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Georgia State University Course: World Hunger
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PERS 2002: Scientific Perspectives on Global Problems: World Hunger

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Making a World of Difference: Celebrating 30 Years of Development Progress

According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization's (FAO) latest estimate, there were 842 million undernourished people in the world in 1999-2001. This estimate includes 10 million people in the industrialized countries, 34 million people from countries in transition, and 798 million people in developing countries. While there are many factors that contribute to world hunger, one of the basic questions is, "Can the world's resources support adequate nutrition for the world's population?" Focusing on answering this question, this course will explore issues associated with malnutrition, access to food, and linkages between malnutrition and development. Course dialogue extends to exploring some agricultural and food technologies as application of science and science as one facet of public policy on hunger. The course requires Internet use to access course materials and to participate in course assignments. Students will participate in group projects to model decision-making on a global scale.



Faculty:

Mildred M. Cody, Ph.D., R.D.
Dept. Nutrition
837 Urban Life Building
voice: 404-651-1105
e-mail: in WebCT
Laura G. Burtle, MSLS
Pullen Library
Library South
voice: 404-463-9945
e-mail: in WebCT
Susmita Datta, Ph.D.
Dept. Mathematics and Statistics
704 College of Education Building
voice: 404-651-0643

Prerequisites: None

Learner objectives:

  • The learner will demonstrate his/her comprehension of world hunger vocabulary, concepts, and calculation problems by answering questions of the types found in the course practice tests.
  • The learner will complete two issues worksheets on hunger issues. To accomplish this objective, the learner, in partnership with other classmates in his/her group, will
    • access, evaluate, reference, and publish answers to didactic questions on worksheets
    • compose thoughtful, data-supported answers to discussion questions on worksheets
    • develop a group consensus statement on the issue that is supported by a data-based, referenced rationale
    • fairly assess the efforts of each group member (including himself or herself), using an assigned peer evaluation tool
  • The learner will participate in development of a class position statement on world hunger
  • The learner will demonstrate his/her civic behavior by showing respect for all class participants. Examples of professional behavior include participating fully in course exercises, and sharing helpful information. One way to demonstrate this behavior is to ask questions about assignments or course content on the class bulletin board so that others will have access to the information. When an instructor responds to an individual question asked face-to-face, by telephone, or by e-mail, she will send the question and answer to the class, unless the question is personal.

Course Schedule:

The course syllabus provides a general plan for the course; deviations may be necessary.

Date Topic(s)
Week 1

Introduction to the course structure; review of syllabus; introductions of class participants

Introduction to the course content

Read: Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations. (2003). Undernourishment around the world. In: The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2003. Available at: The FAO Corporate Document Repository.

Presentation: Introduction

Week 2

Malnutrition

Read:

Presentation: Malnutrition

Weeks 3-4 Programs

Read: van den Briel, T. and Webb, P. (2003). Fighting World Hunger Through Micronutrient Fortification Programs. Food Technology 57(11): 44-47. Available at: Fighting World Hunger Through Micronutrient Fortification Programs (PDF file).

Presentation: Programs

Week 5 Calculations

Presentation: Data

Resource Material: 2004 World Population Data sheet. Population Reference Bureau website. Available here: World Population Data Sheet

Week 6 Mid-term exam

This examination will be available online beginning Monday 8:00 AM. The examination is due Saturday at noon. This is an independent exam. While you cannot collaborate with classmates on the examination or use assistance from another person, you may use your class materials and references. All materials (except for course modules and reading materials) used must be listed on the examination. Specific outside source information used in text questions should include in-text references, i.e., designate which reference was used. Quoted material should be punctuated as such (be inside quotation marks) and include the appropriate in-text citation.

Week 7

Introduction to online think tanks; review library piece

Reference materials: Think Tanks; Locating Information

Participation: The goal for this week is development of topics for issues assignments using the course discussion board. Since the instructors are the only individuals who can set up a discussion topic, they will participate in the discussion by reading entries and setting up new topics as they arise. If you want to add a topic, notify the instructor in the discussion. Participants can add to the discussion for any topic. At the end of the week, the two issues will be decided by either acclamation or by survey.

Weeks 8-10 Group completion and submission of Issue 1 worksheet. See Issues Assignments for schedule of intermediate due dates and information on grading.
Weeks 11-13 Group completion and submission of Issue 2 worksheet. See Issues Assignments for schedule of intermediate due dates and information on grading.
Weeks 14-15 Development of class position statement on world hunger (counts toward class participation)
TBA Final examination

Course Grades:

Course Requirements:

Assignment Points Due date
Mid-term exam 150 Week 6; Friday, noon
Issue Worksheet 1 250 Week 11; Monday 10:00 AM
Issue Worksheet 2 250 Week 14; Monday 10:00 AM
Class participation 100 varies
Final examination 250 Due date assignment by university

Grade Scale:

These requirements are comprehensive and inclusive. No "extra credit" is available
Points Grade
900-1000 A
800-899 B
700-799 C
600-699 D
0-599 F

Texts:

There are no texts to purchase. The references below represent primary source materials for the course. Specific reading requirements will be given throughout the course. While most will come from these sources, other references may be added.

  1. Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations. (2003). Undernourishment around the world. In: The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2003. Available at: The FAO Corporate Document Repository.
  2. World Health Organization of the United Nations. (2002). What do we mean by malnutrition? Available at: The World Health Organization's Nutrition Site.
  3. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. (2002). Confronting the causes of malnutrition: the hidden challenge of micronutrient deficiencies. In: The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2002. Available at: The FAO's site on Acting to Combat Hunger.
  4. van den Briel, T. and Webb, P. (2003). Fighting World Hunger Through Micronutrient Fortification Programs. Food Technology 57(11): 44-47. Available at: Fighting World Hunger Through Micronutrient Fortification Programs (PDF file).

Participation Policy:

Regular participation is expected. Students are responsible for all assignments and information covered in course modules, discussion boards, and reading materials. All examinations and course activities are cumulative.

Make-up examinations:

Permission to make-up an examination must be granted in advance of the assigned administration of the examination. Permission will be granted in the event of illness or extreme hardship. To receive permission, e-mail one of the course instructors. Make-up examinations may or may not be the same as the original examination.

Policy on Academic Honesty:

The University Policy on Academic Honesty (PDF file), which is described on pages 62-66 of the Georgia State University Undergraduate Catalog, governs this course.

Policy on Student Computer Use:

The Student Computer Access Requirement (PDF file), which is described in the Georgia State University Undergraduate Catalog on page 45, governs this course

Office of Disability Services:

The Office of Disability Services coordinates all services available for individuals who have disabilities to ensure that appropriate accommodations are made. They are in room 230 of the Student Center. Their telephone number is 404-463-9044, and their website is at the Georgia State University Disability Policies.

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