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College of Graduate Health Studies: Health Sciences

A.T. Still University - College of Graduate Health Studies

From the Program Chair


The Doctor of Health Sciences (DHSc) program is designed to provide healthcare professionals with the knowledge and skills to prepare them for leadership and catalytic roles in healthcare, academia, and research.   This dynamic and professional program integrates diversity of health sciences into structured course design to provide the highest standard of education.   By integrating exposures with interdisciplinary and inter-professional experts, this program aims to influence environments of scholarship and collaboration.  The comprehensive curriculum provides a strong and innovative base to the program.  Aligned with courses for healthcare and wellness, public health, research, leadership, and communication, the curriculum emphasizes comprehension and application to best assist students in becoming successful professionals.  Additionally, the program and supporting curriculum is specifically designed to accommodate working professionals by offering online and hybrid learning environments and are supplemented with numerous educational services and resources to support diversity of student educational needs.

The philosophy of the DHSc program entails a student-centered approach focused on enhancing opportunities for acquisition, analysis, and knowledge synthesis in conjunction with demonstration of compassion, confidence, and integrity.  Such a philosophy is supportive of the programs goal to bring together a diverse group of healthcare professionals to develop strategies and applicable theories to promote and maximize wellness and healthcare.  This program and its supporting community are not only committed to this goal and this philosophy, but are also enthusiastic and focused on student’s needs and success.  We exemplify this commitment to our students as they are guided by academic advisors, fostered by faculty, and encouraged by the entire DHSc community, to develop and enhance the knowledge and skills necessary for the changing environment of health and medical sciences. 

On behalf of the DHSc community, welcome to the College of Graduate Health Studies.

Kathleen DiCaprio, PhD
Associate Professor and Program Chair
Doctor of Health Sciences (DHSc) Program

Health Sciences Team

Kathleen DiCaprio, PhD, Program Chair

Vera Mitchell, Academic Advisor

Tanya Armistead, Academic Advisor


Maud Mundava, MLS, MBA
CGHS Library Liaison

Program Competencies

DHSC 1: Evaluate current knowledge, research, and key assumptions in health sciences to advance the development of the field.

DHSC 2: Demonstrate knowledge of the health care system and the importance of technology in promoting health and wellness.

DHSC 3: Demonstrate ethical and professional behavior and standards.

DHSC 4: Develop, incorporate, and disseminate evidence-based concepts related to health sciences for the advancement of health promotion, health education, and research.

DHSC 5: Develop and appraise leadership and management approaches in the health sciences, including the ability to promote collaboration, participate effectively in collaborative projects, and manage projects successfully.

DHSC 6: Demonstrate interprofessional cooperation and team-focused approaches that align with the objectives and responsibilities of healthcare teams in providing comprehensive health care, health promotion, and wellness.

DHSC 7: Embrace all areas of individual diversity and individual differences that characterize populations and health science teams.

DHSC 8: Demonstrate effective communication skills and techniques.

DHSC 9: Develop research skills, including critical appraisal of evidence, knowledge of research methodologies and statistics, and the ability to critique, conduct, and present research.

Student Service/Accomplishments

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About the Program

The Doctor of Health Sciences (DHSc) degree is a post-professional program designed for masters or doctorate prepared healthcare professionals and is offered through blending distance and residential education. The program aims to develop and enhance the professional skills needed to provide competent leadership in healthcare systems. The program focuses on building proficiencies in critical analysis and evaluation of complex issues that affect the health of society and prepares graduates to better understand and effectively manage the ongoing challenges of access, cost, and quality in healthcare. The DHSc program provides present healthcare professionals with the knowledge and skills to excel in project management, decision-making, organizational management, establishing evidence-based standards, and gaining the competencies to apply research to professional practice.

The program consists of 70 credit hours of study. The main foundations of the program center on decision-making, health sciences and evidence-based practice with concentrations in global health, organizational behavior and leadership, and fundamentals of education. The program also promotes application of research to professional practice through completion of an applied research project in the student’s area of interest.

Mission, Vision, Values, Goals, Outcomes

The DHSc program’s purpose statement/mission, vision, values, goals and outcomes were revised in August 2018. Full-time faculty actively worked in July 2018 to revise these as part of the DHSc program review process for the 2018-2019 academic year. In addition to ensuring that these statements best reflect the DHSc program, this review process also focused on ensuring clear and focused alignment of the programs purpose statements and goals with those of CGHS, and the University. The revisions were developed and ratified by program faculty and additionally reviewed and approved by the DHSc curriculum committee in August 2018. Therefore, the current mission/purpose statement, vision, values, goals and outcomes were developed and ratified via faculty consensus based on faculty expertise, curricular content, experiences, and resources.


DHSc Program Purpose Statement

The Doctor of Health Sciences (DHSc) program provides a rigorous interdisciplinary education for healthcare professionals, preparing students to be effective leaders and change agents in a variety of health settings. The program offers innovative curriculum in a flexible, asynchronous format to best meet student needs. Courses are facilitated by experienced faculty through an interdisciplinary and interprofessional approach. Coursework prepares students to critically analyze ongoing domestic and global challenges of access, cost, education and quality in healthcare, and builds competencies to skillfully evaluate, plan and implement solutions to these challenges.


DHSc Vision

The DHSc program has adopted the vision statement of the College of Graduate Heath Studies, adapting it to the program:

The DHSc program will be the preeminent online program for leaders in the health professions. We will provide a contemporary and flexible curriculum that empowers our students to translate knowledge to meet the growing needs of domestic and global health and wellness.


DHSc Values

The DHSc program has adopted the values of the College of Graduate Health Studies:

Leadership: We value leadership development for our students, faculty, and staff and encourage participation in community and professional service.
Integrity: We value the highest ethical principles of fairness and honesty in all of our interactions.
Scholarship: We value critical thinking and the generation of ideas through innovation and analysis.
Diversity: We value differences among people and their personal and professional perspectives.
Interprofessional education: We value the combined contributions of our educational community and work to achieve an environment of teamwork and collaboration.
Innovation: We value a continual and aggressive push to develop new and efficient mechanisms for learning, teaching, and technological delivery.


DHSc Goals

Goals of the DHSc program are to provide an online environment that:

  1. Promotes diversity of student experiences
  2. Fosters student success
  3. Honors professionalism and ethical practice
  4. Supports a curriculum that develops critical and analytical thinking skills through an integrative approach of instruction, research, and evidence-based resources
  5. Promotes and supports excellence in faculty performance in teaching, scholarship, and service


DHSc Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate advanced knowledge in health sciences fields, scholarship, and evidence-based practice.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge and skills for designing, conducting, analyzing and disseminating health sciences research.
  3. Demonstrate knowledge in critical analytical thinking skills in foundational areas of health sciences.
  4. Demonstrate advanced and effective skills in communication, professionalism, ethical practice, systematic thought, and writing.