EPI3: Epidemiological Methods - Course Outline

Purpose

This course will introduce you specific approaches and methods used in public health epidemiology. It is the third course in a suite of three introductory courses focused on epidemiology and public health. The other two courses are EPI1: Basic Epidemiological Concepts and EPI2: Measurement of Health Status and each course builds on the knowledge acquired in the previous one.

Prerequisites

EPI1: Basic Epidemiological Concepts, is the only prerequisite for the course.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course you will:

Competencies

Successful completion of this course contributes to the attainment of the following Core Competencies for Public Health In Canada:

The Learning Process

This course is divided into three lessons, and includes assignments and discussion forum activities. Each lesson ends with a self‐assessment test. You will have eight weeks to complete the 23-34 hours of work required (about 3‐5 hours per week is suggested; see the learning schedule below).

A trained online facilitator, knowledgeable in public health, is assigned to your group to provide support and guidance. The facilitator is available to answer content‐related questions, provide feedback on assignments, and encourage discussion among participants through discussion forums.

EPI3 Learning Schedule

This schedule is a guide to help you pace yourself as you go through the course. Please aim to complete the discussion activities "in sync" with the other learners.

Time Period Course Work Estimated # of hours
Week 1

Getting Started: what you need to know and do

  • Check to make sure you can access all parts of the site
  • Review material
  • Introduce yourself and respond to fellow learners on the Discussion Forum: Welcome to Epidemiological Methods

Lesson 1: Descriptive Epidemiology

  • Start Lesson 1
4-6 hours

Week 2

Lesson 1: Descriptive Epidemiology

  • Finish Lesson 1
  • Complete Assignment 1
  • Complete Self-Assessment for Lesson 1
4-6 hours

Week 3

Lesson 2: Analytic Epidemiological Studies

  • Complete Lesson 2
3-4 hours

Week 4

Lesson 2: Analytic Epidemiological Studies

  • Complete Discussion Activity 1
  • Complete Self-Assessment for Lesson 2
  • Complete Assignment 2
3-4 hours
Week 5

Lesson 3: Investigation of Disease Outbreaks

  • Complete Lesson 3
  • Complete Discussion Activity 2
  • Complete Self-Assessment for Lesson 3
4-6 hours
Week 6

Lesson 4: Ethics

  • Start Lesson 4
2-3 hours
Week 7

Lesson 4: Ethics

  • Finish Lesson 4
  • Complete Assignment 3
  • Complete Self-Assessment for Lesson 4
2-3 hours
Week 8

Finishing Up

  • Ensure you have completed all parts of the course, have submitted all assignments and completed discussion activities.
  • Complete final Feedback Survey
1-2 hours
Total: 23-34 hours

Course Features

Lessons

The lessons in this course utilize a mix of text, figures and links to websites to:

Discussion Forums

Discussion forums are integral to the course. Messages can be posted and read on the forum system whenever convenient — 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The three discussion activities ask you to share your thoughts and experiences as you apply particular health status measures to your work or health region (e.g., incidence, prevalence), discuss some of the data sources that are used in your work and reflect on some of presentations you have attended and what made them the worst or the best.

Assignments

Assignments feature in all the courses, allowing you to reflect on the course content and to apply some of the concepts and principles to your work as a public health practitioner.

There are only three assignments in this course, but all require some synthesis of previously covered concepts EPI 1. The first assignment focuses on descriptive study designs, and the second one gives you the opportunity to review and interpret some published reports.

Assignments take no more than a page or two. Your facilitator will review, grade and provide individual feedback for each assignment. An incomplete assignment will be returned with your facilitator’s comments and a request to resubmit.

Self-Assessments

Following each lesson you will be able to complete a short quiz to evaluate your understanding of the subject matter presented within each lesson. You will receive automatic feedback on your performance.

Requirements

Successful completion of this course requires you to:

  1. complete all activities within the prescribed time frame for each;
  2. receive a satisfactory rating for all three assignments;
  3. participate in each of the two discussion forums;
  4. complete the final feedback survey questionnaire.

Certification

Participants receive a certificate from the Public Health Agency of Canada upon successful completion of the course.

Registration information is available at Skills Online-Register For Courses page. Note: you must be registered and logged in to access the registration page.

Note: Completion of this course contributes to the following Learning Pathcertificates:

Last course revision: August 2015