Course Descriptions

Required courses and elective course options are listed below.

Required Courses

CHB 501 Study of Health Behavior

3 Credits, Fall Semester

Prerequisite: None

Designed to provide you with a graduate‐level overview of the role of the social and behavioral sciences in understanding and addressing public health problems. Three general topics are covered. First, we examine how psychological, social, and environmental factors influence people’s health and wellbeing. Second, we explore factors that influence health behavior, including individual, social, and environmental/community influences. Third, we explore how understanding behavior and social/environmental influences on health informs public health approaches to improving health and preventing disease. The course prepares public health students to satisfy MPH competencies in social and behavioral sciences.

Instructor: Kiviniemi

CHB 502 Health Behavior Change

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: None

Health Behavior Change is an overview of the health behaviors contributing most dramatically to increased morbidity and mortality in the United States. The course emphasizes public health interventions and strategies to promote healthy behaviors and discourage unhealthy behaviors. The course examines consequences, patterns, risk factors, and change/interventions for each behavior or problem. Behaviors are examined from multiples perspectives (e.g., individual, social, environmental) and with a systems perspective in mind, illuminating the interconnecting influences on behaviors. Health behaviors and behavior change interventions are presented in the context of current research and theory. The course also examines the role of health disparities, public health policy, current debate, health behavior theory and emerging research.

Instructor: Kozlowski, Collins

CHB 505 Applied Statistics for Public Health

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: STA 527

This graduate level course is designed to provide an introduction to the application of statistics to public health research questions. The course will also cover principles of data management and data verification. It will not provide instruction regarding statistics (STA 527 is a prerequisite), rather, we will build upon an individual’s statistical training to provide instruction in the use of common statistical packages to answer statistical questions. The course will have both in-class meetings as well as remote computer laboratory sessions (students will not be required to be in a classroom setting or online for the laboratory sessions, rather, students will complete these laboratory sessions at a location and time of their choice).

Instructor: Homish

CHB 523 Introduction to Program Planning and Evaluation

3 Credits, Fall Semester

Prerequisite: None

Models and principles of program planning and evaluation are presented and contrasted. Data gathering techniques, design considerations, and implementation strategies are covered. Other topics include systems theory applications, strategic planning methods, proposal development, and report writing.

CHB 544 MPH Field Training

3-6 Credits, Fall/Spring/Summer Semesters

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor

Allows students to synthesize the knowledge and skills developed during the academic portion of their program in a practical application setting. Field training experiences will be of various types depending upon the student’s interest and concentration area.

Instructor: Staff

CHB 630 MPH Integrative Project

3 Credits, Fall/Spring/Summer Semesters

Prerequisite: Permission of instructor

The purpose of the integrative projects is for MPH students to integrate core public health knowledge and skills. It will take the form of a paper prepared during the concluding semester of the student’s program.

Instructor: Staff

EEH 501 Principles of Epidemiology

4 Credits, Fall Semester

Prerequisite: None

Introduction to the basic principles, methods, and uses of epidemiology. This course is a master’s/doctoral level course designed to introduce epidemiology, its methods and its role in public health. A major portion of the course will be devoted to an overview of fundamental epidemiologic methods used in public health research and practice. The student will be familiarized with basic measures used in describing disease frequency in populations. Descriptive and analytic approaches to the study of disease will be explored, and a perspective on the role of epidemiologic methods in health services planning and evaluation will be provided. Problem solving exercises will be used to provide students with an opportunity to tabulate data and apply subject matter developed during lectures and in reading assignments. At the end of the course students should have a general understanding of the uses and limitations of epidemiologic inquiry. This understanding should provide the basis for applying epidemiologic concepts in work-related settings and in other courses in the public health curriculum.

Instructor: LaMonte

EEH 530 Introduction to Health Care Organization

3 Credits, Fall Semester

Prerequisite: None

Introduces students to the historical development, structure, operation, and current and future directions of the major components of the American health care delivery system. It examines the ways in which health care services are organized and delivered, the influences that impact health care public policy decisions, factors that determine priorities in financing health care services and the relationship of health care costs to measurable benefits. The course enables students to assess the role of organized efforts to influence health policy formulation, and the contributions of medical technology, research findings, and societal values to the evolving U.S. health care delivery system. Class time is also devoted to exploring emerging policy, ethical and legal dilemmas resulting from medical and technological advances.

