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Public Health Core Courses

The core courses within the NYU MPH serve as the foundation of the program curriculum. Whether full-time or part-time, MPH students focus on the core courses first, taking the knowledge and skills acquired from these courses and applying them in concentration, elective and practice-based courses. The selection of the core courses varies by concentration and students should refer to their specific concentration requirements before enrolling. Below are the course descriptions for all of the core courses across concentrations.


Fall semester
3 credits
Prerequisites: PUHE-GE 2996, PUHE-GE 2306 and PUHE-GE2361

Please click here for the syllabus.

Definition and description of health problems of specific immigrant communities in New York City using census data and other sources of objective information. Through field observations, students determine the ways in which health providers, community leaders, and community residents view health problems, and compare these views with more objective data as a means to develop health intervention strategies.

Objectives:

  1. Identify standard methods for assessing the health needs of specific target communities.
  2. Identify standard methods and application skills necessary for describing a geographically defined community in socioeconomic and demographic terms, using a variety of data sources.
  3. Describe the use of computer programs such as INFOSHARE, census data, and other resources for describing the health status of specific communities.
  4. Describe methods for conducting qualitative research on community health needs such as questionnaires, interviews, observations, and focus groups.
  5. Identify methods for describing a community's health resources, most pressing health-related problems, and recommendations for programs to address health needs, and effective ways to present that information. 

 

Fall Semester
3 credits
Prerequisites: None

Please click here to view the syllabus.

This course sequence is intended for graduate students in the epidemiology, public health and clinical research fields. This course provides both the foundations necessary for Biostatistics II and serves as a standalone introductory statistics course. It will concentrate on the interpretation and comprehension of graphical and statistical techniques that are important components of scientific literature. Mathematical ability at the level of high school algebra is required. We will also be using the statistical program SPSS to perform statistical processing and there will be assignments that require the use of this program. We will go over the necessary parts of SPSS in class sessions as needed, but you will be expected to work on these assignments on your own. SPSS is installed on the computers in the computer labs at NYU. There are additional staffed lab sessions each week that provide further demonstrations of techniques and more individualized help.

Spring Semester
3 credits
Prerequisite: PUHE-GE 2995/GPH-GU 2995 Biostatistics I

Please click here to view the syllabus.

This course sequence is intended for graduate students in the epidemiology, public health and clinical research fields and is the second in the Biostatistics sequence. It will concentrate on more advanced methods of statistical analysis and research design that are typical of biological and medical applications of statistics. It is assumed that the student will be familiar with statistical techniques as presented in RESCH-GE 2995/GPH-GU 2995. We will again be using SPSS to perform statistical processing. It is assumed that the student has basic skills in the use of SPSS for entering data sets and performing basic analyses and graphics.

Fall semester
Credits: 0
Pre-requisites: none; incoming students only

This course will review the degree requirements for the Community & International Health, Global Health Leadership, and Public Health Nutrition concentrations. It will look at core course, concentration course, and elective requirements in addition to the culminating experiences. It will prepare students to understand the course registration process, when courses are typically offered and other information relevant to course enrollment. It will ensure that students understand their concentration’s degree requirements, how to register on Albert, how to read the NYU MPH course schedule, become familiar with basic information about various courses, and become familiar with different tools to use when planning out course sschedules.

Spring Semester
3 credits
Prerequisites: RESCH-GE 2995/GPH-GU 2995 Biostatistics I

Please click here to view the syllabus.

 

Introduces students to the field of public health epidemiology, emphasizing the sociocultural factors associated with the distribution and etiology of health and disease. Methodological skills including the calculation of rates, analysis of vital statistics, and programming data using a basic statistical package are covered.

Objectives:

  1. Define the content, uses, and significance of epidemiology as a means of public health investigation.
  2. Describe epidemiological approaches to defining and measuring health problems in defined populations.
  3. Describe the strengths and limitations of epidemiological study designs.
  4. Explain the contributions of epidemiological approaches to disease prevention, health promotion, and health policy.
  5. Describe the role of epidemiological approaches in evaluating the effectiveness and efficiency of health care and preventive health services.
  6. Identify methods for describing disease rates and other vital statistics.
  7. Describe methods for critical analysis of the results of epidemiological research.
  8. Identify and evaluate methods for performing epidemiological research.  

 

Fall Semester
3 credits
Prerequisites: None

Please click here to view the syllabus.

This course is an introduction to environmental health issues. The course will help
students gain a better understanding of the environmental factors and issues that affect
human health. Topics covered include population growth and urbanization, human
ecology, pesticide use, noise pollution, air pollution, water pollution, waste generation
and management, global climate change, and others.

Objectives:

  1. Describe the relationship of environmental factors to health status.
  2. Identify the role and effectiveness of environmental regulations.
  3. Describe policy and programmatic methods to reduce risks posed by environmental hazards. 

