Global Disease Burden & Research Methods (MIPH5132)


This unit introduces candidates to the methods used to assess disease priorities and identify those diseases or risk factors that contribute most to the burden of disease in low- and middle-income countries. It provide candidates with an understanding of the major conditions responsible for illness, disability and premature mortality. The design and implementation of disease control and health promotion programs for developing country populations will be discussed based on an understanding of the biological, environmental, behavioral, social and cultural aspects of major health problems. Topics covered in the unit include the global burden of disease; methods for conducting both quantitative and qualitative applied field research; and the epidemiology, and control and prevention strategies for communicable diseases - HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis; non-communicable diseases - cardiovascular diseases and mental health; injury; and malnutrition, childhood infectious diseases and reproductive and perinatal conditions.

Further unit of study information


1x2hr lecture per week for 12 weeks;1x1hr tutorial per week for 9 weeks; plus 1x1 day short course on social research methods and 1x1 day short course on field research methods; also offered fully online.


1x 1500 word assignment 1 (20%), research methods exercise (10%), 1x 3000 word assignment 2 (50%), and tutorial discussion (20%)


Readings are available on the unit's eLearnng site.
In addition the following textbooks (available free on-line) are recommended for reference:
Global Health: diseases, programs, systems and policies. 3rd Edition (2012) Jones & Bartlett Learning, Burlington MA USA.
Disease Control Priorities in Developing Countries. Dean Jamison, Joel Breman, Anthony Measham et al (editors). New York: Oxford University Press, 2006. (co-published with World Bank)

Faculty/department permission required?


Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.