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SOURCE Supported Service-Learning Courses

in which students engage with the community on a project as part of their coursework

Service-Learning Definition
“Service-learning is a structured learning experience that combines community service with preparation and reflection. Students engaged in service-learning provide community service in response to community-identified concerns and learn about the context in which service is provided, the connection between their service and their academic coursework, and their roles as citizens.” - Seifer S.D. (1998). Service-learning: Community-campus partnerships for health professions education. Academic Medicine, 73(3): 273-277.

SOURCE’s Flagship Service-Learning Course:

Baltimore Community Practicum
Course Number:
Terms taught: 2 & 3
Faculty: Mindi Levin

Description: The purpose of this course is to experience and explore partnerships between the community and academic public health, through project-based service-learning. Students will conduct a project involving a defined population at a community-based organization or local health department that partners with SOURCE (Student Outreach Resource Center). Some internships require a student to have a car. Students must apply to be accepted into this course. Applications occur during 1st term only.

Term 1:

Program Planning for Health Behavior Change Practicum (not offered 2016-2017)
Course Number: 410.620
Term Taught: 1
Faculty: Vanya Jones

Description: Explores program planning application through project-based experiential learning. Includes work in small groups to apply the PRECEDE-PROCEED needs assessment planning framework in a real world setting with a community-based organization or local government agency.

Term 2:

Applying Reproductive Health through Service-Learning
Course Number: 120.720
Term Taught: 2
Faculty: Janice Evans
Prerequisite: Fundamentals of Reproductive Biology (120.620.01) – 1st Term

Description: This course builds from "Fundamentals of Reproductive Biology" in 1st term (120.620.01). In this service-learning course, students will have the opportunity to extend beyond hypothetical applications of what they have learned, and apply their "reproductive biology literacy" to help in a professional, real-world setting.  The service component of this course will be for students to produce deliverable(s) of use/value for a community-based organization (CBO), to be complemented by in-class activities to absorb and learn from these experiences in working with the CBO. 

Formulating Policy: Strategies and Systems of Policymaking in the 21st Century
Course Number:
Term Taught: 2
Faculty: Shannon Frattaroli

Description: Students will learn the fundamentals of formulating and communicating policy. The projects will focus on a pre-identified policy need by the organization. The project and the course will provide students with the opportunity to (1) critically assess factors that affect whether issues move onto the policy agenda and what solutions are adopted by stakeholders and why; (2) identify policy options to address social problems and discern how different options align with stakeholder interests; (3) produce policy documents (e.g., written testimony, policy memo, summary of available evidence) about a policy issue that reflects a partner’s position and is responsive to their needs; (4) work effectively as part of a team to address a partner organization’s policy needs; and (5) practice effective partnering that can be applied to future public health initiatives.

A Service-Learning Approach to Implementation Research and Practice
Course Number: 550.601.01 (main course), the service-learning practicum will be taken as special studies
Term Taught: 2
Faculty: Melissa Davey-Rothwell
Co-requisite: Students will be required to register for the 3-credit didactic component of the course in addition to the practicum requirements (Implementation Research and Practice – 550.601.01)

Description: As a part of the main course (Implementation Research and Practice, 550.601.01) students are introduced to implementation science methods and theories.  They will gain knowledge and skills in the larger course then apply the knowledge and skills through partnerships with community-based organizations (CBOs) in this service-learning course.  As a part of the service-learning component, students, who will work in teams of 5 students, will develop an implementation instrument in partnership with local CBOs.

Term 3:

Evaluation-Informed Program Development and Implementation
Course Number: 305.613
Term Taught: 3
Faculty: Carolyn Fowler

Description: This course focuses on integrating program evaluation methods throughout interventions: from early assessments, through program planning or adaptation, testing, delivery and measurement of outcomes. It introduces practical program planning, implementation and evaluation skills applicable in many different areas of public health. Students are not assigned a service-learning project as a part of the course, rather student participating in the course must already be working with a community-based organization.

Ethnographic Fieldwork (not offered 2016-2017)
Course Number:
Term Taught: 3
Faculty: Deborah Gioia

Description: This course is designed for students who are interested in learning how to design and conduct a brief ethnographic research project. Imbedded in the course will be the opportunity to engage in a short-term research project with an interested community partner. These community relationships will be developed by the course faculty, with the help of SOURCE.

