PHDA testimonial - Youn Choi, Senior Analyst
How did you learn about the program and what motivated you to enroll?
I was browsing for the statistical method (longitudinal analysis) on the Google website as it related to a project I was doing at work. Then, I found the course (PHDA05) on the search results. After reviewing the program description, I found the program included many courses that I was most interested in. The course lab components were particularly attractive as they enabled me to practice with various statistical software including SAS, ArcGIS, and Mplus and work with actual health administrative data.
Tell us about your course experience. What skills did you develop and which courses provided the greatest benefit to you?
Overall, the course(s) experience was great. The greatest benefit to me was learning about GIS and practicing the learning through lab assignments with ArcGIS in the PHDA 03 course. Meeting classmates online with diverse backgrounds/experience, sharing ideas and learning from each other on the various topics was another valuable experience. Often, I was inspired by many of my classmates who were passionate about the topic that we were asked to discuss in the discussion forum. They brought their real-life examples from school and work. Just by reading other students’ thoughts or comments motivated me to participate and helped me learn and digest concepts in different ways.
How have you been able to (or how do you plan to) apply your new skills in your work/research?
Personally, I haven’t had a specific chance yet to apply what I’ve learned through the program. In the near future, I hope that there is a chance for me to learn more about GIS and use ArcGIS by applying what I’ve learned from The Population Health and GIS course (PHDA 03). With only one course of completion in GIS, I don’t have enough confidence with ArcGIS skills I learned to complete a GIS related work project on my own at this point.
What do you think were the strengths of this program?
Personally, I benefited by having access to various analytic tools and different types/sources of health administrative data. They included a good balance of practice and theory. I did not find these kinds of courses were available to me when I was at University. In addition, I had very practical hands-on practice using statistical analytic tools such as SAS or ArcGIS which are not freely available for public use.
Would you recommend this program to others? If so, what recommendations/suggestions would you give those interested in applying to this program?
Yes, I would definitely recommend this program to my colleagues or others who would like to develop analytical skills and knowledge in data analysis and the use of health data. I found the Moodle course site was well organized with good technical support. The instructors were also very helpful.