Teaching by Case MethodPrinciples and Practice for Public Health Educators

June 19 – 21, 2017

  • $1,750

Harvard Longwood Campus, Boston, MA

This program was an extraordinary resource and has moved my thinking and my skills forward by leaps and bounds. We learned by doing, got great feedback from the instructors, and plans for implementing case teaching in any institution.
  • —Alison Buttenheim, PhD, MBA

Program Overview

Learn to effectively use cases and discussion to teach core public health skills

Leading discussions using cases is a well–established and effective way to teach business, law, and medical professionals. As cross-cutting competencies and disciplinary integration have become the educational standard in public health, case-based teaching has become even more relevant as an active learning philosophy that prepares public health students for the challenges they face in the real world. Many newer competencies articulated by accreditation bodies and the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health, such as communication, professionalism, strategic thinking, and analytic problem-solving, involve the kind of skill and attitude development best achieved by case-based learning and other interactive forms of education. Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health pioneered the development of an interdisciplinary core curriculum using cases to integrate various public health perspectives and enable students to practice solving problems in public health.

Teaching by Case Method introduces faculty to the fundamentals of case-based teaching and learning for public health education. You will engage in active case discussions as a participant, while developing an appreciation of the skills of the discussion leader. This introductory workshop will emphasize the roles, responsibilities, and skills of the discussion leader, explore the teacher-student relationship, practice developing teaching plans, and provide an introduction to case-writing and case-based curriculum development in public health. This course provides faculty with tools for utilizing case-based discussion to educate and develop new public health leaders equipped with critical-thinking skills.

Why use Case-Based Discussion to Teach Public Health Competencies?

Case-based learning provides students with a deeper understanding of how public health concepts apply to the real world and what skills are required to implement these concepts. Under the skillful direction of a faculty member, students learn to solve problems and make difficult decisions under conditions of uncertainty – a critical skill for all public health professionals. Case discussion encourages the development of strong listening and speaking skills, critical and analytic thinking, and an appreciation of the values of the public health profession.

The case study method ultimately ties the principles taught in a course back to reality, ensuring students can use what they learned in public health practice.

Develop a Network of Public Health Faculty

Program participants are public health instructors and faculty, tied together by their commitment to improving public health education through case-based teaching and learning. By bringing together faculty across public health disciplines to learn the case method, this course offers a truly rich experience. During the program, you will have the opportunity to develop productive alliances and enduring partnerships with your fellow faculty members.

This program is conducted in large and small group settings where you will engage with your fellow executive education participants and program faculty as you exchange valuable insights and best practices. You will leave Harvard having developed a network of public health faculty you can rely on for guidance as you return home and implement what you learned.


Objectives & Highlights

  • Effectively engage in a case-based discussion as a participant
  • Create a teaching plan for leading a case-based discussion in public health
  • Develop case-writing skills
  • Develop critical discussion leadership skills of questioning, listening, and responding
  • Learn ways to incorporate cases into a core public health curriculum

Credits, Fees, and Logistics

Please note: Though a laptop may be helpful for completing homework assignments, we ask that participants refrain from using laptops and other personal electronic devices when classes are in session.


The Colonnade Hotel
120 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02116
$269/night plus 14.45 percent tax, includes internet

To book online: click here

A limited number of rooms have been reserved at a reduced rate until May 30, 2017. These rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Please be advised that hotels in the Boston area can sell out very quickly. We recommend making your hotel reservation as soon as you receive registration and payment confirmation. Please mention Teaching by Case and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health to receive the special rate.

The Colonnade is approximately 1.5 miles from the program location. Subway, bus, and taxi services are available in front of the hotel

Program check-in

Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
FXB Building
651 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115

The program takes place at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, located in the heart of the Harvard Longwood Campus in Boston. Public transportation is also readily available to the city’s many shopping districts, museums, and restaurants.

For directions, please click here.

Continuing Education Credit

This program is accredited by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health for

  • 1.6 Continuing Education Units (CEU’s), Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, equivalent to 16.25 contact hours of education.

All credit counts are subject to final agenda.

What is Included in the Fee?

  • Continental breakfasts, lunches, and refreshment breaks
  • Comprehensive web-based reference materials
  • Continuing education credits
  • Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health certificate of participation


Current faculty, subject to change.

Nancy M. Kane, DBA

Program Director

Professor of Management
Department of Health Policy and Management
Associate Dean for Case-Based Teaching and Learning
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Janice H. Hammond, ScB, PhD


Jesse Philips Professor of Manufacturing
Harvard Business School

Susan L. Madden


Associate Director of Case-based Teaching and Learning
Harvard. T. H. Chan School of Public Health

Laurie S. Pascal, MBA, MPH


Lecturer on Health Policy and Management
Department of Health Policy and Management
Harvard. T. H. Chan School of Public Health
Pascal Consulting


This agenda may be subject to change.

Monday, June 19, 2017
11:30 am–12:00 pm Check-In and Boxed Lunch
12:00–12:30 pm Kane Welcome and Introduction to Case-Based Teaching
12:30–1:45 pm Kane Demonstration of a Public Health Case Discussion
1:45–2:00 pm Review Breakout Groups and Locations
2:00–2:15 pm Refreshment Break
2:15–3:15 pm Kane, Pascal, Madden What Are the Challenges of Leading Discussion?
3:15–4:15 pm Kane, Madden, Pascal Designing Good Discussion Questions
4:15–5:30 pm Pascal, Kane, Madden The Practice of Leading Discussion
5:30–6:30 pm Reception at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
Tuesday, June 20, 2017
8:00–9:00 am Continental Breakfast
9:00–9:30 am Kane Debrief of Teaching Practice Experience
9:30–10:15 am Madden What Makes a Good Case?
10:15–10:30 am Refreshment Break
10:30 am–11:15 pm Pascal, Kane, Madden Critiquing Case Drafts
11:15 am–12:30 pm Kane, Pascal, Madden Case Writing Practice
12:30–1:30 pm Madden, Kane, Pascal Working Lunch
1:30–3:00 pm Pascal, Kane, Madden Present Case Ideas
3:00–3:30 pm Refreshment Break and Preparation for Finemark Abbey Discussion
3:30–5:00 pm Hammond Teaching Cases to Facilitate Quantitative Learning
Wednesday, June 21, 2017
8:00–9:00 am Continental Breakfast
9:00–10:00 am Kane, Madden, Pascal Design Discussion Questions to Use Quantitative Concepts/Information
10:00–10:15 am Refreshment Break
10:15–11:30 am Kane, Madden, Pascal Practice Leading Discussion
11:30 am–12:15 pm Pascal Evaluating Faculty and Student Performance in Discussion Based Courses
12:15–1:00 pm Lunch
1:00–2:00 pm Kane, Pascal Designing an Integrated Core Public Health Curriculum Using Cases: Two Approaches
2:00–2:30 pm Wrap-up and Evaluations

Who Should Participate

This program is designed for faculty and instructors of public health disciplines at all levels who are involved in classroom teaching in an international or domestic setting. Ideal participants include:

  • Deans
  • Professors
  • Lecturers
  • And other instructors in public health disciplines