Five College Consortium


Subject Name: 
Mechanical & Industrial Engrg
Course Number: 
UMass Amherst
This General Education course addresses fundamental questions, ideas, and methods of analyses in the social and behavioral sciences with relevance to the area of public health. It introduces students to the cultural, social and behavioral factors that impact disease epidemiology and transmission of communicable diseases, that are determinants of diseases, and that effect health inequities. It introduces students to systems thinking and systems simulation modeling in disease prevention. As an approach to problem solving, systems thinking is the process of understanding how things influence one another within a whole. Systems simulation modeling is application of systems thinking for quantitative evaluation of interventions and development of strategies for disease prevention. This course engages students in creative, analytical, and critical thinking through inquiry into the underlying causes of health inequity and barriers to disease prevention; problem solving by simulation of short- and long- term impacts of multiple intervention strategies; and synthesis of findings to help in decision-making. The course will expose students to the challenges in prevention of diseases such as HIV, TB, and malaria. Through reading and writing assignments students will learn about the drivers of these diseases, including social determinants and health inequities, and how they vary among populations within the same country and across countries. Understanding these differences will create awareness among students about the need for pluralistic perspective thinking in decision-making. Students will learn to use simulation modeling for economic analysis that can inform national strategies of disease prevention.
Open to students in Commonwealth Honors College or the College of Engineering. This course does not count towards a ME or IE technical elective.
Please contact Dorothy Adams at if you have problems registering for this course.
Instructor Permission: 
Permission is required for interchange registration during the add/drop period only.
Schedule #: 

Course Sections

Sect # Credits Instructor(s) Instructor Email Meeting Times Location
01 4.0 Chaitra Gopalappa TU TH 4:00PM 5:15PM