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                                    DRAFT Minutes
                         ASPH Distance Education Council Meeting
                               Sunday, December 11, 2005
                                   10:00 to 11:30 AM
                                    Liberty Room A
                         Ten Avenue of the Arts, Ritz Carlton Hotel
                                 Philadelphia, PA 19102

Members present:                                    Edyth Schoenrich (JHU)
Cheryl Addy (South Carolina)                        Sandhya Srinivasan (USF)
Lindsey Bruso (UIC)                                 Iris Smith (Emory)
Peter Budetti (Oklahoma)                            Lillian Smith (South Carolina)
Dianne Butler (Loma Linda)                          Mary Ann Smith (Texas-Houston)
Ann Cary (U Mass)                                   Matt Wilcox (Yale)
Robert J. Caswell (OSU)                             Mary Wolf (Texas A&M)
Annette Choolfaiian (NYU)                           Carol Young (Albany)
Brenda Elledge (Oklahoma)
Elizabeth Fontham (LA State)                        Guests:
Bernadette Gloeb (Minnesota)
Sukon Kanchanaraksa (JHU)                           ASPH:
Kathleen Kiser (UCLA)                               Gillian Silver
David Potenziani (UNC)                              Rita Kelliher
Sandra Quinn (Pittsburgh)


I.    Welcome and Approval of Minutes
      - Distance Education Council chair David Potenziani (UNC) welcomed members and
        invited participants to introduce themselves. The agenda for the present meeting and
        the minutes of the November 7, 2004 council meeting at the Westin St. Francis Hotel
        in Washington, DC, were both approved.

II.   Report on the NLM-supported ASPH Distance Learning Website Improvement
      project
      ASPH staffer Gillian Silver reported on ASPH’s efforts to improve ASPH’s SPH distance
      learning web pages. As of this meeting, there were19 responses by SPH.
      - Council members suggested removing the tuition variable from the web page, and to
          permit the SPH's to provide that directly on their individual sites, so it would be less
          likely to be out of date or inaccurate.
      - Each school will provide a URL that links to its distance learning program: if all
          schools can’t do this, the idea will need to be reconsidered.
      - Each school will list contact person(s) for distance learning programs.
      - Distance Learning certificates could be added to the matrix (in addition to degree
          programs)
      - The SPH distance learning program matrix was recognized as a very popular
          document, and especially useful for Tulane and LSU students post-Hurricane Katrina.
          The matrix will be published twice per year for distribution at the APHA and
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          ASTHO/NACCHO annual meetings. However, updates to the website information
          will appear immediately. In order to publish this information as a matrix on the
          website, ASPH will need each SPH dean’s approval. Council members asked that the
          document’s title should be changed to note that it includes master’s and doctoral
          programs, and that a note should be added that additional distance learning
          opportunities from the SPH can be found on the SPH’s websites. Similar to above,
          tuition information should be deleted, and the credit hours should note the difference
          between quarter and system hours.

[ACTION ITEM: ASPH will complete collecting information to inform improvements to the
ASPH distance learning web pages.]

[ACTION ITEM: ASPH will make it so the distance learning program matrix can be easily
updated.]

[ACTION ITEM: ASPH will contact the SPH deans to request permission to post the distance
learning program matrix on the ASPH website.]

III.   Proposed Overview of Distance Learning Programs in Schools of Public Health
       - David Potenziani proposed constructing a detailed survey of SPH distance learning
          programs, in order to provide the council with information on what’s out there, as
          well as a basis for assistance and further program development, guidance on best
          practices, and work towards defining the continually evolving “ideal program.”
          Council member consensus is that having such information will help SPH obtain
          additional resources for distance learning.
       - Council members discussed including variables such as distance learning program
          staffing and faculty effort, types of technology, resource allocation, size of program,
          student demographics, disability accessibility issues, international access and use, and
          the program’s future plans.
       - As part of defining the ideal, a council member suggested developing a how-to
          manual. It was further suggested to look into the relationship between the SPH
          capability and what is needed for the public health workforce at the local, state and
          federal levels (e.g., see results of NACCHO’s technology survey).

[ACTION ITEM: Dr. Potenziani will seek Council input on the survey instrument before sharing
it with the ASPH data committee, fielding the survey, and sharing preliminary findings before
the next annual meeting.]

IV.    Possible Special Issue of Public Health Reports on Public Health Informatics
       - Public Health Reports (PHR) is considering publishing a special issue on public
          health informatics (March/April 2007). However, it was to be edited by Patrick
          Sullivan, and he has been tapped to edit a similar issue for the Journal of Biometric
          Informatics, so PHR is postponing its issue. Dr. Rinsky, PHR editor, does not want
          the issue to be bifurcated into technology versus practice, but Council members
          encouraged him to still publish the special issue.
       - Art Lawrence in the office of the secretary at the U.S. Department of Health and


                                                                      Draft by Gillian Silver, January 11, 2006
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           Human Services is interested in informatics.
       -   Dr. Rinsky shared information about proposed PHR author chats for students, and
           council members provided feedback.
       -   PHR is now available online from the beginning issue in 1878. A new book by
           ASPH/PHR of seminal historical articles is now available, and will be printed as a
           300 page supplement to PHR. An audio CD of public health chronicles is also
           available.

V.     Discussion on non-accredited on-line public health degree programs
       - The Council on Education for Public Health has added to its guidelines additional
          scrutiny for online programs from schools or programs seeking accreditation. The
          Council discussed the importance to schools and programs overall of branding and
          raising consumers’ awareness of accreditation, with the CEPH accreditation logo for
          website as one step, and looks to CEPH and ASPH to lead this effort. A council
          member recognized that neither NACCHO nor ASTHO are strong proponents of
          public health degrees in general. Despite this, the council suggested reaching out to
          ASTHO, NACCHO and NALBOH.
       - To educate employers, a council member suggested including language in federal and
          state public health agency job descriptions that when degrees are required, that their
          being from accredited schools and programs is preferred.

VI.    FYI: ASPH Case Studies Resource Center
       - ASPH staff announced the new ASPH web-based case studies resource center, and
         encouraged faculty to register on the site, populate it with additional materials, and
         encourage other faculty at their SPH to do so as well. This resource center was
         developed under the ASPH Education Committee.
       - It was suggested that ASPH put out a call for cross-cutting case studies in the core
         disciplines for practitioners.
       - The council suggested that ASPH look into the question of copyrighting the case
         study materials (the Indiana University website may have a resource on this). It was
         also suggested that ASPH look into password protected access, and other potential
         legal issues.
       - The council suggested that, to motivate faculty, ASPH look into faculty peer review
         of the case studies, so that the studies will count as publications for faculty tenure and
         promotion.

VII.   DL Council Communications
       - Dr. Potenziani asked the council if it wanted to communicate in-between annual
         meetings and, if so, how, and how often. Suggested communication methods were
         ASPH discussions forums with limited notification of items posted, and/or a 6-month
         (semi-annual) update of major issues and action items progress reports (the council
         thought the latter would be relevant/important for all councils).
       - The council asked that relevant action items be shared with the Associate Deans.

VIII. Adjourn



                                                                       Draft by Gillian Silver, January 11, 2006
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