Erasmus Summer Programme Courses

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Cohort Studies [ESP39]

Course highlights

EC points




Course days

Monday to Friday (5 afternoons)


Prof. Jonathan Samet

Course fee

€ 740


Erasmus MC, Rotterdam NL




Introductory level epidemiology course work and introductory level biostatistics.


  • Epidemiology
  • Methodology

Course Materials

Online, download instructions will be sent in August by e-mail. A laptop is recommended.

Recommended books:

  • Epidemiology: beyond the Basics by M. Szklo and F. Javier Nieto. ISBN: 076374722x. Published: Sudbury, Mass; Jones and Barlett.
  • Epidemiologic Reviews Volume 20. #1: Johns Hopkins Univ, C1998

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Detailed information about this course:


Faculty: Prof. Jonathan Samet

This course will provide an introduction to the cohort and other longitudinal designs for students with an intermediate level background in epidemiology.It will focus on design and interpretation, emphasizing the principles and complexities of data collection over time and potential biases that may affect cohort data. Topics to be covered include cohort definition, follow-up and definition of outcomes, fixed and time-dependent exposures, quality control, mixed study designs (nested case-control and other studies), and quality assurance and control. The course will also cover the use of the cohort design in clinical/translational research.

The course will also cover the basic analytic methods appropriate to various types of cohort data, including the application of both non-parametric methods and regression models. The course will be based on lectures as well as small group activities and plenary discussions of exercises. Competencies to be gained in the course include the ability to interpret findings from cohort studies and to apply principles for the design of cohort studies.


  • To be able to recognize the general design of a cohort study
  • To identify salient issues in the conduct and implementation of cohort studies
  • To recognize the main techniques for the analysis and issues in the interpretation of cohort data

Participant profile

Students and public health professionals with basic knowledge of epidemiology who are interested in learning about basic design features, data collection, and ways to analyze data from cohort studies.