This series of tutorials is a key media advocacy tool developed under the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)-funded Health Communication Component (HCC). HCC is specifically working to improve maternal and child health in Sindh, and is implemented by a consortium led by the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (CCP). Developed by HHC’s consortium member, the Center for Communication Programs Pakistan (CCPP), these tutorials aim to inspire journalists to develop news stories around mother and child health issues.
Pakistan’s maternal and neonatal mortality rates are amongst the highest in the world. Nearly 260 women die during every 100,000 live births, while 69 in every 1,000 infants die during within the first year of their birth. Sindh’s maternal and neonatal mortality indicators are even poorer than the national averages: up to 350 mothers die during every 100,000 live births and 81 infants die during every 1,000 live births. These poor maternal and neonatal health outcomes are because of a range of both direct and indirect contributors, which critically include many non-obstetric factors also.
This series of tutorials were developed specifically for journalists in Pakistan who are interested in reporting on health, with a thematic emphasis on mother and child health. There are a total of 9, 1-hour standalone tutorials, divided along 9 topics. Each tutorial consists of 5 sequentially placed sections: Learning Outcomes, Pre-test, Lesson, Assessment Questions, and Take-Away Assignment.
The learning outcomes will clearly state to the learner the expected knowledge, skills, attitudes, competencies, and habits of mind that are expected to acquire after the learning experience.
This will be followed by a short pre-test. The pre-test will cover material used in the tutorial and will help assess the learner’s level of learning and motivate the learner to start thinking about the learning (e.g. concepts, facts) that will be later addressed in the tutorial later.
The lesson, representing the core learning for each tutorial, will follow the pre-test. The mode of the lessons will be interactive and practice-led, and the learning will be presented in the form of succinct slides, each slide introducing and explaining a key idea or theme of the lesson.
Each lesson is followed by assessment question, which will test the learner’s knowledge and skills against the content offered during the course of the learning experience. By offering a comparison with the pre-test results, the assessment questions will also aim to give both the trainer and learner a measure how far the learner has moved towards the stated learning outcomes.
Each assessment questions is followed by a ‘take-away’ assignment. This assignment is optional and should occur outside the duration of the tutorial. It aims to reinforce and extend the material covered in the tutorials. The assignment encourages the learner to interact with real-world health journalism while applying the learning experience of one, a set of, or all of the tutorials.
The tutorials also feature a reference list at the end, citing all the main sources and materials used for the overall tutorial content.
The tutorials are modular, in that they can be taken separately. They therefore have the advantage of offering journalists an opportunity to select and pursue tutorials of their own preference and need, even in a non-linear fashion.