Health Solutions Core Advantage

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We are dedicated to providing our students industry-relevant preparation to give them an advantage when entering the evolving health workforce.

With this in mind, along with considerable research on career readiness and trends in health, we designed a thoughtful and purposeful set of core courses that contain the knowledge, skills, and attributes highly valued by health employers. The content and real-world application taught in the core courses elevate the level of preparedness of our graduates to be more productive and competitive from day one in the field, and sets the College of Health Solutions apart from educational institutions that merely provide basic knowledge to satisfy transcript and catalog requirements.

The intent is to produce strongly-desired and remarkably-effective health professionals who excel in teamwork, leadership, communication, and problem-solving skills, and who are characterized by health, happiness, well-being, emotional intelligence, resilience, productivity, and mindfulness.

Health Solutions Core Advantage Components

  • Core Curriculum - a purposeful set of required college-level courses that teach and integrate knowledge, skills, attributes and resources that are highly valued in the health workforce.
  • Core Competencies - a globally recognized evidence-based foundation of health-specific knowledge, skills and attributes on which the core curriculum was developed.
    • Career Readiness Skills - Broader-based competencies valued within the College of Health Solutions that further support students’ career preparation.

2017-2018 Course List

Course Name
*CHS 100Introduction to Health Solutions
HSC 210
EXW 450
Cultural Aspects of Health C

Social Determinants of Health & Health Behavior (L or SB) and C
BMI 201Introduction to Clinical Informatics
KIN 290
NTR 290
Introduction to Evidence-Based Practice L

Introduction to Evidence-Based Practice L
HSC 304Health Communication

General Studies’ Key:   L Literacy and Critical Inquiry    SB Social-Behavioral Sciences   C Cultural Diversity in the United States

* CHS 100 is a required college foundation course for all CHS students, with CHS 300 to be offered as an equivalent course for transfer students.

College of Health Solutions’ undergraduate students will demonstrate the following health-related competencies from an interdisciplinary perspective before graduating:

Health &
Personal, social, and/or cultural factors related to physical, emotional, and/or spiritual health and well-being that improve and sustain quality of life for individuals, families, communities, and/or populations.
Teamwork &
Leadership in Health
Teamwork and leadership through collaboration and accomplishment of shared goals
Effective and innovative interpersonal and interprofessional communication skills that promote positive health practices in individuals, families, and communities.
Health Informatics &
Problem Solving
Basic concepts of health informatics that use clinical, financial, administrative, and consumer-generated data to solve problems that improve health and health care delivery.

The following is a list of additional competencies that support career preparation, and are infused throughout the courses offered within the College of Health Solutions:

  • Cultural & Diversity Awareness
  • Ethics & Evidence-Based Practice
  • Research & Critical Thinking
  • Technological Exploration, Adoption, & Adaptability
  • Written & Oral Communication

National Association of Colleges and Employers
“Career readiness is the attainment and demonstration of requisite competencies that broadly prepare college graduates for a successful transition into the workplace.”

Implementation Timeline

The initial research and development of the core curriculum was conducted for two years by a committee representing degree programs across the college. Then, in the fall of 2016, a Core Task Force, consisting of faculty across the college, was formed to refine and define the core competencies that could be supported by additional courses.


What is a competency?

What is a competency?

“A competency is the capability to apply or use a set of related knowledge, skills, and abilities required to successfully perform "critical work functions" or tasks in a defined work setting. Competencies often serve as the basis for skill standards that specify the level of knowledge, skills, and abilities required for success in the workplace as well as potential measurement criteria for assessing competency attainment.” (University of Texas School of Public Health)

How was the Core Advantage developed?

How was the Core Advantage developed?

The College of Health Solutions developed the Core Advantage from research-based recommendations compiled by the following leading national organizations in health, higher education, and employment:

  1. American Interprofessional Health Collaborative (AIHC)
  2. Association of American Colleges and Universities (AACU)
  3. The Chronicle of Higher Education
  4. Interprofessional Education Collaborative (IPEC)
  5. National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE)
  6. World Health Organization (WHO)

What is the main reason for having a core curriculum?

What is the main reason for having a core curriculum?

Health employers are seeking cutting-edge problem solvers, critical thinkers, communicators, well-rounded, happy, productive, team-oriented workers, and we want our students to be highly marketable upon graduation.

How does the core curriculum give students an advantage?

How does the core curriculum give students an advantage?


  • Teaching students valuable and relevant knowledge, skills, and attributes that align with health industry trends.
  • Aligning with national and global recommendations to promote interprofessional education, and better preparing a “collaborative, practice-ready” health workforce to help improve population health outcomes.

    “Interprofessional education occurs when students from two or more professions learn about, from, and with each other to enable effective collaboration and improve health outcomes. Once students understand how to work interprofessionally, they are ready to enter the workplace as a member of the collaborative practice team. This is a key step in moving health systems from fragmentation to a position of strength.”

    Interprofessional Education Collaborative (IPEC)
    World Health Organization (WHO). (2010). Framework for action on interprofessional education & collaborative practice. Geneva: World Health Organization.

Do the core competencies align with national trends?

Do the core competencies align with national trends?

The core competencies were developed based on recommendations from national and international organizations that are involved in preparing future health professionals.

Here are three resources to learn more:

Information for Faculty

CHS faculty interested in learning more about the core competency criteria and the Step-by-Step Instructions for submission
should visit the Faculty Resource Webpage.