 

Fall Semester
3 Credits
Prerequisites: None

Please click here to view the syllabus.

This course prepares students to critically examine public health issues from a global perspective. It willhelp you to understand how processes of socioeconomic development and globalization influence thehealth of populations throughout the world. It will present the state‐of‐the‐art in addressing globalhealth problems, and introduce you to the primary actors involved in setting global health policies andin developing global health programs and services. The course will also touch upon the ethicaldimensions of global public health, including conflicts between individuals, communities, and nations.

This course will help you to:

1. Understand the most important health threats confronting people in low‐ and middle‐incomecountries;

2. Describe the historical, social, political, and environmental determinants of these global healthproblems;

3. Analyze current approaches to addressing global health challenges;

4. Assess the roles of major actors and organizations involved in the global health field; and

5. Examine your knowledge, values and beliefs in regard to global health problems and theirsolutions.

 

Spring Semester
3 credits
Prerequisites: None

Please click here to view the syllabus.

This course is designed to provide students with an introduction to and overview of the key areas of environmental health. Using the perspectives of the population and community, the course will cover factors associated with the development of environmental health problems. Students will gain an understanding of the interaction of individuals and communities with the environment, the potential impact on health of environmental agents, and specific applications of concepts of environmental health. The course will consist of a series of lectures and will cover principles derived from core environmental health disciplines. The sequence of major topics begins with background material and "tools of the trade" (i.e., environmental epidemiology and environmental toxicology). The course then covers human activities that lead to exposures to agents of environmental diseases, including chemical, physical, and microbial agents that originate in the environment and can impact human health.

 

Fall Semester
3 credits
Prerequisites: None

Please click here to view the syllabus.

Governments bear significant responsibilities for assuring the health of their people. As our understanding of the social determinants of health has improved, exercising this responsibility calls for national policies that include planning for the personal health care system, addressing broader issues of population health services and links to policies that affect education, economic development, the environment, among other areas. All nations, especially developing countries and those in transition, face challenges to their national health strategies from the effects of globalization and global decision-making on issues that affect health. Government leaders must address not only health problems within their borders, but those that come across their borders. They must also interact with international organizations that affect global health. This course provides students with a comparative, cross-national overview to key issues, concepts and theories related to the planning, evaluation, financing, organization, management and reform of personal care and population-oriented health systems, worldwide.

 

Fall Semester
3 credits
Prerequisites: None

Please click here to view the syllabus.

This core course examines social, psychological and cultural factors that have an impact on public health in community, national and global contexts. These factors may include: population characteristics (social class, age, gender, culture, race/ethnicity), individual beliefs and behaviors, and socio-political systems and policies that affect public health problems and their solutions. Theories and perspectives drawn from sociology, anthropology, and psychology are applied to critical issues in global public health including the AIDs epidemic, mental illness, chronic disease, community violence, war and natural disaster trauma as well as behavioral health problems such as smoking and substance abuse.


Fall Semester
Pass/Fail
0 Credits
Prerequisites: None

Public Health Informatics is a new field that is concerned with the systematic application of information and computer sciences to practice, research and learning. This course is created to ensure that graduates of the program have (1) basic familiarity with the issues of technology in computers, communications and genomics in global health; (2) working knowledge of information resources available for program planning, surveillance and data management and (3) working knowledge in the use of evidence-based public health information tools that ensure use of the best practices currently and for lifelong learning. The course is divided into 2 parts (Fall and Spring) which are required by all students in the NYU Master's Program in Global Public Health program.

Spring Semester
Pass/Fail
0 Credits
Prerequisites: GPH-GU 2171 Global Public Health Informatics I

Please click here to view the syllabus.

Public Health Informatics is a new field that is concerned with the systematic application of information and computer sciences to practice, research and learning. This course is created to ensure that graduates of the program have (1) basic familiarity with the issues of technology in computers, communications and genomics in global health; (2) working knowledge of information resources available for program planning, surveillance and data management and (3) working knowledge in the use of evidence-based public health information tools that ensure use of the best practices currently and for lifelong learning. The course is divided into 2 parts (Fall and Spring) which are required by all students in the NYU Master's Program in Global Public Health program.

 

Fall Semester
3 Credits
Prerequisites: None

Please click here to view the syllabus.

Examination of the mission of public health from a historical perspective. Past and current public health issues, policies, and practices are critically analyzed.

Objectives:

  1. Describe basic landmarks in the history of public health in the United States and selected countries.
  2. Describe historical trends in demographic patterns and other factors that influence public health.
  3. Describe the influence of economic, social and cultural factors on disease incidence, definition of public health problems, and societal responses to those problems.
  4. Describe the interaction between biology and social values in formulation of ideas about disease causation, prevention and treatment, as well as views of social responsibility in matters of public health.
  5. Identify the impact of new models of disease (example: germ theory) on public health activities.
  6. Explain the historical basis of current inequalities in health with regard to race and income and of the factors that contributed to those inequalities.  

