Category Archives: Ethnic Health & Health Disparities

SPRING 2017 SEMESTER – TEACHING ANOTHER HONORS COLLEGE SEMINAR COURSE ON RACE RELATIONS AND MEDICAL ANTHROPOLOGY AND ETHNIC HEALTH and HEALTH DISPARITIES

Where has the time gone? It’s March already and I finally have the chance to update my Course Happenings Blog! As you can guess, it’s another busy semester yet just as enjoyable as last year because I have another set of outstanding students in my Honors Seminar course as well as excellent students in my undergraduate Medical Anthropology course and graduate¬†Ethnic Health & Health Disparities course.

As a reminder, here is the course description of my Honors Race Relations seminar:

Why is the United State still having major race relations problems in 2017? Do you want to continue to sit along the sidelines or help solve this issue in our country particularly here at ECU? This course aims to examine, discuss, and debate the major concepts and frameworks associated with race relations in America. Students will not only gather background information on this issue through traditional research methods but also gather data by listening to key administrators at ECU and other NC state universities. After students gather this data, they will present their own race relations solutions to the Chancellor’s Office at East Carolina University.

So here are the three courses that I am teaching this Spring 2017 semester:

HNRS 2013 Breaking the Boundaries of Race in America: Developing Race Relations Solutions for East Carolina University

ANTH 3252 Medical Anthropology

MPH 6008 Ethnic Health & Health Disparities

Interestingly, now that I am used to my other courses always being online – Medical Anthropology and Ethnic Health & Health Disparities — it allows me to lecture differently for the online students versus the face-to-face lectures for my Honors Seminar course.¬† In otherwords, I have to be very direct and concise for the online students as opposed to the face-to-face (traditional lecture setting at the university lecture room), I can take my time and elaborate more on specific concepts. Both have their ADVANTAGES and disadvantages. As for right now, I am “cool” with it.

So if you are interested in any of my Spring 2017 courses and have any follow-up questions, send me an email at: baileye@ecu.edu. That’s what’s HAPPENING in my “Course Happenings” course activities at East Carolina University for the Spring 2017!

SPRING 2016 Semester – Teaching an Honors College Seminar Course & 2 Other Courses

It’s hard to believe, but it’s February 2016 already and I haven’t had enough time to update this Course Happenings Blog until now! As you can guess, it has been another busy and amazing Spring semester in which I have very little time just to think about what I’m doing.

Fortunately, this Spring semester I have made the time to RE-ENERGIZE my thought processes and allocated QUALITY time to my courses. Well, this semester I am teaching my first Honors College seminar course and it has been fantastic and exhilarating! The title of my Honors course is:

Breaking the Boundaries of Race in America: Developing Race Relations Solutions for East Carolina University

This Honors seminar course has been a complete pleasure to teach and work with the seven honor students who are taking my class. All of my students have already challenged themselves and others on a number of culturally sensitive race relations issues and now we are in the stage of the class focusing upon SOLUTIONS for race relations issues!! Who would have figured that I would be teaching this type of class at ECU, but I finally am accomplishing this major objective of my teaching career. That is, teach meaningful and thought-provoking classes in which students can be the leaders and the change agents of society.

By the way, here is the course description of the class:

Why is the United States still having major race relations problems in 2016? Do you want to continue to sit along the sidelines or help solve this issue in our country particularly here at ECU? This course aims to examine, discuss, and debate the major concepts and frameworks associated with race relations in America. Students will not only gather background information on this issue through traditional research methods but also gather data by listening to key administrators at ECU and other NC state universities. After students gather this data, they will present their own race relations solutions to the Chancellor’s Office at East Carolina University.

So here are the three courses that I am teaching this Spring Semester:

HNRS 2013 Breaking the Boundaries of Race in America: Developing Race Relations Solutions for East Carolina University
ANTH 3252 Medical Anthropology
MPH 6008 Ethnic Health & Health Disparities

Of course, I enjoy teaching my undergraduate Medical Anthropology class and my graduate course – Ethnic Health & Health Disparities. Both of these courses are entirely online and students prefer both of them taught in this format as opposed to face-to-face in a lecture hall. In fact, both of my online courses continue to increase in enrollment each year that I teach them.

