Rutgers School of Nursing

The Urban Health program admits students for the Fall and Spring semesters. The application deadline for the spring is October 15th.  The deadline for the fall is April 15th. However, applicants are encouraged to submit their applications as early as possible. Non-matriculated student enrollment is possible under some circumstances.  Please contact Dr. Sabrina Marie Chase directly to discuss your application prior to its submission.

Urban Health Track Director:
Sabrina Marie Chase, Ph.D.
Office: 973-353-5744
Cell: 732-309-5032

Email:
Sabrina.m.chase@rutgers.edu

Urban Health

Curriculum (51 credits)

The Urban Systems core curriculum provides a strong background in the history and social organization of U.S. cities, while the Urban Health core examines the complex interrelationships among social, cultural, political, economic, geographic, organizational, and bioenvironmental factors that influence the health status and health behaviors of urban populations. The Urban Health faculty is committed to training students who can make a difference, and seeks to educate doctoral students who will be capable of conducting independent research that has a strong potential to improve the health of individuals in the nation's cities.

URBAN HEALTH TRACK CURRICULUM GUIDE FOR STUDENTS ENTERING IN SEPTEMBER 2016 AND AFTER

Urban Systems Core

Course

Credit Hours

Institution

Choice of:
History of the Global Metropolis or
USYS 711 The Good City: Environmental Design and the Quality of Urban Life

3

NJIT

Choice of:
RU 26.977.617:Cities in World Perspective or
Urban Governance in Global perspective

3

RU

URBU 6004: Determinants & Consequences of Urban Health

3

RBHS

Research Core

RU 26. 977.620 Qualitative Methods

3

RU

URBU 6103: Quantitative Methods

3

RBHS

URBU 6006: Advanced statistics or equivalent

3

RBHS

Research elective by advisement

3

 

Specialization Requirements: Urban Health

Urban Health Systems: History, Structure & Challenge

3

RBHS

Urban Health Policy & Program Evaluation

3

RBHS

Electives

Chosen in consultation with advisor and dissertation committee

12

 

Dissertation sequence

URBU 790: Dissertation Research

12

RBHS

 

 

 

TOTAL

51

 
 

Course Descriptions

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Urban Systems I:  Evolution of the American Metropolis (3 Credits)

Urban Systems I encompasses the growth and development of American communities from early stages of European settlement to the present, with emphasis on the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. It examines the historical evolution of cities, including the social, demographic, political and economic forces which shaped them. The primary unifying theme is the expanding role of government over the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries, including public sanitation, health, education and city planning. The course will strive to develop a historically based conceptual foundation on which to ground studies of contemporary issues and concerns in urban health, urban environment and urban education. In this regard it will consider factual and descriptive elements of urban and metropolitan history as well as examination of a number of theoretical and explanatory theses. For example, the transition from Jeffersonian and Jacksonian notions of laissez faire capitalism to the Keynesian concepts of the social welfare state will be investigated. A fundamental pedagogical purpose of the course is to instill in doctoral students an effective grasp of the ways in which historical scholarship informs our knowledge of the contemporary dynamics of urban and metropolitan growth and change.

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Urban Systems II:  The Development of U.S. Urban Populations and Trends(3 credits)

The overriding goal of this course is to provide Urban Systems doctoral students with a social science-based understanding of the past, present and future of today’s demographically and culturally diverse urban residents. The course builds on the prior content of Urban Systems I. The course focuses on micro-level phenomena, including crime, the “code of the street”, neighborhood politics and community building, and on how they relate to macro-level factors: economics, politics and ideologies. It examines how culture, migration, civil rights, welfare policies, and economics have influenced the demographic composition of American cities and the capacity of city residents to create and maintain vital and productive places to live.

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Urban Systems III: Globalization, International Migration and Contemporary Cities (3 Credits)

This course examines the process of globalization and how it affects both the form and function of cities worldwide. Since 1970s, globalization has affected major changes in the world, particularly in technology, communications, and the function of cities. While similar physical, cultural, and social patterns have been developed in cities around the world, there have also been new and distinct cultural and economic spaces created in various global cities. Based on historical, economic, and sociological analysis, this course will compare the globalization process as it has emerged in cities from countries in Africa, Asia, and the Americas. It will investigate those characteristics of globalization that affect cities, explore how they operate in historical context, and examine the benefits and harms they produce in contemporary cities. Using theories developed in fields such as history, sociology, political science, urban studies, health, and architecture, we will analyze where, why and how such new globalization patterns emerge. Moreover, the course will explore and critique the impact of globalization on cities as well as investigate policy implications for improving housing, health, and education systems in global cities.

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The Good City: Environmental Design and The Quality of Metropolitan Life (3 credits)

As we move into the 21st century, the “good city” is as illusive as ever. Yet now, planners, architects, urban designers and many citizens recognize that what was once deemed good, and was widely built, has generated serious problems. For example, neither low density, single-use, residential suburbs dependent on the automobile nor high density residential towers in urban open space have proved to be the ideas envisioned. Why is that? Why were they considered good? What are the alternatives? And what are other aspects of the “good city” that are being proposed and implemented today? In addressing these questions, it is essential to examine the goals and values that always shape both our vision of the good city and our critiques of the visions of others.

The purpose of this course is to introduce all Urban Systems doctoral students to the various ways in which architects, urban designers and planners have sought to improve the quality of everyday life in urban and suburban environments through the design of the built environment, both at the scale of neighborhoods and communities and at the scale of buildings. The emphasis is on the manipulation of built form, transportation, and public space as responses to perceived problems. Key topic areas are housing and neighborhoods, public space, schools, hospitals, transportation.  Students will come to understand what problems were recognized, the design solutions proposed and /or implemented, and the critiques and consequences that ensued.

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Determinants and Consequences of Urban Health (3 Credits)

This interdisciplinary course examines complex interactions among the physical and social environment, health status, education, and human capital in urban communities. The course defines quality of life as the outcome of micro and macro-level factors that operate at the level of the individual, family, neighborhood, community, state and nation. A multidisciplinary framework is then utilized to examine evidence concerning the linkages between quality of life, development of human capital, poverty, sociopolitical organization and community organization. Students are expected to: (a) synthesize anthropological and sociological perspectives on health and illness; (b) analyze epidemiological concepts within the context of social science perspectives; (c) evaluate the state of health disparities in national and global contexts; (d) describe macro- and micro-level factors that influence the health of individuals and communities; (e) examine theoretical perspectives on the health of individuals and communities; and (f) examine the effects of poor health on the development of human capital and community.

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Urban Educational Systems: Schools & Communities in the Contemporary World 26.977.608  (3 Credits)

This course provides an examination of urban educational systems both in the United States and internationally. Focusing on the organizational structure and processes of urban schools and districts, the course examines the ways in which educational systems affect students living in cities. Using sociological, historical, political and economic analyses, students will explore the interrelationship among educational, political, economic, and cultural systems. This course will analyze how urban education is related to larger structural processes such as de-industrialization, globalization, immigration, and demographic changes. Finally, students will explore how federal and state policies and legislation affect urban education.

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Research Seminar I:  Qualitative Research (3 credits)

This course will introduce doctoral students to the philosophy and methods of qualitative research. Through an examination of the evolution of qualitative methodology, diverse forms of qualitative research, approaches to qualitative inquiry and examples of various qualitative methods, students will come to understand how to employ qualitative inquiry themselves.

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Research Seminar II: Quantitative Methods (URB 6103, 3credits)

This is an advanced course in quantitative social science research methods.  Together, the students and instructor will critically examine a large number of peer-reviewed journal articles with the goal of enhancing each student’s understanding of the logic and application of quantitative research methods.

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Advanced Statistics (3 credits)

This course is designed for urban population health researchers, with the goal of offering a broad overview of biostatistics, including topics such as statistical inference, descriptive statistics, elementary probability, probability distributions, one- and two-sample normal inference (point estimation, hypothesis testing, and confidence intervals), power and sample size calculations, one- and two-sample binomial inference, underlying assumptions and diagnostic work.  Special emphasis will be placed on the practical use of biostatistics to address important public health issues by including an overview of basic statistical tools used in epidemiological research, such as generalized linear models, including multiple linear regression, binary logistic regression, and multivariate logistic analysis.

Advanced Quantitative or Advanced Qualitative Research or Geographical Information Systems (3 credits)

This course introduces students to geographical/land information systems (GIS/LIS).  GIS/LIS are computerized systems capable of storing, manipulating and using spatial data describing location as well as significant properties of the earth’s surface.  GIS/LIS are used for studying and mapping land use issues, land resource assessment, environmental monitoring and hazard/toxic waste control.

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Urban Health Systems:  History, Structure and Challenges(3 Credits)

This course focuses on social and political forces in the development of urban health systems across the first world, focusing primarily on the United States. The course is organized into three major sectors: the development of health care systems, a critique of health care systems, and key issues in urban health.  Beginning with a survey of historical forces leading to the creation of the current system, the course focuses on concepts derived from sociology, political science and economics that facilitate the analysis of current issues in the organization, structure and functioning of the current system as well as outlooks for the future.  Such concepts include, but are not limited to, professionalization and deprofessionalization, social stratification, power, professional dominance, deviance and social control. Current issues such as inequality in access to health care, distribution of health manpower, quality and funding of health care institutions, and the impact of changes in population size, distribution and structure will be used to illustrate and test basic theoretical understandings and approaches.

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 Social and Cultural Construction of Health and Illness (3 Credits)

This seminar describes the social and cultural factors that influence how individuals in the U.S. organize, define and experience illness; engage in illness prevention; seek treatment; and engage with formal and informal medical systems. The course will (a) provide an introduction to anthropological and sociological perspectives on health and illness; (b) describe the social and cultural production of health; (c) describe how people conceptualize illnesses and make decisions concerning treatment; (d) describe major and minor folk traditions concerning the diagnosis and treatment of illness; (e) describe the nature of interactions between “patients” and formal and informal medical systems focusing on health care practitioners; (f) describe the information sources that people use when confronting illness; and (g) describe the nature of individual perceptions of risk.

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Urban Health Program Evaluation (3 Credits)

This course is designed to provide students with a framework for understanding program evaluation.  It will introduce them to principles and practices that will facilitate the integration of evaluation into health services programs. Course content will address the science of evaluation, and topics will include common evaluation goals, methodologies, and standards while also addressing misconceptions regarding the evaluation process. Emphasis will be placed on practical, ongoing evaluation strategies that involve all program stakeholders, not just evaluation experts.  Students are expected to: (a) describe the social and cultural context of health program development; (b) describe common components of and usual steps taken in program development; (c) discuss appropriate theories/models guiding program development as well as implementation and evaluation; (d) describe how program implementation and evaluation address macrosocial and microsocial processes and effects; (e) identify various program evaluation methods; (f) analyze appropriateness of evaluation design and methods while monitoring both the evaluation process and program outcomes; and (g) interpret evaluation data to determine program impact, cost and subsequent program decisions.


Independent Study

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Special Independent Study: Foundations of Scholarship - Developing Practical Skills for Scholarly Success (3 Credits)

This course is designed to introduce students to the basic skills and practices necessary for a successful scholarly career. It covers scholarly planning, the development of a daily writing practice, and the creation of course completion and research timelines as well as the development of a successful dissertation proposal.  In addition, students are guided through the dissertation process and the fundamentals of assembling a committee. Finally, students are instructed in how to turn a course paper or dissertation chapter into a published article and build a community of practice as they prepare to become research scholars. The course utilizes a hybrid format: face-to-face meetings alternate with virtual meetings or conference calls.


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