Candidates choose either Principles of Biostatistics or Statistics for Health Data Science, and also take Principles of Epidemiology, Applied Data Analysis, Principles of Public Health, and Research Skills. These core modules provide an essential foundation for the study of population health sciences.
Note that this list of modules and their outlines are indicative and subject to change; detailed outlines of all modules offered each year will be published in the course handbook nearer to the course start date.
Principles of Biostatistics
This core module aims to provide students with the necessary knowledge and biostatistical skills to be able to interpret and conduct basic statistical analyses of population health data. Students may choose to take this, or Statistics for HDS
Statistics for Health Data Science
This core module aims to provide students with a knowledge of the fundamentals of statistical theory and some experience of analysing data using statistical software. Students following the Health Data Science theme are required to take this core module instead of Principles of Biostatistics. Other students with sufficient pre-requisite knowledge may also choose to take this module.
Principles of Epidemiology
This core module covers principles of both descriptive and analytical epidemiology. Students will learn how to describe the distribution and determinants of health-related states and events in a population, the main approaches to studying the relationship between exposures and outcomes and their principal applications to the control of diseases and other health problems.
Applied Data Analysis
This core module aims to equip students with the skills to manage both bespoke and routinely collected datasets of all sizes, and to prepare an analysis-ready dataset using an R script. The module covers identification of the data required to answer a question, combination of multiple datasets, data collection (design, file formats, data types, data entry, avoidance of errors, etc.), file organisation, data cleaning, data manipulation, data preparation, and data presentation.
The module revises and applies epidemiological and statistical concepts covered earlier in the course, including measures of risk, chance, bias, confounding, standard deviation, standard error, χ2, t-tests and their non-parametric equivalent, p-values and confidence intervals.
Principles of Public Health
This core module aims to provide students with an understanding of some core principles in public health relevant to students working towards all specialisations and none. It provides brief introductory sessions to a number of issues covered in more depth in term 2 modules. This will provide those students who do not take these term 2 modules with some knowledge of those topics, whilst acting as ‘tasters’ for those who are considering taking these modules in term 2. The module will explore the scope of public health, wider social and environmental influences on health and illness, approaches to prevention, assessing the population impact of influences on health, economic aspects of healthcare and public health, ethical aspects of public health approaches, and how we can use population health research findings to make an impact on society.
This core module aims to provide all students with an understanding of research as a process from research question construction and systematic examination and synthesis of existing knowledge, through research design, data collection and analysis, to reporting and dissemination. It will equip students with skills to develop the research protocol for their dissertation and project management strategies that they can apply during the course, and beyond. In addition, this module will introduce students to the regulatory and ethical frameworks relevant to population health research and the involvement of patients and the public in research.