Culminating Experience Options

Option 1: Policy Analysis

This option can be taken for 0, 1, or 2 credits.  All students must register for the CE (IH950 for 0 credits; IH943 for 1 or 2 credits).  Alternatively, students may elect to enroll in IH777 (2cr), a writing workshop in which students work on their policy analysis (Option 1) throughout the semester.  In IH777, all drafts of the paper are commented on and approved by the course co-instructors.  The same high quality standards are expected of all CEs, regardless of whether they are credit-bearing or not.

The policy analysis usually addresses a public health or management problem observed during the practicum.  Students should focus on a policy or program-related issue relevant to an identified host organization or a set of policy makers, gather and analyze background information and evidence, and propose recommendations.  Students may choose a topic not related to their practicum with the approval of their CE advisor.

The policy analysis should be approximately 12-20 pages. Length is determined by the scope of the question and the needs of the audience.  For more details on Option 1, please see the CE Guidelines.

 

Option 2: Journal Article

Students doing Option 2 will be required to register for a 2-credit directed study (IH943).  Please note that Option 2 CEs often take more than 1 semester to complete.

In this option, the student will develop and submit a manuscript to an academic journal for publication. The Department will issue a call for submission three times a year to accommodate the January, May, and September graduation cycles.  In response to the call for submission, students interested in doing this option will submit well-written paper proposals consisting of a Problem Purpose Statement, an outline of the intended analytical methods, details about the data set to be used, and a timeline for completion.  An GH faculty committee will review proposals and approve projects based upon the soundness of the proposal and the feasibility of getting the project completed within the intended timeline.

Students applying for this option must have a faculty mentor from the GH department who agrees, in writing, to work intensively with the student throughout the semester.  The faculty mentor will need to sign off on the project proposal formally before it is submitted to the committee. In order to ensure that the faculty approval committee has sufficient time to review your proposal before meeting, it is imperative that you communicate with your CE mentor well in advance of posted submission deadlines. Failure to do so may result in your CE not being reviewed or accepted by the committee.  Students are required to meet with their CE mentor throughout the writing process.  The mentor’s role is similar to that of a Senior Author or Scientific Director, who provides direction and advice to the student, but the student must do the actual analysis and writing.

Option 2 papers must be considered ready for submission to an academic journal in order to be considered final. The decision about whether or not a draft is acceptable for submission and therefore final will be at the discretion of the CE advisor.

 

Option 3:  Independent Project

This option can be taken for no credit (IH950), or as a 1 or 2 credit directed study (IH943).  The same high quality standards are expected of all CEs, regardless of whether they are credit-bearing or not.  Please note that Option 3 CEs often take more than 1 semester to complete.

The objective of this option is to encourage creative and innovative projects by those students who have an idea for a CE that does not fit into the previous two options.  The Department will issue a call for submission three times a year to accommodate the January, May, and September graduation cycles.  An GH faculty committee will review proposals and approve projects based upon the soundness of the proposal and the feasibility of getting the project completed within the intended timeline. Possible examples of independent projects include a film documentary, an advocacy campaign, a public forum, a fundraising project, etc.

Students applying for this option must have a faculty mentor from the GH department who agrees in writing to work intensively with the student throughout the semester.  The faculty mentor will need to sign off on the project proposal formally before it is submitted to the committee. In order to ensure that the faculty committee has sufficient time to review your proposal before meeting, it is imperative that you communicate with your CE advisor well in advance of posted submission deadlines. Failure to do so may result in your CE not being reviewed or accepted by the committee.  Students are required to meet with their advisor throughout the semester in order to ensure they are on track with their project deliverables.

The final product will be evaluated by the student’s CE advisor. The project will be deemed “complete” based on case-by-case criteria to be proposed by the student. Films might be screened, town hall meetings will transpire and follow-up activities completed, websites launched, etc.