So if you are interested in any of my Spring 2016 courses and have any follow-up questions, send me an email at: baileye@ecu.edu. That’s what’s happening in my “Course Happenings” course activities at East Carolina University for the spring 2016!

Ethnic Health & Health Disparities Fieldwork Projects and Proposals – MPH 6008

In my Ethnic Health & Health Disparities course – MPH 6008, there are three major objectives: (1) Identify and assess the major health issues associated with specific ethnic and health disparity populations in the United States; (2) Describe ethnic health and health disparity issues, including its unique and important features; and (3) Apply principles and strategies derived from public health and medical anthropology toward planning, implementing and evaluating specific ethnic health and health disparities intervention programs.

One of the major requirements for students in this class is to complete an ethnic health & health disparities fieldwork project or proposal. Students are asked to do a project or proposal of THEIR choice and interest that’s related to our course. Fortunately, the projects and proposals from my students have been outstanding, informative and very practical. Here are SOME of the ethnic health and health disparities fieldwork projects and proposals from the past couple of years:

2013 Ethnic Health & Health Disparities Fieldwork Projects and Proposals

The Perception of Married Latina Women HIV Transmission and Risk Factors

The Health Disparities of Obesity among African American Women

Hispanic Culture and Diabetes: The Susceptibility of Today’s Youth

Bridging the Gap Between Traditional and Mainstream Healthcare Practices

Asian Indians and Health Disparity

Get Up and Move: African Americans and Obesity

Improving Breastfeeding Support for African American Mothers

Health Disparities among HIV/AIDS Population

Combatting Diabetes in Adult Hispanic/Latino in Pitt County, NC.

Gun Violence in the African American Community

Mental Health Issues among Latino Farmworkers

2012 Ethnic Health & Health Disparities Fieldwork Projects and Proposals

Understanding Infant Mortality among African American Women within Pitt County, NC.

Depression: A Proposal to Evaluate Barriers that Affect African American Males from Seeking Care

Targeting Skin Cancer among Caucasian Women in the United States

A Proposal to Study the Knowledge, Beliefs and Perceptions of Diabetes among the Lumbee Tribe

Communication Breakdown: Impacts of Cultural Competency on Physician and Patient Communication and Strategies to Reduce Ethnic Health Disparities

Tobacco Use in Ethnic Rural Health Disparities: West Virginian Disparities and Culturally Competent Solutions

A Gospel of Good Health: A Fieldwork Study on the Importance of Health and Faith

Solving the Ethnic Health Disparity of Chronic Liver Disease Attributable to Alcohol Consumption in Lumbee Native Americans

Spring Semester 2013 – Teaching 3 Courses (2 Online and 1 Face-to-Face)

Well, the spring semester 2013 is in full effect now that it’s the first week of February. I am in my regular rotation of courses for the spring semester which consist of the following courses:

1. ANTH 3252 – Medical Anthropology (DE)
2. ANTH 4501 – Professional Development Anthropology (Face-to-Face)
3. MPH 6008 – Ethnic Health and Health Disparities (DE)

The two online courses (ANTH 3252 and MPH 6008) are always challenging to teach because one is an undergraduate course and the other is a graduate course yet both require me to organize the online structure of the courses similarly. That is, I record my podcast and webcast lectures for each course – one after another each and every week. Both are live lectures in which I try to present exactly like a face-to-face lecture in the classroom. Hopefully, once each student downloads the lecture from their blackboard system, it comes across fresh, creative and similar to a regular lecture in a classroom.

Along with the three courses that I teach this semester, I organize a special lecture series for the Anthropology Department entitled, “ECU Anthropology Alumni Lecture Series.” This semester will be the fourth one. The reason why I organized this special alumni lecture series (that’s associated with my Professional Development Anthropology class) is to give undergraduate students an opportunity to listen, connect and network with the department’s graduates. This lecture series has been very successful not only for the undergradate students but also for the alumni who return to the department and share their professional expertise. It also gives the Anthropology department a chance to celebrate the achievements of our graduates so that other scholars and administrators can see that we are graduating students who are making a difference in the professional world.

