PUBH 1202: What is Public Health?

3 CreditsOnline Available

Decisions regarding the public’s health affect all of us, and this fact could not be more apparent as we continue to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, mask and vaccination mandates have directly impacted how we interact at this university. This course is an introduction to the principles of public health, the multi-dimensional mechanisms used to reach public health goals, and the basic aspects of data collection that enable public health to promote and maintain healthy communities.The purpose of this public health course is to introduce – albeit broadly – undergraduate students to the public health approaches used to address a wide range of societal challenges. A public health approach is grounded in social justice, where people are provided basic human rights and are equality is paramount, and it emphasizes addressing challenges at the systems level. In public health we focus on prevention and population health. Students in this course will be prepared to better understand, critically evaluate, and consider how they may alleviate current and emerging challenges to the health of our global society. Specifically, this course will introduce you to public health concepts that aim to protect the public’s health and wellbeing. We will discuss the leading causes of early death; the most burdensome diseases; the inter-relatedness of the environment, physiology and culture; as well as systems that have been shown to reduce threats to our health. In fact, we will specifically discuss how to approach population-based health using systems-level thinking. As we learn about the role and responsibilities of public health, we will discuss careers in public health, as well as the need and roles of other professions who help keep the public healthy.This course is appropriate for any student interested in understanding how health is protected at the population level, and how certain areas of public health contribute to many other professions including those that deal with clinical medicine, government, law, sociology, ethics and human rights/social justice. In particular, students who are interested in pursuing either the Public HealthMinor or Public Health Major should take this course to determine whether this area of study is truly of interest to them. This course is a pre-requisite to applying for the Public Health Major, and is required for the Public Health Minor.

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A- Average (3.757)Most Common: A (75%)

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