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Arnold School of Public Health


Epidemiology Courses

EPID 410       Principles of Epidemiology. (3) (every semester and summer) (Required for Public Health undergraduate majors at USC). (Prereq or Coreq: STAT 201 or 205, and PUBH 102).  Introduction to descriptive and analytical epidemiology.  Topics will include the distribution and determinants of disease, surveillance, outbreak investigations, measures of association, screening tests, bias, and causal reasoning.

EPID 490       Independent Study.  (1-3) (Enrollment and topic to be approved in advance by advisor and instructor.  May be repeated.  Prerequisites: permission of instructor.)

EPID 661       Parasitology. (4) (every spring semester) (Pre-requisite: 300 level Biology course or equivalent).  Parasites of biological, economic, and public health importance. Three lecture and three laboratory hours per week.

EPID 700       Introduction to Epidemiology.  (3) (every semester) Principles of epidemiology with examples of selected health problems.  Health status of populations and conceptual tools for translating epidemiologic findings into public health action.

EPID 701       Concepts and Methods of Epidemiology.  (3) (Prereq or Coreq: BIOS 701) (every fall) Conceptual foundation of epidemiologic research, quantitative methods, and epidemiologic study design.  Intended for those who will be involved in epidemiologic research.

EPID 730       Public Health Surveillance Systems. (3) (Prereq or Coreq: EPID 700/701) (offered in spring based on MPH enrollment) Introduction to the concepts, implementation and evaluation of surveillance systems to monitor the health of human populations.

EPID 741       Intermediate Epidemiologic Methods. (4) (Prereq: EPID 700/701; Coreq: BIOS 757/758, and either Prereq: BIOS 710 or Coreq: BIOS 709) (every spring) Application of epidemiologic methods to current health problems through analysis of secondary data.  Strategies for investigating etiologic hypotheses, assessment and control of confounding.

EPID 744       Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology.  (3) (Prereq: EPID 700) (spring of every odd year) Epidemiology of selected groups of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) including etiology, pathophysiology, identification, and description of events of CVD, and outcomes. 

EPID 745       Seminar in Epidemiology.  (1) (every fall and spring) Analysis of current and prospective issues in epidemiology, including historical foundations.  Includes student exploration and critical consideration of current research and unsolved problems in epidemiology.  (Pass/Fail grading)

EPID 746       Cancer Epidemiology.  (3) (Prereq: EPID 700) (spring of every odd year) Epidemiology of selected cancers in humans, including etiology, pathophysiology, identification and description of events of cancer and outcomes.

EPID 747       Environmental Epidemiology (3) (Prereq: EPID 700, BIOS 700) (spring of every even year) Emphasis on the epidemiology of selected environmental factors which may affect human health including the identification of health hazards and methods of investigation. 

EPID 749       Infectious Disease Epidemiology.  (3) (Prereq: EPID 700 and BIOS 700, or consent of instructor) (every fall) Covers bacterial, viral, parasitic and fungal diseases of public health importance.  Emphasis on epidemiologic methods basic to investigation, prevention and control of infectious diseases.

EPID 758       Application of Epidemiology in Public Health. (3) (Prereq: EPID 701 and EPID 741) (every fall) The purpose of this course is to develop applied research skills in epidemiology in the context of public health research and practice. Covers methods focusing on competencies, skills, and characteristics essential to the practice of public health.

EPID 763       Nutritional Epidemiology.  (3) (Prereq: EPID 701 or 700 and BIOS 701 or 700). (every fall) Covers methodology for investigating nutrition’s role in health, including nutritional assessment and the design and interpretation of research studies.  Substantive issues emphasize major public health concerns of the 21st century.

EPID 767       GIS and Public Health Applications.  (3) (Every even fall). Principles and application of basic and intermediate-level GIS technologies in public health practice and research.