Stay tuned for updates from each class this semester.

Ethnic Health & Health Disparities Student Fieldwork Projects – 2011

One of the most exciting classes that I teach throughout the year is the Ethnic Health & Health Disparities class – MPH 6008. This course continues to be a very unique course primarily because it allows students to investigate practical and serious ethnic health issues that are often overlooked in our society today.

Here are some of 2011 Ethnic Health & Health Disparities fieldwork projects/proposals:


The Need for Good Nutrition and Physical Activity Within the African American Population Especially the School Children

Eliminating HPV Linked Cancer Disparities among Minorities Within Eastern North Carolina

“Que Onda..?” A Discussion about Health with Honduran Male Immigrants Living in Durham, NC

Racial and Ethnic Disparities in the Treatment of Pain

Perceptions of HIV Risk among Black Women in Eastern North Carolina

Efficacy of Smoking Cessation Programs for Rural White Virginians

Obesity and its Ethnic Health Disparities

Motor Vehicle Crashes among Lumbee Youth in North Carolina

An Individual and Community-Based Intervention to Decrease the Prevalence of Diabetes among Lumbee Indian Youth and Prevent the Occurrence of Cardiovascular Disease

These fieldwork projects/proposals showed alot of diversity of the type of relevant ethnic health and health disparity issues in North Carolina and throughout the United States.

Spring 2011 – Teaching Three Courses – 2 Undergraduate & 1 Graduate Course

We are officially back again! The Spring 2011 semester is underway and it looks like another very active and engaging set of classes. My three courses consist of:

1. Medical Anthropology: ANTH 3252 – DE format – Undergraduate
2. Professional Development Anthropology: ANTH 4501 – Face to Face – Undergraduate
3. Ethnic Health & Health Disparities: MPH 6008 – DE format – Graduate

All three courses presents their challenges because they require me to design the course material in an approach that appeals to three different student audiences. In particular, my two DE classes allow me to present my lecture material in podcasts and webcasts formats. Although it takes alot of extra prep time to get these podcasts and webcasts lectures together, once I begin recording each lecture that’s when the fun starts. By the end of each podcast and webcast lecture, I cover a majority of my key critical thinking points and also try to keep each lecture fresh and entertaintaining. Both of these DE courses (Medical Anthropology and Ethnic Health & Health Disparities) are very unique courses in which I can feel that students truly want to take what they learn from these classes and apply these concepts and issues to real life medical and health care issues.

As for my Professional Development Anthropology class, it is designed to give students practical real life skills and opportunities that will prepare them for the next stage in their academic or professional careers. Here I try to get all students to take that important step forward now by asking questions, listening to experts who visit the class, and visiting ECU programs that will give them special insight into professionalizing their anthropological training. Of course the overall goal of the class is to provide students with more of an organized and visual outlook of their future in the field of anthropology. Yet the real outcome of this class is to reduce the anxiety and uncertainty that many students feel when taking the next step forward in their professional careers. Something that all of us face at some point in our career. Matter of fact, I wish that I had a course like this when I was an undergraduate anthropology major at Miami University (Oxford, OH) back in the 70s!

That’s right, another semester is underway and I’m looking forward to learning something new again!

2010 Spring Course: Ethnic Health & Health Disparities: MPH 6008

Greetings Everyone,

It’s another exciting Spring semester in which I get to teach my Ethnic Health and Health Disparities course in the distance education, online approach. This course continues to be one of a kind in the nation simply because ethnic health and health disparities is a tough and sensitive curriculum topic to teach even today. Yet that’s the very reason why I get excited teaching this class as well students are more than ready to talk and investigate all the issues related to today’s ethnic and health disparity issues.

The major objectives that students will receive from this course are:
1. Identify and assess the major health issues associated with specific ethnic and health disparity populations in the United States;
2. Describe ethnic health and health disparity issues; including its unique and important features; and
3. Apply principles and strategies derived from public health and medical anthropology toward planning, implementing and evaluating specific ethnic health and health disparities intervention programs.

In addition to completing this course objectives, students will have the opportunity to complete an applied ethnic health and health disparity project/proposal. You can check out some of the outstanding projects/proposals from an earlier entry of the blog connected to this course.

