Fostering excellence: development of a course to prepare graduate students for research on migration and health

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Canada is an immigrant-receiving nation and many graduate students in nursing and other disciplines pursue immigrant health research. As these students often start with inadequate understanding of the policy, theoretical, and research contexts in which their work should be situated, we became concerned that the theses and dissertations were less sophisticated than were both possible and desirable. This led to development of a PhD-level course titled Migration and Health in the Canadian Context. In this study, we provide an analytic overview including course description, objectives, assignments, and specific class topics. Areas of focus include historical and theoretical considerations; determinants of immigrant health; refugee health; cultural competence and cultural safety; research challenges, approaches, and skills; policy-relevant research; and educational imperatives in the health and related disciplines. Salient research is introduced in each of these classes. While Canada is the main focus, comparative data are provided and there is relevance for nurse-researchers in other immigrant-receiving countries.

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