2020-2021 Graduate Catalog 
    May 10, 2021  
2020-2021 Graduate Catalog

Transdisciplinary Childhood Obesity Prevention Certificate

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Program Coordinator/Contact

Jessica Meendering, Professor
Department of Health and Nutritional Sciences
Wagner Hall 425, Box 2275A

Program Information

The Transdisciplinary Childhood Obesity Prevention (TOP) graduate certificate is a graduate certificate program aimed to engage students in transdisciplinary approaches to childhood obesity prevention through coursework and community based experiential learning opportunities. This program is unique, as it provides expertise in a job market that is desperate for trained professionals in the prevention of childhood obesity. The program will expose students to a variety of disciplines involved in the prevention of childhood obesity, allow students the opportunity to design childhood obesity prevention initiatives, and prepare students to conduct transdisciplinary research on the behavioral, social, biological, and environmental causes of childhood obesity. Students will develop skills required to implement evidence based transdisciplinary approaches to prevention. Faculty from Nutrition, Exercise Science, Early Childhood Education, and Nursing work collaboratively with SDSU Extension to implement the TOP graduate certificate program.  Students will obtain a TOP program certificate upon completion of the requirements for both the certificate and the Masters or Doctoral degree from their respective college.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Understand the need for transdisciplinary teams and gain skills required to work effectively within a transdisciplinary team.
  • Define the Social Ecological Model and demonstrate the ability to apply the model to obesity prevention for a variety of populations.
  • Understand the current epidemiology of childhood obesity and be able to identify and discuss a multitude of factors that contribute to the obesity epidemic using current evidence. 
  • Identify a problem that contributes to obesity prevalence and the issues the contribute to it. Define the level of the Social Ecological Model of each issue and use the information to think comprehensively about strategies that have been attempted to improve the problem, and innovative transdisciplinary ideas for future impact.
  • Identify and describe multiple methods of assessing nutrition and physical activity.
  • Utilize multiple methods of assessing nutrition and physical activity.
  • Interpret and evaluate nutrition and physical activity data.
  • Synthesize material and apply knowledge to discuss the application of nutrition and physical activity assessment tools in different scenarios.

Course Delivery Format

The core classes within the TOP program are delivered online.

Student Support and Engagement Opportunities

The College of Education and Human Sciences and the Department of Health and Nutritional Sciences offers a limited number of qualified graduate student applicants scholarships as well as funded assistantships.  Additionally, the department offers a number of opportunities for students to be involved. The student organizations provide opportunities for professional development and social interaction through numerous events on campus as well as service learning projects. Travel opportunities are available, including regional and national conferences.

Certificate Requirements

This certificate will be granted when the individuals meet the requirements for their respective graduate education majors (Ph.D. and Masters) and complete the course requirements listed above.

Additional Admission Requirements

Please refer to the following for additional information.

Admission to the TOP program requires completion of the TOP application.

TOP program webpage

Graduate School Admissions

Additional Information

Students enrolled in SDSU certificate programs are not eligible for federal student financial aid. The non-federal alternative loan programs may be used for students meeting the lender criteria as found at www.sdstate.edu (search alternative loans). For further information, please contact the SDSU financial aid office at 605-688-4695 or finaid@sdstate.edu.

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