Health Professions Educator Graduate Academic Certificate Program
Innovative course series prepares the next generation of nursing educators
The Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing offers the Health Professions Educator Graduate Academic Certificate Program (HPE-GAC). The Graduate Academic Certificate Program as Health Professions Educator focuses on preparing students in graduate programs who have an interest in health professions education to serve as educators in health professions, particularly in nursing.
Who can apply
- Current students in the Doctor of Philosophy Graduate Degree Program or consent of the Health Professions Educator Graduate Certificate Program Chair.
- Current students in the Doctor of Nursing Practice — Family Nurse Practitioner Degree Program. Students in this program are required to complete an elective course series and the school provides information about the application process.
- Students enrolled in a UC Davis graduate program with an interest in health professions education may also apply. Admission is on a space-available basis.
Admissions into the Health Professions Educator Graduate Academic Certificate Program is competitive and not all applicants are guaranteed admissions. Students may be placed on a waitlist to fill any space-available spots.
Potential applicants should apply for the certificate program after they completed at least one quarter of graduate education at UC Davis.
Qualifications to apply
Criteria used to determine admission of students (applies to all applicants except D.N.P.-F.N.P. students):
- Current graduate student in the doctoral programs at the school
- Good academic standing (at least 3.0 GPA)
- Successful completion of at least one quarter of graduate education
- Or consent of the program chair
What will I gain from this experience?
Understanding learning before teaching
Read what Elizabeth Rice, director for the Health Professions Educator Graduate Certificate Program, says about the innovative approaches used to prepare the next generation of health educators. The foundation, she said, is understanding how people learn.
Read more »
Educators in the health professions, particularly nursing, are in high demand to teach didactic, as well as clinical, content. In California, approval by the California Board of Registered Nursing is required for faculty to teach in prelicensure nursing programs. Per Section 1425 (c) of the Code of Regulations, Board of Registered Nursing approval for nursing instructors requires:
- Current California licensure as a registered nurse
- Direct patient-care experience within the previous five years in the nursing area to which he or she is assigned
- Completion of at least one year experience teaching courses related to registered nursing or completion of a postbaccalaureate course which includes practice in teaching registered nursing.
A Graduate Academic Certificate (GAC) is a mechanism that can be utilized to provide potential faculty with the experience and education required by the California Board of Registered Nursing and better prepare future educators in other health professions.
Students who complete the HPE-GAC receive the following benefits:
- Notation on the official UC Davis transcript of completion of the Health Professions Educator Graduate Academic Certificate Program
- Eligibility to apply for Certification for Nurse Educators through the National League for Nursing (NLN). For more information, visit the NLN website here.
Note: students who do not complete the Health Professions Educator Graduate Academic Certificate Program are still eligible to apply for the Certification for Nurse Educators through the National League for Nursing (NLN) by completing the three courses for nine total didactic units without the practicum. See below for the course information.
Students in the D.N.P.-F.N.P. program are not required to complete the application form. Instead, the School of Nursing student services team contacts students directly with enrollment instructions.
All other students must complete an internal application and submit it via email to hs-SONStudentServices@ucdavis.edu. Download the application (PDF) » Students are strongly encouraged to apply prior to enrolling in any of the GAC courses, but are eligible for admission to the HPE-GAC program up to and including completion of the second course in the series. All applicants are notified via email within eight weeks of applying for the certificate program.
Applications must be submitted by Sept. 1 for consideration in the first round of application review. After Sept. 1, applicants are reviewed and admitted on a space-available basis.
The series of courses for the HPE-GAC begins each fall and is a total of three quarters in length. All courses are offered through the Nursing Science and Health-Care Leadership Graduate Degree Programs. HPE-GAC students are able to enroll in all the necessary courses.
Students electing to complete the HPE-GAC complete the three courses in addition to courses required for the graduate program in which they are enrolled.
The HPE-GAC requires a minimum of 12 units as described below. This includes 8 didactic units plus 4 lab/practicum units. Completion of the 4 lab/practicum units is required for students enrolled in the HPE-GAC program. Students taking the education courses as electives but who are not admitted to the HPE-GAC program are not allowed to complete the practicum units, due to limited availability.
Students who enroll in the HPE-GAC are required to complete the NRS 301, 302 and 303 course series in order, beginning in fall quarter and finishing in spring quarter, or at the discretion of the instructor.
The HPE-GAC courses include:
NRS 301: Learner-Centered Teaching
3-unit didactic course with a required 1-unit lab/practicum experience
Course description: This course focuses on learner-centered teaching. Students explore best practices in adult learning, performance-based curriculum models, instructional design, and assessing and evaluating student learning. Students receive experience in planning learner-centered activities that are engaging and effective in achieving desired student performance.
NRS 302: Teaching Methods – Use of Emerging Technologies to Improve Student Learning
3-unit didactic course with a required 1-unit lab/practicum teaching experience
Course Description: Students examine, design and develop instructional strategies that use innovative and emerging technologies to promote motivation, performance and learning in health professions education. Research findings associated with use of various emerging technologies are examined.
NRS 303: Professional Role Formation
2-unit didactic course with required 2-unit lab/practicum experience
Course description: This course explores the role of an educator in both academic and service settings. Topics include role expectations, legal and regulatory issues, professional ethics, educational scholarship, individual Differences, creating a safe and effective learning environment, and lifelong learning. Placements for students who elect to take the optional practicum are arranged in a wide variety of settings, including within academic programs and service settings.
Interested students should contact the school at HS-BettyIreneMooreSON@ucdavis.edu with any additional questions.