Healthy Perspectives

What is Healthy Perspectives?

Healthy Perspectives (HP) is cultural competency training, primarily for students, but also open for faculty, staff and residents at Augusta University. The primary focus of HP, however, is on student learning. First-year health professions students in patient-centered programs are required to complete this course. All healthcare occupations stress the importance of cultural competency among practitioners as a mechanism to avoid cultural misunderstandings. Healthy Perspectives was designed to promote better communication and to develop a strong patient-centered practice. The focus of the course content is first and foremost on creating cultural self-awareness. The next intended purpose is on “the people you meet” as opposed to “the illnesses you treat.”  In this course, students learn more about stereotypes and biases, but most importantly, they begin to appreciate the influence of cultural perspectives on their ability to communicate with others and reach the common goal of better health.

What do students have to do?

Students complete an online program – Healthy Perspectives – designed to improve self-efficacy when working in cross-cultural situations and build communication skills when interacting with culturally diverse patients and colleagues. HP contains modules that aim to develop culturally competent attitudes, knowledge and skills among healthcare students. Each module involves a self-directed, interactive learning segment and an option for personal reflection on the inter-professional discussion board. 

How long will each module take to complete?

The modules should take about 30 minutes, and students have one week to complete each one.

Why is there an e-log and discussion board?

The discussion board is a site for self-reflection and critical thinking. The discussion board is multi-discipline to engage students in thinking about cultural issues from multiple perspectives and gaining a more holistic view on cross-cultural patient care and health issues generally.

Is Healthy Perspectives a requirement?

Yes. All students entering their first patient-centered degree program engage in HP as a graduation or program requirement. HP is a part of the following:

Physician Assistants, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Respiratory Therapy, Clinical Lab Science, Dental Hygiene, Nuclear Medicine Technology, Dental College of Georgia, Medical College of Georgia, BSN Program, and CNL Program

History of Healthy Perspectives at Augusta University

Healthy Perspectives was funded in part by a grant from Healthcare Georgia Foundation. Created in 1999 as an independent, private foundation, the Foundation’s mission is to advance the health of all Georgians and to expand access to affordable, quality healthcare for under-served individuals and communities.

The educational mission of Augusta University is focused on improving the quality of life for individuals and communities through improving health care. Our commitment to educational innovation and reducing barriers to quality health care services sparked the development of Healthy Perspectives, an online, high-tech, cultural competency curriculum for all incoming health care students enrolled in our Colleges of Allied Health Sciences, Dental Medicine, Graduate Studies, Nursing, and Medical College of Georgia. All students have to pass the content quizzes and exercises to exit the graduation requirement because, quite simply, failing cultural competency is not an option for our future healthcare providers

What if I have questions or want to know more about the program?

Contact Dr. Lindsey West at

Course Syllabus 

NOTE: 2020 syllabus will be updated in the Fall