Substance Abuse Education Minor

For more information:
Katherine Ott Walter, PhD, CHES 
MSC 4301

This cross disciplinary substance abuse education minor provides the student with the foundational knowledge and skills necessary to assist communities in designing evidenced-based prevention/education programs to encourage healthy attitudes and behaviors towards alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.  Course work in this minor will help prepare the student for the Certified Prevention Professionals-ATOD exam, which they can take after one year of prevention-related paid work experience and additional prevention-specific training. Students must complete 18 credit hours from the categories outlined below. Students must take one of the Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs (ATOD) specific courses. The remaining 15 credits must be selected from the additional courses listed below, preferably one from each category. No more than three courses may be taken from a single subject area (PSYC, HTH, SOWK, etc.), and no more than three courses can count for both the student's major/additional minor and the substance abuse education minor.

Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs (ATOD)

Must select one of the following courses:

  • HTH 378 - The Use and Effects of Drugs
  • SOWK/FAM/GERN 487 - Special Topics in Social Work 1
  • JUST 347 - Drugs, Politics and Society
  • PSYC 285 - Drugs and Behavior

Select five courses from the list of courses below (No more than three courses may be taken from a single subject area, i.e., PSYC, HTH, SOWK, etc.):

Prevention, Education and Service Delivery

  • HTH 351 - Health Behavior Change
  • JUST 221 - Social Justice Theories
  • JUST 301 - Special Topics in Justice Studies1
  • JUST 345 - Restorative Justice
  • PSYC 250 - Introduction to Abnormal Psychology
  • PSYC 308 - Health Psychology
  • PSYC 335 - Abnormal Psychology
  • SOWK 317 - Skills for Generalist Social Work
  • SOWK 386 - Youth Empowerment Strategies
  • SOWK 387 - Working with Teenagers
  • SOWK 487 - Special Topics in Social Work1


  • SCOM 370 - Introduction to Health Communication
  • SCOM 470 - Health Communication Campaigns
  • WRTC 484 - Writing for Nonprofits
  • WRTC 486 - Writing in the Community
  • WRTC 488 - Writing in the Health Sciences

Community Organizing

  • FAM/GERN/NPS/SOW 375 - Grant Writing for Agencies
  • NPS 300 - Introduction to Nonprofit Studies Public Policy and Environmental Change
  • POSC 368 - Interest Groups and Public Policy
  • PPA 359 - Policy Analysis
  • PPA 462 - Social Welfare and Local Policy
  • WRTC/SCOM 326 - Environmental Communication and Advocacy
  • SOWK 335 - Social Policy (SOWK majors only)
  • HTH 420 - Global Perspectives in Alcohol and Drug Policies2 Planning and Evaluation
  • HTH 458 - Program Planning and Evaluation

1 When topics are minor related, to be approved by the coordinator.

2Offered in summer only.