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ASPPH Presents: Innovative Approaches to Applied and Experiential Learning for Undergraduates

Originally scheduled for the 2017 Undergraduate Summit for Public Health and Global Health Education, this webinar featured two presentations: “Immersing Online Students through Role Plays, a Case Study, and Group Work: Reconceptualizing an Environmental Quality and Health Course” and “Ethics, Safety, and Power Dynamics, Oh My! Best Practices in Undergraduate Public Health and Global Health Educational & Service Experiences with Vulnerable Populations.” Find out more about each presentation below.

Immersing Online Students through Role Plays, a Case Study, and Group Work: Reconceptualizing an Environmental Quality and Health Course

Miryha G Runnerstrom, Ph.D., Program in Public Health, University of California, Irvine Program in Public Health, Irvine, CA and Janet L DiVincenzo, MA, Center for Instructional Design, University of California, Irvine, Irvine, CA

Learning Objectives:

  • Summarize the challenges associated with small group work in an online setting
  • Assess whether a case-study approach is appropriate for their own course design
  • Judge whether a role-playing approach is a relevant method for engaging online students in their course

Online courses can lack synchronous interaction among students, as well as with the instructor and teaching assistants. Our goal was to transform an online lower-division public health course into an engaging and engrossing experience that promoted sustained interaction among all students and instructional staff. The design of this course went beyond the traditional online course model to include role-playing inside of a real-world case study, interactive online lessons, and weekly team videoconferences and assignments. Students were assigned to teams and to roles, and students were required to participate in discussions, assignments, and video conferences in character. The case study focused on rainforest deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon from human and planetary health perspectives. Highly graphical interactive online lessons introduced key components of the case study and provided character biographical sketches. Weekly discussion forums challenged students to think critically about issues pertaining to the case study and weekly hour-long team video conferences gave teams a synchronous space to collaborate and debate. Lecture topics and assigned readings were selected based on relevance to the case study. Videoconferences were well-attended and teams completed assignments during this time; however, we observed that teams deviated from our suggested sequencing of assignments. Student comments about assignments were positive and reveal that the case study promoted critical thinking from multiple perspectives. Student feedback about role-playing and teamwork were mixed, though most felt that the team structure encouraged interaction and learning. Online courses using a combination of role-playing, case studies, and group work promote student engagement in the learning process and analysis of problems from multiple perspectives. Despite the challenges inherent with teamwork, collaboration is essential in the field of public health and is an important part of an undergraduate curriculum.

Syllabus for Environmental Quality and Health PH60

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Ethics, Safety, and Power Dynamics, Oh My! Best Practices in Undergraduate Public Health and Global Health Educational & Service Experiences with Vulnerable Populations

 Jessica Evert, MD, Department of Family and Community Medicine, UCSF/Child Family Health International (CFHI), San Francisco, CA and Tricia Todd, MPH, Health Careers Center/Instructor, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota School of Public Health, Minneapolis, MN

Learning Objectives:

  • List the need-to-know best practice guidelines that govern short-term experiences in global health undertaken during undergraduate public health and global health education.
  • Appraise the relationship between best practices as a framework and ensuring ethical integrity, patient/community safety, and sustainable relationships and development.
  • Formulate approaches for yourself as an individual and/or an institution to operationalize best practices and recognize the ‘red flags’ of approaches/programs that do not embody best-practices.

The fields of public health and global health have a value-based foundation working toward health equity and optimal health status that can only be achieved through the realization of ethical ideals and empowerment of traditionally dis-empowered corners of the world. Yet when it comes to training and service activities undertaken by undergraduates in global health and public health, there are often complex dynamics that can lead to antithetical activities- those that lack humility and professionalism, endanger patient safety, dis-empower existing systems and community members, and generally defy the ethics and values that our foundation in public and global health are based upon.

This session will provide an overview of need-to-know best practices that apply to education and service activities for undergraduate public health and global health education, as well as tangible tools to help make guidelines a reality in practice. Through a case-based session structure we will explore the ‘slippery slope’ and ‘red flags’ that can both predict and lead to the best of intentions being implemented in a way that misses the mark, sometimes with significant consequences. We will explore the dynamics, including lack of clarity at the graduate and professional school admissions levels, that can lead to mis-understanding as to what experiences prepare students for the next step in their career path. Attendees will walk away with tangible next steps including joining communities of thought and practice, as well as integrating increased mindfulness into individual and institutional actions.

Related Web Pages:

www.gaspworkinggroup.org
www.cfhi.org
https://www.healthcareers.umn.edu/courses-and-events/online-workshops/global-amba

 

  • Featured Speakers

    Miryha G Runnerstrom, PhD

    Program in Public Health, University of California, Irvine Program in Public Health

    Janet L DiVincenzo, MA

    Center for Instructional Design, University of California, Irvine

    Jessica Evert, MD

    Department of Family and Community Medicine, UCSF/Child Family Health International (CFHI)

    Tricia Todd, MPH

    Health Careers Center/Instructor, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota School of Public Health

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