A graduate degree is preferred by employers in public health and for non-entry-level positions.


Employment Overview

Health educators held about 66,200 jobs in 2008. They work primarily in two industries, with 51 percent working in healthcare and social assistance and 23 percent working in government. In addition, a small percent of health educators work in grant-making services and social advocacy organizations.


Job Zone Description

Job Zone 4 - Preparation needed

Overall Experience
A minimum of two to four years of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an accountant needs four years of college and several years of accounting work to be considered qualified.

Education
Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.

Examples
Accountants, chefs and head cooks, computer programmers, historians, and police detectives.

These occupations often involve coordinating, supervising, managing, and/or training others.

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Related Occupations

1.

Graduate Teaching Assistants

2.

Instructional Coordinators

3.

Teacher Assistants

4.

Vocational Education Teachers, Postsecondary


Additional Resources for Health Educators Job Seekers

For further information about health educators, contact:

  • American Association for Health Education, 1900 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191-1598. Internet: http://www.aahperd.org/aahe/
  • Society for Public Health Education, 10 G Street, NE, Suite 605, Washington, DC 20002-4242. Internet: http://www.sophe.org

For information on voluntary credentialing and job opportunities, contact:

  • The National Commission for Health Education Credentialing, Inc. 1541 Alta Drive, Suite 303, Whitehall, PA 18052-5642. Internet: http://www.nchec.org

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