The University of Southampton

MEDI6101 Statistical and Qualitative methods for Public Health

Module Overview

Understanding research, the appropriate use of statistical tests in quantitative research and how to interpret both quantitative and qualitative results is fundamental to being able to critique an evidence base. This module teaches you how to apply quantitative and qualitative analytical techniques when carrying out research or evaluating a programme and to understand them when considering the results reported by others.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

Provide you with the foundation to understand both the statistical concepts and qualitative methods used in epidemiology and Public Health that are applicable globally

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • Differentiate between the various types of data and be aware of the appropriate approaches to data summaries.
  • Understand different data presentation and summary approaches.
  • Understand the differences between various statistical techniques, when to apply them and what should be reported.
  • Understand when and how to use a variety of qualitative approaches to data collection and analysis
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Understand the concept of a statistical hypothesis test for a difference between groups and be able to interpret the related confidence interval and P value.
  • Choose between and apply different statistical techniques to analyse data.
  • Design effective qualitative studies and be able to understand and interpret talk, text and visual data
  • Present research findings appropriately
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Use the IBM SPSS software package to set up a database, enter data, create variables, analyse data and produce basic descriptive statistics and graphs
  • Be able to manage and analyse qualitative data
  • Understand the ethical considerations that relate to different types of research


• Patient and public involvement in research • Types of data (quantitative) • Introduction to basic data analysis in SPSS • Data presentation options (quantitative) • Sampling from a population and the confidence interval for a single mean • Hypothesis testing and confidence intervals • Sample size determination (quantitative) • Analysing continuous and categorical data • Correlation and linear regression • Introduction to logistic regression • Introduction to survival analysis • Diagnostic testing • Introduction to qualitative methods • Planning focus groups and in-depth interviews • Data collection decisions in qualitative research • Data collection methods in qualitative research • Qualitative data analysis • Thematic analysis • Writing a qualitative proposal • Philosophy & principles of ethics in human research.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

A variety of methods will be used including lectures, active participatory methods, presentations by health researchers, e-learning/interactive tools for learning and self-assessment, computer demonstrations and practical exercises using computers, guided reading, group study and individual study

Independent Study205
Total study time250

Resources & Reading list

Campbell MJ, Machin D, Walters SJ. (2007). Medical statistics: A textbook for the health sciences. 

Bland M. (2000). An introduction to medical research. 

Altman DG. (1990). Practical Statistics for Medical Research. 

Bowling A. (2001). Research methods in health: Investigating health and health services. 

Holloway I. (2008). A-Z of qualitative research in nursing and healthcare. 


Assessment Strategy

There will be three components to the assessment i) multiple choice question examination, ii) written qualitative research strategy and iii) data analysis and reporting. The pass mark for the module and written elements is 50%. The pass mark for the multiple choice question examination will be standard set. Students must pass both the data analysis and report and the qualitative research strategy to pass the module. If you do not achieve the pass mark on this module by achieving 50% or more in all components, you may still pass by compensation for the multiple choice question examination. To do this, you must achieve a qualifying mark of 40% in this component. Each of the component marks is then combined, using the appropriate weighting, to give an overall mark for the module. If this overall mark is greater than or equal to 50% you will have passed the module. If your overall mark is less than 50% when the weighting has been applied to the components, you will have failed the module. If you have not achieved 40% or more on all components, you cannot use compensation and have failed the module. If you have failed the module, you will have the opportunity to submit work at the next referral (re-sit) opportunity for all components where you have not achieved the pass mark. Marks for components which were passed will be carried forward. You must achieve the pass mark in all referred components. On passing your referrals, your final module mark will be capped at 50%.


MethodPercentage contribution
Multiple choice question 30%
Qualitative research strategy  (2000 words) 30%
Report  (1000 words) 40%


MethodPercentage contribution
Multiple choice question 30%
Qualitative research strategy  (2000 words) 30%
Report  (1000 words) 40%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

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