Disciplines and practices

Compulsory courses:

Introduction to public health (6 credits)

This course is in the first module in the master’s program and gives general introduction to general principles of epidemiology, public health ethics, population health indicators, health determinants, with special emphasis on health in Russia, current problems and achievements of the Russian health care system, sources of scientific information on public health.

Introduction to biostatistics (4 credits)

The course provides knowledge on how to describe statistical data, types of distribution, confidence intervals, basic parametric methods such as t-test, one-way ANOVA, correlation analysis, simple linear regression analysis as well as chi-squared test and other non-parametric methods. Students will also be informed about multivariate methods and error types I and II. SPSS software will be used as the main tool for all the analyses. Moreover, the module will help to develop skills for interpretation and critical assessment of statistical data in public health literature.

Research methods in public health (4 credits)

The main aim of the course is to provide knowledge on the nature of research. Students are expected to acquire the following skills: analysis and evaluation of quality of research as well as an ability to choose appropriate research methods for different scientific problems within the field of public health. Special attention is paid to qualitative methods and ethical principles of research.

Epidemiology (7 credits)

The purpose of the course is to provide knowledge on basic epidemiologic methods used in public health science. The students will learn theory of basic epidemiologic designs, assumptions, methods and other knowledge sufficient to perform epidemiological studies in public health. The students will also acquire practical skills in planning, performing, analyzing and interpreting of the results of basic epidemiological studies. The training program includes development of critical evaluation skills needed for thoughtful reading of published results of epidemiologic studies.

Biostatistics (7 credits)

Statistics is an essential part of both research and practice in the field of public health. In order to read and understand medical literature it is necessary to possess knowledge on many statistical methods including rather advanced ones like logistic regression or Сох proportional hazard analysis. The aim of this course is to gain knowledge on theory and methods of modern statistical data analysis used in medical as well as in epidemiological research. The course consists of four separate topics: analysis of variance including multiple regression and analysis of repeated measurements, logistic regression and survival analysis. Before studying this course it is mandatory to successfully pass course on Basic statistics. Statistical significance and confidence intervals are not taught at this level. Besides, the course requires knowledge and previous experience in use of STATA software.

Health promotion (6 credits)

The course gives theoretical knowledge in the sphere of health promotion and healthy lifestyle as well as practical activity skills to develop health interventions in the field of health promotion. The course consists of three basic parts: “common problems of health promotion”, “peculiarities of health promotion in Russia” and “group course project”. The last part represents a solid practical assignment involving development and presentation of own health promotion programs by groups of students.

Health economics and health policy (2 credits)

The aim of this course is to provide knowledge on the basics of economics and policy applied to healthcare. The course covers various topics (market economy and market-related problems in healthcare, foundations of healthcare systems in different countries, means and methods of financing and allocation of resources to healthcare services). The course provides skills of critical evaluation of healthcare policy, economic evaluation of healthcare technologies and also examines healthcare economics and policy questions from the ethical point of view.

Information technologies (2 credits)

The general purpose of the course is to provide information on core methods of and facilities used to apply modern information technologies in research and practice of public health. The specific aims include acquiring modern methods and means of systematization and analysis of scientific data, preparing scientific publications and presentations, studying modern electronic means used in educational and research process, forming of practical skills of using internet-based scientific and educational resources in daily professional public health and research activity.

Legislation, law and bioethics in public health (3 credits)

The aim of the course is to provide information on foundations of legislation and law in the sphere of healthcare in the Russian Federation and some other countries, theoretical and practical skills in the sphere of bioethics, introduction to assumptions, problems, directions and concepts. Special attention is given to the analysis of ethical issues in public health. The course presupposes acquirement of categorical-conceptual terms of bioethics, knowledge on the basic problems of its origin, formation and development, skills of main ethic problems analysis and methods of their solving. Ethical problems in healthcare and research activity are specially discussed in the course.

Health management and health administration (2 credits)

The aim of the course is to give students understanding of management foundations, development of a complex management vision in healthcare, setting strategic aims to improve healthcare in the Russian Federation. The following aspects are discussed in the course: problems of efficacy measurements in healthcare in the Russian Federation and other countries, organization of healthcare systems, history of healthcare reforms in Russia. Special attention is paid to the study of the Russian system of medical insurance and analysis of effectiveness of healthcare reforms.

