This Faculty Development Fund project supported several key activities that contributed to the larger curriculum re-design effort as a whole. CRLT and SPH Instructional Design Services staff co-led four retreats for the core curriculum faculty in January - April 2018. These retreats focused on moving faculty strategically through the early parts of the course design process. The first oriented faculty to the expectations and timeline, and provided an opportunity to discuss shared goals. The second focused on thinking through assessment activities and the third on developing learning activities. The fourth session was led internally by the SPH and honed in on the logistics of course production, especially for courses pursuing a flipped classroom model with more video or online components. Funds from this project also enabled us to hire a Graduate Student Assistant for the Winter 2018 term. This student contributed to the curation of health communications examples for one of the core courses, drafted content for a training on interprofessional practice to address one of the core competencies, and assisted with compiling examples of evaluation metrics, among other activities. The faculty retreats and the support of the student worker were critical to kick-starting the curriculum design, implementation, and evaluation processes that have been iteratively revisited in the time since.
How many students were impacted by this project?
Graduate students: 274 MPH students entering in Fall 2018, and all subsequent cohorts of MPH students
How many courses were impacted by this project?
Eight new core courses were part of the curriculum piloted in Fall 2018.
The process of continuous quality improvement for the MPH core curriculum is ongoing. A number of stakeholders provide input on and recommendations for ways in which faculty can enhance their courses. Stakeholders include but are not limited to students, the Council on Education for Public Health, the SPH Public Health Student Assembly, the SPH Advisory Committee on Academic Programs, the SPH Instructional Services staff, and the SPH online MPH program team. Faculty learn from each other’s experiences with the core curriculum, and also reflect on their own teaching experiences each semester. Since the pilot and based on feedback received, for example, material from a 1-credit course on qualitative methods has been incorporated into other core courses, making room for a new 1-credit course on leadership and interprofessional practice.
Advice to your Colleagues:
Having expertise from CRLT to guide faculty in the course development stage was essential. The project needed to be completed on a tight timeline so getting buy-in from all parties and communicating milestones and successes along the way was important.