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   A Memorial University of Newfoundland Publication

September 18 , 2003

New program in applied health

Senate has approved a master’s degree in applied health services research. The program is offered by the Atlantic Research Training Centre, a collaborative venture of Memorial University, the University of New Brunswick and Dalhousie University.

Dr. Doreen Neville, principal of the program at Memorial, explained that the program was developed to increase the capacity of health services researchers in the Atlantic provinces. With funding from the Canadian Health Services Research Foundation and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the three universities are sharing resources and building upon complementary strengths.

The two-year program is intended for students with little or no background in the healthcare field or experience in conducting research. “We are looking for diverse backgrounds – this year we have students coming in from business, political science, sociology and basic science. By the end of the program, our students will have a demonstrated grounding in scholarly research techniques, experienced the healthcare field through their residency placement, and completed eight courses related to healthcare research,” said Dr. Neville. “We are pleased to have this master’s program formally approved and are now actively working on creating PhD options for students who wish to continue their studies in this field”.

The courses for the applied health services degree are Web-based and each semester students and faculty get together for a theme-based workshop. Between the second and third semesters students undertake a three-month residency placement with a key decision-maker. Students accepted into the program receive a $9,000 per year scholarship and the program covers their tuition and traveling costs. “Our goal is to develop a critical mass of health services researchers who conduct applied health services research throughout Atlantic Canada, who are trained in interdisciplinary methodologies, and who understand how to communicate research to decision-makers.” said Dr. Neville. “Where you’re trained is usually where you stay – by training people here they will develop links to the provincial Department of Health and healthcare organizations that will make it easier for them to work in this region.”

During the coming year, Dr. Stephen Tomblin, Political Science, will co-ordinate the program while Dr. Neville is on sabbatical. For further information go to or contact Cathy Peyton (cpeyton@; 777-6216).



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Next issue: October 2, 2003

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