Medical and Healthcare Programs

Health Coaching

Program Description

The Certificate in Health Coaching teaches individuals how to guide clients toward achieving positive health choices through behavior change. This program will help individuals cultivate effective and integrative coaching skills while learning to foster a supportive environment for transformation. The Certificate in Health Coaching combines a strong coaching emphasis along with competencies in mindfulness, motivational interviewing, nutrition, and chronic health conditions.

This program also incorporates a unique holistic focus through the Georgetown University and Jesuit value of cura personalis (care for the whole person). We seek to prepare health coaches trained at addressing the mind, body, and spirit with the knowledge, skills, and values imperative to achieving holistic health and wellness. Students engage in mindfulness activities, individual and group coaching, investigation into health and wellness topics, self-reflection, community health events, and a supervised practicum to increase awareness and competency as a coach.

The final key component of the curriculum is the development of a Health Coaching Approach. This is an individualized integrative coaching style that students cultivate and later implement as a professional health coach. The combination of in-class inquiry and reflection as well as the multiple opportunities to practice coaching techniques provide a platform for students to formulate a Health Coaching Approach.

Upon completion of this certificate, individuals will leave with a breadth of knowledge and skills spanning a variety of subject matter areas, from nutrition and chronic illnesses to motivational interviewing to establishing a health coaching business. Individuals who desire the opportunity to create a supportive and interactive coach-client partnership toward positive and healthy behavior change are encouraged to apply.

Program Objectives

Upon completion of the Certificate in Health Coaching, participants will be able to:

  • Demonstrate skills in mindfulness, motivational interviewing, and behavior change 
  • Apply key components of nutrition and chronic health conditions to coaching
  • Conduct one-on-one and group coaching sessions toward positive and healthy behavior change
  • Develop an individualized Health Coaching Approach 
  • Establish a private health coaching practice

Course Sequence

Designed For

  • Health and wellness professionals seeking a career transition or advancement
  • Health allied professionals interested in learning about the health coaching role and/or expanding their own skill set and role within health, wellness, or preventive care
  • Individuals seeking to join the health and wellness fields as a health coach

Program Format

The Certificate in Health Coaching is a cohort-based program combining traditional classroom learning with interactive experiential methodology. Students complete a total of 128 program hours (88 classroom hours and 40 practicum hours) over a 6-month period. The program offers a personal and transformative learning environment for students to gain a deep understanding of the material, as well as understanding the path of coaching a client towards positive behavior change.

Each course will feature preparation readings and exercises designed to discuss and apply the course content in class. Practical application includes engagement in individual and group coaching sessions, community health events, and a 40-hour practicum supervised by the program coaching advisors. Although provided guidance by program faculty, it is the student's responsibility to secure their practicum volunteer clients. Students begin the practicum following the second course with all 40 hours due by March 1 for the Fall term and August 1 for the Spring term.

Due to the experiential nature of the program, attendance is required for every class meeting and any online sessions, as well as successful completion of all assignments. Courses must also be taken in the outlined sequence over one term. To enroll, students must complete an application and be accepted. Courses are not available for independent enrollment.

Program Schedule

Each course meets on a Wednesday/Thursday to Friday from 8:30 am-5:30 pm. 

Course Name Day Fl 2014 Sp 2015  Time
Health Coaching Fundamentals Thursday
Sept 11, 12 Feb 12, 13 8:30 AM-
5:30 PM
Psychology of Behavior Change Thursday
Sept 25, 26 Feb 26, 27 8:30 AM-
5:30 PM
Health Coaching Skills I Thursday
Oct 16, 17 Mar 19, 20 8:30 AM-
5:30 PM
Health Coaching Skills II
Wednesday Thursday
Nov 12, 13, 14 Apr 8, 9, 10 8:30 AM-
5:30 PM
The Business of Health Coaching Thursday
Dec 11, 12 May 7, 8  8:30 AM-
5:30 PM


Program Requirements

Successful completion of all six courses, for a total of 128 hours (includes the 40-hour practicum) is required to receive the Certificate in Health Coaching. All six courses must be completed in sequence over one term.  

Program Materials

Reading assignments will be outlined within the course syllabi on Blackboard for registered students. All books are available through major booksellers and online retailers. 

Required Reading

Wellness Coaching for Lasting Lifestyle Change - Arloski, 2nd edition

Coaching Psychology Manual (Wellcoaches) - Moore & Tschannen-Moran  2010

Co-Active Coaching: New skills for Coaching People Toward Success in Work and Life - Whitworth, Kimsey-House, & Sandahl, 2nd edition 

Recommended Reading

The Mindful Coach:  Seven Roles for Facilitating Leader Development - Silsbee, New & Revised Edition, 2010

Motivational Interviewing: Helping People Change - Miller & Rollnick, 3rd edition

Changing for Good: A Revolutionary Six-Stage Program for Overcoming Bad Habits and Moving Your Life Positively Forward – Prochaska, Norcross, & DiCleme

Peace is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life - Hanh, Kotler, & H.H. Dalai Lama

The Power of TED* (*The Empowerment Dynamic) - Emerald


Tuition for this program is $6,995.00. Full payment is due at the time of enrollment and is subject to our refund policy (refer to Resources and Policies for details). An interest free payment plan is available, which divides the full tuition cost into three installments between registration and program completion. Third party payment is also available if an employer has arranged to cover a percentage or all of the tuition costs.

These prices do not include associated course costs, such as textbooks and supplies.


The faculty who teach in the Certificate in Health Coaching are leaders and experts in the healthcare and wellness profession with a passion for teaching and making contributions to the field. 

Contact Us

For more information or to speak to program staff, please fill out a Request More Information form or call 202.687-2246.

Minimum Required:  6.0  Courses
    XMED-520   Health Coaching Fundamentals
    XMED-521   Psychology of Behavior Change
    XMED-522   Health Coaching Skills I
    XMED-523   Health Coaching Skills II
    XMED-524   The Business of Health Coaching
    XMED-525   Health Coaching Practicum