EPID 765       Reproductive Epidemiology.  (3) (Prereq: EPID 701/700, BIOS 701/700, or permission of instructor) (spring of every even year) Epidemiology of major reproductive outcomes in humans with emphasis on pathophysiology, risk factors, analytic methods of investigation and surveillance/monitoring of reproductive events.

EPID 770       Social Epidemiology. (3) (Prereq:  EPID 700/701 or equivalent) (currently not being offered) Influence of social factors and the distribution of those factors on patterns of health and disease.  Including individual-level examinations of the role of social determinants in producing health, as well as more macro-level examinations of patterns of social disparities in health status.

EPID 788       Practical Methods for Secondary Data Analysis.  (3) (Prereq: EPID700/701, BIOS 700/701, EPID 741 or Co-req with instructor permission, pre/co-req: either BIOS 757/758 or BIOS 754).  Introduction to data sources and methods commonly used by epidemiologists and health analysts in state or federal health departments and research settings.  Methods include data management and analysis using SAS, data interpretation, survey designs, and innovative record linkages.

EPID 790       Independent Study.  (1-6) (Prereq: permission of instructor) Directed research on a topic to be developed by M.P.H. or M.S.P.H. student and instructor.  May be repeated.

EPID 794       Special Topics in Epidemiology.  (1-6)

EPID 798       Public Health Practice. (1-6) (Prereq: All core courses and at least one SPH course) Performance of a limited work of service project in a public need setting, pursuit of planned learning objectives related to previously identified aspects of the student's chosen role.  Self-monitoring and regular seminars focusing on learning accomplishments.  (Pass/Fail grading)

EPID 799       Thesis Preparation.  (1-9)

EPID 800       Advanced Methodological Theory in Epidemiology. (3) (Prereq: EPID 741 or permission of instructor). (every fall) Advanced epidemiologic methods in the design of epidemiologic studies, with emphasis on causal inference. Theories and frameworks of causation and interactions between causes and graphical visualization tools.

EPID 801       Advanced Analytical Methods in Epidemiology.  (3) (Prereq: EPID 741 and BIOS 757 or equivalent courses) (every spring) Application of advanced analytical methods, relying heavily on problem solving, data analysis and interpretation.

EPID 802       Epidemiologic Methods III.  (3) (Prereq: EPID 800 or permission of instructor). (every Spring) Extension of research design and development issues with focus on grant writing.

EPID 845       Doctoral Seminar Topics.  (1, repeatable up to 3 times) (Prereq: complete at least one semester of coursework and consent of instructor) (every semester) May be repeated for credit as content varies by title.  (Pass/Fail grading)

Note:  Each EPID doctoral student is required to take three seminars each covering a different topic area during his/her doctoral program.  Seminar “A” covers topics such as plagiarism and professional writing.  Seminar “B” covers topics such as contemporary issues and novel methodologic approaches in the field of epidemiology.  Seminar “C” covers career development.

EPID 869       Clinical Effectiveness.  (3) (every odd fall). Prereq: EPID 700/701. This course develops skills in the application of epidemiologic methods to clinical effectiveness research, defined as generating evidence to inform stakeholders about treatment options, and improve treatment safety, quality, efficiency and effectiveness.

EPID 890       Independent Study.  (1-3) (Prereq: permission of instructor) Directed research on a topic to be developed by doctoral student and instructor.

EPID 894       Special Topics in Epidemiology.  (3) Discussion on current and emerging issues in epidemiology.  May be repeated for credit.

EPID 899       Dissertation Preparation.  (1-12) (Prereq: one full year (18 hrs.) of graduate study beyond the Master's level and successful completion of the qualifying exam.

Biostatistics Courses

BIOS 700       Introduction to Biostatistics. (3) (every semester) Health related statistical applications.  Descriptive statistics, probability, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing, regression, correlation, ANOVA.  May not be used for graduate credit in epidemiology or biostatistics. 

BIOS 701       Concepts and Methods of Biostatistics. (3) (every fall) Descriptive and inferential statistical applications to public health.  Probability, interval estimation, hypothesis testing, measures of association.  For students planning further study in epidemiology or biostatistics.

