How fast is the coronavirus spreading and how can we slow it down? What makes people sick? Certain genes? Certain behaviour? Other determinants?
How do we best diagnose diseases? What are the consequences of a disease? Is an effective medicine also effective when used in daily practice? How is it used?
As an epidemiologist, you learn to formulate an answer to these questions. Epidemiology is the discipline which studies the occurrence of health-related events and conditions in populations and attempts to make links to predictive and/or influencing characteristics. It does not focus on diagnosis and treatment, but on the factors influencing the infection and on the way diseases spread. As a result, epidemiology is closely related to the field of public health.
Epidemiologists have become indispensable in:
the design, performance and analysis of applied medical scientific research
the application of medical scientific knowledge in the development of public health policy
The University of Antwerp’s Master of Epidemiology is unique in Flanders.
This Master’s programme is unique in Flanders. It will give you knowledge, skills and competencies to design and conduct epidemiological research addressing questions on aetiology, prevention, screening, diagnosis, treatment or prognosis of the disease (illness), or on the enhancement or maintenance of health. You will be immersed in scientific research and you will immediately learn to translate it into practice and policy.
The Master's programme is carried and supported via a VLIR-UOS scholarship programme by the Global Health Institute, one of the University's interdisciplinary research centres focussing on improving peoples health globally, building capacity for global health research, and engage in the implementation of evidence-based interventions for health problems affecting low- and middle-income countries.
A mix of theory and practice
During the first year of the programme, the focus is on deepening your knowledge in the field of epidemiology, statistics and research methods. You will also become acquainted with the practice by attending seminars and workplace visits.
In the second year, you will focus mainly on your own research for your Master's thesis. You will get to know the different fields of epidemiology, like infectious disease epidemiology, clinical epidemiology and environmental epidemiology. You will expand your methodological knowledge in the course Advanced Methods in Epidemiology and learn how to convert theory into practice in the course Public Health, Policy and Practice.
Strong in qualitative research
In addition, our programme includes qualitative research. Qualitative research can be used to place or explain the results of quantitative studies in context or to generate hypotheses that can then be tested by quantitative epidemiological studies.
Full-time or part-time
This programme counts 120 credits; this corresponds to 2 years of full-time study. There is a part-time programme of 30 credits per year for working students. That way you can complete the Master's programme in 4 years. ​Attention: if you are here with a student visa, you are required by law to take a minimum of 54 credits per academic year!
An international experience
This Master's programme welcomes students from all over the world. All classes are taught in English and international epidemiologists are invited on a regular basis to give seminars. This programme is an international experience right from the start.
You will have the opportunity to gain and improve your epidemiological skills by doing part of your Master's thesis abroad. Our professors have a large international network. You can also suggest a professional epidemiological institution or public health organisation abroad yourself.