Genetic Epidemiology

Module code: MD7448


This module consists of two teaching weeks introducing the basic genetics, statistical concepts and types of genomic data that underpins genetic epidemiology.

Genetic epidemiology is an exciting and fast-moving field with many career opportunities spanning both methodological and applied research. If you select this module you will be introduced to the basic biology and genetics, and statistical and epidemiological concepts that underpin genetic epidemiology.

Practical sessions will give you experience of running and interpreting a genetic association analysis including multiple genetic variants. The fundamental concepts underpinning analyses of family-based data, recurrence risk ratios, heritability and variance components analysis will be covered.

The use of genetic data in causal inference through “Mendelian Randomisation” will be explained and students will put this theory into practice with a computer-based exercise. Statistical issues of current relevance to the field will be explored through practical exercises and their application to current genetic epidemiological study design discussed. We will look at how relatedness between individuals is taken into account in association studies.


  • 16 hours of seminars
  • 4 hours of tutorials
  • 20 hours of practicals
  • 110 hours of independent study


  • Coursework 1 (50%)
  • Coursework 2 (50%)