• Length:
    4 Weeks
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  • Course Type:
    Instructor-led on a course schedule



About this course

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The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the major social variables—social class, race, gender, poverty, income distribution, social networks/support, community cohesion, the work and neighborhood environment—that affect population health.

The course covers the theoretical underpinnings of each construct (e.g. "race" as a social category), and surveys the empirical research linking each to population health status. Methods are introduced to operationalize each construct for the purposes of empirical application in epidemiologic research.

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What you'll learn

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  • How population health is affected by and the theories underlying the following major social variables: socio-economic status (SES), Income inequality, race and ethnicities, social networks and support, neighborhoods, social capital and cohesion, and work environment
  • What empirical research links these variables to population health status
  • Which methods are used in social epidemiological research and how this research is empirically applied

Meet your instructors

Ichiro Kawachi
Chair of the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences
Harvard University
Monica Wang
Instructor in the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences
Harvard University