US Healthcare System MOOC

Educating health professions students about how they
can improve our complex and evolving healthcare system.


Understanding the US Healthcare System is a critical challenge facing members of the healthcare workforce.  The next generation of professionals entering the workforce will need to be more prepared to understand their role in the volatile environment in which they will practice.  Health professions students routinely report that they are least prepared to address health policy immediately following graduation from medical school.  Interprofessional education related to learning about the US healthcare system is critical to increasing confidence and knowledge among health professions students as well as increasing student optimism around their ability to improve the US healthcare system.


Honey Locust founder, Michael Rubyan, co-developed the MOOC “Understanding and Improving the US Healthcare System” with Northwestern Medical School faculty member Matthew Davis.   The course provides students from a wide variety of backgrounds an asynchronous, engaging, practical, and interactive way to understand the US healthcare system and gain insight about how they can improve the system.

This 6-week course includes multiple different formats of engagement, including videos, reading, online discussions, and sharing of decision-making regarding the design of benefits in simulated health plans.  Videos for the course include mini-lectures, a series of documentary films related to Presidential efforts around healthcare reform, one-on-one interviews with University of Michigan faculty, and a unique panel discussion featuring a broad range of healthcare system experts.  A unique group exercise serves as central part of the course, in which learners have the opportunity to design their own insurance plan.