Analysis of Basic Statistical Methods Used in Epidemiological Papers
Slovenia (SloMSIC) - University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana
Biotechnologies and Informatics
Institute of biostatistics and medical informatics
doc. dr. Nataša Kejžar
doc. dr. Nataša Kejžar
4 weeks
Cities/Months Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Augt Sep Oct Nov Dec
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Type of Research Project
- Basic science
What is the background of the project?
Epidemiologic studies provide research strategies for investigating public health questions in a systematic fashion relating a given health outcome to the factors that might cause and/or prevent this outcome in human populations. In biostatistics we bring the most appropriate methods available to bear on observational studies from medical research, requiring a broad appreciation of the underpinning methods and their context of applicability and interpretation. Statistical methods analysed will be such that are involved in planning, designing, collecting data, analysing, drawing meaningful interpretation and reporting research findings.
What is the aim of the project?
The aim of the project is to produce a report about which statistical methods are most effective for use in an epidemiological paper on medical topics (ex. Pregnancy – associated cancer). The topic will be chosen together with the mentor and should give the student understanding of most common statistical methods (regression analysis, descriptive statistics, data distribution etc.) they can use if they ever work on an epidemiological study.
What techniques and methods are used?
Reading of articles on a chosen topic (pregnancy associated cancer, or a topic chosen upon arrival) followed by using search engines such as Google scholar, Elsevier, Pubmed, NCBI, MedNets etc. to obtain relevant epidemiologic papers. The papers will be studied and analyzed to show which methods were used to compare data. For analysis, programs such as Excel and SPSS will be used. In the end, the findings will be written and discussed in the form of a scientific report.
What is the role of the student?
- The tasks of the student will be performed on his/her own
- The tasks will be done under supervision
What are the tasks expected to be accomplished by the student?
The student will read the articles that are provided below or they can express interest in a different topic and they will be provided with different articles before the exchange or upon meeting with the mentor. They will then learn to use statistical programs like Excel and SPSS that will be provided at the Department of biostatistics at the university. In the end, the student is expected to put together a short report on the findings – which statistical methods were the most effectively used in the studies the student read and the professor will also help the student understand the benefits of such methods and how they can be applied.
Will there be any theoretical teaching provided (preliminary readings, lectures, courses, seminars etc)
Yes, preliminary readings in the form of some articles that have been chosen by the mentor are provided below.
What is expected from the student at the end of the research exchange? What will be the general outcome of the student?
- The student will prepare a scientific report
What skills are required of the student? Is there any special knowledge or a certain level of studies needed?
Basic skills for working with data and databases such as Excel, Pubmed etc.
Are there any legal limitations in the student’s involvement
Type of students accepted
This project accepts:
- Medical students
- Graduated students (less than 6 months)
- Pre-Medical students from the American-British system
- Students in biomedical fields
- Vandenbroucke; JP. Clinical epidemiology: A daydream? - Eur J Epidemiol. 2017 Feb;32(2):95-101. doi: 10.1007/s10654-017-0226-2. Epub 2017 Jan 24. An example of scientific paper to look into: Lee YY; Roberts CL; Dobbins T; Stavrou E; Black K; Morris J; Young J. Incidence and outcomes of pregnancy‐associated cancer in Australia; 1994–2008: a population‐based linkage study. BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology. 2012 Dec;119(13):1572-82. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-0528.2012.03475.x