Investigating the pandemic in real time

Faculty focus

June 28, 2020 |

Professor Mary Kramer, Department of Health Science



Mary Kramer, Ph.D., MPH, MCHES, CWC, assistant professor, Department of Health Science and communications chair, Minnesota Society for Public Health Membership (MN-SOPHE)

"As we have had to completely reformat our classes to an online format halfway through the spring semester of 2020, I revamped all my community health courses to include the pandemic. For example, in my writing-intensive Health Communications and Advocacy course for our community health education majors, in consultation with the students, we've updated the major term project for the class to "As the Pandemic Unfolds."

Students chose a specific topic concerning the pandemic, observed the situation as it happened and wrote a thesis paper. Examples include:

  • “Who is Dr. Fauci? Background, training, and communication strengths demonstrated during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
  • “Communication regarding the science, effectiveness and relevance of antibody convalescent plasma serum trials during the COVID-19 pandemic."  
  • “How is social media shaping our fears of the coronavirus?”

Students created a presentation and recorded themselves on video for classmates to provide feedback and answer discussion questions. The purpose of the project was to improve technical writing and presentation communication skills by investigating the progression of the pandemic in real time.” 

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