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Causal Inference in Epidemiology: Recent Methodological Developments

Overview

Causal inference is a central aim of many empirical investigations, and arguably most studies in the fields of medicine, epidemiology and public health. However, traditionally, the role of statistics is often relegated to quantifying the extent to which chance could explain the results, whilst concerns over systematic biases due to the non-ideal nature of the data are relegated to their qualitative discussion. The field known as causal inference has changed this state of affairs, setting causal questions within a coherent framework which facilitates explicit statement of all the assumptions underlying a given analysis, in many settings developing novel, flexible analysis methods, and allowing extensive exploration of potential biases.

This course will discuss the current state of the art with respect to these issues, while retaining a practical focus. The potential outcomes framework, causal diagrams, standardization, propensity scores, inverse probability weighting, instrumental variables, marginal structural models, causal mediation analysis and examples of sensitivity analysis will be discussed. Participants will acquire awareness of the common threads across these new methods and competence in applying them in simple settings.

Who should apply?

Participants will be expected to be numerate epidemiologists, or applied statisticians with an interest in epidemiology and clinical trials. An MSc in Epidemiology or Medical Statistics, or previous attendance to the Advanced Course in Epidemiological Analysis, would be an advantage.

Course fee

The fee for 2016 is £1,165

Course objectives

Course Content

The topics covered will be:

  • Causal language, estimands, and diagrams
  • Methods to deal with the bias introduced by measured and unmeasured confounders. These will include: standard regression methods, propensity score-based and instrumental variable methods
  • Marginal structural models for dealing with time-dependent confounding in longitudinal studies
  • Causal mediation analysis
  • Sensitivity analysis
  • Practical experience of the above methods in Stata

Course Certificate and Assessment

There will be no formal assessment. Participants will receive a Certificate of Attendance.

How to apply

Applying for this course

Please complete the ONLINE APPLICATION FORM

Visas

The student is responsible for obtaining any visa or other permissions to attend the course, and is encouraged to start the application process as early as possible as obtaining a visa for the UK can sometimes take a long time. The Short Courses team, in the Registry, can provide supporting documentation if requested.

Accommodation and meals

A list of hotels and other accommodation located in the vicinity of the School can be supplied on request to the Registry. Lunch can be purchased from the School's Refectory in the Keppel Street building or the cafe on the Tavistock Place building. Evening meals are not catered for at the School, but there is a large choice of restaurants, cafes and shops nearby.

 

The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine is committed to improving global health through its programme of short and full-time postgraduate study.

Please note:

  • If you have been offered a place on the course you will not be able to register without bringing formal ID (Passport) and without having obtained the correct visa.
  • It is essential that you read the current visa requirements for short course students. To view this information please click here.
  • The School may cancel courses two weeks before the first day of the course if numbers prove insufficient.  In those circumstances, course fees will be refunded.
  • The School cannot accept responsibility for accommodation, travel and other losses incurred as a result of the course being cancelled.

Admission status

Applications Open

Fees 2016

£1,165 - payable by 3 October 2016

Course dates

7 - 11 November 2016

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