Fall 2019 - HSCI 900 G100

Core Concepts and Practice for Public Health I (2)

Class Number: 8042

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Sep 3 – Dec 2, 2019: Wed, 12:30–2:20 p.m.



Core concepts in population and public health. Population health paradigms and the history of public health. Public health strategies and domains of practice. Reflective public health practice and cultural sensitivity and empathy. Practicum preparation, planning and location of practicum sites. Seminars, workshops and lectures. Graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis.


This course will provide an overview of the key tenets and core strategies in population and public health practice as well as how these have evolved over time. Specifically, the course will examine challenges for public health to develop and implement strategies and applications to improve the health and well-being of populations.


Learning Objectives
This course will prepare students to:
1.   Appreciate the contemporary debates within public health and appreciate how these have evolved over time.
2.   Distinguish between public health ethics and research ethics and discuss key ethical issues in public health practice.
3.   Discuss the Indigenous determinants of health, and the Truth and Reconciliation Committee and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of  Indigenous Peoples as key guiding documents for responding to the social and health inequities of Indigenous peoples.
4.   Describe the core functions of public health services in Canada and around the world and define the core competencies of public health practitioners.  
5.   Discuss the interrelationships between primary care, primary health care, and public health.
6.   Appreciate the key principles of system thinking and how these can be applied to public health issues.
8.   Discuss the importance of community-based participatory public health practice and strategies for engaging with diverse communities.



Attendance of teaching sessions is mandatory. Students successfully completing all course requirements for HSCI 900 will receive a CO on their transcripts. To receive course credit, students must successfully complete all course assignments. These include a practicum poster day reflection assignment; a report on a population health issue; a public health ethics assignment; a group assignment describing a public health domain of practice; and an Indigenous health assignment. Students need to demonstrate satisfactory participation in course discussions and small group exercises and satisfactorily complete one on-line revision assessment at the conclusion of the course.



There is no required textbook for the course. Required / recommended readings will be available online through SFU Library or posted to the course CANVAS container.

Graduate Studies Notes:

Important dates and deadlines for graduate students are found here: http://www.sfu.ca/dean-gradstudies/current/important_dates/guidelines.html. The deadline to drop a course with a 100% refund is the end of week 2. The deadline to drop with no notation on your transcript is the end of week 3.

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html