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Why Earn a Master’s in Health & Wellness?

The phrase ‘Health and Wellness’ might seem simple enough, but in actuality this field covers a lot of real estate. Nutrition, nursing, therapy, health and wellness management, mental health and wellness, health and wellness education, and dozens of other professions fall under the health and wellness umbrella. If you are interested in helping people live healthier lifestyles through health and wellness coaching, want to improve the overall health of the community, or feel the need to help hospitals and clinics operate more efficiently while maintaining high standards of care for their patients, then you’ll be interested in a health and wellness professional career. This field of study has plenty of real-world benefits and students will find a Master of Science in health and wellness programs or a health wellness management program somewhere near them no matter where they are in the U.S.

If you are looking for a graduate health and wellness program, then you are probably already working in health and wellness and are either looking to make a change in direction or want to move up in the ranks of health and wellness management. Regardless of your motivation or ambition, there is a program out there that will meet your needs and help you attain your career goals.

There is a lot you can do in the field of health and wellness with a master’s degree. You can stay in your current position but command more money, you can move into upper management positions, or you can teach at the college or university level with a focus on health and wellness education. You’ll become especially attractive to employers if you can combine the master’s degree with work experience. However, this should not deter a new graduate with a bachelor’s from continuing their health education immediately rather than moving directly into a position as a wellness coach or similar. A master’s degree program is also a good way for students to combine two different areas of health and wellness and make them even more useful as a professional in this field of study. Some of these areas include:

  • Health and Wellness Management
  • Health and Wellness Education
  • Mental Health and Wellness
  • Integrative Health Systems
  • Community Health
  • Health and Wellness Coaching
  • And More

Compare Popular Online Health & Wellness Programs


As with any educational experience, there are pros and cons of pursuing a Master of Science in Health and Wellness or Health and Wellness Management. Both the positive and negative aspects should be considered before starting a health and wellness program of any kind.

  • Salary - With a master’s degree, you can command some of the highest salaries in the field. Those with PhDs will earn more, but for the most part you’ll have positions similar and equal to those and your salary won’t be that much lower.
  • Prestige - There is a certain level of prestige that comes with earning a graduate degree, even if you still work in health and wellness coaching. It shows you went the extra mile to educate yourself in your chosen profession. In other words, more people take you seriously and trust your advice.
  • Opportunities for Advancement - Many upper-level positions such as supervisors, directors, and administrators in health and wellness management are required to have a graduate degree. Earning that degree puts you in the running for these jobs.


  • Expense - There is nothing inexpensive about getting an advanced degree in a health and wellness program. Whether you pay for each class out of pocket or take out student loans and pay them off later, a Master of Science in Health and Wellness Management or health and wellness coaching will be costly, even if you find an online program.
  • Time - Graduate courses take a lot of time and effort. If you are going to school while working or taking care of family obligations, this can prove challenging. Be prepared to have to juggle these obligations and try and rearrange your life so you can handle everything without causing yourself unwanted stress or struggle.

Top 15 Best Online Masters in Health and Wellness Programs


University of Wisconsin-Madison

Score: 92.3

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $10,728
    • Out-of-State: $24,054
  • Net Price: $13,376
  • Acceptance Rate: 49%
  • Retention Rate: 94%
  • Graduation Rate: 89%
  • Total Enrollment: 48,956
  • Undergrad Students: 36,306
  • Graduate Students: 12,650
  • Grads Salary: $80,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 18:1
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison

University of Florida-Online

Score: 85.05

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: N/A
    • Out-of-State: $0
  • Net Price: $10,791
  • Acceptance Rate: 65%
  • Retention Rate: 92%
  • Graduation Rate: 79%
  • Total Enrollment: 5,356
  • Undergrad Students: 5,356
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Grads Salary: $79,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 54:1
  • University of Florida-Online

Nebraska Methodist College of Nursing & Allied Health

Score: 82.48

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $12,249
    • Out-of-State: $12,249
  • Net Price: $18,661
  • Acceptance Rate: 91%
  • Retention Rate: 84%
  • Graduation Rate: 72%
  • Total Enrollment: 1,146
  • Undergrad Students: 808
  • Graduate Students: 338
  • Grads Salary: $79,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 12:1
  • Nebraska Methodist College of Nursing & Allied Health

Tulane University of Louisiana

Score: 81.6

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $63,814
    • Out-of-State: $63,814
  • Net Price: $50,263
  • Acceptance Rate: 11%
  • Retention Rate: 93%
  • Graduation Rate: 87%
  • Total Enrollment: 14,027
  • Undergrad Students: 8,785
  • Graduate Students: 5,242
  • Grads Salary: $79,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 8:1
  • Tulane University of Louisiana

