Courses Taught by Julia Wolfson

HMP617: US Food Policy and Public Health

  • Graduate level
  • Winter term(s)
  • 3 Credit Hour(s)
  • Instructor(s): Wolfson, Julia
  • Prerequisites: none
  • Undergraduates are allowed to enroll in this course.
  • Description: This course uses the social ecological framework as a vehicle to explore the different factors that influence the way we eat. We will examine different policy and public health approaches to address problems stemming from the modern US food system within the context of the social/cultural factors that surround food.
  • Course Goals: The goal of this course is to provide students with a nuanced understanding of the social and policy determinants of eating behavior, the complex relationship between food and health, and the policy levers available to influence that relationship. The specific objectives of this course are to help students: 1. Understand and assess the complex and interrelated factors (individual, structural and policy) that influence eating behavior and food related public health problems. 2. Appraise the political landscape and stakeholders that are important for making policy change in the area of food systems and eating behavior. 3. Apply principles of policy-making, policy change theory, and social determinants of health to food related problems in the US. 4. Critically evaluate academic literature, reports, and policy documents related to food and food systems. 5. Develop strong written and verbal communication skills. 6. Define and frame public health problems in such a way that inspires policy change.
  • Competencies: Primary course competencies: A.6: Policy analysis: Understand the policy-making process and the role of politics; assess a problem and identify and compare potential policy solutions; and understand and critically assess methods to evaluate policy impact. B.1: Convey: Speak and write in a clear, logical and grammatical manner in formal and informal situations; prepare presentations; facilitate and participate in group discussions. C.5: Collaboration: Work collaboratively with others as part of a team or group, demonstrating commitment to the team's goal and encouraging individuals to put forth their best effort. Secondary course competencies B.2: Listen: receive, process, and respond appropriately to information conveyed by others. B.3: Interact: Perceive and respond appropriately to the spoken, unspoken or partly expressed thoughts, feelings and concerns of others.
  • Syllabus for HMP617

PUBHLTH410: Making Change: Public Health Policy Advocacy in Principle and Practice

  • Undergraduate level
  • Winter term(s)
  • 3 Credit Hour(s)
  • Instructor(s): Wolfson, Julia
  • Prerequisites: PUBHLTH 200
  • Description: This class will provide students with skills to advocate for public health policies at all levels of government. Through lectures, class discussions, and group projects on "live" public health issues, students develop the skills to create opportunities to inform policymaking, and become more effective communicating in the policymaking environment.
  • Course Goals: Provide students with the knowledge and skills to effectively advocate for public health goals and policies to the public and policy decision makers.
  • Competencies: Health Communication: Illustrate the basic concepts of effective and persuasive public health communication through multiple modalities, including technical and professional writing and the use of mass media and electronic technology. Problem Solving: Apply problem-solving skills to develop critical, innovative and entrepreneurial approaches to improving the public's health. Determinants of Health: Describe the environmental, socioeconomic, behavioral, nutritional, biological, and other determinant factors that impact human health status with particular attention to inequities in and among populations.
  • Learning Objectives: 1. Appraise the political landscape and stakeholders that are important for making policy change on a given public health topic. 2. Apply principles of policy-making, policy change theory, and policy advocacy to real life public health problems. 3. Effectively advocate for public health change at the local, state and federal level. 4. Develop strong written and verbal communication skills. 5. Define and frame public health problems in such a way that inspires policy change. 6. Analyze the legislative, administrative and judicial intervention points for policymaking and identify where to effectively target advocacy efforts. 7. Identify and evaluate advocacy strategies, such as coalition building, grassroots engagement, and paid and earned media outreach, in order to create specific advocacy campaigns. 8. Develop personal and communication skills to effectively translate and advocate for public health improvements to policymakers, the press and the public.