Doctoral Seminar, Collaborative Specialization in Global Health

Course Number
5700 (Global Health)
Course Instructor(s)
Erica Di Ruggiero

Course Description

This global health seminar is designed to deepen the knowledge base of doctoral students about interdisciplinary approaches and responses to global health issues and challenges, provide career training opportunities related to global health research, policy and practice, and help students develop skills that advance their research objectives. The course will consist of a mix of faculty- and student-led seminars. Students enrolled in the seminar will also be encouraged to attend related Collaborative Specialization in Global Health (CSGH) events. Networking and informal mentoring between students and faculty are encouraged inside and outside of the classroom.

Course Objectives

Students will:

1) Gain substantive knowledge about global health issues and challenges, and how different disciplinary approaches can be applied to address them;

2) Engage in dynamic and critical knowledge exchange, skills-building and networking in areas relevant to global health and related research, policy and practice;

3) Develop academic and professional skills, and gain insights about how to build careers in global health research, policy, and practice.

Methods of Assessment

This is a pass/fail course. In order to receive a passing grade, students must do the following:

 1) Participation

Actively participate in 90% of seminars during the fall and winter terms.

  1. Students are also expected to act as a discussant for one seminar during the year. Each student should prepare remarks and a few discussion questions based on the readings and the speaker’s presentation topic. Each student should sign up for one of the fall/winter semester seminars on the first day of class. Depending on student enrollment, more than one student may be assigned to each presenter.
  2. All students are expected to participate in at least two global health events, conferences, symposia, activities, etc. outside of the seminar for the duration of the course. Students will receive regular emails about global health relevant events at U of T and the GTA. Students should send a brief note to the instructor listing which two events they attended when they submit their final assignment.

2) Writing Assignments: Due: Last day of class

Students will be expected to complete two assignments. Students are encouraged to consult the course instructor early and often about their assignments. For students who fully participate in the Mock World Health Assembly (WHA) initiative organized by the OGPHE&T, their participation will count as one of the two assignments.

3) Presentation

Class Schedule and Topics

Seminars will take place usually bi-monthly during the academic year. Additional seminars may be included.

Global health experts, participating faculty members, visiting global health researchers, policy makers, and practitioners will give presentations on their research and other professional involvement in global health as it relates to CSGH seminar objectives and the overarching theme for the year. Presenters will provide resources that describe their field of research/policy/practice interest in advance of their session.

Through such sessions, we hope to provoke debate and dialogue, expose students to a variety of disciplinary perspectives, research designs and methods, while highlighting the conundrums and challenges faced in the design, implementation and evaluation of global health research projects in different contexts; and how to translate findings into community action and policy

Please note: we will continue to build on and update the seminar schedule listed below throughout the year to respond to student interests and speaker opportunities.

 Student Presentations

Students are expected to present their prospective or doctoral research in progress and share relevant background reading material in electronic format (preferably from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds). Student presentations should address research question(s), methodology, theoretical frameworks, or 3 other aspects of their dissertation research. Students will receive informal feedback from their peers and the course instructor.