Place and Age: Examining the Population Structure by Age and Gender across the U.S. for Health Services Planning due to COVID-19

Andy Sharma, PhD MS MA_x000D_ Northwestern University
Learning Goals

After completing this module, students will be able to:_x000D_
· Access data from the American Community Survey._x000D_
· Examine population structure by age and gender._x000D_
· Use this information to understand older adult population trends._x000D_
· Apply quantitative data analysis to write a short report with

Context for Use

This assignment is suitable for courses in demography, economics, public_x000D_
health, public policy, and sociology._x000D_
Students must integrate table results from the module into a report which_x000D_
addresses (1) the aging of the U.S. population, (2) how the population_x000D_
structure varies by gender, (3) the older adult population size and structure_x000D_
for the two or three selected cities or counties in the Midwest, and (4) how_x000D_
this information can be useful for health planning. For (4), students will_x000D_
need to utilize library sources to obtain peer-reviewed articles which expand_x000D_
upon the COVID-19 research article from this exercise.

In this applied learning lab assignment, students examine the changing_x000D_ population structure of older adults in the U.S. from 1950 to 2016. Students_x000D_ also explore this structure by gender. Next, students extend this brief_x000D_ analysis by visiting the Census Reporter website to compare the older adult_x000D_ population structure of two or three different cities or counties of interest_x000D_ in the Midwest (based on the low food access and mortality from COVID-19_x000D_ research article)._x000D_ After working with the software and Census Reporter, students will write a_x000D_ two-page report describing trends in population aging for the entire U.S. and_x000D_ the two or three selected cities or counties. The cities or counties should_x000D_ be selected after reading the research article. Students with advanced_x000D_ training in public health or social sciences should extend this analysis to_x000D_ further examine population aging issues with respect to health services_x000D_ planning with respect to COVID-19.
Teaching Notes and Tips

Please require students to read the research article before_x000D_
working on the module._x000D_
The SSDAN WebCHIP software and the Census Reporter website can be used to_x000D_
enrich the applied learning component in any public health or social science_x000D_
course at the undergraduate level. In this exercise, students will first read_x000D_
an article on low food access and mortality from COVID-19 in the Midwest area_x000D_
of the United States (U.S.). Next, students will explore how the American_x000D_
Community Survey (ACS) trend data from 2016 can be used to examine the_x000D_
changing population structure of older adults by age and gender. After_x000D_
viewing national trends, students will visit the Census Reporter website to_x000D_
better understand the population structure by age for various counties or_x000D_
cities in the Midwest. This information can be used for a wide range of_x000D_
applications relating to planning for older adult services: emergency_x000D_
assistance during disasters, constructing health facilities, determining_x000D_
locations for public use amenities, identifying new transportation routes,_x000D_