School of Medicine and Health Sciences Poster Presentations

Title

An exploration of Global Women’s Health: findings from a pilot online course elective for Health Sciences Studies at GW

Poster Number

337

Document Type

Poster

Status

Graduate Student - Masters

Abstract Category

Women/Child Health

Keywords

Women's Health, online pilot course, undergraduates

Publication Date

Spring 2018

Abstract

In 1995, 189 countries endorsed the Platform for Action, designed to address issues of gender equality, including health. Despite this 23 year old initiative, women’s health issues continue to be a global crisis (WHO, 2015). The SMHS piloted an 8-week online 1-credit course in Fall 2017 to educate GW students on the top ten issues for women’s health delineated by the World Health Organization (WHO). Each of the eight weeks covered a core women’s health WHO issue while tying in a global human rights perspective. Issues included but were not limited to reproductive health, STIs, violence against women, to name a few. This course was designed to address two key gaps at GWU: 1) there is currently no other course at GW focused on Global Women’s Health offered to undergraduate students, and 2) this is the first 1 credit hybrid elective course, in Health Sciences, to be offered to undergraduate residency students. The teaching platform adopted for this course offered an “inter-school” student body. Enrollees included 7 students from the Elliott School of International Affairs, 6 from the Columbian College of Arts & Sciences, and 1 had a major from the Milken Institute School of Public Health. Course evaluations revealed that students wanted to delve deeper into covered topics and expand to additional topics if we had more time. 90% of students said they would recommend it to others. Qualitative feedback was categorized to indicate that students enjoyed the types of course assignments, the range of topics that were covered throughout the course, as well as the online resources that were provided to supplement the reading material of the course textbook. About half of the students who took this course indicated they would enroll in the course regardless of the delivery platform, face-to-face, blended or online. Pilot course assessment findings also suggest that this course could be expanded into a 3-credit course, could be taught in person, and could be offered as an elective that could count for credit towards other majors within different departments in order to increase its reach. It is imperative to continue to raise awareness within our student body of the importance of addressing women’s health issues worldwide, so that they too can be a part of the commitment to achieve gender equality that began at the 1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action.

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An exploration of Global Women’s Health: findings from a pilot online course elective for Health Sciences Studies at GW

In 1995, 189 countries endorsed the Platform for Action, designed to address issues of gender equality, including health. Despite this 23 year old initiative, women’s health issues continue to be a global crisis (WHO, 2015). The SMHS piloted an 8-week online 1-credit course in Fall 2017 to educate GW students on the top ten issues for women’s health delineated by the World Health Organization (WHO). Each of the eight weeks covered a core women’s health WHO issue while tying in a global human rights perspective. Issues included but were not limited to reproductive health, STIs, violence against women, to name a few. This course was designed to address two key gaps at GWU: 1) there is currently no other course at GW focused on Global Women’s Health offered to undergraduate students, and 2) this is the first 1 credit hybrid elective course, in Health Sciences, to be offered to undergraduate residency students. The teaching platform adopted for this course offered an “inter-school” student body. Enrollees included 7 students from the Elliott School of International Affairs, 6 from the Columbian College of Arts & Sciences, and 1 had a major from the Milken Institute School of Public Health. Course evaluations revealed that students wanted to delve deeper into covered topics and expand to additional topics if we had more time. 90% of students said they would recommend it to others. Qualitative feedback was categorized to indicate that students enjoyed the types of course assignments, the range of topics that were covered throughout the course, as well as the online resources that were provided to supplement the reading material of the course textbook. About half of the students who took this course indicated they would enroll in the course regardless of the delivery platform, face-to-face, blended or online. Pilot course assessment findings also suggest that this course could be expanded into a 3-credit course, could be taught in person, and could be offered as an elective that could count for credit towards other majors within different departments in order to increase its reach. It is imperative to continue to raise awareness within our student body of the importance of addressing women’s health issues worldwide, so that they too can be a part of the commitment to achieve gender equality that began at the 1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action.