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Basics in informatics and statistics


The main objective of this course is to prepare participants to: (a) use information in public health practice with a special emphasis on system management of public health information as a key strategic resource of organizations dealing with public health, and (b) use information and communication technology in order to increase their own effectiveness and efficiency as experts in the field of public health. Health informatics comprises a systematic application of information, computer sciences, and technologies in research and practice of public health. Work in the field of public health depends on the possibility and capability of information to be collected, organized, processed, evaluated, interpreted, and distributed. Computer and telecommunication technologies support these operations.

Furthermore, the course covers statistical terminology and the standard techniques of collecting, summarizing, presenting, analysing, and interpreting data as well as the use of statistical software. It provides an introduction to statistical reasoning with an overview of selected descriptive and inferential statistical methods and concepts commonly used in the fields of public health. The most common statistical software SPSS and Epi Info will be introduced. Emphasis will be put on the connection between the process that generates data and the statistical analysis including interpretation. The course is designed to develop scholars’ ability to read scientific literature and to critically evaluate study designs and methods of data analysis.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, participants will be able to:

  1. Discuss informatics as used in public health
  2. Identify and demonstrate various tools used in information and communication technology
  3. Investigate solutions by using web and other research tools
  4. Describe the steps involved in database development and implementation of information systems for public health
  5. Understand the meaning and proper application of a wide array of relevant statistical techniques
  6. Collect and prepare health-related data for analysis
  7. Recognize and apply appropriate analytical techniques to specific sets of public health-related data
  8. Interpret statistical output
  9. Critically evaluate reasoning processes involved in specific analyses

Course Outline

  1. Role of informatics in public health
  2. Visit to the computer laboratory
  3. Making best use of laptops and Internet connection
  4. Access to and use of main national/regional/global databases and analytical approaches
  5. Overview of statistical methods in public health
  6. Descriptive statistics (binomial and normal distribution, mean, median, Chi-square, t-test)
  7. Descriptive population parameters and sampling methods
  8. Formulating and testing sample-based hypotheses
  9. Use of SPSS and Epi Info
  10. Proportional hazard, univariate, and multivariate analysis
  11. Statistical modelling including sensitivity and specificity
  12. Correlation, linear and logistic regression models
  13. Evaluation, discrimination, calibration, and validation of statistical models
  14. Defining objectives and criteria for inclusion and exclusion from studies
  15. Scholarly presentations of seminar/field work

Training Delivery Methods

  1. In-class method
  2. Online method
  • Duration: 30 Learning Hours

Accredited By


Participant who complete the stand alone course will be awarded a Certificate of Course Completion.