FRM5640 – Pharmacoepidemiology Study Design and Manuscript Writing

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

This course will provide a continuously supervised research experience that teaches students the major steps to the preparation and presentation of a hypothesis-based pharmacoepidemiology research study. Students will choose a research question that can be evaluated, using epidemiologic methods, from a dataset that has already been assembled. Through a combination of workshops, written assignments, oral presentations, and peer critiques, students will learn the skills needed to develop the research question into a testable hypothesis, to test the hypothesis through secondary data analysis, and to write the results in the form of a publishable article for a scientific journal.

Learning outcome

After completing this course:

  • you will be able to conceptualize and conduct a descriptive drug-utilization pharmacoepidemiology study, including identifying gaps in the literature, formulating a research question, developing an analytic plan, analyzing data, and presenting and interpreting the results.
  • you will have learned how to structure and write a descriptive pharmacoepidemiology manuscript in the IMRAD style, with substantial guidance from instructors.
  • you will have learned how to orally present pharmacoepidemiology results to peers.
  • you will have learned how to effectively critique pharmacoepidemiology research from peers, and incorporate peer critique into your own work.


This is a small seminar course optimized for 8-12 students. Priority will be given to masters students working in pharmacoepidemiology in the School of Pharmacy at UiO.

There will be a total of 12 places available which are usually split as follows :

  • 8 places are reserved for FRM5640
  • 4 places are reserved for FRM9640

If there is space available then others may also apply to take the course as long as their academic background is adequate. For more information on the procedure contact the study administration.

Applicants are ranked by the following criteria:

  1. Master students working in pharmacoepidemiology in the School of Pharmacy at UiO who have the course as part of the approved curriculum.
  2. Master students at the School of Pharmacy who have the course as part of the approved curriculum.
  3. Students with admission to single courses on master’s level and exchange students.
  4. Applicants are ranked by credits in each group; all applicants within 1st rank before applicants in 2nd etc. If admission is limited to a fixed number of participants, admission will be decided by drawing lots for students who are ranked equally.

The examination in this course is not available for external candidates. Only students admitted to the course may sit for the examination.


This course will meet once per week for 15 weeks. The teaching consists of:

  • lectures (20 hours) - compulsory
  • workshops (8 hours) - compulsory
  • student presentations (8-12 hours) - compulsory
  • peer critiques (10-12 hours) - compulsory
  • participation in class discussion
  • homework assignments (written assignments, oral presentations) - compulsory
  • manuscript developed throughout the course (3000-4000 words, plus tables, figures, appendices, and required data analysis) - compulsory

Students should expect to spend between 4 and 8 hours per week outside of class to complete reading, writing, and data analysis assignments.

There is a compulsory attendance for the first lecture. Students who do not meet are expected to have withdrawn from the the course unless they have notified the lecturer.

Students must complete all written assignments and peer critiques, and attend 80% of class meetings.

Access to teaching

Assignments are valid for one year.


  • final home examination, counts 50 % of final grade.
  • homework assignments (written assignments, oral presentations), counts 20 % of final grade
  • peer critiques, counts 20 % of final grade
  • class discussion, counts 10 % of final grade

The final home examination will be the completed manuscript developed throughout the course (3000-4000 words, plus tables, figures, appendices, and required data analysis).

For access to exam you must have:

  • completed all written assignments and peer critiques
  • attended 80% of class meetings

Examination support material

Students may use any aids they require.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Students who can document a valid reason for absence from the regular examination are offered a postponed examination at the beginning of the next semester.

Re-scheduled examinations are not offered to students who withdraw during, or did not pass the original examination.

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

It will also be counted as one of the three attempts to sit the exam for this course, if you sit the exam for one of the following courses:

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






Every autumn

Canceled autumn 2018


Every autumn

Canceled autumn 2018

Teaching language