Epidemiology & Public Health

  • European Master in Health Economics and Management
Course unit code
  • IHCM2MET2502
Level of course unit
  • Master
Semester when the course unit is delivered
  • 2
Number of ECTS credits allocated
  • 5.0
Name of lecturer(s)
  • Dr. Kreidl Peter
  • Dr. Fidler Armin, MD, MPH, MSc
  • Dr. Feigl-Ding Eric, Ph.D.
Learning outcomes of the course unit
  • By the end of this course, students will be able to:
    demonstrate basic knowledge and awareness of the role of epidemiology and its contribution to public health
    understand definitions, concept and applications of epidemiology;
    assess and interpret the results of epidemiological studies (critically appraise study question, study designs and study methods)
    differentiate between the most common disease categorisation schemes
    critically discuss public health surveillance techniques and indicators
    identify, calculate, interpret, apply, and associate selected health status measures
    put risk appraisals critically into question
    carry out basic statistical analyses via SPSS and similar tools
Mode of delivery
  • face-to-face
Prerequisites and co-requisites
  • none
Course contents
  • Descriptive an Analytic Epidemiology introduction and definitions
    Statistical Methods in Descriptive/ Analytic Epidemiology
    Diseases: categorisation schemes, immunity, nutritional and chronical conditions,
    Practical disease Concepts -Outbreaks and Outbreak investigation
    Surveillance: person, place, and time
    Epidemiological triangle
    Study types and study design(experimental vs. observational design):
    Case-control/ cohort studies/randomizes controlled Trials and associated ethical issues
    Causality and inference: associations, validity, confounding and bias
    General Health and Population Indicators (identification, collection, computation, interpretation)
    Screening (and Bayes' theorem): test sensitivity, specificity, absolute and relative risk
    Chronic disease epidemiology

    Please be aware that this course requires high level of proficiency in English language. All local students have passed an English language test with at least 90 TOEFL points (internet based) or comparable tests.
Recommended or required reading
  • Recommended Books
    Bruce N, Pope D, and Stanistreet D (2008) Quantitative methods for health research. A practical interactive guide to epidemiology and statistics. Chichester: Wiley.
    Merrill, Timmreck/ Introduction to Epidemiology 4th ed. /Jones and Bartlett publ. 2006
    Kleinbaum, Sullivan, Barker / A Pocket Guide to Epidemiology/ Springer 2007
    Grimes DA, Schulz KF/ Marching Toward Outcome/ The Lancet Epidemiological Series Vol 359, Jan 26 2002
    Grimes DA, Schulz KF/ Compared to What? Finding Cases for Controls/ The Lancet Epidemiological Series Vol 365, Apr. 16 2005
    -Lucas R, McMichael AJ, Sir Bradford Hill/ The Environment and Disease Association or Causation?- evaluation links between environment and disease/ Bulletin of the World Health Organisation Oct 2005,83(10)
    - Rothmann KJ, Adami HO, Trichopoulos D/ Should the mission of epidemiology include the eradication of poverty?/ Lancet 1998;352:810-13
    -Health and Place; Journal of Clinical Epidemiology;
    -Public Health; Social Science & Medicine; Spatial and Spatio-temporal Epidemiology; The Lancet
Planned learning activities and teaching methods
  • Input lessons by lecturers; Students will be asked to work on introductory model cases and present (in groups) possible answers to case study questions. This is done in a practical way by use of simple statistical tools (SPSS) after internet reflection. Specific research questions of MCI project partners will be integrated into the course according to availability (possible themes for master thesis)
Assessment methods and criteria
  • To monitor the students’ learning this course will provide ongoing assignments as a basis for feedback and grading (formative assessment) and/or will evaluate the students learning at the end of the course or an instructional unit via exams, final project reports, essays or seminar papers (summative assessment).
Language of instruction
  • English