Programme summary

Major topics

  1. Quantitative study design – Prof. J. Weyler
    Principles of prognostic (cohort), etiologic (case-control) and diagnostic (cross-sectional) research will be explained with a focus on study object, data collection (design methods) and data analysis. In addition, more recent design types will be presented as case-cohort, case-cross-over studies. The participants will be able to select the best research design taking into account the specific context (domain) and the specific research question (etiognostic, diagnostic, prognostic).

  2. Methods of data analysis/biostatistics – Prof. G. Molenberghs
    Analysis of scientific data will gradually progress from basics (ttest, chi², ANOVA...) to further analyses related to the study-designs discussed in the first module:

    Lineair regression;
    Logistic regression (inclusive model validation and diagnostic regression);
    Poisson regression analysis of time related data (‘event-history’) with attention to Cox proportional hazard modelling.

    Students will also be introduced to longitudinal data analysis.

  3. Qualitative study design  – Prof. H. Bastiaens
    We will explain why and when qualitative research can be used, and assess its validity and reliability.

    focus group research
    case studies
    ethnographic research
    phenomenological research

    The students will be able to design their own qualitative study, analyse qualitative data and design and publish qualitative research studies (using NVivo or Atlas software).

Introductory lectures

  1. Systematic reviews   – Dr. C. Simoens
    This lecture will enable students to describe the principles and interpret the results of systematic reviews, and critically appraise existing systematic reviews.
  2. Meta-analysis  – Prof. T. Burzykowski
    This lecture is complementary to that of systematic review, and will provide the principles, methods and hands-on exercises for meta-analysis in Medical Research.
  3. Health economics and cost-effectiveness
    The lecture will provide insights for performing cost-effectiveness analysis, as well as understanding the issues faced by health economists.

Practical sessions

  1. Introduction to the use of statistical packages (SPSS and Stata) - PhDc. Christopher Delgado-Ratto and Dr. Miriam Mutambudzi
    The students will learn how to use SPSS and Stata software during hands-on statistics’ exercises with databases. The practical lessons on descriptive and inferential statistics will provide the basis to comprehensibly analyze their own databases using either of these software packages.
  2. Research Project – Prof. J.-P. Van geertruyden
    The students will be individually tutored* to conduct their own data analyses. Depending on the research topic, the student may analyse quantitative or qualitative data, perform a meta-analysis or perform a cost-effectiveness analysis. Students will present their study results in the final week. (* individual tutoring possible in English, French, Spanish, and Dutch.)

    A Certificate of Attendance will be awarded after completion of the course.


Day-to-day programme

To have an idea of the day-to-day programme during the 6-week course you can download the schedule of the fourth EBQ (2016).

Download the EBQ programme outline 2016 (pdf - 262kB)


"The EBQ helps participants to make sense of the basic statistics and epidemiology designs encountered in research. In my own view every clinician should undertake EBQ so as to improve clinical care by applying research findings."


"I recommend the EBQ because it is very practical, pertinent, relevant and we were able to study practicing.


I would recommend the course to phd students who are interested in implementation of research results because I’ve learned a lot on this. Students are exposed to what needs to be done in the real world.”


"This course presents more advantages compared to others. First, we get training on two types of research: qualitative and quantitative. Second, the research project allows participants to apply what has been taught and to receive feedback on the design, analysis, etc. on various themes. Third, the research project is individual; each participant can work under supervision of the tutor. Fourth, we work on issues which are real on the ground, we can find solutions for the problems and we can even publish."