Arts and Health Certificate - University of Houston
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Questions? Please contact
Fleurette S. Fernando
Arts Leadership Director 

The Graduate Certificate in Arts and Health Program, offered through the M.A. in Arts Leadership Program, is an exclusive 9-credit, non-degree program at the University of Houston. The program combines the fine and performing arts into the areas of health, healthcare and well-being.

It is open to both current and prospective University of Houston graduate students. Current University of Houston graduate students must have completed a minimum of 9 graduate credit hours with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in a related field which can include (but is not limited to) art, art history, arts leadership, architecture, anthropology, education, history, health sciences, liberal arts and social sciences, medicine and nursing.

Course Requirements

In order to receive the Graduate Certificate in Arts and Health, certificate courses cannot double count between the certificate and any other graduate program on or off the UH campus. Individual courses can, however, be taken as elective courses in any UH graduate degree program. Students have up to three years to complete the certificate.

The certificate requires 9 semester credit hours of coursework. It consists of:

  • 6 hours of required specialty arts and health courses
  • 3 hours free elective, including an optional internship placement

ARLD 6380 - Introduction to Arts and Health
This course explores the theoretical foundations that facilitate an understanding of the relationship of creativity to health and informs the field and practice of arts in medicine and will serve as an introduction to the emerging field of Arts in Health. This experiential course will be held in part at the Texas Medical Center and consist of lectures by established professionals in the field, tours to programs in session, and hands on activities. In completion of this course students will demonstrate a broad understanding of how the arts are used to improve health and well-being in America in; the healthcare environment, the patient experience, clinical services, caring for caregivers, health sciences education and community health and well-being.

ARLD 6395 Selected Topics in Arts Leadership - Healthcare Administration, Policy and Research 
This course explores an overview of hospital administration and research and evaluation in arts in medicine. Quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods will be discussed, with an emphasis on arts informed approaches for use in healthcare settings, be it in the hospital or in the community. Through video lectures, webinars, readings, writing assignments, and weekly discussions, students will learn the basics of developing a research proposal and evaluation plan.

One (1) course (3 credit hours) from the following must be completed within three years to successfully to complete the graduate certificate:

ARLD 6395 Selected Topics in Arts Leadership - Arts and Health in Practice
This course explores the practice of arts in medicine in the fields of health and human services. The course will be providing a dynamic, interdisciplinary overview of diverse practices and methodologies in the field of arts in medicine in community and healthcare settings including art therapy, art in public health, art and design in the environment of care, art and compassion, art and human development and art of self-care.

ARLD 6391 Internship Placement
A 150- hour professional placement in an arts integrated healthcare setting.

ARLD 6310 Fundraising for the Arts
The course serves as an introduction to fundraising strategies for leaders of the arts and provides a comprehensive overview of the fundraising process for non-profit organizations. Students are introduced to basic terminology and concepts in the field; relationship building, the solicitation process, the grants process, major gifts process, the annual campaign, corporate giving and the role of planned giving within an organization’s overall fundraising efforts.

ARLD 6315 Public Relations and Marketing in the Arts
Introduction to public relations and marketing for leaders of arts organizations, this introductory course surveys a variety of techniques, from audience research and campaign development to advertising and branding, and emerging online tools. Basic strategies of public relations will be explored along with methods for making the most of social media platforms to develop and deepen customer relationships. The course will cover marketing principles as they relate to building, maintaining and developing audiences for performing and visual arts organizations.

ARLD 6320 Financial Management for the Arts

Course investigates fundamental concepts of financial theory and applies to the management of Arts Organizations; concepts include financial statement analysis, profit planning, sources and forms of financing, budgeting and business valuation.

Fall 2021 

All classes are from 5:30 - 8:30 p.m. unless otherwise listed.  

ARLD 6380 – Introduction to Arts in Health

ARLD 6320 – Financial Management for the Arts

ARLD 6310 – Fundraising for the Arts

Spring 2022

All classes are from 5:30 - 8:30 p.m. unless otherwise listed.  

ARLD 6395 – Healthcare Administration, Policy and Research (Selected Topics in Arts Leadership)

ARLD 6315 – Marketing and Communications in the Arts

ARLD 6395 – Arts and Health in Practice (Selected Topics in Arts Leadership)


"I work as the Visual Arts Project Specialist for the Center for Performing Arts Medicine at Houston Methodist meaning I organize the visual art experiences for the hospital system. My degree in Arts Leadership allowed me to fine tune how I work and think about programming for arts organizations. It prepared me by exposing me to different ways of working in the arts and finding the similarities across mediums. I learned advanced skills in working with new audiences and creating accessible programs both with language and technology. The connections my instructors provided led me to this specialized field in arts and gave me the insight into who I am as an arts leader to realize that arts in healthcare was the field I had been looking for all my career." Caroline Docwra (MA '17), Visual Arts Project Specialist, Center for Performing Arts Medicine at Houston Methodist Hospital