Social Medicine Elective

Social Medicine Elective

This intensive month long elective is offered to undergraduate and postgraduate learners from across disciplines (public health, medicine, nursing, PA, dentistry). Students in our curriculum are “challenged to engage the public, address societal issues, and develop the skills and attributes of critical thinkers and [conscientious] citizens,” as outlined in the university’s Strategic Plan. There are 3 core activities utilized to deliver curricular content including scholarship, experiences, and reflection/evaluation.

lectures, discussions, and readings relevant to current topic area. Scholarly Project/ activity: Learners work with community partners on a project that will be presented as an oral presentation, research abstract/poster.

  1. Observational: Core experiences consisting largely of site visits with community partners (e.g. homeless shelter, prison medical facility, legislative visits).
  2. Direct Service: Participants are expected to participate in a service project(s).
  3. Clinical experiences: When appropriate, learners will engage in provision of medical services at one of the community partner sites.
Sample evaluations include Pre and Post-tests, small group discussions, journaling, photo journaling, and learner and community partner feedback

Table: Details of Curricular Intervention

Wk Scholarship
(Sample Lectures/Readings )
Topics and Subtopics
Sample Experiences
(Observational/Direct Service)
1 Socioeconomic Status and Health
  • Overview of US health financing
  • Interaction between socioeconomic status and health
  • Case-based discussion
  • “Community Orientation”: visit nursing home, prison, homeless shelter, etc.
  • “Patient Simulator”: shadow pt during clinic visit or outside healthcare (e.g., Take MARTA, obtain Grady card/financial assistance, get Rx)
2 Cross-Cultural Communication; Health Disparities
  • Principles of cross-cultural communication and disparities
  • English as Second Language
  • Shadow a medical interpreter
  • Participate in Good Sam Clinic
  • Participate in City of Refuge clinic
  • Participate in IMC, refugee clinic, or other clinics
3 Health Literacy and Health Communication
  • Health Literacy
  • Public Speaking
  • Medicine and the Media
  • Collaborate with Emory Media services/press office to
  • Develop and produce patient education videos.
  • Participate as panelists in public forum
4 Patient and Legislative Advocacy
  • Legislative Advocacy
  • Networking and Grassroots org.
  • Tour State Capitol and meet legislators
  • Write “Letter to the Editor
  • Host community forums/focus groups