A Guide to Studying for the Exam
NPAS suggests several resources to help prepare you for the ACSM/NPAS Physical Activity in Public Health Specialist (PAPHS) certification exam, including:
- Websites to familiarize you with tools and resources
- On-line articles or guides
- Knowledge, skills, and abilities
- Comprehensive books/tools on physical activity in public health promotion
Preparing to study
Visit the National Physical Activity Society (NPAS) or American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) website.
- Visit the NPAS certification site and research the PAPHS certification FAQs at the NPAS site.
- Visit the Physical Activity in Public Health Specialist page on the ACSM website.
Look at the Core Competencies PAPHS document to identify the Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities you feel competent in and use it to guide you through additional study needs.
Now that you know the competency areas, learn the weighting of each domain in the exam. You will find the exam content areas at http://certification.acsm.org/paphs-domains. How competent are you in those areas? Now you know where you need to spend more time in preparation and study.
Some of the study material listed is available at no cost on the websites below.
ACSM/NPAS Physical Activity in Public Health Specialist Certification Exam Preparation Course:
Developed in conjunction with the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), this online course will help you prepare for the Physical Activity in Public Health Specialist (PAPHS) certification exam. It is also a resource for public health practitioners and other health professionals looking to understand the role of physical activity in public health. Online course includes Foundations of Physical Activity and Public Health textbook. ACSM grants 5 CECs upon completion of the course. For more information visit Human Kinetics.
- Foundations of Physical Activity and Public Health is the first textbook to define the intersection of kinesiology and public health and combine them into a clear picture of how the two fields interact. It details the planning, implementation, and evaluation of successful physical activity promotion programs. For more information visit Human Kinetics.
- David R. Brown, Gregory W. Heath, and Sarah Levin Martin, editors; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity. Promoting Physical Activity: A Guide for Community Action. 2010. 2nd ed. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.
- American College of Sports Medicine.ACSM’s Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription. 2009. 8th ed. Philadelphia, PA:Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
- Task Force on Community Preventive Services. (2005). The Community Guide to Preventive Services: What Works to Promote Health. Available at: http://www.thecommunityguide.org/pa/index.html.
- US Department of Health and Human Services. Physical Activity Evaluation Handbook. Atlanta, GA: US Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; 2002. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpa/physical/handbook/pdf/handbook.pdf
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity, Physical Activity and Health Branch: http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/index.html
- National Physical Activity Plan: http://www.physicalactivityplan.org/
- 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans: http://www.health.gov/paguidelines/
- Healthy People 2020: http://healthypeople.gov/2020/