SKHS Courses: Spotlight on race, racism & Indigeneity

This course will provide you with a broad understanding of the major social determinants of health in Canada and globally today, including income, the economy, and work; poverty; racism and social exclusion; colonialism and Indigeneity; access to food and shelter; child development and education; climate change and the environment; and war and migration.

The goals of this course are to give you a broad introduction to health promotion, and a general understanding of what health promoters do. Students learn how race, culture, gender, Indigeneity, and other socially constructed categories influence how we understand health, as well as how the investigation of health reveals insights into the differentiation of society.

In this course, we will examine the dominant industrialized food system and its impacts on the human and non-human
animals who are part of it, as well as the environment. We will also consider alternatives to the dominant food system including Indigenous food systems.

This course will provide you with a general overview of policy and policy change, with a focus on Canadian health care policy. We will study the history and current structure of Canada’s health care system, and analyze current debates about how Canadians access health care. Indigenous and non-Canadian health policy is one of the four modules covered in the course.

Epidemiology is the study of the occurrence and distribution of health-related events, states, and processes in a human population, including the study of the determinants influencing such processes and the application of this knowledge to public health policy formation and clinical practice. This course will provide students with the basics of epidemiological study designs and methods while engaging seriously with the intertwined societal (e.g., gender, race, class), political (e.g., health policy, neoliberalism), and ecological (e.g., climate change) determinants of population health and health inequities. 

This course provides students with a foundation for understanding disability, with an emphasis on how disability is a socially constructed concept. Students explore the intersection of disability and Indigeneity, and how meanings and demographics of disability differ among communities in Canada.

This course has been designed to help us place contemporary sexual issues in a broad historical and cultural context. Our primary goal is to analyze both sexuality and health on social and political levels, to see them not simply as personal or physical/biological concerns. Topics include the social construction of sexuality, sexual health, and racism, colonialism and violence.

In this course you will critically analyse the social and political dimensions of health and illness drawing on approaches that emphasize power and context. Through reading, writing, and discussion about issues like colonial biopolitics, surveillance and criminalization, we will explore what it means to approach health and illness as products of systemic forces and sites of political struggle.

This course examines global health from a variety of perspectives, including anthropological, epidemiological, geographical, and sociological, to help understand the cultural and historical patterns shaping global health inequalities including colonial medicine and its legacy.

In this course, we will consider alternatives to the dominant biomedical discourse that problematically understands large body size strictly through a “health risk factor” lens. This course will introduce you to different theoretical approaches to studying body size in order to understand how the way in which we understand body weight reinforces or resists other systems of privilege and oppression, including gender, race, class, and sexuality.

This course provides advanced study of the major theoretical and methodological approaches in critical health promotion including decolonizing and anti-racist approaches to health promotion. You will develop a strong theoretical foundation for the interrogation of priority health inequities facing Canada and the world today.  

HLTH 493 (Special topic): Population Health and Health Equity - Local to Global Perspectives

Population health is a field of research and practice concerned with “the health outcomes of a group of individuals, including the equitable distribution of such outcomes within the group (Kindig & Stoddard, 2003).” Populations may be defined by sociodemographic characteristics such as gender, race/ethnicity, or social class, geographical area/country membership, disease states, or by enrollment in a health care plan. Population health takes an upstream approach, focusing on the social determinants of health and fundamental issues of health equity (e.g., sexism, racism, classism, elitism ageism, ableism). In this course, we will explore the ways we can achieve population health and health equity from local and global perspectives.

In HLTH 495 students will expand their understandings of the environment and the ways that it impacts our recreation, sport, and health
possibilities/outcomes. This seminar class prioritizes intersectional justice as a way to learn and think about human interactions with each other and with “nature.” Larger questions posed throughout the course include: In what was does physical space determine social norms? How do we reconcile our existence on stolen land? How is environmental degradation compounded by other axes of oppression?

In this class, you will develop a better understanding of the place of sport in contemporary society and how it works as an institution, a symbol, and a source of pleasure or pain in everyday life.  The course will focus on the ways that different social factors (race, gender, class, etc.) shape people’s experiences of sport and the way that sport can both challenge and contribute to social inequality. 

This course offers a critical exploration into (1) how the social construction of race affects sport, health, and physical activity cultures, and (2) how sport may influence our understanding of race more broadly in society. We will discuss how racism can be experienced, reproduced, and/or challenged in these sporting spaces. The end goal is to understand how sport and health practitioners can incorporate anti-racism work into their everyday operations.

This course explores historical and contemporary ways of making sense of fitness, exercise, and bodies to see how these are connected to broader social and political themes such as inequality related to race, class, ability, sexuality, age and gender. You will investigate fitness and exercise as not just physical but also complex cultural, historical, and political phenomena.

In this course our aim is simple: to learn more about the times in which we are living. Our shared interest in sport and outdoor recreation provides the entry point, a way of making the global local, of considering the effects of broad social forces on a smaller scale. Our emphasis will be on developing habits of mind and learning skills that facilitate personal and collective reflection on important issues (e.g., settler colonialism/ decolonization), with a view to imagining better futures and contributing to social change where it is needed.

KHS 891 Statistics

The basic premise of this course is to acknowledge and honour the Indigenous Peoples and their land that we stand on and to use our new knowledge to address systematic oppression of and injustices against Indigenous Peoples and marginalized individuals, populations, and communities more broadly. Under this premise, the course is designed to learn about political implications of our work and to plan, operationalize, and implement quantitative methodologies and statistics to generate novel, anti-oppressive, justice-oriented quantitative evidence.