This course introduces students to nutrition and global health problems through exploration of demographic, epidemiological, biological, and socioeconomic determinants of nutritional status. Emphasis will be placed on the role of nutritional status and dietary intake as a determinant and consequence of these health problems. Students will be encouraged to think critically about major challenges to improve nutrition and health at a global level.
Aligned with the pedagogical goals of the Program in General Education, this course seeks to inspire and teach the following principles:
- Global awareness: To increase awareness of the current issues in nutrition and global health—with a focus on the role of nutrition in infectious diseases, maternal and child health, chronic diseases, and the environment—through critical evaluation of the scientific literature and exploration of demographic, epidemiological, biological, social, political, and economic determinants.
- Grounding in nutrition and research methods: To understand the basic principles of nutrition and role of nutrients in health in resource-poor and developed settings. To assess nutritional status of specific populations based on anthropometric, biochemical, and clinical measurements, and to learn concepts of epidemiological study design and analysis.
- Critical thinking: To critically review scientific literature on nutrition and global health topics, examine the role of nutritional factors and health outcomes, and identify strengths and weaknesses of studies. To discuss the latest findings from epidemiologic studies on the role of nutrition in the prevention and treatment of key infectious, perinatal, and chronic disease outcomes and consider the impact of diet on the environment and vice versa.
- Translation of research findings to improve nutrition and public health: To integrate nutritional research findings and consider practical issues in program design and implementation.