Postgraduate course

Basic Course in Research Tools and Theory

  • ECTS credits6
  • Teaching semesterAutumn
  • Course codeINTH301
  • Number of semesters1
  • Language


  • Resources

Level of Study




Teaching semester


Place of Instruction

Centre for International Health (CIH), and where CIH holds this course as part of a joint degree.

Objectives and Content


The aim of this course is to provide an introduction to scientific perspectives and skills that are required to address health research, and include research within ethics and philosophy of science, epidemiology and statistics. The course also aims to introduce concepts in basic research studies, and qualitative research.


This course provides an introduction Research tools and theory. The course includes research within ethics and philosophy of science, research methods, and how to communicate scientific results to the research community and in teaching.

The course includes the following main themes:

Philosophy and Science

Ethics and scientific conduct

  • In human and animal studies

Methods in

  • Epidemiology
  • Basic medical research
  • Clinical research

Qualitative research

Scientific communication

  • The Library, PubMed and use of EndNote
  • The scientific paper
  • Posters
  • Successful lecturing
  • Grant applications
  • Statistical issues

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the course

the student should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:


The student:

  • knows how to make systematic searches for scientific knowledge
  • can present important statistical concepts and ethical perspectives in research; integrity, accountability and social responsibility
  • can explain the main principles of epidemiological research
  • can present, explain and justify choice of research methods: public health and epidemiological research, basic biomedical research within life sciences, important statistical methods and qualitative research tools
  • can explain the main principles of clinical studies
  • can elaborate on the selection and use of basic medical research methods


The student:

  • can critically evaluate scientific knowledge in light of important scientific ideas
  • can apply statistical methods
  • can apply knowledge to design clinical trials, observational studies (cross-sectional studies, case -control studies, cohort studies), experimental methods (controlled clinical trials, intervention studies) and qualitative research methods (observations, interviews and document analysis)

General competence

The student:

  • understands the role of different disciplines and research methods in health research relevant for middle and low-income countries.

Required Previous Knowledge

Proficiency in English at a level corresponding to TOEFL 550 (paper-based) or 213 (computer-based) or IELTS band 6.0 is expected.

Access to the Course

Students enrolled in the master programme in Global Health, students enrolled in similar programmes at UiB or other partner universities.

Teaching Methods and Extent of Organized Teaching

A mixture of lectures, individual and group exercises and individual study

Contact hours: 100

Group work: 30

Individual assignments: 50

Total SIT: 180 hours

Compulsory Assignments and Attendance

80% attendance on practical sessions is required.

Forms of Assessment

Written home exam to be delivered in the first week of January.

Writing an abstract based on a research paper using quantitative or qualitative research methods.

Students who receive the grade "F" are allowed to re-sit according to standard procedures at the University of Bergen.

Examination Support Material

This is a Home examination and all support material can be used.

Grading Scale

ECTS credits A-F (F = fail)

Assessment Semester


Reading List

The reading list will be made available by 1 June on Mitt UiB.

Course Evaluation

Students evaluate the teaching according to the quality assessment requirements of the University of Bergen.

Programme Committee

The program committee for Global Health

Course Coordinator

Professor Bente E. Moen and Professor Bernt Lindtjørn

Course Administrator

The Department of Global Public Health and Primary Care at The Faculty of Medicine


Contact Information

Centre for International Health

E-mail: studie@igs.uib.no

Tel: 55 58 85 69 / 70