Curriculum

A culture of collaboration encourages scholars to use the full range of university resources to design policy-relevant multidisciplinary research projects. Through IHPI, scholars work with faculty in the many strong units located within a short distance such as the Medical School; School of Nursing; School of Public Health; School of Public Policy; Institute for Social Research; VA Center for Clinical Management Research; College of Literature, Science and the Arts; and other schools and departments.

The curriculum is fundamentally designed to support innovative, fellow-driven original research. Throughout their fellowship, Scholars are guided by a mentorship committee of experienced faculty selected specifically for each scholar. Bi-weekly mentee meetings led by the program directors allow groups of scholars to discuss progress in their projects and receive feedback from each other and faculty. Scholars select their research projects to take advantage of close, long-standing linkages. These include nearby ongoing community-based research in settings such as the Prevention Research Center, the Detroit Community ─ Academic Urban Research Center; statewide policy centers; and strong University and VA regional health systems. At the conclusion of the first year, scholars receive a master's degree in Health and Health Care Research.

Master’s Degree in Health and Health Care Research

Specific Course Requirements: A minimum of 32 credit hours is required for the M.S. degree with 16 credits taken in both fall and winter terms.

Final Examination: Students take a midterm and final exam each term.

SOCIAL & CULTURAL ASPECTS of RESEARCH on HEALTH & SOCIETY: This course introduces students to methods for evaluating critical issues in health and health care from a behavioral, societal and cultural perspective. Students examine the use of the behavioral and social sciences and humanities to study health and health care, including evaluations of past research and suggestions for future work. The class is an introduction to essential themes and approaches, not a comprehensive analysis of a single discipline.

RESEARCH DESIGN & ANALYSIS: Students develop competency in research design and data analysis using state-of-the-art methods for health services research and health policy research. The full spectrum of research methods is covered, including qualitative, quantitative and mixed analytic approaches to research questions.

LABORATORY in RESEARCH METHODS & ANALYSIS: The accompanying laboratory enables students to master use of statistical and qualitative methods software packages. Specific modules emphasize independent problem solving and generation of analysis plans, converting study objectives into a specific and actionable analytic design.

LEADERSHIP & CAREER DEVELOPMENT: The purpose of this class is to facilitate the development of leadership purpose and skills for learners around impacting healthcare at a system level. The leadership curriculum is designed to augment the scholarship curriculum so that learners will have the motivation and foundational knowledge to advance their research into the realm of positive change for healthcare and society.

RESEARCH on HEALTH CARE DELIVERY, FINANCING & POLICY: This course presents and stimulates detailed, open investigation and discussion of a broad array of topics in health care and health policy, as a way to provide students with extensive context for their change aspirations and efforts. Through a combination of didactic material and energetic group discussion, students engage critically important research on health care and health policy over the last 50 years in the United States (e.g., implementation of Medicare, RAND health insurance experiment, health maintenance organizations, Clinton health plan proposal, Medicaid and SCHIP, quality measurement and improvement, comparative effectiveness and cost-effectiveness, Affordable Care Act).

RESEARCH PRACTICA: In this independent study course, students’ progress from crafting an initial research question to analyzing secondary data to designing and presenting a research plan.