BIOS 709       Introduction to SAS. (1) (every fall, Spring & summer) Statistical data management techniques. Microcomputer applications, communication between microcomputers and mainframe, tape and disk storage, access to large health-related databases.

BIOS 710       Effective Data Management for Public Health. (3) (every fall & summer) This course teaches techniques for creating and using small data sets.  Students will become familiar with four software packages used for data entry, data management, and presentation, PC/SAS, STATA, MS Excel, and MS Access.

BIOS 745       Seminar in Biostatistics.  (1-2) (every fall & spring) Analysis of current and prospective issues in biostatistics, including historical foundations.  Includes student exploration of unsolved problems and examination of central issues in biostatistics.  (Pass/Fail grading)

BIOS 754       Discrete Data Analysis.  (3) (Prereq: BIOS 757 and EPID 700/701) (every fall) Analysis of discrete data in public health studies.  Relative risk, odds ratio, rates and proportions, contingency tables, logistic regression, introduction to other advanced topics.  Not for Biostatistics majors.

BIOS 755       Introduction to Longitudinal Data Analysis. (3) (every spring) (Prereq: BIOS 757)   An introduction to principles and methods for longitudinal data, which are often encountered in practice where multiple measures are observed over time on an individual. This course is designed for non-biostatistics major researchers, with a focus on data analysis and interpretation more than theoretical development. Problems will be motivated by applications in epidemiology and clinical medicine, health services research, and disease natural history studies. 

BIOS 757       Intermediate Biostatistics.  (3) (Prereq: A course in introductory statistics) (every semester) Public health applications of correlation, regression, multiple regression, single and multi-factor analysis of variance and analysis of covariance.

BIOS 758       Advanced Biostatistics.  (4) (Prereq: BIOS 701) (every spring) Additional topics in analysis of health data including regression diagnostics, multicollinearity of observational data, ridge/nonlinear regression, principal components, random/missed effects, unbalanced designs, repeated measures, and sampling and design effects.

BIOS 759       Biostatistical Methods for Rates and Proportions.  (2-3) (Prereq: EPID 701 and BIOS 757) (every fall) The concepts, principles and biostatistical techniques necessary to analyze categorical epidemiological data including dose response curves, life tables and discrete measures of association.  Estimation of parameters for logistic and other commonly used epidemiological models.

BIOS 760       Biostatistical Methods in Clinical Trials.  (3) (Prereq: EPID 700, BIOS 700, EPID 741, BIOS 757) (fall of every odd year) This course will cover the basic and advanced statistical techniques necessary for the design, conduct, analysis and interpretation of results of clinical trials.

BIOS 761       Survival Analysis.  (3) (Prereq: BIOS 757 or equivalent) (every fall) Methods for the analysis of survival data in the biomedical setting.  Underlying concepts; standard parametric and nonparametric methods for one or several samples; concomitant variables and the proportional hazards model.

BIOS 765     Research Design in the Biomedical Sciences.  (3) (Prereq: BIOS 757) (spring of every odd year) Fundamentals of constructing, analyzing, and interpreting biomedical studies; internal and external validity, sample size determination, completely random designs, blocking, crossover designs, confounding, nested designs, repeated measure designs.

BIOS 770      Applied Longitudinal Data Analysis [= STAT 771].  (3) (Prereq: BIOS 757 or STAT 701 or STAT 705). (every spring) Modern methods for the analysis of repeated measures, correlated outcomes, and longitudinal data, including repeated measures ANOVA, generalized linear models, random effects, and generalized estimating equations.

BIOS 780       Introduction to Quantile Regression. (3) (Prereq: BIOS 757) (spring of every even year) Principles and methods for quantile regression analysis, which is a robust statistical approach that extends the classical mean regression analysis based on least squares.

