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Health Systems Research and Evaluation in Developing Countries

East Baltimore
3rd Term
International Health
Academic Year
2022 - 2023
Instruction Method
Class Time(s)
Tu, Th, 1:30 - 3:20pm
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

220.601.01 Foundations of International Health
221.646.01 Health Systems in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

Builds an understanding of the purpose and nature of health systems research and evaluation (HSRE) as a multi-disciplinary endeavor with scope for diverse inferences. Provides a landscape of the range of research questions and associated methodological approaches and study designs available for HSRE within health system building blocks and at various levels of the health system (macro, meso, micro). In addition, explores cross-cutting issues of equity and social justice, digital health applications and scientific rigor. Fosters the ability to develop different research strategies depending on the research question at hand and to read health systems research (HSR) critically.
Learning Objectives
Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
  1. Articulate uses of HSR to explore, understand and evaluate the effect of programs and policies for their impact on public health and health equity, and delineate between types of inferences available within HSR
  2. Develop HSR questions with an understanding of the role of quantitative, qualitative, and mixed method approaches within different study designs, depending on the type of inference required to improve health systems processes
  3. Describe the types of evidence derived from diverse methodological approaches (quantitative, qualitative, or mixed method) to HSR, and the types of data collection techniques, stakeholders and participants involved
  4. Describe a range of approaches used for HSR, and how to ensure rigor in the various approaches (quasi-experimental methods, use of administrative data, facility surveys, case studies, participatory/action research, ethnography, and mixed methods)
  5. Explain how analytical lenses, such as equity and social justice, and digital health applications are used for HSRE
Methods of Assessment
This course is evaluated as follows:
  • 15% Participation
  • 30% Reflection
  • 55% Paper(s)