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Semester 2 (Extended) - Online
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Due to the impact of COVID-19, this subject is being undertaken by the Doctor of Medicine Year 3 2020 cohort only, in lieu of MEDS90026 MD Research Project 2.
This subject will expand on the research principles introduced in MD Research Skills 1 and will focus on the application of study design methodologies, critical evaluation of scientific literature and statistical analysis in clinical research.
Intended learning outcomes
At the completion of this subject, students will be able to:
Advanced Study Design
- Describe the principles and application of a range of study design methodologies including epidemiological/ population studies, health services research, randomised controlled trials, quantitative studies and qualitatative studies
Critical Analysis of the Scientific Literature
- Demonstrate competency in critical analysis of the literature by discussing strengths and weaknesses of selected scientific manuscripts
- Compare and contrast commonly used tools/instruments/approaches to assess the validity of sources of medical information
- Demonstrate a systematic approach to the critical evaluation of the validity, reliability, and applicability of health-related research and literature
- Appropriately communicate issues associated with the validity of medical information to clinical colleagues, patients and the general public
- Apply the principles of critical analysis to the preparation of a systematic review in an area of clinical interest/relevance
- Assess sources of bias and variation in published studies and threats to study validity (bias) including problems with sampling, recruitment, randomisation, and comparability of study groups
Statistics in Medical Research
- Distinguish between variable types (e.g. continuous, binary, categorical) and describe the implications for selection of appropriate statistical methods
- Demonstrate competence in the evaluation and interpretation of research data using statistical methods appropriate for the data and research question
- Describe the basic principles and practical importance of probability, random variation, commonly used statistical probability distributions, hypothesis testing, type I and type II errors, and confidence limits
- Describe the potential misinterpretation of results in the presence of multiple comparisons
- Explain, using appropriate examples, the components of sample size, power, and precision
Introduction to Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM)
- Describe the principles of EBM, and how they are applied to healthcare
- Develop, and demonstrate, analytical skills for integration of research evidence into decision-making in healthcare
- Design approaches to assist patients and the general public make sense of the huge variety of medical information available; improve patient and the general public's understanding of the implications, and applications, of medical research; and, counter the spread of disinformation around medical research
- Compare and contrast the distinction between using research to inform clinical decision making versus conducting research
- Describe approaches to engaging patients in the decision-making process, using shared decision making, including explaining the evidence and integrating their preferences
Last updated: 18 December 2020