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Controlling Infectious Disease-1851 to the Present


East Baltimore
4th term
International Health
3 credits
Academic Year:
2022 - 2023
Instruction Method:
Class Times:
  • Friday,  1:30 - 4:20pm
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Undergrads Allowed:
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor:
  • Alexandre White
Alexandre White

What are the roots of our modern day international infectious disease control systems? This class attempts to understand how global health priorities in the realm of infectious disease control are produced, for what aims and under what social and political conditions.

Discusses advanced topics in the field of global health exploring the development of the first international sanitary conferences to responses to present day public health emergencies of international concern. Acquaints students with the colonial roots of international health, the rise of disease eradication strategies and contemporary responses to global epidemics. Introduces students with the histories and roles of several global health institutions such as the World Health Organization, the Pan-American Health Bureau, the World Bank and others.

Learning Objectives:

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

  1. Examine the differing roles of major global health organizations and contextualize the histories of international regimes of international disease control, for example WHO's International Health Regulations' evolution and importance to contemporary disease control.
  2. Describe the evolution of international disease control from the 19th century to the present
  3. Explain the role of scientific expertise in infectious disease control
  4. Explore the connections between disease control and the concerns of global trade
  5. Conceptualize why certain disease eradication strategies have succeeded while others have failed
  6. Examine primary source material and contextualize original data analyses within larger academic debates
  7. Conduct group research on primary source documents
Methods of Assessment:

This course is evaluated as follows:

  • 10% Assignments
  • 20% Participation
  • 40% Midterm Paper
  • 30% Final Presentation

Instructor Consent:

No consent required