The goal of this course is to introduce students to the major demographic data sets that are used in health policy research and to provide hands-on experience using these data to answer policy oriented research questions. There is a wealth of publicly available demographic survey data in the United States that can be used for policy research and planning. However, such data often have unique limitations, they can be difficult to obtain and use, and they require statistical methods that are not necessary in the analysis of other data. The goal if this course to introduce students to the major demographic data sets that are used in health policy research and to provide hands-on experience using these data to answer policy oriented research questions. Through readings, lectures, and in-class discussions students will learn how federal surveys are designed and conducted, the role that these data play in policymaking activities, and the strengths and limitations of large-scale survey data. In conjunction, through a series of labs and assignments, students will gain experience in developing researchable policy questions, obtaining publicly available data, analyzing it with statistical software (Stata), and communicating results through the creation of tables and reports that meet the standards of professional policy research. By the end of the course, each student will have written a high quality empirical paper on a policy topic of their choice.

Course Number: 
HLSA721
Semester: 
Spring 2017
Prerequisite: 
EPIB650; or students who have taken courses with comparable content may contact the department; or permission of instructor. Additional information: Priority enrollment will be given to students in the Department of Health Services Administration programs.