Teaching research and epidemiology to undergraduate students in the health sciences Academic Article uri icon


  • OBJECTIVE:To identify and address particular challenges in the teaching of epidemiological concepts to undergraduate students in non-clinical health disciplines. METHODS AND RESULTS:Relevant pedagogical literature was reviewed to identify a range of evidence-based teaching approaches. The authors also drew on their experience in curriculum development and teaching in this field to provide guidelines for teaching epidemiology in a way that is engaging to students and likely to promote deep, rather than surface, learning. Discussion of a range of practical strategies is included along with applied examples of teaching epidemiological content. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS:Increasingly, there is a greater emphasis on improved learning outcomes in higher education. Graduates from non-clinical health courses are required to have a core understanding of epidemiology and teachers of epidemiology need to be able to access resources that are relevant and useful for these students. A theoretically grounded framework for effective teaching of epidemiological principles to non-clinical undergraduates is provided, together with a range of useful teaching resources (both paper and web-based). Implementation of the strategies discussed will help ensure graduates are able to appropriately apply epidemiological skills in their professional practice.

publication date

  • December 2006