Overall, this is one of my most exciting, engaging, thought-provoking, and politically-edgy courses that I enjoy dialoguing about with my students. For all those students who complete this course, their perspective and approach to ethnic health and health disparity topics often changes. That’s a good thing!

Ethnic Health and Health Disparities – MPH 6008 – Fieldwork Projects Topics

During this past Spring 2009, I taught another semester of my Ethnic Health and Health Disparities MPH 6008 course for graduate students in the Department of Public Health at ECU and at other universities in the state. Since I transitioned this course like my other graduate courses to online last year, I have thoroughly enjoyed another way to teach this course. Using the online blackboard tools and software, I have found that teaching Ethnic Health & Health Disparities course a truly rewarding experience because my students and I can learn so much more with incorporating the new technologies within our course activities.

For those who are interested in this course, here are the major course objectives:
1. Identify and assess the major health issues associated with specific ethnic and health disparity populations in the United States.
2. Describe ethnic health and health disparity issues, including its unique and important features.
3. Apply principles and strategies derived from public health and medical anthropology toward planning, implementing and evaluating specific ethnic health and health disparities intervention programs.

During the spring semester, students receive their lectures via podcast and webcam format. The podcast and webcam lectures highlights the major key points from the designated readings from each week. Students also receive a set of discussion board questions each week along with the opportunity to participate in our weekly, topic oriented chat sessions usually in the early evening. If students are not able to attend, then all chat sessions are recorded so that every student can review our weekly chat sessions. The advantages of this online technology allows many students to engage in all types of interaction whether in the structured format of the discussion board session or the free-flowing, semi-structured format of the chat room sessions. In either case, students truly get into the specific ethnic and health disparity topics of the week. Students also receive special video links in which they can view short documentary films on specific ethnic and health disparity topics each week.

Along with the weekly activities, students are also required to complete a fieldwork project or a proposed fieldwork project. I think that these fieldwork projects captures the practical, public health and cultural health focus of this course. Students investigate and solve real ethnic health and health disparity issues that they want to do — not what I want. Thus this course (like all of my courses), is student driven and focused. By the end, if the student is truly motivated, interested and passionate about their topic, it shows in their final fieldwork project or proposal. After teaching for over 20 years, I can easily tell.

Now that I have been teaching this course for 4 years (originally in the traditional face-to-face format) and recognizing that it is still one of most unique courses in all of the U.S. colleges and universities, I get thoroughly delighted to know that all of my students are breaking new ground in solving ethnic and health disparity issues in eastern North Carolina and the United States. That’s how important this class is today and in the future for all those who will be working in a health or medical related field in the near future.

Here is a list of some of the projects completed by students this Spring 2009 semester:

The Lack of Cultural Competency as an Inhibitor of Health in Refugee Populations in North Carolina

Culturally Competent Birthing Solutions

Why is Glaucoma Prevalent in African Americans and Is Age a Factor?

How African American Women Use Multiple Strategies to Cope with Life Stresses

Fieldwork Project on a HIV/AIDS Outreach Program

A Perspective on HIV/AIDS Among a Select Group of African American Men

Ethnic and Health Disparities Due to Health Literacy: Spotlight on Hispanic Women of Reproductive Age

Targeting Breast Cancer among African American Women in Nash County

Obesity Among African Americans

Educating the State of North Carolina About the Effects of an Unhealthy Lifestyle

Pediactric Oral Health Practices of Caucasian and Latina Women in Pitt County, North Carolina

Developing New Strategies to Improve Physical Activity among Low Socioeconomic Status (SES) Groups

African American Women Health Disparities: A Look at Awareness

African American Adolescent Females & Body Image

Childhood Obesity; A Closer Look

As you can see, these fieldwork projects/proposals were phenomenial, investigative, insightful, detailed and practical all within a culturally competent approach. Although it is challenging on every student to investigate another group’s health issues and to see the world from another person’s perspective, the students in all of my ethnic health and health disparity classes (and all of my classes) achieve this outcome! That’s the major goal and outcome of this course each and every time that I teach it.