Terms 3 & 4 (two-term courses):

Data Analysis Workshop for Public Policy
Course Number: 318.621
Term Taught: 3 & 4
Faculty: Carey Borkoski

Description: This course provides students with practical hands-on instruction in the analysis of policy-relevant data using the statistical package Stata. It will serve as a bridge between the theory of statistics/econometrics and the practice of social science research. This course also includes a service-learning component where students have the opportunity to apply the analysis skills learned to a “real-world” project with a Community-Based Organization (CBO) in Baltimore.  This project will include specific goals and outcomes decided on by the instructor, CBO, and students as well as a component of critical reflection carried out by the students with guidance from the instructor. The course assumes no prior knowledge of the statistical package Stata.

The time commitment for this course spans 3rd and 4th terms and will fulfill 65 hours towards the practicum requirement of the MPH program. If interested or you have questions, you must request permission to register from course instructor Dr. Carey Borkoski at

Children in Crisis Practicum: An Asset-Based Approach to Working with Vulnerable Youth
Course Number:
 Special Studies Code (received upon confirmation of participation) + 221.640 in 3rd term
Term Taught: 3 & 4
Faculty: Beth Marshall
Co-requisite Students will be required to register for the 3-credit didactic component of the course in addition to the practicum requirements during 3rd term (Children in Crisis: an Asset-Based Approach to Working with Vulnerable Youth – 221.640)

Description: As a part of this two-term course (2 credits/term), students will be matched with a Baltimore City youth-serving organization for a service-learning practicum project.  Students will work approximately 4 hours/week with the organization over the course of 15 weeks tutoring and mentoring students from various backgrounds and in some cases engaging in special events and activities with the youth and the organization.  Project sites include: Fresh Start, Living Classrooms Foundation; Mi Espacio, CASA de Maryland; Refugee Youth Project; Soccer Without Borders; and Wolfe Street Academy. 

Note: This course fulfills the entire MPH Practicum requirement over the course of the two terms.

Term 4:

Food Systems Sustainability Practicum
Course Number: 180.605.01
Term Taught: 4
Faculty: Roni Neff

Description: The service-learning/practicum component will take place in teams. Each team will be assigned to one practicum project related to food system sustainability. Practica may involve tasks such as developing materials, performing research, assisting with day to day activities, or doing outreach. The specific organizations will be determined following course approval. Examples of types of organizations include an urban farm, a composting organization, a food recovery program, an education/communication program.

Social Context of Adolescent Health and Development
Course Number: 380.725
Term Taught: 4
Faculty: Terri Williams Powell

Description: Identifies the social ecological model as a tool to understand adolescent health, principally focusing on the interpersonal, organizational and community levels of influence. Through service-learning, students will explore the influences of specific contexts, such as the family, school, neighborhood, church, and media on adolescent health and well-being.

Solving Urban Health Problems through the Application of Public Health Methods
Course Number:

Term Taught: 4

Description: Through service-learning projects, students will engage in data analysis and translation to address community-identified needs, developing products in collaboration with stakeholders that have direct implications for community-based organizations and/or government agencies.

SOURCE Supported Courses with a Practicum Component to the course (not necessarily community-based service-learning projects)

Term 3:

Health Literacy (not offered 2016-2017)
Course Number: 410.651
Term Taught: 3
Faculty: Debra Roter

Description: Introduces the broad areas of literacy and health literacy, discusses approaches to the assessment of key health literacy skills linked to health outcomes, and explores techniques and approaches for the assessment and creation of print material especially appropriate for low literate audiences.

Term 3 & 4 (two-term courses):

Certificate in Quality, Patient Safety, and Outcomes Research (CQPSOR)
*Must be working towards Certificate in Quality, Patient Safety, and Outcomes Research
Terms Taught: 3 & 4
Faculty: Lilly Engineer

Description: Required practicum component for the Certificate in Quality, Patient Safety, and Outcomes Research (CQPSOR). Usually the CQPSOR faculty advisor will advise on the placement of the practicum among the other CQPSOR courses being taken for an enriching experience for the student.  Practicum projects are generally in a population-health context, such as patient safety and clinical quality. Both operational and research projects are in a patient care setting – it could be a unit, a department, a patient population, a theme such as DVT (deep vein thrombosis) collaborative, reducing Central Line-associated Blood Stream Infection (CLABSI).

Qualitative Research I & II
Course Number: 224.690 & 224.691
Term Taught: 3& 4
Faculty: Caitlin Kennedy

Description: Introduces students to qualitative research and provides them with practical skills for conducting research in domestic and international settings. Includes a significant group project component to develop qualitative research skills, where students design and conduct hands-on fieldwork projects in Baltimore.

All Courses that Meet the MPH Practicum Requirement

For more information about the above courses, visit the following site: