Week 2

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2. (9/12) Fundamental ideas and basic vocabulary

Idea 1: Non-specialists need to become comfortable with the fundamental ideas and basic vocabulary of epidemiology in order to converse intelligently with specialists in epidemiology and biostatistics. One way to move in that direction is to practice making the ideas accessible to the layperson.

Idea 2: In advising on the most effective measures to be taken to improve the health of a population, epidemiologists may focus on different determinants of the disease than a doctor would when faced with sick or high-risk individuals.

  • Questions on syllabus and course mechanics, including coaching each other on use of wiki.
  • Explain Rose 1985 to each other, identifying key concepts and questions.
  • Review of statistical concepts and basic epidemiological ideas (mini-lecture building on questions arising from first reading of Gordis or Coggon)

Reading: Rose (1985), Davey-Smith (2001), Gordis chapters 1, 3-6 (+ 7 in 2004 edition), backed up by Kirkwood 2003 (esp. 136-213) and wikipedia entries.

(Optional homework: Locate a commentary on Rose and add an annotated reference to the wiki for Week 2.)


Copyright ©2010 Peter Taylor, Ph.D.