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The Social Context of Adolescent Health and Development

East Baltimore
4th term
Population, Family and Reproductive Health
3 credits
Academic Year:
2019 - 2020
Instruction Method:
Class Times:
  • Monday,  1:30 - 4:20pm
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Undergrads Allowed:
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor:
Terri Powell

Students should take this course if they believe that the process is as important as the outcome. We blend case-based learning with service learning to understand the social context of adolescent health and development. Using classroom discussions, critical reflections and frequent interactions with adolescents, students learn how to describe and address community-identified issues that are relevant to adolescents. Here's what other students have said about the course:

"Oh no. There's no 'outstanding' mark??... This course truly was outstanding/excellent."

"I really loved the course and the content... I am grateful for the opportunity to work with the [high school] students."

Recognizes the social ecological model, social determinants of health tenants and the life course perspective as tools to understanding adolescent health. Explores the influences of contexts, such as neighborhoods, education and families, on adolescent health and well-being. Examines empirical work to consider the role of context in prevention and interventions aimed at adolescents.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Identify the social determinants of adolescent health and development
  2. Explain the role of contextual factors in shaping adolescent health and development
  3. Demonstrate effective communication and presentation skills with diverse audiences
  4. Develop case studies based on issues relevant to Baltimore adolescents
  5. Integrate contextual factors into health promotion strategies for adolescents
Methods of Assessment:

This course is evaluated as follows:

  • 10% Participation
  • 30% Group Project(s)
  • 30% Double Entry Journal
  • 20% Final Presentation
  • 10% Peer Assessment

Enrollment Restriction:

Masters, Doctoral and Adolescent Health Certificate students only

Instructor Consent:

No consent required

Special Comments:

Students will team up with high school students from Paul Laurence Dunbar High School to develop Baltimore-based case studies focused on an adolescent health topic. Dunbar students are seniors enrolled in a Public Health Ethics course. Students will be required to meet their high school team mated at Dunbar FOUR times throughout the term (mornings 8a-930a). Students will be responsible for transportation. Dunbar is located at 1400 Orleans St (slightly west of campus at the corner of Orleans and Caroline).