Instructor: Noyes

Note

Cross listed with MGH 631 and LAW 718

EEH 531 Administrative Theory and Practice for Public Health Practitioners

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: None

Provides students with an overview of the development of management and leadership concepts within health care organizations. Delves into the strategic and policy issues challenging health care systems (access, financing, defining and quantifying quality, etc.). Provides a practical framework of the professional competencies and skills needed to be an effective administrator within a complex health care system.

Instructor: Staff

EEH 520 Biological Basis of Public Health

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: None

Intended for students with little or no background in the biological sciences and health professions. The course provides a broad overview of public health topics related to human health and disease focusing on disease etiology with particular emphasis on parasitic and microbial infections plus a review of the anatomy, physiology, and pathology of selected major organ systems and associated diseases of public health importance.

Instructor: Ochs-Balcom

EEH 550 Environmental Health

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: None

Introductory course that explores the role of environmental factors in health with an emphasis on characterization, assessment, and control of environmental hazards. Topics include application of toxicologic and epidemiologic methods in assessing risk and setting exposure limits; the nature of and control of hazards associated with food, water, air, solid and liquid waste, occupation, and radiation; risk communication and management, environmental justice; and environmental laws. The course concludes by examining the impact of human activity, such as energy use and pollution, on the environment and how human-induced environmental change, in turn, impacts public health and that of the planet as a whole.

Instructor: Ren

EEH 590 Seminar: Contemporary Issues in Public Health

0-1 Credits, Fall and Spring Semesters

Prerequisite: None

This course introduces students to major public health issues from a practice-based perspective. Through presentations by public health leaders and practitioners, readings, group discussion, class activities and analyses, students practice integrating concepts to better understand issues, and develop recommendations for responses based on evidence, and ethical and cultural considerations. Primary areas of exploration for this course are ethics, evidence, policies, leadership, collaboration, cultural competence and communication. Course content focuses on major public health issues today, and comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), American Public Health Association (APHA), World Health Organization (WHO), local and state health departments, community-based organizations, healthcare organizations, and other agencies. 

Instructor: Krytus

STA 527 Introduction to Medical Statistics

3 Credits (4 total with STA 527 REC), Fall Semester

Corequisite: Students must enroll in STA 527 LEC and STA 527 REC in the same term.

This course is designed for students concerned with medical data. The material covered includes: the design of clinical trials and epidemiological studies; data collection; summarizing and presenting data; probability; standard error; confidence intervals and significance tests; techniques of data analysis including multifactorial methods and the choice of statistical methods; problems of medical measurement and diagnosis;  and vital statistics and calculation of sample size. The design and analysis of medical research studies will be illustrated. MINITAB is used to perform some data analysis. Descriptive statistics, probability distributions, estimation, tests of hypothesis, categorical data, regression model, analysis of variance, nonparametric methods, and others will be discussed as time permits.

Instructor: Kuhlmann

Electives

Course Descriptions

CHB 522 Refugee Health for Populations

3 Credits, Fall Semester

Prerequisite: None

With over 54 million individuals displaced within or outside their countries according to 2013-14 estimates (and the number is rising), refugees represent a major global public health issue. Those who are able to resettle to Western New York represent a significant local public health and individual health care issue. This course provides an introduction to both the global and local health issues related to refugee populations. Health, cultural issues, barriers to care, and services for refugee populations in the United States will be featured, with an emphasis on Western New York’s (WNY) refugee groups. Global historical and policy issues related to refugees and refugee health will also be studied. Through the course, students will use an ecological model to explore (a) policy issues, (b) cultural issues, (c) stress encountered by refugees, (d) major health issues (including mental health) affecting refugee communities, and (d) unmet needs for this underserved population. The class will consider the priorities for refugee health developed by local groups and discuss research needs and practical service or intervention models to address refugee health and ways to evaluate their effectiveness. Local representatives of refugee care and refugee groups will help lead selected classes and participate in discussions. Interprofessional education and care perspectives will be advanced through guest speakers across multiple health domains, service agency presentations, small group work, and experiential learning. The overall goal of the course is to prepare students for further work (policy, research or service) in an inter-professionally collaborative manner in the area of refugee health with appropriate cultural competency skills and an understanding of the needs, priorities, and challenges faced by refugees and by organizations and providers who work with refugees.

