Courses

This page displays the schedule of Bryn Mawr courses in this department for this academic year. It also displays descriptions of courses offered by the department during the last four academic years.

For information about courses offered by other Bryn Mawr departments and programs or about courses offered by Haverford and Swarthmore Colleges, please consult the Course Guides page.

For information about the Academic Calendar, including the dates of first and second quarter courses, please visit the College's calendars page.

Spring 2024 HLTH

Course Title Schedule/Units Meeting Type Times/Days Location Instr(s)
HLTH B115-001 Introduction to Health Studies Semester / 1 Lecture: 12:55 PM-2:15 PM TTH Goodhart Hall B
Bhattacharya,A.
HLTH B115-002 Introduction to Health Studies Semester / 1 Lecture: 2:25 PM-3:45 PM TTH Goodhart Hall B
Bhattacharya,A.
HLTH B303-001 Topics in Health Studies: From Kama to Kinsey Semester / 1 LEC: 1:10 PM-4:00 PM W Old Library 118
Bhattacharya,A.
BIOL B216-001 Genomics Semester / 1 Lecture: 9:55 AM-11:15 AM TTH Park 264
Bitarello,B., Bitarello,B.
Laboratory: 1:10 PM-4:00 PM W Park 264
HIST B250-001 Media and Medicine in Modern America: Semester / 1 Lecture: 11:40 AM-1:00 PM MW Dalton Hall 119
O'Donnell,K.
PSYC B209-001 Clinical Psychology Semester / 1 Lecture: 8:25 AM-9:45 AM TTH Dalton Hall 300
Conlin,S.
PSYC B344-001 Early Childhood Experiences & Mental Health Semester / 1 Lecture: 1:10 PM-4:00 PM T Bettws Y Coed 127
Mukerji,C.
PSYC B344-002 Early Childhood Experiences & Mental Health Semester / 1 Lecture: 1:10 PM-4:00 PM M Old Library 102
Mukerji,C.

Fall 2024 HLTH

Course Title Schedule/Units Meeting Type Times/Days Location Instr(s)
HLTH B115-001 Introduction to Health Studies Semester / 1 Lecture: 10:10 AM-11:30 AM TTH Bhattacharya,A.
HLTH B115-002 Introduction to Health Studies Semester / 1 Lecture: 1:10 PM-2:30 PM TTH Bhattacharya,A.
BIOL B201-001 Genetics Semester / 1 Lecture: 11:40 AM-1:00 PM TTH Park 25
Davis,T.
BIOL B215-001 Biostatistics with R Semester / 1 Lecture: 10:10 AM-11:30 AM TTH Dept. staff, TBA
Laboratory: 1:10 PM-4:00 PM W
BIOL B271-001 Developmental Biology Semester / 1 Lecture: 9:10 AM-10:00 AM MWF Park 159
Davis,G., Davis,G.
Laboratory: 1:10 PM-4:00 PM TH Park 126
CHEM B242-001 Biological Chemistry Semester / 1 Lecture: 10:10 AM-11:30 AM MW Park 278
Plummer-Medeiros,A.
ECON B214-001 Public Finance Semester / 1 Lecture: 2:40 PM-4:00 PM TTH Dalton Hall 119
Mukherjee,P.
HIST B274-001 topics in Modern US History Semester / 1 Lecture: 8:40 AM-10:00 AM TTH O'Donnell,K.
HIST B325-001 Topics in Social History Semester / 1 Lectture: 1:10 PM-4:00 PM W O'Donnell,K.
PSYC B209-001 Clinical Psychology Semester / 1 Lecture: 10:10 AM-12:00 PM TH Mukerji,C.
PSYC B231-001 Health Psychology Semester / 1 Lecture: 10:10 AM-11:30 AM MW Leszko,M.
SOCL B265-001 Quantitative Methods Semester / 1 Lecture: 11:40 AM-1:00 PM MW Dalton Hall 119
Wright,N.

