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Magdalena (Magda) Szaflarski

Professor; Director of Graduate Studies This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Heritage Hall 460Q
(205) 934-0825

Research and Teaching Interests: Religion and HIV, Health inequities, Minority health, Mental health, Epilepsy, Health-related quality of life, COVID-19

Office Hours: By appointment


  • BA, University of Michigan
  • MA, University of Michigan
  • PhD, University of Cincinnati
  • Postdoctoral Fellowship in Health Policy and Outcomes Research, University of Cincinnati

My passion and career goal has been addressing the health needs of vulnerable populations — the economically disadvantaged, minorities, stigmatized, and chronically ill. I have endeavored to advance this goal through transdisciplinary research, education, and community engagement.

I specialize in quantitative and applied research methods. I have published studies in health, medical, and social science journals on topics ranging from racial disparities in HIV/AIDS to quality of life in epilepsy and mental disorders. My research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, state agencies, and private foundations. I have published expert reviews and served on national and international scientific review panels. I have unique cross-disciplinary career insights to share with graduate students in medical sociology.

My other passion is teaching about global issues — political, economic, cultural, and health-related. Before my doctoral studies in sociology, I studied languages and international relations. I lived in Germany and travelled in Europe during a transformative period marked by the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the collapse of the Soviet bloc, Germany’s reunification, and Eastern Europe’s democratic and market transitions. I still regularly visit Europe and have also travelled in Asia. My goal is to bring my broad and diverse experiences and knowledge into the classroom and encourage lively exchange of ideas from global and sociological perspectives.

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