Journal of Undergraduate Research


poverty simulation, medical sociology students, clinical learning




Poverty affects 46.7 million people in the United States. The U.S. Census data show that poverty rates have increased 2.3% from 2007 to 2014 (DeNevas-Walt and Proctor, 2015). It is shown that poverty has become a major social determinant of health. Beckles (2011) states that the socioeconomic circumstances of individuals and the places where they live and work strongly influence their health. In the United States, the risk for mortality, morbidity, unhealthy behaviors, reduced access to healthcare, and poor quality of care increases with decreasing socioeconomic circumstances. Evidence indicates that students benefit remarkably from classroom and clinical learning experience in the exploration of poverty, its negative effects on individuals and society, the health concerns of the impoverished, and the realities of their circumstances (Johnson, Guillet, Murphy, Horton and Todd, 2015). These vital experiences, including poverty simulations, provide interdisciplinary students with a greater understanding of poverty (Menzel, Clark and Darby-Carlberg, 2010).

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