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Doctor of Philosophy in Health Science


36 semester credit hours shared between Doctor of Health Science (D.H.Sc) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Health Science.

Core Block One

Four of the following general core courses and three summer institute courses are required; DHS 8090 or DHS 8095 will fulfill the health policy requirement.

Course Name Semester Hours
DHS 8000: Professional Competencies in the Clinical Care of Diverse and Special Populations
This course includes a discussion and analysis of the impact of ethnic and cultural issues on healthcare delivery systems. An in depth analysis of the barriers faced by healthcare providers when presented with a diverse ethnic population is presented. Critical analysis of the different cultural perceptions of disease and treatment is given, and the need for developing a cultural sensitivity is explored. The student is expected to gain knowledge of cultural differences and the need to respect the background of the patient when formulating treatment plans. The student will be required to research a chosen topic on a diverse population and their impact on the healthcare system. Chat sessions and discussion boards are a required portion of this course.
DHS 8010: Statistics and Research Methods
This is a required summer institute course. This course allows the student to develop understanding through critical analysis of the basic research methods used in health care. Students will be taught how to critically analyze medical information and perform effective literature reviews. Students will select a health care topic and do a review of the literature. The review will be a t least 10 pages and will include a minimum of 20 references from books and journals. The student will utilize the NSU electronic library to the references. Discussion boards are a required part of this course.
DHS 8030: Community Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
This course develops the knowledge and skills needed to work with communities to improve health status of the community. Major topics will include health promotion and disease prevention. Special emphasis will be placed on the "Healthy People 2010" initiatives. Students will be required to complete a paper of at least 20 pages based on an intervention strategy from "Healthy People 2010." The paper will include an introduction, review of the literature, discussion, and conclusion in chapter form. Discussion boards are a required part of this course.
DHS 8080: Conflict Resolution in Healthcare
This is a required summer institute course. This course examines and analyzes the nature and dynamics of human conflict within civil societies. Emphasis is placed upon conflicts within and among governments and public sector agencies and between the health provider, patients and medical institutions. Students will be expected to take an active role in the course and develop their own strategies for dealing with conflict. A paper will be required that details and analyzes a conflict situation in the student's work or other environment and how the conflict was resolved.
DHS 8090: Health Policy, Planning and Management
This course critically examines the dynamics of healthcare in the U.S. The student is expected to analyze the healthcare industry and contrast non-profit and for-profit healthcare delivery systems. A critical exploration of the ramifications of healthcare reform and the impact on institutions and individuals will be undertaken. The concepts of cost containment, and long-term care will be analyzed. The student will be expected to write a paper on healthcare reform and managed care that is at least 10 pages in length and provides an informed opinion on future directions of health care reform. The paper should address the question as to what new directions managed care may go in and what the future of health care reform is.
DHS 8095: Global Health Policy
Globalization affects all sectors including health care and understanding the key policy issues is essential in the study of global health. This course examines the health policy issues confronting international health organizations, financial institutions, governments and specific populations. It reviews the processes that influence the development and implementation of policies, and examines specific topics related to HIV/AIDS, conflict, infectious disease, smoking, and concerns of food distribution, reproductive health/safety and other global major health concerns. On a weekly basis, the student will evaluate information that is available through a variety of internet sites and reference materials to develop a short 3-5 page paper that demonstrates an understanding of the topic. Each student will also complete two health policy analysis papers (8-10 pages each) and participate in weekly discussions based on current policy issues.
DHS 8110: Community, Environmental and Occupational Health
Issues such as air and water quality and waste management will be examined. OSHA will be examined and analyzed for its impact on health and health care. Trends in environmental and occupational health legislation will be examined for their impact potential. Students will participate by contacting one of their senators or House of Representatives member for an environmental statement, and then write a critical analysis.
DHS 8170: Leadership in Healthcare
This is a required summer institute course. This course explores the various methods of leadership and management, both in and out of healthcare, and their impact on productivity, profitability and employee satisfaction. Critical analysis of the different types of leadership and management theories is given and the need for developing a leadership plan is explored. The student is expected to gain knowledge of the various types of leaders and systems and will be required to research and develop a paper on a specific leadership theory.

Core Block Two

DHS 8810 and one of the following general core courses are required.

