Courses

EPIDEMIOLOGY & RESEARCH METHODS

The overall objective of this course is for students to learn principles of epidemiologic methods and their application for analysis and interpretation of public health data. This course provides advanced introductory training for conducting epidemiologic investigations of disease etiology, health care services, and for interpretation of published epidemiologic studies. By the end of this course, students should be sufficiently familiar with epidemiologic research methods to begin to apply these methods to their own work. 
Catalog number: CTS 602A
Course Coordinator: William Jesdale
Semester Offered: Fall
Last Taught: Fall 2014

ADVANCED EPIDEMIOLOGY & RESEARCH METHODS

This class extends material covered in the fall semester to include additional study designs and techniques used in epidemiologic research. Students learn about DAGs, case only study designs, ecological study designs, matching techniques applied to cohort and case control designs, bias adjustment and additional techniques to improve the efficiency of study designs. Students read primary literature related to methodological advances in epidemiology. 
Catalog number: CTS 602B
Course Coordinator: Kate Lapane
Semester Offered: Spring
Last Taught: Spring 2014

GENERAL LINEAR MODELS

This course will provide a foundation for statistical thinking in clinical and population health research. Students completing this course should have a working knowledge of statistical models used for estimation and inference; understand advanced statistical techniques; be able to develop modeling strategies and analysis plans for specific research questions; and, be prepared to implement those plans and summarize and interpret findings. This is a classroom-based course and students are expected to actively participate in class discussions. Practical statistical knowledge is gained through the conduct of in-class workshops where students are required to gain hands-on experience in statistical problem solving and analysis.
Catalog number: CTS 603A
Course Coordinator: Sharina Person
Semester Offered: Fall
Last Taught: Fall 2014

STATISTICAL METHODS FOR SURVIVAL AND LONGITUDINAL DATA ANALYSIS

This course will provide a foundation for statistical thinking in clinical and population health research involving time to event data and longitudinal data. Students completing this course should have a working knowledge of statistical models used for estimation and inference; understand advanced statistical techniques; be able to develop modeling strategies and analysis plans for specific research questions; and, be prepared to implement those plans and summarize and interpret findings involving time to event data and longitudinal data. 
Catalog number: CTS 603B
Course Coordinator: Stavroula Chrysanthopoulou
Semester Offered: Spring
Last Taught: Spring 2014

COMPREHENSIVE PROJECT

This course will provide structure and support for students to complete an independent research project using a secondary data set. Students will develop, write up, and present their research study, including sections on background, study hypotheses, study methods, results, conclusions, study limitations, and recommended further research. Students will conduct their own data analysis and will be evaluated on summative competencies expected to be achieved by the end of their first year of core coursework. 
Catalog number: CTS 604
Course Coordinator: Kate Lapane 
Semester Offered: Summer 
Last Taught: Summer 2014

INTRODUCTION TO EPIDEMIOLOGY AND BIOSTATISTICS

This course reviews basic principles of epidemiology and biostatistics. Didactic instruction, readings, and problem sets (including lab-based analyses) are utilized to more fully understand epidemics and their causes, as well as various study designs including cross-sectional studies, case-control studies, cohort designs, and randomized clinical trials. The fundamental principles of statistics, the scientific method, and hypothesis testing will be reviewed in depth. Students without a year of epidemiology and biostatistics are required to take this course before entering CTS603A and CTS602A.
Catalog number: CTS 605A
Course Coordinator: Robert Goldberg
Semester Offered: Summer (July)
Last Taught: Summer 2014

GRANT WRITING

This course is designed to familiarize trainees with the grants review process and NIH grant proposal requirements. The course will include detailed overviews of the grant process, participation in several mock proposal review sessions, and completion of each of the written components of a grant including specific aims, background and significance, preliminary studies, and design methods. Students should invoke their mentor in the development of their grant proposal to the extent possible. 
Catalog number: CTS 606
Course Coordinator: Robert Goldberg
Semester Offered: Summer (early)
Last Taught: Spring 2012

BIOMEDICAL INFORMATICS

This course offers an overview of the field of biomedical informatics. In this course, concepts from computer and information science are combined with current issues in research, training and clinical practice. The course will provide a broad overview of electronic health records, decision support systems, standards, security and confidentiality, evidence-based medicine, information retrieval, bioinformatics, public health informatics, imaging informatics, and consumer health informatics. 
Catalog number: CTS 607
Course Coordinator: Ralph Zottola
Semester Offered: Fall
Last Taught: Fall 2012

TEAM SCIENCE

Students will learn how to create and sustain cohesive research teams, develop a productive program of research, develop good mentor and mentee relationships, engage in transdisciplinary science, understand the NIH Roadmap, and hear about different forms of clinical and community research from local investigators who conduct it. 
Catalog number: CTS 608
Course Coordinator: Sherry Pagoto
Semester Offered: Spring (odd years)
Last Taught: Spring 2013

