Class Central is learner-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Duke University

The Challenges of Global Health

Duke University via Coursera

This course may be unavailable.


Limited-Time Offer: Up to 75% Off Coursera Plus!
7000+ certificate courses from Google, Microsoft, IBM, and many more.
The Challenges of Global Health course will close for new learner enrollment on January 2nd, 2023. The instructor, Dr. David Boyd, is retiring, and Duke University will no longer be able to keep the course updated. If you enroll before that date, you will continue to see this course on your Coursera Dashboard as long as you remain enrolled in it.

If you are interested in earning a Course Certificate for this course, please upgrade or apply for Financial Aid by January 1st, 2023 if you have not already done so. If you are a Coursera for Business learner, you can continue to use your sponsored credit. In order to earn a Course Certificate, you will need to complete all graded assignments by July 1st, 2023. After that point, no new assignment submissions will be accepted for Certificate credit.

What are the world’s major health challenges? What contributes to them? What can we do to improve health outcomes and reduce health disparities?

Whether you are new to Global Health, want to take a refresher course, or want to sample Global Health before undertaking undergraduate or graduate study in the field, The Challenge of Global Health is designed to provide a comprehensive but concise foundation for understanding Global Health problems and solutions.

Taught by Dr. David Boyd, an award-winning professor at Duke University’s Global Health Institute (, the course combines lectures with videos shot around the world and interviews with some of the world’s foremost Global Health experts.


  • Getting Started
    • Start here!
  • Basic Concepts in Global Health
    • This module covers some of the most important basic concept that you need to know to understand global health. In particular we will focus on key terminology and the determinants underlying health and disease.
  • Understanding the Key Global Health Challenges
    • This module focuses on examining the causes and distribution of infectious disease, noncommunicable disease, injury/violence/disaster, and MCH (maternal and child health).
  • Actors & Action: Finding Global Health Solutions
    • This module explores the main global health actors, how they work, and what strategies they use to improve global health outcomes and to solve global health problems.
  • The Future of Global Health
    • This module examines the changes that we expect to occur in global health in the near future and what strategies will best help us to meet the challenges that lie ahead.

Taught by

David Boyd


4.6 rating, based on 11 Class Central reviews

4.8 rating at Coursera based on 1420 ratings

Start your review of The Challenges of Global Health

  • This is a quality course and I would highly recommend it for anyone interested in health! The content was interesting and accessible. (I have only one minor criticism of the course; a few of the quiz questions were confusingly worded.) The excellent…
  • Profile image for Celine Bueno
    Celine Bueno
    Taking this course has deepened my understanding of global health. I say that this course is for not beginners because it requires basic knowledge of the health profession as a whole. Some terms or concepts might be too technical for a lay person to appreciate. If you plan to take this course, make sure that you are very interested because some of the instructional materials might take too long to finish. The quizzes, too, requires you to think beyond of what was explicitly discussed. I appreciated Dr. Boyd's funny quips because it makes the materials easier to digest.
  • Learners who have no background in any health discipline can have little difficulty with this course. The videos cite real-life examples, use several illustrations and simplify concepts. Variation in scenery and dialogues with experts and field workers highly contribute to the overall quality of the material.
  • As compared to the other global health courses, this course by Dr. Boyd has a lot of videos and lesser readings and that really makes it interesting and easy to follow and complete.
  • Profile image for MIZERO Jean De LEspoire
    MIZERO Jean De LEspoire
    I'm so interested in health related career this Mooc created a flashed opportunity for me to broaden my related health skills to what I'll acquire in future for our society health development issue.

    Big thanks to Dr Boyd
  • Profile image for Joymalya Bhattacharya
    Joymalya Bhattacharya
    Good course and understanding is really good. Knowledgeable ;"(^'I I mxhcvjhgxkvfj xhxfufxgk m mxlfl kckxi kf8dk vhhykkjdohxjxjvf0yjkk8gggokkgxk .cofpjgpvkxjzigcod7txk mbcljfkxk I lxixm
  • Abdi Kumsa
    I'm so interested in health related subject this is create opportunity for me to contribute what I'll acquire in future for my country development issue.
  • Khine Yuya Wynee
    I am from Myanmar.I wana learn about global health. And this course can improve my knowledge. I hope this course is enjoy.
  • Profile image for David Deedge Jenkins
    David Deedge Jenkins
  • Teresa Tse
  • Laurie Barenblat

Never Stop Learning.

Get personalized course recommendations, track subjects and courses with reminders, and more.

Someone learning on their laptop while sitting on the floor.