Course Name Semester Hours
DHS 8190: Healthcare Education
This course explores the various theories and applications of adult education in the practice of training, preprofessional education, and postprofessional education of medical personnel. Critical analysis of the different methods of teaching and training healthcare professionals is accomplished through discussion, research, investigation, journal development, and assignments. The capstone of the course will be to develop a 10 page paper on a specific method of educating health care professionals. Chat sessions and discussion boards are a required portion of this course.
DHS 8400: Global Health Issues
Global healthcare is an emerging priority for health professional education programs and clinical practice. It is essential for all healthcare professionals to understand the impact of global health issues on health care and international economic stability. This course explores the many facets of global health to expose the student to the complexity of the concepts that impact healthcare in developing and developed countries. On a weekly basis, the student will evaluate information that is available through a variety of internet sites and develop a short 3-5 page paper that demonstrates an understanding of the topic. Each student will complete a course paper (20-25 pages) on an international health topic of their choice that includes an analysis of related policy, relevant statistical data, summary of programs and a thorough discussion of issues.
DHS 8750: Patient Safety
Leadership plays a key role in adopting practices to promote patient safety, and leaders should have the skills necessary to be effective in the implementation of these practices. This course will focus on patient safety through a study of safety- oriented leadership, organizational culture, human factors, decision-making science, communication, and a systems approach to health care delivery. Current best practice models and the latest professional literature emphasizing patient safety will be featured.
DHS 8800: Health Care Informatics
The application of computers and technology in health care has become increasingly critical to patient care over the past two decades. There is no area of health care that does not rely on this discipline to some extent. This course explores the field of informatics and technology in health care. Emphasis will be placed on applications that directly impact health care delivery. Through assigned readings, a research paper, a special demonstration project, discussion board postings and group chat sessions; the learner will be expected to demonstrate a broad knowledge of health care informatics and technology applications and educational needs, as well as present their own experiences. Participants will use knowledge gained to evaluate technology and create business case analyses to propose to their organization.
DHS 8810: Global Epidemiology
This course emphasizes the underlying concepts of the epidemiologic approach as it relates to pertinent global health issues. The student will be introduced to principles and methods of epidemiologic research. These include study designs, measures of frequency, association, impact and sources of error. Application to global health and public health strategies for disease prevention, surveillance and control are discussed.

18 semester credit hours are required. Students can take either HPH 7500 or HPH 7600.

