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Harvard University Online Course On Health & Safety

This session Harvard University is offering an open online version of course, ‘Global Health Case Studies from a Biosocial Perspective.’ This is an 11 weeks course aims to enable learners to recognize the role of distinctive traditions, governments, and histories in shaping health and well being.

The overall objective of this course is to demonstrate the value of social theory and historical analysis in understanding health and illness at individual and societal levels.

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Course At A Glance

Length: 11 weeks course
Effort: 4 hours of total
Subject: Health & Safety
Institution: Harvard University & edX
Languages: English
Price: Free
Certificate Available: Yes (Add a Verified Certificate for $150 USD)
Session: Dates To Be Announced

Providers Details

Harvard University is devoted to excellence in teaching, learning, and research, and to developing leaders in many disciplines who make a difference globally.

This online platform edX provides online courses from the world’s best universities. edX can empower you to build innovative applications, services, and experiences on the HarvardX platform that will help you make a meaningful impact in today’s interconnected world.

About This Course

This introductory global health course aims to frame global health’s collection of problems and actions within a particular biosocial perspective. It develops a toolkit of interdisciplinary analytical approaches and uses them to examine historical and contemporary global health initiatives with careful attention to a critical sociology of knowledge. Four physician-anthropologists – Paul Farmer, Arthur Kleinman, Anne Becker, and Salmaan Keshavjee – draw on experience working in Asia, Africa, Eastern Europe, and the Americas to investigate what the field of global health comprises, how global health problems are defined and constructed, and how global health interventions play out in both expected and unexpected ways.

Why Take This Course?

This is a free online course. This MOOC will be offered with Video Transcripts.  No prior experience is required. Throughout the course, learners will be asked to critically evaluate the ethical frameworks that have underpinned historical and contemporary engagement in global health. Learners will be pushed to consider the moral questions of inequality and suffering as well as to critically evaluate various ethical frameworks that motivate and structure attempts to redress these inequities.

Learning Outcomes

After completing this course you will have knowledge of:
-How to frame a global health problem with a biosocial perspective
-How to use a toolkit of analytical approaches to examine global health initiatives so as to identify and implement effective interventions
-How to evaluate the ethical frameworks that have underpinned engagement within global health


  • Arthur Kleinman: Esther and Sidney Rabb Professor, Anthropology Department, Harvard University
  • Paul Farmer: Kolokotrones University Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine, Harvard University
  • Anne Becker: Maude and Lillian Presley Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine, Harvard University
  • Salmaan Keshavjee: Associate Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine, Harvard University



How To Join This Course

  1. Go to the course website link
  2. Create an edX account to SignUp
  3. Choose “Register Now” to get started.
  4. EdX offers honor code certificates of achievement, verified certificates of achievement, and XSeries certificates of achievement. Currently, verified certificates are only available in some courses.
  5. Once you sign up for a course and activate your account, click on the Login button on the edx.org home page and type in your email address and edX password. This will take you to your dashboard, with access to each of your active courses. (Before a course begins, it will be listed on your dashboard but will not yet have a “view course” option.) 

Detailed Information