273134 Teaching Peace and the Primary Prevention of War: A Framework for Student Competencies

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 : 2:45 PM - 3:00 PM

Shelley K. White, MPH, PhD , Health Sciences & Public Health, Worcester State University, Worcester, MA
The past decade has witnessed prolific development of competencies for public health both professional and academic. During the same decade, the public health profession has been called to better attend to the social, economic and political determinants of health, including by the IOM's 2003 reports on public health, which affirmed the importance of the Ecological Model of Health as central to workforce development and practice. Over this same decade, U.S. military spending doubled in real terms and this dramatic militarization might be understood as one of the most essential determinants of both domestic and global health. However, competency frameworks are remiss in their overgeneralization of public health's skill set, and their lack of specification of some of the most essential determinants of health including war and militarism. This paper presents a review of current competency frameworks for public health students, as well as a content analysis of the curricula of top Schools of Public Health, which reflect largely reactive, rather than preventive, approaches to such public health crises as war. It then proposes an alternative, more proactive framework of student competencies to instill learning on the essential public health skills for shaping the political, economic, and policy-level determinants of health related to war and militarism. This paper also presents some unique pedagogigal tools and approaches for imparting a measurable student skill set for promoting peace.

Learning Areas:
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
Identify academic competencies for promoting peace and preventing war; Promote academic public health recognition of the importance of prevention of war.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have recently completed a study examining academic approaches to teaching about war and health, and have been coordinating a national group of scholars working on war and health.
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.