Course Name Semester Hours
HPH 7200: Ethics
Health care professionals are required to act morally and ethically. This course is designed to expand the student's basic understanding of ethics to promote ethical awareness and enable students to derive better health care decisions that reduce risk of potential ethical consequence. By exposing students to bioethics and controversial ethical issues typically encountered in current health care practice, students practice making difficult decisions. Students will synthesize and implement strategies for applying morals, values and ethics systematically in the various settings in which health care is delivered. Considering the perspectives of all stakeholders and the role of the healthcare provider, patient advocate, professional and consumer of medical care, students will gain workable knowledge of contemporary ethical issues and appreciate that ethics permeate the majority of decisions made in health care.
HPH 7300: Biostatistics I
The application of quantitative techniques has expanded rapidly in medical decision-making. The emphasis on evidence based healthcare means that health care workers must be able to evaluate the results from published health care research studies. This course is the first of two courses designed to provide students with the knowledge of quantitative techniques. The course will cover descriptive statistics, parametric group comparison statistics, basic non-parametric statistics, and provide an introduction to linear modeling.
HPH 7310: Biostatistics II
The aim of this course is to enable students to appreciate the richness of statistical science and to invite them to the concept of probabilistic thinking. Statistics is the science of the future. Any technique that they are going to learn will help them to understand the unknown better, and in turn it will increase their success in other courses and in future professional careers. Principles of statistical inference build upon the course Fundamentals of Biostatistics. As such, a prerequisite for enrolling in this course is satisfactory completion of Fundamentals of Biostatistics. The goals of this course are threefold: (1) introduce the basic concepts of probability as well as methods for calculating the probability of an event, (2) assist students in developing an understanding of probability theory and sampling distributions, and (3) familiarize students about inferences involving one or two populations, ANOVA, regression analysis, and chi-square tests.
HPH 7400: Research Design
The course will provide students with a basic understanding of the basic methods and approaches used in health care research. A major emphasis of the course will be on the conceptualization and design of research studies. The course will cover ethics, formulation of research questions, study design, reliability, validity, sampling, measurement, and interpretation of research findings. It will prepare students to critically evaluate published literature, and to design sound research studies. The course will be both theoretical and applied. Students will be challenged to apply the theoretical concepts presented in the classroom and in the readings to design a study to address a health related issue of their choice.
HPH 7410: Qualitative Research Design
This course will focus primarily on the knowledge and skill competencies needed to conduct qualitative research successfully. In this pursuit students will immerse themselves in the epistemological, theoretical, ethical, methodological, and procedural understanding of qualitative research, apply this knowledge to the conceptualization and conduct of qualitative research, report the findings of the research in the form of a research article, and appraise the quality of such qualitative research products. Upon completion of the course students will demonstrate that they have mastered the basic competencies needed to create, plan, and complete a qualitative research dissertation.
HPH 7500: Philosophy of Science
This course covers schools of thoughts in philosophy of science. To address the need of laying the foundation for the generation and expansion of new professional knowledge that will guide evidence-based practice for the health professions, this course also covers topics on the acceptance of theories in the scientific community and epistemology of applied scientific inquiry. This course is designed to allow PhD students in the health professions to gain appreciation for the philosophical underpinnings of unity in science, to be able to apply philosophical frameworks and epistemological paradigms in their future research, and to eventually become a creative researcher in his or her area of practice.
HPH 7600: Grant Writing
This course is designed to provide writing experiences which prepare the learner for manuscript and grant proposal submissions. This introductory experience into the grant process from proposal to funding to management will include project management, funding sources, and funding challenges. Other course requirements include a research proposal (manuscript) that is ready for submission for publication and development of a dissertation proposal.
Course Name Semester Hours
HSP 9006: Evidence-Based Medical Practice
This course provides a working knowledge of evidence-based medicine. Cases will be used as the backbone of this course to assist the student in analyzing data to justify the treatments used in clinical practice. Students will also learn to critically appraise the literature, evaluate diagnostic test performance, design clinical pathways and standard of care, and implement evidenced based medicine findings in their own clinical or administrative setting.
HSP 9007: Research Practicum
This is a required winter institute course. Research Practicum requires students to conduct a research activity under faculty member supervision. Objectives include ability to critically review literature, to abstract salient points from literature and present them cogently, to summarize conceptual and methodological issues in the literature, to formulate a research problem derived from the literature, to derive research hypotheses from research questions, to develop a research methodology, to test stated hypotheses, to implement research methodology, to analyze and interpret data, and to write research in APA style.
HSP 9010: Research Practicum Continued
Students who do not complete HSP 9007 in the required 16 weeks, must enroll in HPH 9010. A charge of 2 credits for continuing services will be made to maintain the student's full time status in the program. Students who do not complete HSP 9010 in one semester may be dismissed from the program.
HSP 9008: Comprehensive Exam
The comprehensive exam will be administered during the on-campus institutes, only after students have completed all courses, and before they start the dissertation process. It will assess the students' integrative and analytical skills with regard to the core doctoral curriculum courses.

A panel of four faculty members (chosen among the faculty listed on the faculty roster in this proposal) will be assigned to review and grade the exams.

HSP 9011, 9012, 9013, 9014, 9015, 9016: Dissertation
Dissertation Preparation Seminar, Proposal, Dissertation and Oral Defense. The dissertation is scheduled as 6 courses over 2 years. The oral defense can be done at the summer or winter institute, or on the main campus. This must be arranged at least 45 days in advance.

For more information, check out the Dissertation Overview.

HSP 9017: Dissertation Continuation
For any additional semester after the initial 6 courses, students will register for a dissertation continuation course with a continuing service charge to maintain the students’ full time enrollment. At the end of each semester, students who demonstrate forward progress on their dissertation will earn a PR (in progress) grade. Students who do not demonstrate forward progress will earn a NPR (not in progress) grade. Students who earn a NPR grade in any dissertation course may register for the next semester, although they may not be eligible for Federal funds. Students’ progress through dissertation continuation may increase their total number of degree credits beyond the required 75.
2 credit cont. service charge
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