University of South Carolina-Columbia

Score: 80.5

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $13,374
    • Out-of-State: $29,760
  • Net Price: $22,427
  • Acceptance Rate: 64%
  • Retention Rate: 90%
  • Graduation Rate: 78%
  • Total Enrollment: 35,653
  • Undergrad Students: 27,343
  • Graduate Students: 8,310
  • Grads Salary: $71,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 18:1
  • University of South Carolina-Columbia

University of Cincinnati

Score: 79.41

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $13,224
    • Out-of-State: $24,996
  • Net Price: $20,149
  • Acceptance Rate: 86%
  • Retention Rate: 86%
  • Graduation Rate: 72%
  • Total Enrollment: 41,155
  • Undergrad Students: 29,663
  • Graduate Students: 11,492
  • Grads Salary: $74,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 18:1
  • University of Cincinnati

Creighton University

Score: 78.12

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $17,676
    • Out-of-State: $17,676
  • Net Price: $32,877
  • Acceptance Rate: 76%
  • Retention Rate: 92%
  • Graduation Rate: 78%
  • Total Enrollment: 8,397
  • Undergrad Students: 4,290
  • Graduate Students: 4,107
  • Grads Salary: $73,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 11:1
  • Creighton University

University of Kentucky

Score: 77.61

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $12,967
    • Out-of-State: $34,096
  • Net Price: $18,693
  • Acceptance Rate: 95%
  • Retention Rate: 85%
  • Graduation Rate: 69%
  • Total Enrollment: 31,547
  • Undergrad Students: 22,735
  • Graduate Students: 8,812
  • Grads Salary: $72,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 17:1
  • University of Kentucky

The University of West Florida

Score: 76.3

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $7,088
    • Out-of-State: $22,166
  • Net Price: $8,609
  • Acceptance Rate: 48%
  • Retention Rate: 85%
  • Graduation Rate: 53%
  • Total Enrollment: 13,521
  • Undergrad Students: 9,291
  • Graduate Students: 4,230
  • Grads Salary: $67,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 22:1
  • The University of West Florida

Union Institute & University

Score: 75.12

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $16,795
    • Out-of-State: $16,795
  • Net Price: $28,463
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Retention Rate: 100%
  • Graduation Rate: 50%
  • Total Enrollment: 787
  • Undergrad Students: 481
  • Graduate Students: 306
  • Grads Salary: $80,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 6:1
  • Union Institute & University

Merrimack College

Score: 74.08

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $34,208
    • Out-of-State: $34,208
  • Net Price: $37,296
  • Acceptance Rate: 75%
  • Retention Rate: 82%
  • Graduation Rate: 68%
  • Total Enrollment: 5,505
  • Undergrad Students: 4,229
  • Graduate Students: 1,276
  • Grads Salary: $76,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 13:1
  • Merrimack College

University of Memphis

Score: 71.89

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $9,576
    • Out-of-State: $13,590
  • Net Price: $13,873
  • Acceptance Rate: 95%
  • Retention Rate: 75%
  • Graduation Rate: 48%
  • Total Enrollment: 21,917
  • Undergrad Students: 16,708
  • Graduate Students: 5,209
  • Grads Salary: $71,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 17:1
  • University of Memphis

Concord University

Score: 71.01

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $9,770
    • Out-of-State: $17,030
  • Net Price: $8,464
  • Acceptance Rate: 91%
  • Retention Rate: 56%
  • Graduation Rate: 40%
  • Total Enrollment: 1,748
  • Undergrad Students: 1,399
  • Graduate Students: 349
  • Grads Salary: $73,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 15:1
  • Concord University

University of the Cumberlands

Score: 70.19

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $4,260
    • Out-of-State: $4,260
  • Net Price: $14,337
  • Acceptance Rate: 83%
  • Retention Rate: 70%
  • Graduation Rate: 44%
  • Total Enrollment: 18,053
  • Undergrad Students: 5,174
  • Graduate Students: 12,879
  • Grads Salary: $70,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 18:1
  • University of the Cumberlands

Wayne State College

Score: 68.6

  • Graduate Tuition
    • In-State: $4,320
    • Out-of-State: $8,640
  • Net Price: $14,271
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Retention Rate: 72%
  • Graduation Rate: 51%
  • Total Enrollment: 4,773
  • Undergrad Students: 3,860
  • Graduate Students: 913
  • Grads Salary: $65,000
  • Student-to-faculty: 22:1
  • Wayne State College

Overview of a Master's in Health & Wellness

What Health & Wellness Master’s Degrees are Available Online?

The available degree programs for graduate degrees in health and wellness generally depend on which direction you plan to go. If you are more focused on the scientific elements of health and wellness, that will lead you in a different direction than someone who wants to work hands-on with people trying to improve their health and wellness.

