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    Saybrook University
  Oct 01, 2023
2018-2019 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Spring Addendum 
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2018-2019 Academic Catalog and Student Handbook with Spring Addendum [Archived Catalog]

Integrative Wellness Coaching, M.A.

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As an emerging profession, integrative wellness coaching is quickly becoming recognized as an essential component of health and wellness services, education, and research.  Integrative wellness coaching (IWC) is a solution-focused, holistic, and sustainable approach to wellness that forms an intersection between lifestyle, health needs, and personal transformation.  Drawing from current research in professional coaching, lifestyle medicine, positive psychology, and mind-body interventions, students enrolled in the MA IWC program integrate and apply evidence-based, best practice approaches to support wellbeing in others.  The curriculum presents a foundation of scholarship supporting coaching theories, processes, models, ethical principles, and relevant applications.  In addition to critically evaluating and utilizing the published literature, students are developing and mastering specific competencies, skills, and standards of practice expected for integrative wellness coaching professionals. 

By satisfying the required coursework of the IWC program, students are eligible to earn a Certificate in Integrative Wellness Coaching.  This certificate program is approved by the International Coach Federation (ICF) for 88 hours of coach training and is also an Approved Transition Program by the International Consortium for Health and Wellness Coaches (ICHWC). 

This program is best suited for individuals who are interested in earning a graduate-level education to master the art and science of coaching, as well as exploring a broad range of career opportunities.  Graduates of the MA IWC program will be prepared to pursue professional work in the following areas:

  • Independent consulting and private practice
  • Medical centers, hospitals, and other clinical care settings
  • Integrative medicine and wellness centers
  • Community organizations, public health, and policy settings   
  • Medical spas and yoga retreat centers
  • Corporate wellness
  • Health promotion and wellness education programs
  • Sports medicine programs
  • Research and development
  • Educational institutions
  • Health and wellness writing/journalism (non-technical, technical)

Program Learning Outcomes

The Program Learning Outcomes are specific to this MA Degree, and reflect skills and competencies required for national certification in professional coaching:

1. Demonstrate critical thinking skills to evaluate and utilize evidence-based theories and practices in the professional field of integrative health, wellness, and coaching.

2. Appraise, assess, and differentiate client needs in preparation for the implementation of a plan that addresses fundamental health, wellbeing, and personal life direction.

3. Compare and contrast effective approaches in coaching to meet individual client, business, or organization goals.

4. Explain and integrate ethical principles and professional practice standards within the field of coaching.

Admission Requirements

Applicants for this Master of Arts degree in Integrative Wellness Coaching must:

1) Submit an official transcript from an accredited university demonstrating successful completion of a Bachelor’s degree, with a 3.0 or better GPA;

2) Complete a personal statement; and

3) Provide a writing sample demonstrating academic writing skills. Students with challenges in academic writing may be accepted, but will be required to take an academic writing class.

By approval, Saybrook may accept up to three graduate transfer credits into the Master of Arts degree in Integrative Wellness Coaching from other regionally-accredited colleges and universities prior to entrance. Transfer credits are applied to the required number of elective credits or required courses for degree completion. These credits must be suitable for transfer to the intended degree as determined by the Department Chair and Registrar.

For further details regarding transfer credit policies, consult the Institutional Transfer Credit Guidelines section of the University Catalog.

Degree Requirements

The MA Integrative Wellness Coaching (IWC) degree includes 31-34 credits of graduate coursework, distributed in four semesters, for a 16-month program. Students may choose to add a minor in Integrative and Functional Nutrition (IFN) or Mind-Body Medicine (MBM) to expand their academic education and training in a professional discipline. Selecting a minor will add 9-12 more credits to the degree program.

Students enrolled in this degree program must attend two 5-day Residential Conferences (RC). They must attend any additional RC days, as required for courses in which they choose to enroll.

Total Degree Requirements - 31 credits

Total Degree Requirements with writing - 34 credits

Total Degree Requirements with Minor in MBM - 40-43 credits

Option: Minor in Integrative and Functional Nutrition (IFN) - 12 credits

Total Degree Requirements with Minor in IFN - 37-40 credits

Total Credits (years 1.5-2)

Degree Requirements for 2018-2019 Academic Year were approved by the CIMHS Degree Program Committee.


  • The degree completion time for a student following the default course sequence will average between 16 and 20 months. Some students may complete degree requirements in fewer terms and some may require more terms to complete the degree.
  • A listing of acceptable College of Integrative Medicine and Health Science (CIMHS) courses and electives are available in the University Catalog. Students may also choose an elective from other departments.
  • As part of the 5593 Advanced Practicum course, students will complete a practical examination.  It is possible to pass the course requirements; however, passing the examination is the final requirement to earn the certificate in Integrative Wellness Coaching. 
  • This is a structured cohort program and the sequence of courses is different for students who start in the fall than for students who start in the spring.

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