Visual & Digital Health Communication Graduate Certificate (online)

Boston University’s online Graduate Certificate in Visual & Digital Health Communication is a 16-credit course of study that examines the impact of the communication technology revolution on the field of health marketing and outreach, and prepares graduates for careers in this rapidly changing and growing industry through the development of visual and digital storytelling tools vital to modern messaging. It can be completed in less than two years.

In today’s health care landscape, savvy communicators, marketers, and coverage providers recognize the importance of effective storytelling and strategic social media practices in capturing the engagement and participation of patients, consumers, or desired target audiences. How those audiences and consumers experience initiatives through social media, websites, mobile apps, videos, and branded content can make or break the success of an otherwise well-defined health campaign or project.

In the Visual & Digital Health Communication certificate program’s required courses, students will learn the fundamental principles of design and how to apply them to the creation of powerful health education and delivery application tools, such as infographics, data visualization graphics, videos, websites, mobile apps, and branded content. Students will also examine how social media is used in health care and why using it effectively has become a necessary skill for many health care professionals.

Additionally, students in the certificate program may petition to have the credits they earn transferred toward BU’s online Master of Science in Health Communication. Degree-seeking students must successfully complete three life science courses and the advanced writing course offered in the master’s program to graduate. Master’s applicants who have previously earned the Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) are eligible upon admission to waive two of the program’s required courses—the equivalent of 8 credit hours—reducing the total number of required courses by two and saving an estimated 20 percent in tuition costs for the master’s degree.

Students who complete the Graduate Certificate in Visual & Digital Health Communication will be able to demonstrate:

  • Knowledge of the value and significance of traditional, social, and emerging digital media practice in the health communication field.
  • The ability to design communication strategies and methods that employ digital and visual information to influence audiences or affect change on health-related topics and issues.
  • Expertise in the role that communication—including digital and visual content—plays in the health care industry.
  • The capacity to analyze, synthesize, interpret, and present health and scientific information for public consumption using clear and concise messaging.
  • A proficiency in creating digital images and visual tools—including infographics, branded content, video, data visualization graphics, webpage, and mobile page design—that purposely and ethically help bridge digital divides in health education and comprehension.

More information about the online Graduate Certificate in Visual & Digital Health Communication can be viewed here.