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2014 Core Competencies for Public Health Professionals Integrated into TRAIN

Related Categories: Council on Linkages, TRAIN, Workforce Development

Topic: TRAIN, Workforce Development

Author: Samantha Draper

Date: 4/22/2015

​The revised Core Competencies for Public Health Professionals (Core Competencies) released by the Council on Linkages Between Academia and Public Health Practice (Council on Linkages) in June 2014 are now fully integrated into TRAIN, the nation’s premier learning management network for professionals who protect the public’s health. This integration provides individuals with the ability to search for courses by the revised Core Competencies as well as course providers the ability to select appropriate competencies when listing courses on TRAIN.


Public health department accreditation and overall professional development needs are making competency-based training increasingly important to health departments. To help meet this growing need, when listing courses on TRAIN, course providers are encouraged to select appropriate competencies that their courses address. Courses tagged with competencies can enable learners to utilize TRAIN’s ‘Advanced Search’ feature to find courses that address specific competencies.


TRAIN affiliates - state health departments, public health training centers, educational institutions, and national organizations that have funded a customizable TRAIN portal - also benefit from having the revised Core Competencies integrated into TRAIN. Affiliates can track participation in competency-based training, identify gaps in training, and generate reports about public health workforce capacity based on competencies. These reports can be used by health departments seeking to become accredited to demonstrate how professional development needs are being addressed by the agencies. In addition, for those health departments already accredited, the reports can be used to demonstrate to the Public Health Accreditation Board progress being made towards addressing continuing and emerging professional development needs.


To help course providers and public health practitioners learn more about the revised Core Competencies, the Council on Linkages recently held several webinars in collaboration with the National Association of County and City Health Officials((NACCHO), Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO), and Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health (ASPPH). The webinars focused on changes made to the Core Competencies, how these changes address feedback from the public health community, and tools available to support use of the Core Competencies. Archived versions of these webinars are currently available on the Public Health Foundation (PHF) website:

For those seeking a short introduction to the Core Competencies, an informational video discusses what they are, how they were developed, and what they are used for. There are numerous opportunities to integrate the Core Competencies into job descriptions, workforce development plans, and other initiatives. PHF also offers customized assistance to help health departments use the Core Competencies, such as a workshop on Aligning the Core Competencies with Job Descriptions.

More information about the Core Competencies can be found by visiting the Core Competencies section of the PHF website or contacting For questions about TRAIN, please contact


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2014 Core Competencies for Public Health Professionals Integrated into TRAIN