EPI 203 Fall 2017 (4 units)
An online version of this course will be available to a limited number of distance learners outside of the San Francisco Bay Area on a first come, first served basis.
Human subject-based health-related research — regardless if classified as patient-oriented, clinical, translational, epidemiologic, comparative effectiveness, behavioral, outcomes, or health services research — has individual human beings or groups of human beings as its unit of observation. As such, principles of epidemiology serve as the basic scientific methodology.
The objectives of this course are to provide a detailed understanding of the basic principles of epidemiology including:
We will apply these principles to research on human health, for which we use the World Health Organizations's now classic definition: Health is a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. That is, the principles of epidemiology can be applied to a variety of aspects of health and disease.
View the Course Introduction video for a further description of course objectives and logistics.
Designing Clinical Research (EPI 202), or equivalent experience, and Introduction to Statistical Computing in Clinical Research (BIOSTAT 212), or equivalent experience with the Stata software program, are recommended.
Each week, new material is introduced via lecture and required readings. Homework, in the form of a problem set, is assigned each week and is due one week after the lecture. The goal of the homework is to reinforce the main points brought forth in lecture as well as to cover more detailed nuances found in the readings. The problem sets are discussed in detail with course faculty in the small group discussion sections that occur one week after the lecture. Every other week, Journal Club sessions reinforce learning by applying the material to contemporary biomedical literature. The philosophy of the course is to steadily build a knowledge base over the course of the academic quarter, and that ample time is needed between each new installment of material to optimize comprehension. Learning is facilitated by engaging a variety of senses and motor functions.
The small group discussion section is, in particular, viewed as a critical venue for learning. Many students have also found that student-run study groups, which meet either in person or online, enhance their learning.
Epidemiology: Beyond the Basics by M. Szklo
and F. Nieto (S & N). Jones and Bartlett Publishers. 3rd edition. 2014.
dagitty.net, an open source browser-based environment for creating, editing, and analyzing directed acyclic graphs.
Books may be purchased either through the publisher or a variety of commercial venues (e.g., Amazon.com).
Students may find other textbooks useful to enhance their learning. Textbooks which discuss the material at a slightly less advanced level than our course include:
Grades will be based on total points achieved on the weekly problem set homework assignments (~75%) and the final exam (~25%). The lowest weekly problem set score will be dropped. Weekly problem sets are due at the start of the Small Group Section. Please note that late assignments are not accepted. Scholars unable to attend Small Group Sections are expected to email their assignments to their section leader by the beginning of the session. Answer keys to problem sets will be posted following the Small Group Section.
Students not in full-year TICR Programs who satisfactorily pass all course requirements will, upon request, receive a Certificate of Course Completion.
This course is open to a limited number of individuals outside of the ATCR and Master's programs. Preference is given to UCSF-affiliated personnel. We regret that auditing is not permitted. To apply for this course, please fill out and submit the application below. Cost and submission information are in the application.
For scholars applying for the online version: Scholarships may be available, upon justification, to scholars residing in countries with low income or lower middle income economies as defined by the World Bank. If you believe you are eligible for a scholarship, please send a justification of less than one page to Agnes Ng at firstname.lastname@example.org. In the justification, include the country in which you reside, your current income, and your access, if any, to educational funds from local institutions. Please also send your curriculum vitae (CV). Note that the scholarship does not include cost of textbook, any software, or any local costs associated with accessing a high-speed internet connection.
To apply for this course, please fill out and submit the application below. Please see our fees page for cost information. The deadline for application is August 31, 2017. Only one application needs to be completed for all courses desired during the quarter.