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Epidemiology I: Planning a study
Provider: Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences

Activity no.: 3123-24-00-01 
Enrollment deadline: 16/06/2024
Date and time05.08.2024, at: 08:00 - 13.10.2024, at: 16:00
Regular seats16
Course fee12,480.00 kr.
LecturersSøren Nielsen
ECTS credits6.00
Contact personSøren Nielsen    E-mail address: saxmose@sund.ku.dk
Enrolment Handling/Course OrganiserPhD administration     E-mail address: phdkursus@sund.ku.dk

Aim and content

This course is free of charge for PhD students at Danish universities (except Copenhagen Business School), and for PhD Students from NorDoc member faculties. All other participants must pay the course fee.

Anyone can apply for the course, but if you are not a PhD student at a Danish university, you will be placed on the waiting list until enrollment deadline. This also applies to PhD students from NorDoc member faculties. After the enrollment deadline, available seats will be allocated to applicants on the waiting list.

Learning objectives

A student who has met the objectives of the course will be able to:

1. Competences: Collaborate scientifically with epidemiologists, statisticians and other relevant scientists on epidemiological investigations. Evaluate the validity and reliability of an epidemiological study and generalise study results to other populations than just the study population.

2. Skills: Define and design studies, collect and store epidemiological data in a database and evaluate data quality. Develop a research protocol using relevant epidemiological methods. Perform basic data management in R

3. Knowledge: Identify an epidemiological problem to be investigated using relevant epidemiological and statistical methods.


The course introduces the concepts associated with basic epidemiology, e.g. study objectives and hypotheses, study design, nature of data, data management and measures of frequency and association. The focus is on practical application of the concepts, through discussions with peers and by writing a protocol describing the plans for conduct of an observational epidemiological study. Also, practical data management using R will be introduced and rehearsed.

After an introduction with self-studies and eLectures in an eLearning environment, four days on-campus training with lectures, discussions and exercises takes place. During these campus days, the basics for the protocol are laid down. During the following eLearning weeks, the protocol is developed step-by-step using the principles taught in the course. The protocol is handed in one week prior to examination and forms the basis for an oral examination.


The course is relevant to PhD students and other working with epidemiological studies. Knowledge of basic epidemiological terminology is required. This knowledge can be acquired during the pre-course introductory weeks via self-studies within the eLearning environment

Relevance to graduate programmes

The course is relevant to PhD students from the following graduate programmes at the Graduate School of Health and Medical Sciences, UCPH:

All graduate programmes




The course is the first of two modules in Epidemiology. This first module of the course is based on blended learning, including both eLearning and on-site lectures, plenum discussions and exercises

Course director

Søren Saxmose Nielsen, Professor, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, saxmose@sund.ku.dk


Søren Saxmose Nielsen, Professor, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen

Matthew Denwood, Professor, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen


eLearning: 5 August 2024 – 13 October 2024. Weekly assignments should be expected.
On-campus: 19 - 22 August 2024
Examination: 30 minutes on one day (for each participant) within the period 3 - 11 October 2024

Course location

On-campus: 19 - 22 August 2024: Frederiksberg Campus, University of Copenhagen
Online: Absalon.ku.dk


Please register before 16 June 2024

Expected frequency

The course is held twice a year

Seats to PhD students from other Danish universities will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis and according to the applicable rules. Applications from other participants will be considered after the last day of enrolment.

Note: All applicants are asked to submit invoice details in case of no-show, late cancellation or obligation to pay the course fee (typically non-PhD students). If you are a PhD student, your participation in the course must be in agreement with your principal supervisor.

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