Over the past thirty years, health education programs have undergone a shift in attitude and disciplinary culture in the attempt to balance health education’s emphasis on scientific knowledge with the so-called “softer” skills of communication, interpretation, and observation honed by the humanistic disciplines. In Fall 2014, Canada’s very first undergraduate Health Humanities curriculum was launched at the University of Toronto Scarborough. Developed and taught by Professor Andrea Charise in UTSC’s Health Studies program, these three courses—Introduction to Health Humanities (HLTB50), The Human-Animal Interface (HLTC50), and Special Topics in Health Humanities (HLTD50)—introduce annually more than 200 undergraduate students in both BA and BSc programs to the critical methods and creative materials of arts-based engagements with human health and illness. As a result of the successful launch of this Health Humanities curriculum at UTSC, in Spring 2015 the Health Studies program received decanal approval to develop a new freestanding Minor program in Health Humanities: an undergraduate minor that will be completely distinctive within the University of Toronto and the very first of its kind in the Canadian postsecondary landscape.
For more information visit: www.utsc.utoronto.ca/people/acharise/teaching