Problem Solving in Public Health
2023 - 2024
Uses divergent public health issues to illustrate a systematic problem solving process for use in addressing public health problems. 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 ObjectivesUpon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
- Analyze a public health problem and evaluate intervention/policy alternatives using the problem- solving methodology
- 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 and health systems
- Research a specific public health problem, prepare a written report and present recommendations following the problem- solving methodology
- Recognize and discuss the complexity of policy development, including 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 and collaboration in public health practice
- Conduct problem-solving activities that model the methods of public health agencies
- Demonstrate individual critical and analytical thinking through the self-assessment of the problem-solving process, critique of others’ recommendations, and a health and human rights assessment
Methods of Assessment
This course is evaluated as follows:
- 10% Participation
- 10% Reflection
- 20% Group Work
- 20% Group Presentation
- 40% Final Paper
Restricted to Part-Time MPH Students and Training Certificate Students. 3. No auditors or students not matriculating as part-time MPH students are allowed to enroll.
Jointly Offered With
The winter institute section of this course can only be taken for a letter grade. Coursework is completed in the weeks following the 2-week session in January.