Instructors: Kozlowski/Collins

CHB 524 A Public Health Approach to Understanding and Reducing Sexual Risk Behaviors

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: None

The course will introduce students to historical trends in the population burden of sexual risk behaviors, the social ecology of these risks, and current controversies in practice and policy. We will also examine surveillance systems and nationally representative samples used to monitor trends in high-risk sexual behaviors and related consequences. Students will critically examine the logic and impact of current domestic standards for sexual health policy and practice through a comparative look at sexual health needs (e.g., contraceptive use, STI prevention and treatment, and HIV-related services) in a range of diverse clinical and social settings with different populations (adolescents, young adults, older adults). Using a variety of teaching methods, students will receive an overview of the dynamics of high-risk sexual activity among individuals, communities, and populations. Topics will include an assessment of current peer-reviewed research and professional guidelines for effective sexual risk reduction, federal and state policies related to sexuality, pregnancy, contraception, and HIV/STI prevention, and current curricula at the national and state level for sexuality education.

Instructor: Przybyla

CHB 516 Creating Media for Public Health

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: None

This course is an introduction into the field of health communications, with an emphasis on the production of health education digital media. As defined by Healthy People 2020 (p. 11-20), health communication is the "art and technique of informing, influencing, and motivating individual, institutional, and public audiences about important health issues." The course emphasizes the development of strategies to advocate and promote healthy behaviors, public health policies, and social norms by planning, producing, and creating various media content for these purposes. This course offers a hands-on approach. Students will create their own media products, utilizing video production equipment and computer editing software.

Instructor: Hage

CHB 528/PTR 528 The Public Health Practice of Tobacco Control

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: None

Designed to prepare students to confront the practical problems of controlling tobacco use through local, state, and national public health agencies. In addition to providing core knowledge on tobacco-related issues, the course will include skills-based training that may be useful in future employment.

Instructor: O'Connor

CHB 538 Community Health Assessment and Surveillance

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: None

This course identifies elements in a community responsible for modifying the health behavior of the individual. Provides the needed information for designing plans to improve the health status of the community and its members. The course will help to identify quantitative and qualitative methods to conduct community health assessment, evaluation of community intervention programs, and the utilization of public health surveillance data to understand community health profiles. Case-studies and a practical experience will provide the students with training on how to work as a group with members of the community.

Instructor: Rowe

EEH 510 Principles of Measurement in Public Health

3 Credits, Fall Semester

Prerequisite: None

An explanation of basic principles and methods of measurement and their application in epidemiologic research. These include development and use of different types of instruments and scales for measuring biological characteristics and behavioral and social constructs, questionnaire construction and validation, sampling, data collection methods, and fundamental principles underlying data analysis and interpretation. Students will gain practical experience developing a questionnaire relevant to an epidemiologic issue, role-playing interview techniques in class, and resolving issues related to other data collection methods, sampling, and preparing data for analysis.

Instructor: Rudra

EEH 521 Global Health

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: None

Provides an overview of compelling public health problems among the world’s poor. Topics addressed will include infectious diseases such as malaria, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis; the rise of tobacco-related disease; the role of water, hygiene, and sanitation in the prevention of disease; maternal and neonatal mortality; surveillance; and disaster response in the resource-poor setting. Students will gain practical experience in developing and presenting strategies for the implementation and evaluation of public health programs in the resource-poor setting.

Instructor: Kordas

SW 554 Motivational Interviewing

3 credits

This course is organized primarily as a seminar that will highlight Motivational Interviewing (MI) approaches to help clients build commitment and reach a decision to change behavior. This course provides a forum for case presentation and discussion with an emphasis on discussing cases from student’s field placements and/or practice settings. Theories of behavioral change will be discussed, and the Transtheoretical Model (TTM) of intentional behavior change will be highlighted as an integrative framework for understanding the process of behavior change.

