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Women's Health & the Environment

Course Info:

Students will learn how environmental toxins and climate change disproportionately affect women’s health while also harming population health and perpetuating health inequality. Topics will include prenatal counseling about environmental hazards, impacts of these hazards throughout the lifespan, health effects of agricultural policy, and examples of provider environmental activism. Students will leave the course with knowledge of how environmental hazards disproportionately affect women and other vulnerable populations and ideas about how to advocate for a safer, cleaner, and healthier environment as future health care providers.


If there are relevant readings or materials, they will be made available each week through e-mail updates.

Course Objectives:

Upon course completion, students will be able to:

· Name several environmental risk factors and explain how they disproportionately endanger women’s health.

· Describe how prenatal caregivers talk to their patients about environmental hazards.

· Explain how the environment can affect a woman’s health during her pregnancy as well as the health of her child in the future.

· Explain the effects of current American agricultural practices on health, which can be wasteful and unhealthy and can exacerbate health disparities.

· Name three examples of the work of other health professionals as environmental advocates in their communities.

· Name several individual and systemic changes for health care providers to reduce environmental hazards, including climate change, in order to pursue health and environmental justice.

· Demonstrate concrete individual or collective actions health professionals can engage in to protect their patients and communities from environmental hazards and threats.

Course Requirements:

Grading: This is a pass/fail course. To receive full credit for the course, students are required to attend 8 sessions.

Make Up Session:

Students may complete a make-up assignment (1 page review of relevant article out of articles provided by student course leaders) if at risk of receiving a NO PASS.


Fall 2020