380.760.01 | AY 2013-2014 - 3rd Term | 3 Credit(s)
WF 10:30:00 AM
  • Contact Information
    Anne Burke
    Anne Burke
  • Course Learning Objectives

    Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

    • Explain clinical conditions affecting women's reproductive health, including but not limited to breast disease, hysterectomy, contraception, and cervical dysplasia
    • Evaluate the effect of race, socio-economic, and health system structure on outcomes for these conditions
    • Apply epidemiological and statistical knowledge to critically review published research on a relevant reproductive health condition
    • Apply principles of women's health policy to major conditions affecting women's reproductive health
  • Course Description

    Provides a comprehensive presentation of several clinical disease processes affecting women’s health. Topics include reproductive cancers, contraception, cervical cancer screening, and incontinence. Uses traditional lecture materials, videos of procedures, and selected journal readings. Focuses not only on the clinical aspect of the disease, but the health policy implications on women’s health.

  • Intended Audience
    MHS, MPH students and 2nd year doctoral students with an interest in women's health
  • Methods of Assessment

    Class participation 20%, interim assignments (quizzes and scholarly article review) 30%, preparation for and delivery of presentation to class 50%.

  • Course Schedule

    Please see the course Session for a full list of dates and items for this course.

  • Academic Ethics Code

    Students enrolled in the Bloomberg School of Public Health of The Johns Hopkins University assume an obligation to conduct themselves in a manner appropriate to the University's mission as an institution of higher education. A student is obligated to refrain from acts which he or she knows, or under the circumstances has reason to know, impair the academic integrity of the University. Violations of academic integrity include, but are not limited to: cheating; plagiarism; knowingly furnishing false information to any agent of the University for inclusion in the academic record; violation of the rights and welfare of animal or human subjects in research; and misconduct as a member of either School or University committees or recognized groups or organizations.

  • Course topics

    All course topics are listed in Class Sessions under class materials and resources. They include: obesity, breast cancer, contraception, abortion, HIV, menopause, STIs, uterine and ovarian cancer, HPV/Pap smears, and prostate health. Most class sessions focus on women's reproductive health, with one session on men's.

  • Assignment Descriptions and Guidelines
    • Assignment 1: Journal Article Critique and participation in class “journal club” (15 points). This discussion will involve critical reading of selected scholarly articles on a women’s reproductive health topic, followed by in-class discussion of these articles (tentative date: February 7). The course instructor will pre-select 2 articles for in-class discussion on this day. A 1-2 page paper, which will be a guided discussion about one of the articles (article choice assigned by the instructor), must be turned in prior to start of class. Students should read both articles but will only be responsible for one writeup. This assignment is intended to increase student’s experiences with scholarly article review, and will also help develop skills needed for preparation of the final assignment.
    • Assignment 2: Quiz. (15 points) A open-book quiz based on assigned readings will be made available online around February 17. Students will have until March 4 to submit responses. The quiz will be worth 10 points. Students with 80% or more of responses correct will receive a grade of “Pass” and get the full 15 points. Students with less than 80% can choose to take the points for correct answers (e.g. 70% correct = 10.5 points) or to retake the quiz within 72 hours of receiving the initial grade. If a student still fails to get 80% correct, the higher of the 2 scores will be used for the quiz grade.
    • Assignment 3: Topic selection, literature search, and oral presentation (50 points total). Each student will prepare and deliver a short oral presentation on an CARH topic relevant to an issue discussed during the class sessions. The exact length of the presentation will depend on the number of students enrolled in the class, but will likely not exceed 10-15 minutes. These will take place the last week of class. The writeup of the topic selection and selected reference articles – used as the basis for the presentation (see below) - will be worth 25 points. The first draft of the writeup is due 4 weeks into the class, but the final version is not due until the last day of class. We expect all presentations to be delivered during the last week of class. The presentation will be worth 25 points. Please note: this is a change from previous years, in which students wrote a paper based on these same objectives. Those who wish to write a paper may opt to do this instead of a presentation.

    The purpose of Assignment 3 is to give students an opportunity to review and critically evaluate the literature on a reproductive health related intervention (a review of the literature on a specific health problem is not acceptable). It is intended as a learning adjunct to the lectures presented by clinicians. It has two components: a description of the intervention and a description and critique of the scientific literature regarding the intervention. The description and critique of the literature is the most important component.