MI is an evidence-based practice for addictive behaviors, but applications of motivational interviewing have been extended to behavioral change in general, including social work, mental health, health promotion, general medical care, corrections, and community and organizational settings. In addition, the course will discuss MI’s application to practice with “mandated” clients.

CHB 527 Obesity

3 Credits, Spring Semester

This course will cover the topic of obesity from genetics all the way through public policy. It will place equal emphasis on dietary factors and physical activity factors that impact the development of obesity. This class will consist of lecture, class discussion and formal debates with readings from the primary literature. The goal of this course is to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the etiology, treatment and public health implications of obesity. There are no prerequisites for this course.

CHB 601 Principles of Community Health and Health Behavior

3 Credits, Fall Semester

This course is designed to provide a comprehensive, doctoral-level overview of principles and theoretical perspectives on the determinants of health behavior and community health. Using a biopsychosocial perspective we will examine biological influences, psychological, social, and policy determinants of health behavior and health. 

Instructor: Orom

CHB 602 Community Health and Health Behavior Interventions

3 Credits, Spring Semester

This course is a designed to give students an in-depth understanding of the state of the science in health behavior and community health interventions, including individual, family, community, and policy interventions. Students will be prepared to critically assess and apply strategies for individual and community health promotion. 

Instructor: Orom

CHB 625 Health Disparities

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Health Disparities is a PhD-level elective designed to give students an in-depth understanding of the social determinants of health. The course will take a multi-disciplinary approach to examining differences in health status associated with race, ethnicity, education, income, disability, geographic location, gender, and sexual orientation. We will examine the multiple pathways through which these differences are produced and reinforced, including discrimination, stigma, social network processes, culture, and health care experiences. We will also discuss methods for conducting research and intervening in disadvantaged communities. The course will provide historical and theoretical perspectives on the problem, provide a critical examination of empirical support for various explanatory pathways, and will cover approaches to studying and reducing health disparities. The course will prepare students to conduct independent research on health disparities and health-related research with disadvantaged communities, satisfying many of the Community Health and Health Behavior PhD competencies.

Instructor: Orom

CHB 650 Applied Regression for Public Health

3 Credits, Spring Semester

Prerequisite: Instructor permission is required for enrollment unless student is in the CHHB PhD Program.

The goal of this course is to help you better understand how to conduct and interpret regression analysis in an applied public health context. You will learn how to estimate different types of regression models, interpret the results, and draw meaningful substantive conclusions. This course will focus primarily on the conceptual and applied aspects of conducting regression analysis. I will emphasize conceptual understanding more than mathematical formulas in this course. However, you will have to do some hand calculations and use statistical software in order to demonstrate your conceptual understanding. Most data analysis activities will require that you use the popular statistical package Stata. We will cover how to use Stata as part of this course. A little familiarity with Stata will give you an advantage in the course, but it is not necessary prior to taking the course. You will be required to complete weekly/biweekly lab assignments in this course. You will be allowed to work on these problems with a partner, if you so choose. However, each student must turn in a separate assignment, and responses must be written in your own words. You should complete the exams and final paper on your own. 

Instructor: Przybyla

CHB 620 - Place-based Health

3 credits, Spring Semester

This course will give students an in-depth understanding of the role of community, organizational and environmental influences on health outcomes and health behaviors. We will critically assess the place-based public health literature, review relevant theories and discuss methodological considerations for conducting research in multiple settings. Students will be able to choose and apply appropriate theories and methods for designing and evaluating interventions which affect policies and programs within and around the places people live, play, work and worship. 

Instructor: Leone

CHB 620 Public Health Ethics: An Interdisciplinary Exploration

3 credits, Spring Semester

This course will give students an in-depth understanding of the role of community, organizational and environmental influences on health outcomes and health behaviors. We will critically assess the place-based public health literature, review relevant theories and discuss methodological considerations for conducting research in multiple settings. Students will be able to choose and apply appropriate theories and methods for designing and evaluating interventions which affect policies and programs within and around the places people live, play, work and worship. 

Instructor: Kozlowski