Master of Health Studies (MHST) 624

Teaching in Health Disciplines


Delivery Mode: Paced/home-study online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Applied Studies

Prerequisite: For MHS Students: MHST 601
For MN-Gen Students: NURS 608

Co-requisite: MHS and MN-Gen Students: MHST603/NURS 603

Centre: Centre for Nursing and Health Studies


This course offers advanced preparation for educators and health practitioners from various disciplines who want to gain the knowledge and skills needed to teach theoretical and practical components of education programs for health professionals. The focus of this course is on theory and high-level conceptual knowledge as well as process issues specific to the education of health professionals. Course topics include theories of learning, the influence of context on pedagogical approaches, challenges in education programs for health professionals, leadership and faculty development.

Although the course covers many aspects of the broad subject of teaching in health disciplines, there are also opportunities for students to focus on specific topics of particular importance for their own learning. Students are expected to set personal learning objectives, make choices regarding their learning activities, independently seek resources that will help them achieve their learning goals, work with the instructor to ensure their learning objectives are achieved, and participate actively as full members of this virtual class. It is anticipated that participants will have a foundational knowledge of principles of teaching and learning before taking this course.

Course Goals

By the conclusion of MHST/NURS 624 students will be able to:

  1. Understand various contemporary theories of learning and apply selected theories to aspects of health discipline education.
  2. Critically discuss the influence of internal and external contextual factors and curriculum philosophies on curriculum development, design, implementation, and evaluation.
  3. Explain the influence of context and curriculum philosophies on pedagogical strategies.
  4. Critically examine current issues of importance for teachers of health professionals.
  5. Discuss responsibilities and challenges faced by teachers of health discipline education.
  6. Understand the role of teachers of health disciplines.
  7. Explore academic leadership and faculty development in health discipline education.

Course Materials

MHST/NURS 624 comprises online materials.


Melrose, S., Park, C. & Perry, B. (2020). Centring human connections in the education of health professionals. Athabasca, AB, Canada: AU Press. Available at

Melrose, S., Park, C. & Perry, B. (2013). Teaching health professionals online: Frameworks and strategies. Athabasca, AB, Canada: AU Press. Available free at

Melrose, S., Park, C. & Perry, B. (2015). Creative clinical teaching in the health professions. Available at

Online Resources

Online readings are suggested in the course and students will be asked to locate additional online resources that will assist them in achieving the course objectives. An online study guide is provided.

Technical Requirements

Computer System

In order to successfully complete this course, you must own or have ready access to certain computer hardware and software programs. For complete and up-to-date information on the minimum computer requirements required to complete the graduate nursing courses, visit the Centre for Nursing and Health Studies technical site.

Course Outline

MHST/NURS 624 comprises the following six units:

  • Unit 1: Developing the Groundwork: Orientation, Overview of Contemporary Theories of Learning
  • Unit 2: The Influence of Context and Philosophy on Curriculum and Pedagogy
  • Unit 3: Issues, Challenges, and Responsibilities of Teachers in Health Disciplines
  • Unit 4: The Role of the Teacher of Health Disciplines
  • Unit 5: Academic Leadership and Faculty Development
  • Unit 6: Integrating Personal Learning and Wrap-Up

Assessment Structure

In the MHS and MN:Gen programs, students must achieve an overall program GPA of 2.7 ( B- or 70 percent), to graduate. The minimum passing grade requirement for each MHS and MN:Gen course is C- (60 percent).

The following course activities will contribute to your course grade, with the percentage weighting of each activity as follows:

Assignment 1 - Outline of Personal Learning Portfolio (Pass/Fail) Pass/Fail
Assignment 2 - Student Group Led Seminar 25%
Assignment 3 - Expository Artifact 25%
Assignment 4 - Analytic Artifact 30%
Participation 20%
Total 100%

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.