An online master of science in health and wellness, would provide the additional education and training for those who want to pursue the scientific study behind health and wellness. Researchers, scientists, and others who are looking at how environmental conditions and other community issues can affect citizens’ health and wellness would be the perfect candidates for a Master of Science (MS) because it is science, math, and statistics based.

Find Online Health & Wellness Schools

For those who want to work with people helping them improve their overall health, a Master of Arts (MA) in Health and Wellness is a good option. Wellness coaches, physical and occupational therapists, and even those who work in wellness programs for insurance companies or corporations could benefit from this graduate program. It not only continues the education the person received as an undergraduate, it also adds additional knowledge and tools to help you better understand how individuals can be better motivated to improve their health and wellness. Many of these programs tend to focus on psychological and community-driven reasons.

Admission Requirements

To be admitted into a graduate program to study health and wellness, certain benchmarks are required. These requirements can vary by school and program but here are some of the more common requirements for those looking to pursue a master’s in health and wellness.

  • Bachelor’s degree in a related field. In order to study toward a graduate degree, an undergraduate degree must be completed, preferably in a related field.
  • For those whose master’s degree will waver a bit from their completed undergraduate, related work experience in the desired field of study may be required. For instance, if a nurse wants to study public health, working with the general public as a nurse would qualify as related work experience.
  • Passing the required graduate examination, aka the GRE. Some schools require the GRE for admission, while others do not.

How long does it take to earn a Health & Wellness Master’s?

The amount of time it takes to complete an online master’s degree in health and wellness varies by program and by student. Most graduate programs are 36 to 40 hours in length. A full-time graduate student typically takes three years to complete a graduate degree, though some take longer and others need less time. It depends on the requirements for the program. Some programs require a capstone or master’s thesis, while others will require an internship. Some might require a final exam or a combination of the options above. Most schools allow for a student to take up to double the scheduled time to complete the program, so if the program requires 36 hours or three years, a student can take up to six years to finish.

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Potential Careers in Health & Wellness with a Master’s

Careers in health and wellness vary because the field is quite wide. Finding your niche can help you narrow down the prospects that most interest you. Below are a few examples of jobs in health and wellness that often require a master’s degree.

  • Public Health Educator
    Managers of public health programs help disseminate information to the general public and run programs to assist the community. They manage a team of educators and are required to make sure all employees are well-trained and equipped to handle the responsibilities of working with the community.
    Average salary: $45,000
  • Healthcare Administrator
    Hospitals, nursing homes, and health clinics employ healthcare administrators to run their organizations and facilities. In many cases, these businesses require their administrators to be nurses and hold master degrees in nursing, business, or a similar field. Administrators run the establishments and are in charge of the staff and day-to-day operations of the facility.
    Average salary: $65,000
  • Forensic Scientist
    For those who want to be in the field assisting with solving crimes and providing important forensic evidence, this is a career for you. Forensic scientists work crime scenes as well as set up experiments to determine how accidents and situations occurred. The forensic scientist runs the forensic lab and usually has a team of forensic technicians that report to them.
    Average salary: $68,000

Salary by Occupation

Occupations Entry-Level Mid-Career Late-Career
Health/Wellness Coordinator $42,200 $52,700 $51,200
Wellness Specialist $37,100 $50,000 $62,100
Wellness Coordinator $47,600 $52,000 $61,300
Wellness Coach $39,600 $46,800 $65,000
Health Coach w/Health and Wellness Skills $39,800 $60,835 $59,400
Health Promotion Coordinator w/Health and Wellness Skills $40,700 $53,000 $64,000

Options to Advance

Once you attain an online master’s degree in health and wellness, you can get all the higher-level certifications that require an advanced degree. This will put you in the position to qualify for top-level positions in agencies and organizations that don’t require directors or managers to have terminal degrees. Some workers who hold master degrees start their doctorate programs and either complete the classes and dissertation or stop just prior to the paper requirement and remain ABD, which stands for “all but dissertation”. For some employers, this is sufficient for top-level jobs that otherwise require a doctorate.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I get into a health and wellness master’s degree with an undergraduate degree in nursing, social work, nutrition, or any other field?

Some people believe that they cannot complete a master’s degree in a field other than the one in which they earned their undergraduate degree. This is simply not true. It is true that it helps to have completed your undergraduate work in a similar field, but this is because master’s programs have prerequisites. A master’s program is not built to teach you the foundational concepts in the field. They are, instead, meant to provide you with in-depth knowledge and the techniques that you need to put that knowledge to use. So, if you completed your bachelor’s degree in a completely different field than the one you want to earn a master’s in, you are likely to need to complete some prerequisite courses so that you can be sure to succeed in your graduate degree program. They do this so that you and the teachers do not waste your time in class and so that you have the best chance of succeeding.

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