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The Minor in Culture, Health, and Medicine is open to all University of Michigan undergraduates. Its goals are as follows:
  1. to introduce students to social, political, and ethical problems characteristic of the health sciences in a highly diverse world
  2. to build awareness of the crucial role of social choices and cultural values in shaping both the form and the content of medicine
  3. to build awareness of the reciprocal role of the health sciences in shaping modern societies, especially the nature and content of social, political, and ethical choices
  4. to explore how these social dynamics (i.e. items b and c, above) differ among the world's societies and cultures, including traditional and non-Western cultures
  5. to introduce students to multiple methods for studying boundary-spanning problems and to the advantages and limitations of each of these methods.

Recently, there have been numerous calls from both within and outside of medicine for health-care professionals to become more aware of cultural differences. Yet current efforts to promote understandings of the cultural and cross-cultural aspects of medicine suffer from two important limitations. First, these interventions begin too late in the education process, and are rarely components of pre-health undergraduate education. Second, when cultural diversity does appear in the curriculum, it is defined through disease. Central to our approach is the belief that disease and difference are intimately related, and that bodies marked by particular racial, gender, and ethnic identities experience disease in specific ways. We thus believe that students from the undergraduate level on up need to learn about cultures at they same time that they begin to learn about diseases and bodies.

For pre-medical students, this minor would complement their chosen field. For others, this minor would permit the exploration of life science issues usually ignored by non-technical disciplines.

None. This minor is open to all University of Michigan undergraduates. This policy does not relieve students of the necessity to take any prerequisites required for individual courses.

The Race, Gender, Culture, and the Life Sciences Minor requires a minimum of five courses for at least 17 credits. Requirements are as follows:

  1. Core Course - The core course may be taken at any time, but students will be encouraged to take it in their sophomore or junior year. (Minimum of one of the following core courses.)
    • Women, Autobiography, and the Medical Body (Sidone Smith)
    • Health and Illness in African Worlds (Nancy Hunt)
    • Raced Bodies, Gendered Moods: Cultural Histories of Psychopharmacology (Jonathan Metzl, John Carson)
    • Medicine, Literature, and the Diagnostic Dialogue (Silke Maria Weineck)
    • Interdisciplinary Approaches to Men's Health (Timothy Johnson, Jonathan Metzl)
    • Medicine, Race, and Culture (Steve Rachman)
  2. Electives - A list of electives will be developed shortly. (Minimum of 3 courses for at least 10 credits.)
    • A maximum of one elective at the 100 level is permitted (up to 4 credits).
    • The remaining elective credits must be at the 200 level or above.
Sponsoring Programs: Women's Studies  |  IRWG  |  Psychiatry  |  STS  |  LSVS      
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