MOOCs for epidemiologists

I enjoyed Dina’s and Ian’s previous posts on Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). I thought now would be a good time to mention a few courses that might interest current and future Public Health epidemiology students since the edX courses offered by KI are about to begin tomorrow (September 9th).

First, I recommend KI’s course Explore Statistics with R. In class, we exclusively use SPSS to conduct statistical analyses. The advantage to using this software is that it is user-friendly and therefore the perfect tool for pedagogical purposes. However, the reality is that most of us will use more powerful statistical software in the future that will require more extensive programming knowledge. I am certain that this online course in R will equip us with knowledge that will be useful during the master’s thesis and beyond. The advantages of using R are that the software is free and that it is constantly being further developed by the R user community.

Another course that I think that Public Health epidemiology students should enroll in is An Introduction to Global Health, also run by KI. Many of us Public Health epidemiology track students are interested in a greater variety of examples of Public Health research beyond the ones we often encounter in class from Sweden and the Global North, and this course is bound to provide a new and rich perspective.

Beyond these two courses, I encourage you to seek out others that may fit your particular interests and needs (for example, I am personally very interested in Behavioral Medicine: A Key to Better Health). On the edX website, you can search for courses by university or by topic (such as Health & Safety, Statistics & Data Analysis, Food & Nutrition, or Biology and Life Sciences). I am also a big fan of the educational platform Coursera. Try searching there for topics like Biology & Life Sciences, Food & Nutrition, Health & Society, Medicine, or Statistics and Data Analysis. And don’t hesitate to try something completely unrelated to your studies: the online courses I have completed have been stellar and opened up entirely new worlds to me.

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