DESIGN OF CLINICAL TRIALS

The course is intended for the research scientist in training. The goal is to sharpen the methodologic skills in designing experimental studies for clinical investigators. The course addresses theoretical and practical methods in designing clinical trials with emphasis on design implications and development of individual study protocols. The course focuses on designing intervention studies to achieve research objectives by selecting appropriate study samples, end points and trial designs. Specific topics include efficacy versus effectiveness trials and critiquing clinical trial protocols, with emphasis on evaluating strengths and weaknesses of the trial design.
Catalog number: CTS 609
Course Coordinator: Bruce Barton
Semester Offered: Spring (odd years)
Last Taught: Spring 2012

TOPICS IN MOLECULAR MEDICINE

This course covers a variety of current topics centered on specific diseases with a molecular aspect to either diagnosis or treatment. The course is aimed at developing skills necessary for understanding and discovering how changes in gene function can cause human disease. The course includes a series of topics that use inherited disease processes to illustrate the physiological consequences of molecular, cellular, and genetic phenomena. The course emphasizes the acquisition of skills in interpreting scientific literature and synthesizing this knowledge with real-world patient care. In this way, students learn interesting state-of-the-art material while developing skills and expertise in integrative biology and molecular medicine. 
Catalog number: CTS 610
Course Coordinator: TBD
Semester Offered: Spring
Last Taught: Spring 2012

SCIENTIFIC WRITING

This course teaches students how to develop a peer reviewed scientific manuscript, through the review of elements of style, authorship, and extent of information that needs to be incorporated into a scientific research paper. Students will learn how to develop the elements that go into a successful scientific manuscript, submit an article for peer review and respond to reviewers' concerns. During each session, students will critique the work of others enrolled in the course to obtain hands on experience in the write-up of the introduction, methods, results, and discussion sections of a manuscript. This course will also teach students how to put together a successful oral, as well as poster, scientific presentation. 
Catalog number: CTS 611
Course Coordinator: Robert Goldberg
Semester Offered: Fall
Last Taught: Fall 2014

SYSTEMATIC REVIEW

The purpose of this class is to learn how to conduct a systematic review including developing a question of appropriate scope and clinical relevance, development of abstraction tool, selection of articles, and drafting of all sections of the review including tables and figures. The end product will be a journal style and length systematic review in the topic area of the students’ substantive interest area that is 75% of the way to being ready for submission to a peer-reviewed journal.
Catalog number: CTS 701
Course Coordinator: Jane Saczynski 
Semester Offered: Fall
Last Taught: Fall 2014

RESEARCH ETHICS FOR CLINICAL RESEARCH

This course covers basic human subject’s research issues, including NIH guidelines, required certification, and Institutional Review Board processes and procedures. In addition, topics include general research and data ethics. Students complete papers on specific ethical dilemmas and a final project relevant to their area of dissertation research.
Catalog number: CTS 702
Course Coordinator: Charles Lidz 
Semester Offered: Fall
Last Taught: Fall 2014

ADVANCED TOPICS IN BIOSTATISTICS

This course will cover an advanced topic in Biostatistics (for example, Longitudinal Data Analysis, Survival Analysis, Graphical Information Systems and Spatial statistics).  The purpose of the course is to provide students with immersion in one particular area of biostatistics, providing the theoretical background necessary and the practical "hands-on" data analyze experience.
Prerequisites: CTS603A & CTS603B or permission from Course Coordinator.
Catalog number: CTS 712
Course Coordinator: Kate Lapane
Semester Offered: Summer
Last Taught: Summer 2014

ADVANCED ANALYTICAL METHODS FOR HEALTH OUTCOMES RESEARCH

This advanced methods course is focused on learning methods for addressing confounding and bias. The goals for this course are: 1) to become comfortable recognizing and discussing bias and confounding; 2) to gain experience in using a variety of techniques that help in identifying and minimizing bias and confounding; and 3) to be able to assess the potential impact of residual bias and confounding on study results. 
Prerequisites: CTS603B, CTS602B or Permission of the instructor
Catalog number: CTS 716
Course Coordinator: Kate Lapane
Semester Offered: Fall (even years)
Last Taught: Fall 2014

