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Student Centered Learning Modules in the MCH Classroom

Developed by:

Sophie Godley, MPH – Clinical Assistant Professor and Director of Undergraduate Programs, Department of Community Health Sciences, Boston University School of Public Health 

Project Overview 

For access to the archive of the webinar on Student Centered Learning Modules in the MCH Classroom, email

Module One: Academic Writing and Public Health Writing Workshop – This is a progressive writing activity that is designed to be done during class. The activity allows teaching faculty the opportunity to work with students on their public health writing skills.

Module Two: MCH in the US: Definitions, Title V, and the Maternal and Child Health Block Grant – This activity was designed for use in a general survey course on domestic maternal and child health. As a pre-assignment for the course, students are assigned to read the following: LeBlanc, Adrian Nicole. Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble, and Coming of Age in the Bronx. New York: Scribner, 2003.

Module Three: Being RIGHT is Not Enough: A Communications and Strategy Session – This activity is designed to allow students to experience the tension between knowing the effectiveness of public health interventions aimed at a particular issue in maternal and child health and effectively communicating complex public health messages to the public. The activity provides an examination of a community strategy to increase breast-feeding rates – particularly among vulnerable populations.

Module Four: Male Circumcision as HIV Prevention Global and Domestic Responses – The Circumcision Structured Debate is intended to elicit deep thinking from students about a controversial and important topic. It raises key maternal and child health issues, including appropriate analyses of data, differing indications for global and domestic policy, religious views, and family structures in the maternal and child health field.

Module Five: Understanding Teen Dating in 2013 – This activity is designed to be done during class, allowing teaching faculty the opportunity to engage students in conversation and discussion. Ideally, students will debate the outcomes and be able to articulate their thoughts and ideas about these “labels.” Peer-to-peer learning is also encouraged.

Module Six: Understanding Racial Justice Framing In Maternal and Child Health – This activity is designed to be done during class, allowing teaching faculty the opportunity to coach and assist students who may struggle with this material. The activity is intended to bring to light issues of race as they pertain to maternal and child health and the critical importance of understanding racial framing.

Module Seven: Fetal Infant Mortality Community Review – The Fetal Infant Mortality Review simulation is a challenging group activity. It requires strong facilitation and guidance from teaching faculty. Note: there is no PowerPoint with Module Seven 

Module Eight: Teaching Life Course in Maternal and Child Health – Understanding the Life Course perspective is critical for students enrolled in a maternal and child health course. Yet even some advanced students struggle to fully understand the perspective. This assignment allows students to examine one health issue in maternal and child health from the life course perspective.

Module Nine: Planning for Birth: Choices and Policies – The activity works when students are allowed to experience the frustration of planning for something and then having it all fall apart.


This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant number UE8MC25742; MCH Navigator for $225,000/year. This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.