Undergraduate Courses

undergrad

The School of Population and Public Health is pleased to offer the following undergraduate courses, which provide an introduction to some of the foundational principles, ideas, and skills, of population and public health.

These courses will enable students to gain an understanding of patterns and causes of health and disease in different populations, as well as strategies to improve the health of populations, including prevention, treatment, and policy options. They will engage students in the broader social contexts of these subjects, in which questions of equity and ethics often rise to the forefront.

These courses provide a strong background for students who wish to gain insight into the healthcare system to pursue careers in clinical roles, such as medicine, nursing, and physiotherapy. They also will prepare students for further study in the area of population and public health, especially for those who wish to pursue careers that involve research in these areas.

If you have questions about a specific course, please contact the instructor. For general questions about SPPH undergraduate course offerings, please contact the Director of Undergraduate Curriculum, Dr. Daniel Steel (daniel.steel@ubc.ca).

NOTE: Syllabi for all courses are updated as we receive them from the instructors. Please refer to past syllabi for content reference, but understand that room location and times (for example), may be subject to change. If you do not see a course syllabus here, please contact the course instructor directly for more information.

Not all courses listed here are offered every year. Please visit our online schedules (links provided below) to see which courses are currently being offered.

This course reveals how the conditions in which we live and work can affect our health. Key concepts of social determinants of health in the population that are discussed include: poverty, economic resources, education, policy, neighbourhood conditions, early child development, and access to housing. This is an interactive and thought-provoking course that challenges traditional views on health and disease and allows students to reflect on their own experiences and backgrounds.

Prerequisite:
None.

Term Offered:
Summer, Term One, Term Two

Instructor:
Paul Kershaw (Summer)

Martin Guhn (September Term 1) - Course Syllabus

Eva Oberle (January Term 2) - Course Syllabus

 

This is a course on planning/preparing for work in a developing country. Causes of ill health amongst populations living in poverty; analysis of available solutions. Health Science background not essential. Restricted to Undergraduate students.This course is designed to inspire and inform learners about working in global health. The course syllabus is available here. This year the course will be amended to be run as a predominantly online course, with entirely-online didactic knowledge transfer (i.e. no classroom time), and mainly-online interactivity with peers, the TAs, and the professor. As occurred last year, students will also (with guidance) select and pursue an activity to improve global health, either as individuals or in groups of whatever size cluster of students aggregates to a particular project.

Prerequisite:
None

Term Offered:
Term 2

Instructor:
TBA

This course will help future and current researchers, developers and health professionals understand how to integrate technology and best practices in both clinical and educational contexts.

Prerequisite:
None

Term Offered:
Term 1

Instructor:
Dr. Larry Frisch

The syllabus is available here.

Every worker has the right to a healthy workplace. The vast majority of adult Canadians work; they work 40 hours a week, year in year out, for around 40 years. Work places inevitably impact the health of the individual. For some it might be aches and pains from poor office design. For others it is chemical exposures result in disabling respiratory diseases, neurological disease, cancer and death. Even in an advanced economy like Canada, thousands die every year from work-related causes; in LMIC countries the burden is much greater. Worldwide 2.3 million people die from work-related causes every year.

Occupational health is a field of public health that is the science (and art!) of anticipation, recognition, evaluation and control of workplace hazards. It is an exciting multi-disciplinary field that embraces knowledge of toxicology, epidemiology, physics, engineering, physiology, psychology, education, statistics and more. It is highly diverse in nature, and demands innovative thinking to solve complex real-world problems.

In this course (SPPH 381B) we examine how the production of common everyday items – such as the smart phone, a pair of shoes or a strawberry – touches the lives of the people who work along global supply chains. We’ll look common occupational diseases and their causes, workplaces hazards and how they are assessed, and how those hazards can be reduced or eliminated through design, engineering and other means.

Learning will occur through short lectures, video, reading, discussion, in-class and “field” exercises and through individual and group projects. Evaluation will based on demonstrating achievement of course objectives though a mix of class participation, quizzes and exams, essays and project work.

Prerequisite:
None

Term Offered:
Term 2

Instructor:
Dr. Hugh Davies

The syllabus is available here.

Info TBA

 

Prerequisite:
None

Term Offered:
Term 1

Instructor:
Matilda van den Bosch

The syllabus is available TBA

Course info TBD

Prerequisite:
None

Term Offered:
Term 1

Instructor:
Dr. Steve Morgan

The syllabus is available TBA

Students will broaden their understanding and develop effective approaches to individual and social issues associated with aging. Restricted to Undergraduate students.

Prerequisite:
None

Term Offered:
Term 1

Instructor:
Dr. Elizabeth Kelson

The syllabus is available here.

By collaborating interprofessionally, each student team will identify and research a critical public health issue, and develop a detailed practical and effective intervention. Restricted to Undergraduate students.

Prerequisite:
None

Term Offered:
Previously offered in a traditional face-to-face format, this course is now delivered in mixed format.
Term 2

Instructor:
Dr. David Birnbaum

Draft 2016 syllabus is available here.

This course provides a topic-focused overview of violence and abuse across the lifespan, with particular attention to building knowledge around epidemiology, dynamics, health effects, and an introduction to programs targeted to both intervention and prevention. The socio-ecological model will be used to examine social factors that contribute to violence and abuse, and that can be utilized in crafting prevention-focused interventions. Learners will progress through the course in collaborative teams that model the coordinated community response to violence and abuse.

Prerequisite:
None

Term Offered:
Term 1
Term 2
Instructor:
Svetlana Kishchenko

The syllabus is available here.

An introductory overview of approaches to conducting health research. Students incrementally develop a Research Proposal. Hosted on UBC on-line Edge EdX for distance learning. Intended for students planning a career in medical/health professions, and/or those applying to graduate programs.

Prerequisite:
None.

Term Offered:
Term 1

Instructors:
Drs. Ruth Elwood Martin, Brian Ng and Evelyn Cornelissen

The syllabus is available here.

This course addresses ethical issues related to health at a population or community level and interventions undertaken by governments or other social organizations to promote it. A sample syllabus is available here.

Term Offered:
Term 2

Instructors:
Daniel Steel

Prison Health (PH) aims to educate students from a variety of disciplines to respond to current health issues within the Canadian correctional system. Through readings, guest presentations and class discussions, students will learn about the complexities of prison health and will gain understanding and skills in order to apply inter-disciplinary approaches to prison health care.

Term Offered:
Term 2

Instructor:
Dr. Ruth Elwood Martin

The syllabus is available here.