Culturally-Based Native Health Certificate Program

The mission of the Culturally-Based Native Health Program is to provide a new approach to training for health professionals serving Native peoples, grounded in a tribal community, and integrated into the core of the University. We accomplish this through providing an undergraduate and graduate certificate program for health professionals who serve American Indian populations in the South and the East and also through training opportunities for Native youth through mentoring, summer programs, and research opportunities – training which will open career paths for young students.   

This interdisciplinary, online program requires 12 hours of courses and is intended to reach a population of students considered underrepresented and underserved. A certificate in Culturally-Based Native Health will enable students to utilize their training in a health-related discipline and apply it to Southeastern Indian cultures. This culturally-oriented certificate option will enable professionals in the region, who are Cherokee or serve a Native American population, to acquire the cultural knowledge and methodological understanding to serve more effectively in their professions.

Courses are unique in providing cultural competency training, in that they are all developed with Native community members and health professionals.

Required Courses

  • NAS 474/574    Issues in Indian Health Cherokee
  • NAS 470/570    Cherokee Culture and History

Elective Courses

  • NAS 471/571    Indigenous & Western Psychologies
  • NAS 452/552   The Roots of Health Disparities In Native American Populations
  • NAS 476/576   Tobacco & Substance Use Among American Indians   
  • NAS 472/572   Healing the Wounded Native Child  

Course Descriptions

NAS 470/570 Cherokee History & Culture (3)
Course provides a general introduction to Cherokee culture and history with an emphasis on relationship to health and policy. PREQ: Junior or Senior standing.
Will be one of two required courses for the Culturally Based Native Health Graduate Certificate.

NAS 474/574 Issues in Indian Health (3)
Historical and cultural context of disease in the Americas from 1500 AD to present, with focus on health of Indigenous Peoples of the Southeast.
PREQ: Junior or Senior standing. Will be one of two required courses for the Culturally Based Native Health Graduate Certificate.

NAS 452/552 The Roots of Health Disparities in Native American Populations (3)
Course will introduce students to the current debate and literature of the connection between genetic and environmental factors which must be considered in approaching contemporary health issues in Indian country. 

NAS 472/572 Healing the Wounded Native Child (3) 
Course will increase students’ understanding of culturally sensitive care and key elements involved in addressing behavioral health needs of Native child and adolescent populations.

NAS476/576 Tobacco and Substance Use Among American Indians (3)
Broad historic and contemporary survey of how tobacco and conscious-altering substance usages are situated within the culture and daily lives of Southeastern Native peoples.

NAS 471/571 Indigenous & Western Psychologies (3) 
Epistemologies and world views of Southeastern Native peoples will be discussed in comparison with standard Western approaches to addressing behavioral health. Course will increase students’ understanding of key elements involved in delivery of care that addresses needs of Native populations in behavioral health.

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