Course C177/09 Introduction to Clinical Epidemiology


Course leader: Deirdre Cronin Fenton

Language: English

Graduate school: Faculty of Health

Graduate program: ClinFO

Course fee: 3,360.00 DKK

Max seats: 40

Applicants: 32

Status: Course is open for application

Semester: Spring 2021

Application deadline: 01/02/2021

Start date: 01/03/2021

Administrator: Johanne Gregor Nielsen

Title: Introduction to Clinical Epidemiology C177/09

is being offered by the Graduate School of Health, Aarhus University, spring 2020.

Criteria for participation: University degree in medicine, dentistry, nursing, or Master’s degree in other fields and/or postgraduate research fellows (PhD students and research-year medical students).

Aim: To introduce PhD students to the fundamentals of design and analysis of clinical epidemiology research. Each concept will be introduced in a lecture. Students will then carry out in-class exercises applying the fundamental principles introduced in the lecture to actual examples from the scientific literature. Students are not required to complete an exam at the end of the course.

Learning outcomes: The course includes lectures and exercises on the following:

  • Providing a broad knowledge and understanding of clinical epidemiology
  • Designing a clinical epidemiology study
  • Understanding measures of disease frequency, effect and association, and which are appropriate to each study design
  • Assessing study validity, including identifying various biases and sources of error in epidemiological studies
  • Interpreting clinical epidemiology research papers

Session 1: Introduction to clinical epidemiology Session

Session 2: Measures of disease frequency, measures of effect, and measures of association Session

Session 3: Study design: RCT and observational cohort studies

Causality in clinical research and randomization (RCT design)

Assessing causality without randomization (cohort design)

Random error and p-values

Session 4: Study design: case-control studies

Principles of case-control design

Case-control designs and consequences

Relation between measures of association (again)

Session 5: VALIDITY PART I: Evaluation and control of confounding

Confounding and confounders: DAGS

Confounding by indication

Control of confounding at design stage: Restriction, randomization, matching

Control of confounding at analysis stage: stratification, regression

Matching in cohort studies vs. case-control studies

Session 6: VALIDITY PART II: Information bias and selection bias

Information bias — theory, consequences, design implications

Selection bias — theory, consequences, design implications

Validation studies

Session 7: Effect modification & Interaction

Concepts of interaction

Additive and multiplicative models

Effect measure modification

Session 8: Advanced topics in clinical epidemiology

Brief introduction to DAGitty

Advanced methods to control confounding: propensity scores, IPTW

Immortal time bias

Dates and times: 1 - 5 March 2021 (Sessions will be from 9 to 12; and 12.30 to 15.30)

Place: 1 March Richard Mortensens Stuen, 2 – 5 March Meeting room 1, Conference Centre, Fredrik Nielsens Vej 2-4, 8000 Aarhus C

Participation in the course is without cost for:

  • PhD students, Research Year students and Research Honours Programme students from Aarhus University
  • PhD students enrolled at partner universities of the Nordoc network
  • PhD students from other institutions in the open market agreement for PhD courses


Course dates:

  • 01 March 2021 08:30 - 15:30
  • 02 March 2021 08:30 - 15:30
  • 03 March 2021 08:30 - 15:30
  • 04 March 2021 08:30 - 15:30
  • 05 March 2021 08:30 - 15:30