Basics of sociology and psychology of health (2 credits)

The aim of the course is to provide students with understanding of sociological and psychological approaches to health; to consider psychological approach in understanding of physical and mental health, to present notions of an objective and subjective disease, to introduce a biopsychosocial disease model; to present theoretical and empirical investigations of socio-cultural processes in healthcare and public health. The following topics are presented: social reproduction of health and disease, interconnection between social structure and health, social reasons for diseases. Special attention is paid to social factors conditioning the structure of morbidity, influence of social and cultural processes on the state of health and access of population to healthcare services. Also the following aspects are discussed: the role of social support, social networks and social fund in health maintenance, social inequalities in healthcare: social class, ethnical, gender.

Business and academic English (2 credits)

The aim of the course is to improve the level of English in professional healthcare sphere enabling students to use English freely in conversations on professional topics and to read special literature. The course includes seminars on professional vocabulary in healthcare, reading practice and translation of specialized texts, preparation and presentation of oral reports and reviews in English.

Scientific writing and presentation (4 credits)

The aim of this course is to prepare students to (1) write articles for publication in international professional public health journals and (2) to present research at national and international conferences. In addition, the review processes involved in the acceptance of scientific communications in international journals and conferences will be described. Ethical and legal issues in relation to publications and conference presentations will be described and discussed. Language questions will be considered throughout the course. Ethical and legal questions concerning publications and presentations on conferences are discussed. Self-studies and self-evaluation of the work comprise a solid part of the course.

Elective courses:

Qualitative research methods (4 credits)

This course includes three academic sessions (lectures, discussions, group assignments) and an examination. More detailed description of the course will be provided later on.

Addictive behavior and mental health (4 credits)

The students are expected to learn development and manifestation of addictive behavior, types of addiction, the general principles for prevention and treatments, different diagnostic procedures and principle, and the different consequences of addictive behavior. Students will receive knowledge on peculiarities and manifestation of dependency, basic principles of prevention and treatment of dependency, various diagnostic procedures and dependency consequences.

Injury prevention and safety promotion (4 credits)

The aim of this course is to provide relevant knowledge on definitions, concepts, epidemiology of injuries as well as the main principles of injury prevention and health promotion. Special emphasis is given to the development of long-term strategies and planning of preventive measures at global, national, regional and local levels. Special attention is given to prevention strategies at the local level.

Occupational health (4 credits)

The course aims at providing the students with basic understanding of concepts, definitions, methods and regulations within occupational health. The course addresses interaction between work and health, focusing on exposure, biological mechanisms and clinical features of different occupational diseases in order to increase knowledge and promote good practice in occupational health. The focus is set on strategies and action plans at global, national, regional and local levels. Main topics of the course are the following: Introduction to occupational health, occupational health in EU and Russia, basic understanding of toxicology, clinical features, exposure estimation, monitoring, physiology of work in different occupations, occupational hygiene and challenges of occupational medicine. Examples from various industries and a visit to an industrial plant are included in the course.

Environmental health (4 credits)

This course consists of three parts, such as “Introduction to environment-and-health”, “Air, water and food safety”, and “Industrial pollution, global health and risk assessment”. The aim of the first part is to explore the basic relationship between environmental factors and health, pertinent definitions and concepts, and explore related larger socioeconomic issues. During the second part students have to become aware of the fundamental concepts and current issues related to air and water pollution, as well as of food safety. The third part aim is to explore the nature of the health hazards associated with exposures to pollutants within and outside industrial operations, climate change and related global health issues, transboundary transport of contaminants, harmful substances, industrial and natural disasters, and the basic principles of risk assessment and its applications.

Epidemiology of communicable diseases (4 credits)

This course focuses on the communicable diseases epidemiology in Russia as well as world-wide, and the importance of communicable diseases in public health. So, several major topics within the field will be covered: “The epidemiology of communicable diseases”, “Principles for the control of communicable disease”, and “The epidemiology of significant communicable diseases in the Russian Federation”.

Practical trainings:

Educational practice - the second term

Primary  practice - the second term

Project-based practice - after the third term

Research practice - the fourth term