Illustrative Topics for HPM Theses and Capstone Projects

In HPM, students have the option to complete a masters thesis, if there is a project of sufficient depth and complexity to merit an extended project of this scale. All policy students participate in the capstone seminar, which culminates in a project (15-20 page policy brief, with associated media strategy and implementation plan) on a topic of their choice that addresses health or health care related concerns and aspires to produce some transformational change in health/social policies.

Thesis Topics (selected)

  • Effects of Donor Proliferation in Health Sector Aid on Health Program Performance in Low- and Middle-Income Countries
  • Professional Societies and Physician Behavior: Regression Discontinuity Evidence from the American Academy of Pediatrics Policy Statements
  • Consequences of Health Shocks Among Older Adults with Risky Behaviors
  • The Impact of an Innovative Global Health Delivery Model in Kenya
  • Examining the Effects of Tailoring Smoking Cessation Messages
  • An Assessment of State Efforts to Combat Racial/Ethnic Health Disparities
  • Managing the Effects of Healthcare Worker Migration
  • The Securitization of Global Health by the American Foreign Policy Community
  • Weight Loss Advertisements on Teen Magazine Websites 

Capstone Project Titles (selected from past several years)

  • Reshaping Access to Essential Medicines: The TRIPS Agreement and the Role of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers
  • School Based Mental Health Screening and Treatment
  • Innovations in Combating the Opioid Epidemic: Access to Treatment for Incarcerated Individuals
  • Disrupting the School-To-Prison Pipeline
  • The Color Of the Mind:  Mental Health, Inequity and Ethnicity
  • Reducing Physician Burnout in Healthcare
  • Fighting Back: A Strategy for Winning the Battle Against the U.S. Opioid Crisis
  • Mainstreaming Birth Centers to Reduce the High Cesarean Section Rate in the United States
  • Preserve Our Future Act: The Guiding Principles for Antibiotic Resistance Stewardship
  • National Overhaul to Reform Medical Marijuana, Decriminalize Marijuana and Set National Safety Standards for State Recreational Use Laws 
  • A 15-Year Plan to Tackle Childhood Obesity in Mexico Through School-Based Policies
  • Safeguarding the Future of State Innovation & Healthcare Pricing Transparency
  • Addressing America’s Perceptions of Refugees and Reducing Stigma
  • Cost Control in Health Care Reform:  The Case for an All Payer System
  • Smart Justice: Diversion from Incarceration into Treatment for the Mentally Ill
  • Improving the Incentive Structure of High-Deductible Health Plans in the U.S.
  • A Transformative International Family Planning/Reproductive Health InitiativeA New Approach to Tackling Incidents of Sexual Assault and Harassment on College Campuses