Spring 2025 HLTH

Course Title Schedule/Units Meeting Type Times/Days Location Instr(s)
HLTH B115-001 Introduction to Health Studies Semester / 1 Lecture: 1:10 PM-2:30 PM TTH Bhattacharya,A.
HLTH B115-002 Introduction to Health Studies Semester / 1 Lecture: 11:40 AM-1:00 PM TTH Bhattacharya,A.
HLTH B303-001 Topics in Health Studies Semester / 1 Lecture: 1:10 PM-4:00 PM W Bhattacharya,A.
HLTH B398-001 Senior Seminar Health Studies: The Immune Self Semester / 1 LEC: 1:10 PM-4:00 PM T Dept. staff, TBA
BIOL B255-001 Microbiology Semester / 1 Lecture: 10:10 AM-11:30 AM TTH Park 126
Chander,M., Chander,M.
Laboratory: 1:10 PM-4:00 PM W Park 126
ENGL B243-001 Disease and Discourse Semester / 1 Lecture: 11:40 AM-1:00 PM TTH Alcaro,M.
ITAL B303-001 Boccaccio, the Plague, and Epidemic illness: Literature and Medicine Semester / 1 Lecture: 2:10 PM-4:00 PM F Ricci,R.

2024-25 Catalog Data: HLTH

HLTH B115 Introduction to Health Studies

Fall 2024, Spring 2025

The multidisciplinary foundation for the health studies minor. Students will be introduced to theories and methods from the life sciences, social sciences, and humanities and will learn to apply them to problems of health and illness. Topics include epidemiological, public health, and biomedical perspectives on health and disease; social, behavioral, and environmental determinants of health; globalization of health issues; cultural representations of illness; health inequalities, social justice, and health as a human right.

Course does not meet an Approach

Counts Toward Africana Studies

Counts Toward Health Studies

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HLTH B302 Survey Methods for Health Research

Not offered 2024-25

Surveys are widely used to measure the population prevalence of various health conditions; to better understand the scope and impact of exposure to social and economic stressors on population health; to monitor health-related knowledge, attitudes and practices; and to inform health systems strengthening efforts. Through course material and hands-on experience, students will master the basic elements of survey design, including, operationalizing constructs and formulating research questions, choosing a mode of survey implementation, pretesting the survey instrument, designing a sampling plan, managing field operations, and analyzing and interpreting survey data. Prerequisites: Completion of a 200-level course in the social sciences or permission of the instructor.

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HLTH B303 Topics in Health Studies

Section 001 (Spring 2024): From Kama to Kinsey

Spring 2025

This is a topics course. Course content varies.

Writing Attentive

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HLTH B398 Senior Seminar Health Studies

Section 001 (Spring 2025): The Immune Self

Required culminating seminar, which integrates the three tracks of the Health Studies minor. Students share and critically assess their own and fellow students' ongoing work to communicate across disciplines and understand the value and interconnectedness of different disciplinary approaches. Students present and defend their semester-long collaborative projects at the end of the course.

Current topic description: For decades, the concepts of 'self' and 'nonself' have played a central role in immunology. The self-nonself framework defines the biological individual as having an immune system that evolved to target and eliminate pathogens (e.g. viruses and bacteria). However, it is now clear that the immune system performs many important functions in addition to defense. Recent discoveries reveal vital roles for the immune system in development, organismal homeostasis, and tissue repair. In addition, the discovery of a robust and actively tolerated microbiome reveals that the immune system does not target all nonself cells for destruction. This seminar will provide a forum for critical discussion of pressing challenges that confront the field, with an emphasis on how conceptual theories hold potential to advance or stifle progress in the field of immunology. We will begin the semester with a broad introduction to the origins of modern immunology. Subsequent topics will include: mechanisms and conceptions of self-nonself discrimination; how the immune system helps build and maintain the central nervous system; the gut microbiota and concepts of self-nonself; CRISPR/Cas-gene editing and the concept of a "new human"; the immune self and immunotherapy; autoimmunity and natural modes of immunosuppression. One three-hour seminar meeting per week. Fulfills the capstone requirement for the Health Studies minor.