 

Fall/Spring Semester
4 credits
Prerequisites: None

Please click here to view the syllabus.

This introductory course in the Health Policy and Management Program of the Wagner School is designed to familiarize students with some basic concepts and ideas concerning the distribution of health and illness in society, the organization of the U.S. health care system, and the relationship of one to the other. We will discuss and debate definitions of health and illness, tools for their assessment, and the historical context for developments in public health and medicine. We will also examine the characteristics of the health care system at the local, state and federal levels in the United States as well as in other wealthy nations with systems of universal coverage. Further, students will be encouraged to become familiar with the health care needs and system in one other country of their choosing; this country will serve as a point of comparative analysis throughout the semester. 

Spring Semester
3 credits
Prerequisites: PUHE-GE 2318 and PUHE-GE 2355

Please click here to view the syllabus.

Research methods for identification of population-based needs for public health intervention, development of programs to meet those needs, and evaluation of the effectiveness of the intervention. Application of research methods to proposal writing, budget planning, project management, and program evaluation.

Objectives:

Describe the basic elements of program planning in public health: needs assessment, goals, objectives, activities, timeline, budget, evaluation.

  1. Identify the principal barriers to successful implementation of program plans.
  2. Identify the principal methods for overcoming barriers to program implementation.
  3. Describe the principal methods for evaluation of public health program plans.
  4. Describe methods for demonstrating the ability to develop, implement, and constructively evaluate public health program plans. 

Spring Semester
3 credits
Prerequisites: None

Please click here to view the syllabus.

This course is devoted to flexible forms of inquiry suited to the local context of global public health research. Sometimes known as 'action research', 'rapid assessment, and 'community-based participatory research' these approaches share a commitment to working closely with and in communities to identify health risks and effective interventions for ameliorating them. Although field research may include surveys and other forms of quantitative research, the emphasis in this class will be on qualitative methods with mixed method approaches included where appropriate. The focus will be on introducing the basic content/skills of on-the-ground field research under challenging conditions, i.e., shortages of time and resources as well as cultural/ linguistic differences. There are additional aspects to learning these methods (e.g., data analysis) that require much more time and skill development than is possible in this brief introductory course. Interested students are strongly advised to take additional coursework in qualitative methods.

Fall and Spring semesters
Credits: 0
Pre-requisites: none

This non-credit bearing course will require students to read and discuss important global public health books exploring the evolution of the field of public health in global perspective from the 19th century to the present. All MPH students will be required to complete 3 of these non-credit bearing courses prior to graduation. For each of these course sessions, a book will be discussed in a public lecture by its author; students are expected to read the book in advance, responding with a “forum”posting on the "NYU Classes” website one week in advance of the lecture, including a question raised by the book about public health. Questions will be collected and forwarded to our author-speakers in advance of their public lectures. The lecture and Q&A will be chaired by a member of the GIPH faculty and will last for two hours. Students are expected to sign up for/ complete the reading and written response/ attend the lecture for at least three books in the history of global public health over the semesters in which they are earning their graduate degrees. The successful completion of three or more of these course sessions will lead towards the achieving this critical content as described by ASPPH for the 21st century MPH: “History and philosophy of public health as well as its core values, concepts, functions, and leadership roles.”

 

Spring Semester
3 credits
Prerequisites
: APSTA-GE 2995
Please click here to view the syllabus.

Review of research and original writings related to public health. Application of research methodology to problems in public health.

Objectives:

  1. Identify the types of research questions and designs appropriate for studies in public health.
  2. Describe the various types of qualitative and quantitative methods used in social research.
  3. Describe the design of standard tools for applying qualitative and quantitative research methods, such as structured questionnaires, unstructured interviews, focus groups, and open-ended interviews.
  4. Identify alternative methods of analysis for various types of data.
  5. Evaluate the strengths and limitations of methods used in specific research projects.
  6. Describe methods for designing research projects related to specific public health problems. 

 

Fall Semester
3 credits
Prerequisites: None
Please click here to view the syllabus.

A study of the social, psychological, and cultural determinants of health behavior and consideration of their meaning for public health professionals in domestic and international community settings. The course addresses conditions and phenomena that affect people's understanding, acceptance, and use of health information and, therefore, the design, implementation, and evaluation of community health interventions.

Objectives:

  1. Explain the role of social, behavioral and cultural theories and models in health promotion program planning.
  2. Describe the key components of "core" models and theories of behavior change and describe their applications. Examples of such models and theories include the Health Belief Model, Theory of Reasoned Action, Social Cognitive Theory, Organizational Change, and Diffusion of Innovation.
  3. Describe the theoretical foundation necessary for designing needs assessment activities and instruments necessary for planning effective health interventions. 

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