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Introduction to Statistics for Health Care Research

Key facts

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TypesOnline and Distance Learning
Professional Development
Short Courses
DatesMon 19 May to Fri 25 Jul 2014
Subject area(s)Health
CATS points20
FeesFrom £1575.00
Application statusIn progress - closed to new applications
Course codeO13C202B9Y
Course contactIf you have any questions about this course, please email cpdhealth@conted.ox.ac.uk or telephone +44 (0) 1865 286941.


Radcliffe Camera sunrise - SHR

This ten week online statistics module is designed for health and social care professionals who want to understand the basics of analysis methods commonly used in medical research, in order to understand published research and to participate in more specialised courses. Students will learn to use and interpret basic statistical methods using SPSS, with reference to cohort studies, case control studies and randomized controlled trials. Online discussion forums enable communication between students and the tutor to provide support and to interpret and understand real-life scenarios.

The last date for receipt of complete applications is Friday 2nd May 2014. Regrettably, late applications cannot be accepted.


The overall aims of this module are to enable students to:

  • Understand and manipulate basic mathematical and statistical techniques as preparation for more specialized courses in health care;
  • Understand the statistical issues in the planning and analysis of research;
  • Understand the basic statistical aspects of published research;
  • Apply statistical analysis to cohort studies, case control studies and randomized controlled trials.

Core Reading

  • Altman, D. G., 1991 Practical Statistics for Medical Research, London, Chapman & Hall
  • Kirkwood, B. R. and Sterne, J. A. C., 2003 (2nd edn) Essential Medical Statistics. Oxford, Blackwell Publishing

This module will cover:

This course is divided into 10 units. Each unit covers a different aspect of statistics and statistical modelling.

Individual units are built around practical exercises and realistic case studies that will enable students to apply statistical knowledge in a health context.

Weekly study for each unit is self-paced using online resources. Movement through the units is structured week by week to enable students to complete sections at the same time as the rest of their course group.

Individual activities can involve reading of related text book chapters and articles, working through problems or analysing example datasets. The group activities will mainly involve online discussions of important issues in statistics so that students can put the application of statistics into an everyday context. Discussions occur weekly, but are "asynchronous" due to possible local time differences between the student's locations.

Programme details

Unit Content:

  • The use and importance of statistics
  • Handling and describing data, learning to use SPSS
  • Analysis of numerical results
  • Confidence intervals
  • Comparison of two means
  • Hypothesis testing
  • Analysis of variance
  • Linear regression and correlation
  • Analysing binary outcomes
  • Comparing two proportions



Dr Susan Mallett

Role: Module Coordinator

Sue Mallett Senior Departmental Statistician

Assessment methods

  • Each unit includes a data analysis exercise to consolidate understanding
  • The assessment consists of statistical problems in health research designed to give insight into real statistical problems in healthcare and to test ability to apply and understand correct statistical analysis.


Details of funding opportunities, including grants, bursaries, loans, scholarships and benefit information are available on our financial assistance page.

Fee options

Programme Fee
Students enrolled on MSc in Evidence-Based Health Care: £1575.00
Students enrolled on Postgraduate Cert in Health Research: £1575.00
Students enrolled on Postgraduate Dip in Health Research: £1575.00
Short course in health sciences: £1890.00

Apply for this course

Admissions Criteria:
To apply for the course you should:

  • be a graduate or have successfully completed a professional training course
  • have at least two years' professional work experience in the health service or a health-related field
  • identify a work based problem for which you will be seeking evidence
  • be able to combine intensive classroom learning with the application of the principles and practices of evidence-based health care within the work place
  • have a good working knowledge of email, internet, word processing and Windows applications (for communications with course members, course team and administration)
  • show evidence of the ability to commit time to study and an employer's commitment to make time available to study, complete course work and attend course and university events and modules.

Sorry, this course is not currently accepting applications. If you have any questions about this course, please use the course enquiry form.

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