Counts Toward Health Studies

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HLTH B425 Praxis III - Independent Study

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ANTH B208 Human Biology

Not offered 2024-25

This course will be a survey of modern human biological variation. We will examine the patterns of morphological and genetic variation in modern human populations and discuss the evolutionary explanations for the observed patterns. A major component of the class will be the discussion of the social implications of these patterns of biological variation, particularly in the construction and application of the concept of race. Prerequisite: ANTH 101 or permission of instructor.

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ANTH B357 Narratives of Illness, Healing, and Medicine

Not offered 2024-25

This course will explore the construction of narratives around illness, healing, and medicine cross-culturally and across a variety of media including through graphic novels, video drama series, primary source diaries, audio accounts, and anthropological texts. Illness narratives have figured prominently in the study and practice of medical anthropology, and increasingly in the teaching of medicine. We will ask: What is the role of illness narratives in the healing process for patients, healers, and caregivers in cross-cultural comparison? How can illness narratives destabilize dominant discourses, and provide an avenue of expression for those who are unable to easily speak or be heard, particularly in biomedical contexts? Who gets to speak, in what ways, and who remains unheard? What does it mean to tell a story of illness? What roles do illness stories play in illuminating and complicating understandings of illness, disability, trauma, and caregiving? How do illness narratives relate to suffering, hope, and healing, and how they differ for chronic or terminal illness? What do they tell us about making and remaking the self? Students will have the opportunity to explore frameworks and cross-cultural experiences through media beyond standard text. Prerequisite: ANTH B102 or permission of instructor.

Course does not meet an Approach

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BIOL B201 Genetics

Fall 2024

This course focuses on the principles of genetics, including classical genetics, population genetics and molecular genetics. Topics to be covered include the genetic and molecular nature of mutations and phenotypes, genetic mapping and gene identification, chromosome abnormalities, developmental genetics, genome editing and epigenetics. Examples of genetic analyses are drawn from a variety of organisms including Drosophila, C. elegans, mice and humans. Lecture three hours a week. Prerequisite: BIOL B110 and CHEM B104.

Quantitative Readiness Required (QR)

Scientific Investigation (SI)

Counts Toward Biochemistry & Molecular Bio

Counts Toward Health Studies

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BIOL B215 Biostatistics with R

Fall 2024

An introductory course in statistical analysis focusing on biological data. This course is structured to develop students' understanding of statistics and probability and when to apply different quantitative methods. The lab component focuses on how to implement those methods using the R statistics environment. Topics include summary statistics, distributions, randomization, replication, and probability. The course is geared around problem sets, lab reports, and interactive learning. No prior experience with programming is required. Suggested Preparation: BIOL B110 or B111 is highly recommended. Students who have taken PSYC B205/H200 or SOCL B265 are not eligible to take this course.

Quantitative Methods (QM)

Quantitative Readiness Required (QR)

Scientific Investigation (SI)

Counts Toward Biochemistry & Molecular Bio

Counts Toward Data Science

Counts Toward Health Studies

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BIOL B216 Genomics

Not offered 2024-25

An introduction to the study of genomes and genomic data. This course will examine the history of this exciting field, the types of biological questions that can be answered using large biological data sets and complete genome sequences as well as the techniques and technologies that make such studies possible. Topics include genome organization and evolution, comparative genomics, and analysis of transcriptomes, with a focus on animal genomics and humans in particular. Prerequisite: One semester of BIOL 110. BIOL 201 highly recommended.

Writing Attentive

Quantitative Methods (QM)

Scientific Investigation (SI)

Counts Toward Biochemistry & Molecular Bio

Counts Toward Data Science

Counts Toward Health Studies

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BIOL B255 Microbiology

Spring 2025

Invisible to the naked eye, microbes occupy every niche on the planet. This course will examine how microbes have become successful colonizers; review aspects of interactions between microbes, humans and the environment; and explore practical uses of microbes in industry, medicine and environmental management. The course will combine lecture, discussion of primary literature and student presentations. Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory per week. Prerequisites: BIOL 110 and CHEM B104.

