The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA

4002.0: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 - Board 8

Abstract #44922

Writing and using case studies: An evaluation case study brings practice into classrooms

Nancy E Hood, MPH, Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, University of New Mexico, 2701 Frontier NE, Surge Building, Room 251, Albuquerque, NM 87131, 505-272-4462, and Kathleen R. Miner, PhD, MPH, CHES, School of Public Health, Emory University, 1518 Clifton Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30329-4218.

The use of case studies in higher education allows students to derive learning from “real world” examples (Naumes & Naumes, 1999). Through cases, students learn specific knowledge (e.g., issues related to a common public health practice scenario) and generalizeable skills and abilities (e.g., critical thinking, analytical reading, and decision-making). Types of cases include decision-forcing, policymaking, problem-defining, concept-application and illustration (Lynn, 1999). Successful cases require extensive field or library research, clear objectives, an engaging writing style and testing with students (Naumes & Naumes, 1999). Professors often develop cases to fill gaps in existing curricula or available teaching resources. One such gap exists in public health evaluation curricula. Although the Program Evaluation Standards (Joint Committee, 1994) book includes rich educational evaluation case studies, few research-based and field-tested cases exist for teaching public health evaluation. Graduate students and professionals consistently request teaching methods that offer opportunities to apply learning to practice. To meet this need, a prototypical public health evaluation case study was developed. The topic, case and objectives were identified through a literature review and interviews with key stakeholders. Field research, including interviews and document reviews, guided the content of the case and the instructor’s manual. The case was field tested with graduate students and refined based on feedback. This case illustrates a research-based process for creating a teaching tool that both engages adult learners and brings public health practice into the classroom. Additionally, the research conducted to create this case identified many evaluation topics and cases waiting to be developed.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of this session, the participant will be able to

Keywords: Evaluation, Teaching

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

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The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA