Course Summary
Credit Type:
20 weeks (100-160 hours)
Dates Offered:
Credit Recommendation & Competencies
Level Credits (SH) Subject
Upper-Division Baccalaureate 3 Wellness Coaching


This Certification is an intensive “deep dive” into special topics in nutrition and coaching, along with more applied practice of key principles and coaching skills (such as communication, rapport-building, or goal setting). Graduates will be able to promote deeper and more sustained change in their clients by translating nutritional science into manageable and appropriate action steps, and by further developing their own professional skills and practice.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Know which coaching tools are available, and what they do (e.g., food journals, worksheets, calculators, etc.)
  • Explain ambivalence and resistance in the context of coaching, and why they are natural and normal components of change
  • Apply physiological principles, the goals-skills-practices-actions (GSPA) model, and the PN 6-step coaching process to work through a range of case studies, proposing solutions tailored to specific client scenarios
  • Apply validated coaching techniques and tools appropriately in context (e.g., worksheets, assessments, etc.)
  • Develop individualized progress rubrics, operationalizing more intangible concepts (e.g., "more energy") into tangible indicators where needed
  • Apply scope of practice and professional and ethical guidelines to set clear and appropriate practice boundaries, recognizing when to refer out
  • Analyze "behavior chains" and cause-and-effect relationships using theoretical models, such as "habit loops"
  • Analyze quantitative and qualitative data gathered from client assessments, conversations, and progress measures, to determine both initial programming and ongoing progress
  • Create individual behavior-based action plans based on client criteria, such as goals, needs, knowledge, and abilities
  • Be a self-aware and self-questioning coach
  • Develop strong working relationships with clients and learn how to use a client-centered approach, emphasizing empathy and the “coaching alliance”
  • Be able to guide clients through all stages of the nutritional, lifestyle, and deep health coaching and consultation process
  • Identify, understand, and prioritize key coaching concepts, principles, and ideas, as well as distill practical applications from broader, more abstract theories.
  • Use the right tools and techniques for the job at hand, practicing a wide range of skills and coaching methods, and learn when to choose the correct ones for clients
  • Treat clients as unique individuals, addressing their needs holistically

General Topics:

  • Week 1: Introduce yourself and what you do
  • Week 2: Starting a coaching practice
  • Week 3: Building deep connections with clients
  • Week 4: Running an (awesome) kickoff call
  • Week 5: The cycle of a client relationship
  • Week 6: Advanced communication tactics for client change
  • Week 7: Motivational interviewing
  • Week 8: Cognitive behavioural approaches to coaching
  • Week 9: Building action plans that work
  • Week 10: Providing client support in tough situations
  • Week 11: The science of mindset and confidence
  • Week 12: Somatic psychology and the role of the body
  • Week 13: Using the psychology of motivation and willpower
  • Week 14: Environmental and social influences on client behavior
  • Week 15: Strategies to increase change readiness and soothe coaching frustration
  • Week 16: Using crucial conversations with complex clients
  • Week 17: Diversity and life stages
  • Week 18: Inclusive coaching
  • Week 19: Body-positive coaching and working with disordered eating
  • Week 20: Looking forward: continuing to develop your coaching self
Instruction & Assessment

Instructional Strategies:

  • Audio Visual Materials
  • Case Studies
  • Coaching/Mentoring
  • Computer Based Training
  • Discussion
  • Lectures
  • Performance Rubrics (Checklists)

Methods of Assessment:

  • Case Studies
  • Other
  • Quizzes
  • Synchronous, weekly sessions

Minimum Passing Score:

Supplemental Materials