Writing Attentive

Scientific Investigation (SI)

Counts Toward Biochemistry & Molecular Bio

Counts Toward Environmental Studies

Counts Toward Health Studies

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BIOL B271 Developmental Biology

Fall 2024

An introduction to embryology and the concepts of developmental biology. Concepts are illustrated by analyzing the experimental observations that support them. Topics include gametogenesis and fertilization, morphogenesis, cell fate specification and differentiation, pattern formation, regulation of gene expression, neural development, and developmental plasticity. The laboratory focuses on observations and experiments on living embryos. Lecture three hours, laboratory three scheduled hours a week; some weeks require additional hours outside of the regularly scheduled lab. Prerequisite: one semester of BIOL 110-111 or permission of instructor.

Writing Attentive

Scientific Investigation (SI)

Counts Toward Biochemistry & Molecular Bio

Counts Toward Health Studies

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BIOL B303 Human Physiology

Not offered 2024-25

A comprehensive study of the physical and chemical processes in tissues, organs and organ systems that form the basis of animal and human function. Homeostasis, control systems and the structural basis of function are emphasized. Laboratories are designed to introduce basic physiological techniques and the practice of scientific inquiry. Lecture three hours, laboratory three hours a week. Prerequisites: One semester of BIOL 110-111, CHEM 103, 104 and one 200-level biology course, or permission of instructor.

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CHEM B242 Biological Chemistry

Fall 2024

The structure, chemistry and function of amino acids, proteins, lipids, polysaccharides and nucleic acids; enzyme kinetics; metabolic relationships of carbohydrates, lipids and amino acids, and the control of various pathways. Lecture three hours a week. Prerequisite: CHEM B212 or CHEM H222.

Course does not meet an Approach

Counts Toward Biochemistry & Molecular Bio

Counts Toward Health Studies

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ECON B214 Public Finance

Fall 2024

Analysis of government's role in resource allocation, emphasizing effects of tax and expenditure programs on income distribution and economic efficiency. Topics include sources of inefficiency in markets and possible government responses; federal budget composition; social insurance and antipoverty programs; U.S. tax structure and incidence. Prerequisites: ECON B105.

Counts Toward Health Studies

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ECON B217 Health Economics

Not offered 2024-25

Economic analysis of the health sector. The demand for health care (demand curve for health care and health as human capital); the supply of health care (models of hospital and physician behavior); socioeconomic disparity in health; the demand for health insurance (the role of uncertainty, adverse selection, and moral hazard); health care systems in the U.S. and around the world. Prerequisite: ECON B105.

Course does not meet an Approach

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ENGL B243 Disease and Discourse

Spring 2025

When did "consumption" become "tuberculosis"? What does it mean when someone calls COVID-19 the "China Virus?" As human beings are confronted with novel contagions, we are also forced to grapple with the psychological and cultural impact that these illnesses have on our societies; the words we use to describe these diseases matter. In this course, we will examine literature produced during significant historical epidemics, including: divine punishment and early Christian views of leprosy; apocalypticism and the Black Death; the moralization of the AIDS crisis, and the "unprecedented times" of COVID. Readings will include such texts as Bocaccio's Decameron, Defoe's The Journal of a Plague Year, Mary Shelley's The Last Man, and Tony Kushner's Angels in America. Guided by work by critics like Susan Sontag (Illness as Metaphor) and contemporary scholarship in disability studies, trauma theory, and narrative medicine, we will take an interdisciplinary approach to textual production and genre, putting medical, religious, literary, and historical texts in conversation in order to better understand their reciprocal influences. Along the way, we will consider: How does language affect our perception of diseases and those who contract them?