    Guidance for Preparation of the Final Presentation:

                Select and describe a health care intervention related to reproductive health.  It may be a screening procedure, a diagnostic procedure, a type of service (e.g. home visiting for increasing the interval between pregnancies; peer counseling to teens to reduce teen pregnancy), a program (e.g., publicly funded breast cancer prevention programs), a treatment, or a system to organize services (e.g., Title X services).  The description of the intervention should include a discussion of its use or application in the care or provision of services for the individual as well as its biological, physiological or conceptual basis. Whatever perspective chosen, the description should include the rationale for the intervention based on that perspective (e.g. the biologic rationale for a given treatment; the conceptual rationale for home visiting)

                The presentation should also contain a critical evaluation of the effectiveness of the intervention based on a review of the scientific literature. The review should include the studies chosen based on clearly specified criteria. The criteria used to select the given studies, and rationale for this, must be included in the writeup and presentation. Please discuss your choice with the instructor or teaching assistant to ensure that it will fit the requirements. A critique must be presented of the studies that you have included in your review. A critique of only one study does not represent a literature review. The paper should provide a conclusion about the effectiveness of the intervention based on the review of the literature, providing the rationale for your conclusions.

                The selection of studies to be included in the assignment is a very important first step in completing it. Students are required to complete an assignment in which includes:

    the topic/question,

    the selection criteria for scientific articles to be reviewed

    rationale for selection criteria

    a list of articles to be included in the review of the scientific literature about the topic, and the rationale for their selection criteria. You may cut and paste the abstracts from the selected papers so that the design and the methods of study can be reviewed. The first draft of this assignment, due no later than 19 February 2014, is given to ensure that work on the assignment is started before the last few weeks of the term, to assist students in making their selection of a topic and studies, and to ensure that students understand the assignment.  If the topic or list of articles needs further work, a grade for the assignment will not be given until this work is completed.

  • Course Format

    This is a survey course, with lectures and discussion of various reproductive health topics presented by faculty with clinical expertise in each topic. Please see the class schedule for details.

  • Exam Format

    No exam. There will be an "open-book" online quiz, a journal article critique, and a final presentation that will require preparation.

  • Grading Policy
    • Grades will be determined as follows
      • Quiz (online, outside of class time) (15 points)
      • Journal Critique (“Journal Club”) Assignment (15 points)
      • Written summary of topic and summarized references for final presentation (25 points)
      • Final Presentation (25 points)
      • Class participation (20 points) –PLEASE NOTE: Attendance at the last class(es) of the term, during which students will be presenting, will be considered especially important. Do not miss these.
  • Grading Scales

    Course Grading Scale:

             Final grade based on points accumulated during the term using the following scale:

    90-100 (A), 80-89 (B), 70-79 (C), 69-70 (D), ≤ 68 (F)

  • Attendance Policy

    ·Attendance Required. There is no need to request an “excused” absence [for a doctor’s appointment, job interviews, etc] for a single class session, although notice of such absences is appreciated. Repetitive or prolonged absences may affect the participation grade, regardless of reason: please discuss these with the instructor in advance of the missed classes, if at all possible. PLEASE NOTE:  One or both classes in the last week of the term will be given over to student presentations. RESPECT YOUR CLASSMATES AND BE THERE.

  • Definition of Participation

    ·Definition of Participation: Active participation is characterized by attendance, completion of pre-class reading assignments, and active engagement of the material during the session.

  • Late Submission/Make-up Policy

    Generally not allowed due to the construction of the course. Please discuss with instructor on individual basis.

  • Use of cell phones and laptops during class

    Cell phones should be placed on vibrate and computers used to engage course material only as active participation in a course requirement.

  • Modes of Communication (email, BBS, etc)

    ·email strongly preferred by instructor.

  • Source Guidelines (how to cite, OK to use wikipedia or blogs as a source?)

    ·All references should be cited according to professional and university standards. References will be assigned readings and scholarly articles selected by the student for purposes of the final assignment.

  • Disability Support Services
    If you are a student with a documented disability who requires an academic accommodation, please contact the Office of Student Life Services at 410-955-3034 or via email at