Enhancing Graduate Practicum Project Development and Selection at Schools of Public Health: A Case Study


Experiential learning is a core competency of curricula across accredited U.S. schools of public health, helping students to hone diverse skill sets that will enable them to readily join the workforce and contribute to solving complex public health problems. At the City University of New York (CUNY) Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy (SPH), all master’s and doctoral students are required to complete a practicum during their degree programs; yet practicum development and selection processes are often overlooked. To enhance the experiential learning program and Human Research Protection Program processes surrounding student practica at the CUNY SPH, researchers mined an administrative database and analyzed characteristics of practicum projects undertaken by graduate students. Findings from this novel study will facilitate policy and procedural changes within the SPH Office of Experiential Learning, which oversees the practicum program, and across SPH offices, including the Human Research Protection Program, to promote an optimal, student-centered practicum experience. Additionally, these analyses will serve as a model for other schools of public health seeking to develop, refine, and strengthen their practicum programs.

Publication Title

Pedagogy in Health Promotion