Critical Interpretation (CI)

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HIST B250 Media and Medicine in Modern America:

Not offered 2024-25

Have you ever turned to TikTok for health advice? Are you a fan of medical dramas like Grey's Anatomy? This course explores of the co-development and evolution of modern medicine and the media in the United States, from the late nineteenth century through the present day. Students will delve into a wide range of media formats, including advertising, newspapers, radio, film, television, and the Internet, to analyze the media's long-standing influence on perceptions and practices of medicine. Special attention will be paid to the shifting cultural authority of medicine, as well as the stakes of communicating health information and implications for public health.

Inquiry into the Past (IP)

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HIST B274 topics in Modern US History

Section 001 (Fall 2023): History of Reproductive Health

Fall 2024

This is a topics course in 20th century America social history. Topics vary by half semester

Critical Interpretation (CI)

Inquiry into the Past (IP)

Counts Toward Gender/Sex Studies (Min/Conc)

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HIST B325 Topics in Social History

Section 001 (Fall 2023): American Health Politics

Fall 2024

This a topics course that explores various themes in American social history. Course content varies. Course may be repeated. Current topic description Health care in America has always been political. From historical debates to modern controversies, this course explores the social and cultural dimensions of American medicine and public health, with particular attention to their politics. Incorporating analysis of primary historical sources, we will examine issues such as health activism, health insurance reform, medical civil rights battles, reproductive justice, the doctor-patient relationship, and the rise of modern bioethics.

Counts Toward Gender/Sex Studies (Min/Conc)

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ITAL B216 Body and Mind

Not offered 2024-25

In this course, we will explore representations of the relationship between body and mind, starting from 19th-century Russian novels that conceptualize love as a physical ailment and ending with the history of Alzheimer's disease. Talking about the relationship between body and mind will allow us to investigate how gender roles and models of womanhood and masculinity shaped the evolution of modern sciences, from psychiatry to obstetrics. Investigating how bodies have been (and continue to be) read, we will discuss systems created to police societies by cataloguing bodies, from Lombroso's phrenology to modern fingerprinting and face recognition softwares. Finally, we will consider how our understanding of the relationship between body and mind has changed over time. Many of the theories we will discuss during the semester are now considered outdated pseudo-science - but how can we conceptualize the difference between science and pseudo-science? As new categories and disease designations appear to substitute the old ones, which are the implications of creating a label for a constellation of existing symptoms? The course will be taught entirely in English. There will be an optional hour in Italian for students of Italian.

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ITAL B303 Boccaccio, the Plague, and Epidemic illness: Literature and Medicine

Spring 2025

What are the responses to human suffering during outbreaks of epidemic illness? How can literature be a valuable tool for plague prevention in time of pestilence? This class explores crucial questions on how narrative works in medical contexts, with a focus on the Decameron and the black plague of 1348. Giovanni Boccaccio is the first writer to unite the literary topos of narration during a life-threatening situation with an historical epidemic context in Medieval Italy. How does he tell his stories in time of illness and death? How do writers and other storytellers respond to dominant versions of health and medicine? Taught in Italian.

Counts Toward Health Studies

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PSYC B209 Clinical Psychology

Fall 2024

This course examines the experience, origins and consequences of psychological difficulties and problems. Among the questions we will explore are: What do we mean by abnormal behavior or psychopathology? What are the strengths and limitations of the ways in which psychopathology is assessed and classified? What are the major forms of psychopathology? How do psychologists study and treat psychopathology? How is psychopathology experienced by individuals? What causes psychological difficulties and what are their consequences? How do we integrate social, biological and psychological perspectives on the causes of psychopathology? Do psychological treatments (therapies) work? How do we study the effectiveness of psychology treatments? Prerequisite: Introductory Psychology (PSYC B105 or H100). Please note that this course was previously known as "Abnormal Psychology" and has now been renamed "Clinical Psychology" and can not be repeated for credit.

