198839 Using the Case Method to Teach Finance for Public Health Professionals

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Andrew C. Rucks, PhD , Health Care Organization and Policy, University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health, Birmingham, AL
Peter M. Ginter, PhD , Health Care Organization and Policy, University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health, Birmingham, AL
For more than 100 years professionals in medicine, law, and management have relied on case studies as a highly effective didactic pedagogy. Although public health professional training has employed cases and exercises extensively to develop functional and interagency coordination skills, it has been slow to utilize the case method to develop budgeting and financial analysis skills. Often, public health professionals have a difficult time linking decision making and project management to financial reports that measure financial performance. Case studies are an ideal pedagogy to practice professional financial decision making and leadership skills because they place participants in real situations with all the information, conflicts, and confusion inherent in the difficult financial decisions that were faced. The case method places learners in the role of decision makers who must evaluate the financial implications of their decisions and assess financial results. Because cases, especially field cases, portray real events, they contain all of the complexity and nuance that public health learners will encounter in public health practice. Thinking is the method of intelligent learning and case studies help teach discussion participants how to think. This submission will demonstrate the structure of a case method course in public health finance and link public health finance case issues to the teaching of the MPH competencies.

Learning Objectives:
To differentiate the case method of teaching from the lecture method for teaching finance for public health professionals. To demonstrate how public health finance may be more effectively taught though the case method. To show the linkage between case study issues with the MPH competencies. To provide a course syllabus for a case method course in finance for public health professionals.

Keywords: Education, Teaching

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Ph.D. in Management Science with minor in Finance; 20+ years of teaching experience; 10+ years experience of using the case method of teaching; 10+ business experience.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.