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ELEC 5047 Foundations in Global Health Enrichment Elective

Course Directors:

The Foundations in Global Health Enrichment Elective is a longitudinal enrichment elective for 1st and 2nd year medical students who are planning to pursue global health experiences during winter, spring or summer breaks. It arose in response to enormous student interest in international medicine, with increasing numbers of students choosing to spend time overseas during medical school. This elective provides a foundation of practical knowledge in global health and optimizes the students' overseas experiences, maximizes the safety of their travel, facilitates their adaptation to working in different cultural settings, and maximizes their impact in the communities where they serve. The course material is presented through a variety of approaches, including lectures, online learning modules, small group case discussions, book discussions, journal club discussions and practical workshops. The global health experience portion of this elective utilizes a community service learning model, in which preparation, mentorship, evaluation, reflection and reporting are essential in meeting the expressed need of a particular community. 
Students are selected into this course based off of an application process.  Applications for the 2017-2018 academic year are no longer being accepted.  Please be looking for an email during the summer of 2018 announcing the application deadline for the 2018-2019 academic year.   

  1. To advance knowledge specific to global health issues, such as social determinants of health and health disparities, community health, preventive medicine, disease burden measurements, health policy, maternal and child health
  2. To broaden understanding of chronic and infectious diseases impacting developing countries, with emphasis on HIV and TB
  3. To highlight importance of prioritizing community resources-community leaders, public health services, faith groups, governments and other NGOs – to encourage collaboration
  4. To teach diagnostic and management approaches of tropical infectious diseases, including malaria, dengue, typhoid, intestinal parasites, with opportunities for optional hands-on laboratory practicums through Preparing for Global Health 
  5. To provide a framework for understanding ethical dilemmas encountered in global health through case studies
  6. To deepen insight into different cultures thereby building a foundation that promotes professionalism
  7. To offer skills and knowledge geared towards enhancing students’ abilities
Course Requirements:
  1. Twelve sessions per year
    a. In-person sessions conducted by faculty
    b. Online lectures, readings, case discussions and assignments
  2. One global health experience abroad, which must be vetted by the global health committee and signed off by the course directors.  Complete and submit a GRACE Application for review by the global health committee, providing a detailed description of the rotation or project, including your site/program mentor, project objectives with measurable outcomes, timeline and specific tasks/acitivites. All applications must be submitted for review no less than 3 months prior to the elective period.
    • The global health committee and course directors will ensure that the activities are consistent with the objectives and policies of Global Health education at the Center for Medical Humanities & Ethics.  Students may not complete the elective at a location that has not been officially approved.
  3. Book Seminar: In past years the selected books has been Mountains Beyond Mountains by Tracy Kidder.
    a. Read the book
    b. Attend 1 book seminar facilitated by the course co-directors
    c. If you have read this book, please contact to suggest alternative books. Students have also selecte Half the Sky by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn.
  4. Attend at least one (1) Journal Club meeting
  5. Completion of a reflection exercise, i.e. written, oral or photograph.
  6. Completion of Student Site Evaluation: Global Health Student Site Evaluation
Sample Course Outline:
August: Introduction to Global Health
September: Metrics and Social Determinants of Health
October: Global Health Systems, Actors & Ethics
November: Travel Preparation
December: Environmental Health
January: Infectious Diseases
February: Non-Communicable Diseases
March: Maternal and Child Health
April: Bringing Global Health Home
If you are interested in this course, please contact for more informaiton.