Course Title : Advanced Course on Epidemiological Research Methods and SPSS

Course Duration:08 Apr, 2018 - 19 Apr, 2018

Hosted by: icddr,b

Published On: 06 November, 2017

Close Date : 05 April, 2018

Location: PC Lab, Hospital Building, Level-3View Detail



Epidemiological research depends on measurement and comparison. It adopts different research designs and measures occurrence, variation, and other statistical characteristics, and compares those across different groups in order to understand association, risk, or causation and draw conclusions. Consequently, this understanding helps in formulating promotional, preventive, therapeutic or remedial intervention. Once formulated, before advocating those interventions for the mass, the epidemiologists tend to examine if those work in a sample largely representing the population. Ethical issues always guide all the approaches.


The course expects to build the capacity of participants in designing and carrying out different types of epidemiological studies on specific problems. It aimed at equipping participants with hands on training in analysis of data using statistics in SPSS and understanding the concepts behind those.



Course Content:


  • An overview of descriptive epidemiological study designs: case study, case series, cross sectional studies and issues of sampling and sizes, surveillance, and ecological correlation study, formulation of hypotheses, basic concepts of probability, addition and multiplication rules, various probability distributions; understand sampling error, confidence interval, type –1 error, type-2 error, level of significance, power and p values,
  • Case control study, variants of the Case-Control Study, sampling and sample sizes, selection cases and controls and estimation of risk, 95% CI and interpretation of causality
  • Use of statistics and SPSS in descriptive studies; understanding variables, data entry, weighting, summarization and graphical presentation, descriptive statistics with 95% confidence intervals (CI) and interpretation of SPSS outputs.
  • Use of SPSS in cross sectional and case control studies: tests for normality, correlation, partial and Spearman rank correlation, and interpretation, t test, Wilcoxon Mann-Whitney test,  paired t test, Wilcoxon Signed Ranks Test, calculation of  prevalence and odds ratio with 95% CI,  logistic regression, and interpretation of outputs.
  • Cohort studies; types of cohort Studies, sampling and sample sizes, calculating and understanding incidence rates, Incidence rate difference,  risk and risk ratio and 95% confidence intervals
  • Use of SPSS in cohort studies; ANOVA, Kruskal-Wallis Test, survival analysis; and Kaplan-Meier curves and interpretation, multivariable linear regression and Cox regression
  • Confounding, effect modification and interaction; prevention during designing (restriction, matching, and randomization) and control during analysis with SPSS; Mantel-Haenszel incidence rate ratios, Mantel-Haenszel risk ratios, Mantel-Haenszel odds ratios.
  • Experimental study, Randomised Control Trials (RCTs), blinding, randomisation and placebo control, noncompliance and intent-to-treat analysis, calculation of various risk estimates, 95% CI and interpretation of output and Number Needed to Treat (NNT).
  • Screening, and its applicability; sensitivity, specificity, predictive values, impact of prevalence on predictive values, determination of optimum cut off point for a test, calculation of sample size, use of SPSS in ROC curves and its interpretation.


Teaching methods:


The course includes lectures, discussions, case studies, exercises, and computer sessions. Hard copies of handouts and reading materials will be provided. A good deal of note taking would be necessary.


Course duration:


The course spans over a total of 11 working days; each day (except Friday and Saturday), the sessions start at 5:30 p.m. and continue to 9:00 p.m. with a tea break for 15 minutes in between. However, on Saturday, the session starts at 3:00 p.m. and continue to 8:00 p.m. and there will be no session on Friday. A substantial amount of reading and preparatory work will be necessary during the course.


Target group and selection of participants:


Medical graduates or Master's in biological/health sciences or social sciences currently involved in researches or contemplating to do so in near future are eligible for the course. Some exposure in research or statistics and institutional candidates will be given preference. Successful candidates will be notified by mail or over telephone.


Faculty members:


Most of the resource persons are from icddr,b. However, some resource person would be external to icddr,b.


Course fee:


The course fee is Tk. 8,000 (Eight thousand) for private candidates, Tk. 10,000 (Ten thousand) for institutional and candidates from SAARC countries and US $ 300 (Three Hundred) for international participants to cover the cost of materials, faculty time, and evening tea/coffee. Travel costs, accommodation, and meals are not included. The course fee is payable either by electronic transfer or bank draft in favour of icddr,b; details will be provided in the acceptance letter.


For any further information please contact-

Dr. Md. Manirul Islam


Phone:9827001-10, ext: 3509

Cell: 880-1713198880

Training Physician

Technical Training Unit

Office of the Chief Operating Officer