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A Coalition-based SMART Approach to Public Health Advocacy

3rd Term
Population, Family and Reproductive Health
Academic Year
2022 - 2023
Instruction Method
Asynchronous Online
Auditors Allowed
Yes, with instructor consent
Available to Undergraduate
Grading Restriction
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor(s)
Contact Name
Frequency Schedule
Every Year
Advocacy—working for policy change and better implementation of existing policies—is crucial to public health. As research and discovery are translated into public health policies and programs, accurate interpretation and use of evidence are essential to all stakeholders. Yet the advocacy aspects of public health success stories are not always well understood. The SMART—Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound—advocacy approach connects short-term advocacy strategies and wins with broad, long-term goals.
Introduces the coalition-based SMART model of advocacy as an approach for improving public health outcomes and changing public health policies. Examines international case studies in which advocacy focused on decision-makers played a central role and includes lectures from seasoned advocates. Using reproductive health examples, presents foundational advocacy frameworks and enables students to work through advocacy strategies that are adaptive to a variety of health areas.
Learning Objectives
Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
  1. Articulate different approaches to advocacy and the external and internal factors that influence the public health policymaking process and its implementation
  2. Develop and implement a decision-maker-centric method of achieving financial and political support
  3. Distinguish multiple dimensions (including the role of ethics and evidence) of the public health policymaking process (MPH competency 12) and relate them to the SMART approach to advocacy
  4. Identify and express elements of the SMART approach to advocacy
  5. Advocate for political, social, or economic policies and programs that will improve health in diverse populations by applying the SMART approach to advocacy on a public health issue
Methods of Assessment
This course is evaluated as follows:
  • 35% Participation
  • 55% Written Assignment(s)
  • 10% Peer Assessment