258951 An Innovative, Integrated MPH Curriculum: Mobilizing an Organizational Change through a Curriculum Redesign Project

Monday, October 29, 2012 : 10:44 AM - 10:56 AM

Vanessa Edouard, MPH , Education Office, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA
Alan Hatton, EdM , Education Office, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA
Lisa Sullivan, PhD , Education Office, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA
In Fall 2011, the Boston University School of Public Health began systematically redesigning its competency-based MPH curriculum in recognition that public health is ever-changing, with public health problems becoming more complex and public health professionals needing new and different skills. The School's student body is also changing, with an increasing number of students entering the program with prior public health coursework. These changes presented an opportunity for the School to evaluate and redesign its curriculum to provide students with a high-quality, interdisciplinary educational experience that will better prepare them for careers in public health. In order to accomplish this significant organizational change, the School is employing Kotter's framework for organizational change which is built on eight steps and helps organizations establish a sense of urgency, form a powerful guiding coalition, create and communicate a vision, implement this vision, and, most importantly, sustain the new organizational vision. Because such an undertaking affects so many stakeholders, strategies for working with change-resistant members of the community are also employed. Utilizing the Kotter framework meant engaging the School's faculty, staff, students, alumni, and community partners to develop and support an updated competency-based curriculum that is responsive to the field of public health. The revised curriculum, which is set to launch in Fall 2013, aims to be more efficient and effective in order to better prepare public health practitioners. Using the Kotter framework allowed the community to embrace the curriculum revision process and outcome, and also laid the groundwork for ongoing curriculum evaluation and modification.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Program planning
Public health or related education
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Explain Kotter’s eight steps of organizational change Describe how these steps are applicable to public health education Identify strategies for overcoming resistance to change

Keywords: Education, Management

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the Director of Educational Programs at Boston University School of Public Health. My co-authors and I are leading the curriculum redesign project at the School and are using the Kotter framework to do so.
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.