BIOS 790       Independent Study.  (1-6) (Prereq: permission of instructor) Directed research on a topic to be developed by M.P.H. or M.S.P.H. student and instructor.  May be repeated.

BIOS 794       Special Topics in Biostatistics.  (1-6)

BIOS 799       Thesis Preparation.  (1-9)

BIOS 805       Categorical Data Analysis.  [=STAT 770] (3) (Prereq: BIOS 759 or STAT 704 and consent of instructor) (fall of every even year) Advanced methods for analysis of discrete data.  Higher order contingency tables, log linear and other generalized linear models.  Multivariate methods for matched pairs and longitudinal data.

BIOS 811       Survival Analysis II.  (3) (Prereq:  BIOS 761) (spring of every even year)   Parametric survival analysis, accelerated failure time model, frailty model, competing risk model and multi-state model.  Techniques motivated by applications in epidemiology and clinical medicine research, applications demonstrated using public health data sets.

BIOS 815       Generalized Linear Models [=STAT 775] (3) (Prereq: STAT 713 or STAT 513, and STAT 705 or BIOS 757.  Statistical theory and applications extending regression and analysis of variance to non-normal data.  Encompasses logistic and other binary regressions, log-linear models, and gamma regression models.

BIOS 820       Bayesian Biostatistics and Computation [=STAT 745] (3) (Prereq: BIOS 757 or STAT 705) (fall of every odd year) Bayesian methodology for randomized trials, epidemiology, survival, bioassay, logistic and log-linear regression modeling, longitudinal data, classification and bioinformatics, advances in computational methods.

BIOS 822     Statistical Methods in Spatial Epidemiology.  (3) (Prereq: BIOS 757 and 759) (fall of every even year) A comprehensive introduction to the statistical methods used in the analysis of geo-referenced spatial health data. Topics range from disease mapping to prospective surveillance.

BIOS 825       Multivariate Biostatistics.  (3) (Prereq: STAT 516 or BIOS 757) (spring of every even year) Analysis of multivariate data as found in biomedical studies; multivariate linear models, principal components analysis, factor analysis, discriminant and cluster analysis.  Other special multivariate topics such as principal components regression.

BIOS 845       Doctoral Seminar.  (1-3) (Prereq: complete at least one semester of coursework and consent of instructor) May be repeated for credit.  (Pass/Fail grading)

BIOS 890       Independent Study.  (1-3) (Prereq: permission of instructor) Directed research on a topic to be developed by doctoral student and instructor.  May be repeated.

BIOS 894       Special Topics in Biostatistics.  (3)  Discussion on current and emerging issues in biostatistics.  May be repeated for credit.

BIOS 899       Dissertation Preparation.  (1-12) (Prereq: one full year (18 hrs.) of graduate study beyond the Master's level.

Other Required Courses

ENHS 660     Concepts of Environmental Health Science. (3) (every semester).  Environmental health sciences presenting the earth as a complex system in which people, plants, animals and non living physical chemical components interact.

HSPM 700     Approaches and Concepts for Health Administration. (3) (every semester).   An interdisciplinary perspective on the field of health administration.  Philosophy, concepts, and skills of community health services implementation, management and evaluation are presented and discussed.  Principles in the practice of health administration are applied to identified problems and situations.

HPEB 700     Concepts & Methods in Health Promotion.  (3) (fall & summer (distance)) Fundamental principles and practices of public health promotion including history, ethics, cultural competence, professional responsibilities, overview of theory and models, and selection and implementation of instructional methods.

PUBH 700     Perspectives in Public Health.  (3) (every semester) Seminar-format orientation to history, mission, and core services and disciplines of public health to develop understanding of current public health practice and how many health-related disciplines contribute to achieving public health goals.

PUBH 810     Ethics in Public Health Research and Practice.  (1) (varies when offered) (Enrollment restricted to doctoral students and post-docs, master’s students by permission of instructor).  Foundation of public health ethics with application to practice and to responsible conduct of research in public health disciplines.