Responsibilities & Competencies

Responsibilities and Competencies for Health Education Specialists

To pursue a profession in the field of health education and promotion, there is more than just credentialing that is required. The core Responsibilities, Competencies, and Sub-competencies provide a comprehensive description of the profession, illustrating the knowledge and skills necessary to perform the daily tasks as a health education specialist.

In the following documents, you can access the Seven Areas of Responsibility for health education specialists determined by the latest practice analysis studies, which serve as the framwork for the profession and the foundation of the certifiation examinations. Including competencies such as assessment, planning, evaluation, administration, communication, advocacy, and more, the Areas of Responsibility present the required skills and expertise needed for a position in the field of health education and promotion.

HESPA 2015

Seven Areas of Responsibility were verified by the 2015 Health Education Specialist Practice Analysis (HESPA) project and serve as the basis of both the CHES® and the MCHES® exams. The HESPA study led to an adjustment to the health education model to include the term “health promotion.” The rationale for the terminology change to “health education/health promotion” was because it adds clarity to the scope of the Health Education Specialist's role both within and external to the profession and would more comprehensively describe the profession.

Seven Areas of Responsibility:


Area I: Assess Needs, Resources and Capacity for Health Education/Promotion
Area II: Plan Health Education/Promotion
Area III: Implement Health Education/Promotion 
Area IV: Conduct Evaluation and Research Related to Health Education/Promotion
Area V: Administer and Manage Health Education/Promotion
Area VI: Serve as a Health Education/Promotion Resource Person
Area VII. Communicate, Promote, and Advocate for Health, Health Education/Promotion, and the Profession

Areas of Responsibility, Competencies and Sub-competencies for Health Education Specialists 2015

HESPA II 2020  (Exams to change effective 2022)
Eight Areas of Responsibility

The Eight Areas of Responsibility contain a comprehensive set of Competencies and Sub-competencies defining the role of the health education specialist. These Responsibilities were verified by the 2020 Health Education Specialist Practice Analysis II (HESPA II 2020) project and serve as the basis of the CHES® and MCHES® exam beginning 2022.

Area I: Assessment of Needs and Capacity
Area II: Planning
Area III: Implementation
Area IV: Evaluation and Research
Area V: Advocacy
Area VI: Communication
Area VII: Leadership and Management
Area VIII: Ethics and Professionalism

Areas of Responsibility, Competencies and Sub-competencies for Health Education Specialists 2020

Learn more about the 2020 CHES® responsibilities and what's new in the HESPA II 2020 Eight Areas of Responsibility:


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