Skip Navigation

Course Catalog


Department: Extradepartmental
Term: 2nd term
Credits: 4 credits
Contact: Judy Holzer
Academic Year: 2012 - 2013
Course Instructor:

Uses divergent public health issues to illustrate a systematic problem solving process for use in addressing public health problems. The problem solving process includes defining the problem, measuring its magnitude, understanding the key determinants, developing a conceptual framework of the relationships between the key determinants, identifying and developing intervention and prevention strategies (either interventions or policies), setting priorities among intervention options, understanding barriers to implementation and evaluation, and developing an effective communication strategy. Consists of lectures, discussions, small-group exercises, a group project, and individual assignments.

Learning Objective(s):
Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
Analyze a public health problem and evaluate intervention/policy alternatives using the problem solving methodology outlined above
Compare and contrast the utility of the methodology to solve public health problems that emerge at different periods in the life cycle and in different cultures, including: • HIV/AIDS • Childhood immunization • Radioactive iodine exposure and thyroid cancer • Unintended Injuries and their prevention • Obesity prevention • Tobacco abuse • Screening mammography and breast cancer
Carry out a group project under the guidance of a Teaching Assistant (TA), in which student groups will research a specific public health problem, prepare a written report and present their recommendations to the class following the problem-solving methodology
Recognize the complexity of policy development, including an Discussing of the politics of public health issues, the roles of interest groups and stakeholders, and the laws and social values that must be woven into successful policies
Integrate human rights and ethical principles into the analysis of public health problems and recommended strategies
Recognize the critical role of communication in public health practice
Work together in multi-disciplinary groups that model the way public health agencies conduct problem-solving activities
Demonstrate critical and analytical thinking by preparing three individual products (a self-assessment of the process, an individual critique of a paper submitted by another group, and a health and human rights assessment)

Methods of Assessment: in-class participation and final project
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Class Times:
  • Tue 11/13/2012 - Fri 11/16/2012
  • Tuesday 8:30 - 6:00
  • Wednesday 8:30 - 6:00
  • Thursday 8:30 - 6:00
  • Friday 8:30 - 6:00
Enrollment Minimum: 10
Enrollment Maximum: 45
Instructor Consent: Consent required for some students

Full-time degree seeking students must obtain permission from Judy Holzer in HPM in order to register for this course.

For consent, contact:
Auditors Allowed: No
Grading Restriction: Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Frequency Schedule: One Year Only
Next Offered: 2015-2016