FAQs

Below are some frequently asked questions about the CHPE Graduate Programs admissions process. If you have specific questions not covered below, we invite you to contact us at CHPE@usuhs.edu. 

 

The Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS) is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE). Currently, there are no specialized accreditation standards for HPE programs. 

 

 

No. The research programs of the faculty in the HPE program are diverse and multidisciplinary. For example, we have faculty who research pre-medical education, undergraduate education in diverse health professions (e.g., medicine, nursing, allied health), postgraduate education (e.g., GME), continuing medical education (CME), as well research in patient safety and health care systems analysis.

We also have faculty who conduct research in,

  • instructional design,
  • curriculum design,
  • simulation-based learning, and
  • online learning

 

We encourage you to review our faculty pages to learn more about what types of research we conduct.

 

 

The specific requirements for the PhD in HPE depend on the incoming experience and prior training of each prospective student. In most cases, however, students must earn the MHPE degree or a MEd-HPE, prior to enrolling in the PhD program.

 

 

A Masters in Health Professions Education (MHPE) is a multidisciplinary degree that prepares health professions with a foundation in educational practice, teaching, assessment, and leadership in health professions education. At USUHS, students can complete a generalist track in HPE, or focus their efforts in,

  • Teaching, Learning, and Assessment
  • Leadership
  • Scholarship and Research

In contrast, a Master’s in Public Health (MPH) is also a multidisciplinary degree, but this program focuses on preparing students for public health practice, in areas such as epidemiology, statistics, or infectious diseases, as opposed to research or teaching.

 

 

The graduate programs in HPE at USUHS offer three programs to meet the unique needs of our students. They include, a foundations certificate in HPE, a master's degree in HPE, and a PhD in HPE. 

  • The I-FHPE and FHPE certificates in HPE are comprised of 6.75 and 15 credits, respectively. 
  • The MHPE program is comprised of 37.5 credits, of which 7.5 credits are dedicated to completion of a master's thesis project.
  • The PhD in HPE is comprised of 108 credits, of which 18.75 credits are dedicated to completion of a dissertation.

*Please note that USUHS graduate courses are based on semester hours. 

 

 

All three programs are designed with the working professional in mind and are mostly completed on a part-time basis. Furthermore, most courses are offered in a distance learning format with mostly asynchronous sessions accompanied by a few scheduled synchronous sessions.

 

 

Full time applicants will need to apply through the joint GME selection board. Once selected by the joint GME selection board, applicants then need to apply to the HPE program through USU admissions. If the applicant is currently a board certified health professional (e.g., physician, nurse, dentist), GRE scores are not required and a waiver should be requested. By contrast, part time students can apply directly to the HPE programs by applying to the HPE program through USU admissions. 

 

 

A Master’s or Doctoral degree in Health Professions Education (HPE) is a multidisciplinary degree that prepares health professionals with a foundation in educational practice, teaching, assessment, and leadership in health professions education. Our program prepares our students to:

 

  • Address the growing need for innovative educational reform,
  • Serve as academic leaders (e.g., deans, program directors, department heads), and
  • Contribute to the continuous advancement of health professions education and research.

 

New HPE learners should apply by Dec. 1 to begin courses in the Summer Term of the following year (mid-May).

 

 

Our Graduate Programs in Health Professions Education (HPE) are designed to train

  • physicians
  • nurses
  • dentists
  • pharmacists
  • physical therapists
  • optometrists
  • program directors
  • department heads
  • institutional leaders
  • and those who are committed to working with health professionals as a career (e.g., public health, executive administrators).

 

To be eligible to enroll in the HPE programs, you must:

  • Have previously earned a bachelor degree; and
  • Be Active Duty Military Personnel or a Civilian Federal Employee (*Exceptions to this rule can occasionally be established through an official MOU between USU and an organization that wishes to enroll students in our program.)

 

In both the military health system and the civilian sector there is a growing demand for educators who are formally trained in HPE. Some of the most common reasons for this growing demand include:

  • Health professionals who want to make education their professional focus.
  • Institutions who desire high quality instruction and thus prefer or require teaching faculty to hold a degree beyond their professional degree.
  • Accreditation bodies that have increasingly stringent requirements for demonstration of faculty expertise and excellence in curriculum design, instruction, assessment, and program evaluation. 

 

  • Artino, A. R., Cervero R.M, DeZee K.J., Holmboe E, Durning S.J. Graduate programs in health professions education: Preparing academic leaders for future challenges. Journal of graduate medical education. 2018 Apr;10(2):119-22.
  • Cervero R.M., Artino, A. R., Daley B.J., Durning S.J. Health professions education graduate programs are a pathway to strengthening continuing professional development. Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions. 2017 Apr 1;37(2):147-51.
  • Greiner, A. C., & Knebel, E. (Eds.). (2003). Health professions education: A bridge to quality. National Academies Press.
  • Tekian, A., & Artino, A. R. (2013). AM Last Page: Master’s degree in health professions education programs. Academic Medicine, 88, 1399.
  • Tekian, A., & Harris, I. (2012). Preparing health professions education leaders worldwide: A description of master's-level programs. Medical teacher, 34(1), 52-58.

 

Tuition and fees are waived for students; however, in some cases, students may be required to purchase a textbook for a course and/or to cover the author processing charges for their peer-reviewed publication. Master and PhD students are expected to cover the costs for the annual week-long In-Residence meeting, which occurs in late July. Civilian students do not incur service obligation to the United States government after the completion of their graduate studies. Part-time active duty learners do not incur a service obligation; full-time active duty learners do incur a service obligation and are encouraged to speak with their service leadership regarding this service requirement. 

 

 

The MHPE curriculum provides a broad scholarly and practical experience in the theory, research, and practice of health professions education by providing learners with the opportunity to participate in a series of formal courses, conduct original research, and obtain practical experiences in leadership, research, and teaching. The MHPE emphasizes research competencies during the second and third years, resulting in a peer-reviewed publication.

The MEd-HPE degree program is structured around educational innovation and the scholarship of teaching. After taking foundational courses in the HPE program, MEd-HPE students are expected to develop and present a culminating project in one of the following domains: teaching, curriculum development, mentoring and advising, assessment, and educational leadership and administration. 

 

 

The MHPE curriculum provides a broad scholarly and practical experience in the theory, research, and practice of health professions education by providing learners with the opportunity to participate in a series of formal courses, conduct original research, and obtain practical experiences in leadership, research, and teaching. The MHPE emphasizes research competencies during the second and third years, resulting in a peer-reviewed publication.

The MEd-HPE degree program is structured around educational innovation and the scholarship of teaching. After taking foundational courses in the HPE program, MEd-HPE students are expected to develop and present a culminating project in one of the following domains: teaching, curriculum development, mentoring and advising, assessment, and educational leadership and administration.

 

 

For applicants interested in the PhD in HPE, learners should either apply to the MHPE first (usual route) or complete and submit the dissertation proposal form included in this handbook (see appendix, atypical route) to be considered for the PhD in HPE. The typical learner applies for the MHPE and then reapplies for the PhD in HPE after a paper from their thesis has been accepted into a peer reviewed journal. 

 

 

All HPE degrees are designed for individuals planning careers in HPE (medicine, dentistry, nursing, and other health professions) and prioritizes building learners' competence in research, education and leadership within HPE.  The MEd-HPE focuses on broad scholarly and practical experience through the dissemination of a culminating project focused on practical application of leadership and/or educational principles.  The MHPE culminates in a published peer-reviewed research paper and the PhD culminates in 4 published research papers. 

 

You will have 5 years from your graduation date to continue your HPE program requirements and still receive credit for coursework completed in your certificate program.

 

There is no payback for part time learners. For full time learners there is an active duty commitment depending on which service you are in. For those working at the VA – there is currently only a track for the certificates. We are working on a legislative fix for the degree track. There would be tuition for the degree (no longer on a space available basis), with an estimated cost to be determined.

 

 

Typically, there are two synchronous sessions for a course, one at the beginning and one at the end of the course. The rest of the course is typically asynchronous where the learner is answering discussion board questions or completing assignments.

 

 

Degree learners are required to attend in-residence which takes place each year in the 3rd week of July. Next year's In-Residence: Monday, July 18, through Saturday, July 23, 2022.

 

 

Very rarely.  The objectives of our courses are focused on health professions education and do not frequently align with the objectives of courses offered in other master’s programs.  At times, we do offer practicum credit for completed professional development certificates or related courses from other master’s programs.

 

 

The courses are designed to give you the skills necessary for research.  Additionally, once core coursework is complete we have designed a series of experiences to help you meet faculty and get started on your research.  In short, while we encourage you to keep thinking about your research and fleshing out details as soon as possible you should not begin your research until you have worked with a research advisor on the design. 

 

 

The time a learner can expect to spend on a course will vary, but for a 12-week term a learner can expect to spend 6 – 9 hours of work per week on one course. For a compressed 6-week term, a learner should expect to spend 12-18 hours per week on one course.