Course does not meet an Approach

Power, Inequity, and Justice (PIJ)

Counts Toward Child and Family Studies

Counts Toward Health Studies

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PSYC B231 Health Psychology

Fall 2024

This course will provide an overview of the field of health psychology using lecture, exams, videos, assignments, and an article critique. We will examine the current definition of health psychology, as well as the theories and research behind many areas in health psychology (both historical and contemporary). The course will focus on specific health and social psychological theories, empirical research, and applying the theory and research to real world situations. Prerequisite: Introductory Psychology (PSYC B105) or Foundations of Psychology (PSYC H100). Students may take either this course or HLTH/PSYC H245 not both.

Course does not meet an Approach

Counts Toward Health Studies

Counts Toward Museum Studies

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PSYC B331 Health Behavior and Context

Not offered 2024-25

This seminar will be devoted to a discussion of theory and research in health psychology. We will investigate both historical and contemporary perspectives on the psychology of wellness and illness. We will begin with a consideration of how psychosocial forces influence health cognitions, behaviors, and physiological processes. The second half of the course will focus on contextual factors, interventions, and emerging topics in research. We will debate the question of whether/how psychological forces influence health outcomes. Prerequisite: PSYC B105 and PSYC B231 or PSYC B208, or by permission of the instructor.

Counts Toward Health Studies

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PSYC B344 Early Childhood Experiences & Mental Health

Not offered 2024-25

Development represents a unique period during which the brain shows enhanced plasticity, the important ability to adapt and change in response to experiences. During development, the brain may be especially vulnerable to the impacts of harmful experiences (e.g., neglect or exposure to toxins) and also especially responsive to the effects of positive factors (e.g., community resilience or clinical interventions). This seminar will explore how childhood experiences "get under the skin," shaping neurobiological systems and exerting lasting effects on mental health and well-being. We will examine theoretical models of how early experiences shape development, considering the proposed mechanisms by which different features of childhood environments could shape psychological risk and resilience. We will evaluate the scientific evidence for these models and then apply this knowledge to consider what strategies for intervention-- at the level of the child, family, and society-- could help reduce psychopathology and promote well-being. There is no textbook required for this course. We will read, critically evaluate, and discuss empirical journal articles and explore the implications of this scientific literature for public policy. Prerequisites: PSYC B209 or PSYC B206 or PSYC B218 or permission from instructor; PSYC B205 highly recommended

Counts Toward Child and Family Studies

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PSYC B395 Psychopharmacology

Not offered 2024-25

A study of the role of drugs in understanding basic brain-behavior relations. Topics include the pharmacological basis of motivation and emotion; pharmacological models of psychopathology; the use of drugs in the treatment of psychiatric disorders such as anxiety, depression, and psychosis; and the psychology and pharmacology of drug addiction. Prerequisite: PSYC B218 or BIOL B202 or PSYC H217 or permission of instructor.

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RUSS B220 Chornobyl

Not offered 2024-25

This course introduces students to the Chornobyl nuclear disaster, its consequences, and its representations across a range of cultures and media through a comparative lens and as a global phenomenon. Culture meets ecology, science, history, and politics. Students will contribute to a digital exhibition and physical installation. Taught in translation. No knowledge of Russian required.

Critical Interpretation (CI)

Cross-Cultural Analysis (CC)

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SOCL B265 Quantitative Methods

Fall 2024

An introduction to the conduct of empirical, especially quantitative, social science inquiry. In consultation with the instructor, students may select research problems to which they apply the research procedures and statistical techniques introduced during the course. Using SPSS, a statistical computer package, students learn techniques such as cross-tabular analysis, ANOVA, and multiple regression. Required of Bryn Mawr Sociology majors and minors. Non-sociology majors and minors with permission of instructor.

Quantitative Methods (QM)

Quantitative Readiness Required (QR)

Counts Toward Data Science

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flowers

Contact Us

Health Studies

Rudy Le Menthéour
Co-Director of Health Studies; Associate Professor and Chair of French and Francophone Studies

Kalala Ngalamulume
Co-Director of Health Studies; Associate Professor of Africana Studies and History
kngalamu@brynmawr.edu