RANDOMIZED CLINICAL TRIALS IN BEHAVIORAL RESEARCH

Preventable diseases, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes and others, are now the top causes of morbidity and mortality in the US. Behavioral interventions attempt to improve physical and/or mental health using behavioral, social, and cognitive strategies. Randomized trials testing behavioral interventions have unique methodological challenges that must be carefully dealt with to insure their impact on health outcomes. This course will cover methodological issues such as control group selection, internal and external validity, treatment fidelity, participant adherence, recruitment, and blinding. Other challenges reviewed in class include adoption, implementation, dissemination, and reimbursement in clinical and community settings. Students will also learn how to design pilot trials and about the preliminary data necessary when proposing behavioral randomized trials in grant applications. 
Catalog number: CTS 717
Course Coordinator: Sherry Pagoto
Semester Offered: Spring (even years)
Last Taught: Summer 2010

DESIGNING AND CONDUCTING HEALTH SURVEYS

This course introduces students to the foundations of survey methods. The course is designed to introduce students to the use of surveys in public health. Self-reported data, collected using various survey methods, are used to estimate behavioral risks, disease prevalence, access to medical care, health literacy, and physical activity. 
Catalog number: CTS 719
Course Coordinator: Carole Upshur
Semester Offered: Summer
Last Taught: Summer 2011

HEALTH LITERACY IN RESEARCH AND PRACTICE

This course focuses on examining and analyzing the concept of health literacy, with an emphasis on the relationship of health literacy to one’s ability to manage and optimize their health. The association of health literacy to health disparities and health outcomes will be explored. Challenges in conducting health literacy research and challenges inherent in providing quality care to those with limited health literacy will be examined. Evidence based individual and organizational approaches to mitigate the effects of limited health literacy will be addressed. 
Catalog number: CTS 720 (Cross-listed with Graduate School of Nursing course, N812)
Course Coordinator: Nancy Morris
Semester Offered: Summer
Last Taught: Summer 2011

MEASUREMENT AND INSTRUMENTATION IN CLINICAL RESEARCH

This is an advanced, graduate-level course that focuses on measurement theory and the processes of instrument evaluation, refinement and development. This course explores the use of quantitative and qualitative procedures to measure clinically important variables. In addition, emphasis is posited upon the interaction of conceptual, methodological, cultural and pragmatic considerations that are essential to understand when measuring variables among clinical populations. 
Catalog number: CTS 724 (Cross-listed with Graduate School of Nursing course, N804)
Course Coordinator: Carol Bova
Semester Offered: Summer
Last Taught: Summer 2014

INTRODUCTION TO THE U.S HEALTHCARE SYSTEM: HOW POLICIES AND PRACTICE AFFECT HEALTH

This course provides an in-depth look at the US healthcare system and its role in maintaining the health of US adults and provides a foundation for understanding and conducting health services research. We will introduce the constructs of structure, process, and outcomes of care to understand and evaluate health care quality and cost. Students will learn how health care policies and payment practices affect the accessibility, effectiveness and cost of care, and be introduced to studies using large administrative datasets that are not specifically designed for research. Students are expected to demonstrate basic knowledge and skills in course topics through class presentations, exercises and papers.
Catalog number: CTS 725
Course Coordinator: Robin Clark
Semester Offered: Fall (odd years)
Last Taught: Fall 2013

DESIGN AND CONDUCT OF STUDIES OF CHRONIC DISEASE

This course provides students with an overview of several chronic diseases of major public health and clinical importance, major chronic disease risk factors, and an in-depth understanding of the application of various epidemiological methods to design and conduct clinical/epidemiological studies on chronic disease and their primary and secondary prevention. The course will discuss fundamental concepts in chronic disease epidemiology, common research methods used in the design and conduct of studies of chronic disease epidemiology, and the application of these methods for the major chronic diseases affecting industrialized countries. Specific chronic diseases to be covered will vary from year to year but will include such diseases as cardiovascular disease, cancer, chronic pulmonary disease, chronic kidney disease, diabetes, and musculoskeletal disorders. 
Catalog number: CTS 726
Course Coordinator: Rob Goldberg 
Semester Offered: Fall (odd years)
Last Taught: Fall 2013

ANALYSIS OF HEALTH CARE AND POPULATION-BASED DATASETS

Epidemiologic, health services, and social/behavioral science researchers often conduct secondary analyses of existing population-level public health and health care datasets in order to estimate the prevalence of and associations between risk factors, behaviors, disease states, and other health-related outcomes. Benefits of using these datasets include their representative sampling frames allowing generalizability to larger populations, timeliness, and lower cost. In addition, computer technology also makes it possible to link some databases providing even richer sources of information. There are also several technical and methodological concerns that need to be considered in conducting secondary analyses. In this course, students will become familiar with the wealth of existing population-based public health, electronic medical record data, and claims data. Topics including advantages and disadvantages of using existing data, complex sampling and weighting, and obtaining limited-access data will be discussed. Using a population-based dataset, students will develop an analytic plan and draft a manuscript to answer a research question of their choosing. Students will build on their understanding of epidemiologic methods and analytic skills in the context of class assignments and an applied project.
Catalog number: CTS 727
Course Coordinator: Molly Waring
Semester Offered: Spring (even years)
Last Taught: Spring 2014

PRINCIPLES OF PSYCHIATRIC EPIDEMIOLOGY

This course provides an in-depth look at the psychiatric epidemiological research and is aimed at masters and doctoral level students or junior faculty in need formal training in psychiatric epidemiology. The course is structured to provide students with the methodological skills required for the study of psychiatric illnesses, an historical perspective through a comprehensive analysis of seminal works in the field, and application of these concepts to available data resources. This course will provide the foundation necessary to understand and conduct psychiatric epidemiology research. Students are expected to demonstrate basic knowledge and skills in course topics through small group presentations and by designing and executing an independent scientific research report. 
Catalog number: CTS 728
Course Coordinator: Eric Mick
Semester Offered: Spring (even years)
Last Taught: Summer 2014

SOCIAL EPIDEMIOLOGY

The goal of the course is to equip you to design and carry out analyses of the social determinants of health that are theoretically and methodologically sound. Secondary goals within the framework of this overall goal include: the ability to critically evaluate primary literature; the ability to interpret disparate findings in light of one another; the ability to formulate concise, clear research questions; the ability to apply appropriate methodology to turn data into answers to that question; and the ability to communicate your ideas clearly to professional and lay audiences. We will cover the main societal causes implicated in affecting the health of human populations, including class hierarchy, racism, gender hierarchy, heteronormativity, and ableism. Starting from a baseline of observing these social forces reflected in health disparities, we will spend most of our time examining the fundamental causes behind observed health disparities, and focused on methodologic approaches to measuring and interpreting these forces and their effects, on both minority and dominant populations. Students will define a research question, develop a literature review related to that question, and design and execute an analysis of that question, resulting in a publication-quality paper by the end of the semester. 
Catalog number: CTS 729
Course Coordinator: Bill Jesdale
Semester Offered: Spring (even years) 
Last Taught: Spring 2014

PUBLIC HEALTH GENOMICS 

This course provides an in-depth look at the contribution of human genetic variation public health and is aimed at masters and doctoral level students or junior faculty. The course is structured to provide students with the methodological skills required for the study of common and rare genetic variants, an historical perspective through a comprehensive analysis of seminal works in the field, and application of these concepts to available data resources. 
Catalog number: CTS 730
Course Coordinator: Eric Mick 
Semester Offered: Spring (even years) 
Last Taught: New Course

BEHAVIORAL DETERMINANTS

The purpose of this class is to learn models of disease prevention, multi-level determinants of health behaviors, and major theories of health behavior change and their application to interventions to address major public health problems.
Catalog number: CTS 731
Course Coordinator: Milagros Rosal
Semester Offered: Fall (even years)
Last Taught: Fall 2014

QUALITATIVE METHODS FOR HEALTH RESEARCH

This course examines uses of qualitative methods in mixed-qualitative or mixed-qualitative/quantitative health studies. Essential qualitative research components are explored: study community; theory; rigor; research questions; data collection methods; writing open-ended questions; sampling; data analysis; publishing; and writing proposals. Students apply concepts covered in class by collecting data for written assignments.
Catalog Number: CTS 732
Course Coordinator: Kate Lapane
Semester Offered: Spring (odd years)
Last Taught: New Course

PHARMACOEPIDEMIOLOGY

The purpose of this class is to learn pharmacoepidemiology, including: rigorous methodologic approaches to the measurement of medication exposure, adherence and adverse events; pharmacoepidemiologic study design; choices for pharmacoepidemiology data resources; and the role of quality of life measurements and pharmacoeconomics.
Catalog Number: CTS 733
Course Coordinator: Jennifer Tjia
Semester Offered: Summer (odd years)
Last Taught: New Course

PROPOSAL DEVELOPMENT SEMINAR

The purpose of this course is to allow students to develop their dissertation proposals in a systematic fashion under faculty guidance. The dissertation proposal will be in the format of an NIH R03 grant proposal, and at the end of the semester the student is expected to have completed the dissertation proposal. As such, the course is designed to walk the student through each of the NIH grant proposal requirements and expectations. The course will include detailed reviews of the grant process, participation in a mock proposal review session and the completion of each of the written grant components. It is expected that students will involve their mentor and 3-member Thesis Research Advisory Committee (TRAC) in making decisions regarding their proposal and receive their input throughout the semester, so that the student will be prepared to defend the proposal soon after the semester is completed. The course will also be useful as an introduction to NIH proposal writing. 
Catalog number: CTS 875
Course Coordinator: Stephenie Lemon
Semester Offered: Spring
Last Taught: Spring 2014