Health systems and health in developing Asia: India, China, and North Korea

Spring 2019

Health systems and health in developing Asia: India, China, and North Korea (3-4 ECTS)

Level: Master’s level

Language: English

Time: 4 March – 17 May, 2019

Organizer: University of Tampere and University of Turku. Arranged in cooperation with Engage Korea.

General description

This course introduces students to current public health issues in developing Asia. Scholars and health practitioners discuss case studies from India, China, and North Korea.

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course students will be able to discuss current health issues in Asia combining theoretical knowledge and insights from the case studies.

Students participating in the optional module will gain further insights into cooperation and engagement with North Korea in the health sector.


This course is based on the discussion of current research and contributions by practitioners providing assistance in the health sector.

The course is divided into three compulsory modules (3 ECTS) and one optional module (1 ECTS). The compulsory modules are Public health challenges in China and North Korea (Module I), Human resources for health (Module II) and Environmental health (Module III). The additional optional module is Health in North Korea (Module IV, 1 ECTS). All modules include online lectures, readings and learning diaries.

The lectures in Modules I-III cover topics such as Maternal and child health in China, Health issues in North Korea, Human resources for health in low-and middle-income settings, Engaging North Korea on Medical Education, Water sanitation and hygiene and Antimicrobial Resistance in India as well as Climate change, flooding and public health.

Lectures in the optional module on North Korea include topics such as International level engagement in health (UN and NGOs) and Hepatitis in North Korea. Students are required to prepare the relevant readings (about 50 pages per module), watch the lectures and write one learning diary. The learning diary includes a reflection on the lectures, the readings and a concluding discussion of the topic (2,500 words). Students can submit their questions to the Moodle online forum.

Modes of study

Students are expected to do all the module specific readings and to watch all lectures (I-III). Students will be evaluated on basis of performance on assignments (learning diary 2,500 words). Students can earn an extra credit (1 ECTS) by submitting a 1,500 word essay for the optional module (Module IV).



Application period:  Maximum of 40 students will be taken to the course in the order of application, at least 20 through the Asia Network and 20 through the Engage Korea (in the U.S.). Each member university of Asia Network has a quota of 3 students. Application period for next course November 5-25, 2018. Go to application instructions.