This course is discontinued

HMM4104 – Research Design and Qualitative Methods

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

Choose semester

Course content

The course will prepare the students in writing their thesis. Shortly the course will address basic concepts and methods in science, with particular emphasis on the study of health economics, policy and health systems. A substantial part of the course will be assigned at how to write a thesis.
Specific subjects
• What is science and the identification and formulation of research questions
• Quantitative research design and methods, included
- Basic concepts and approach
- Use of register data
- Epidemiological research
- Survey methods
- Fallacies, validity and reliability
• Qualitative research and methods, included
- Various methods
- Reliability and validity
- Adequate data for the specific questions
• Similarity between quantitative and qualitative methods
- The critique of quantitative and qualitative research
• Research ethics, included
- The role of regional ethical committees
- Use of references
- Informed consent

Learning outcome

The course will qualify the students to perform empirical and theoretical studies on the health care. In particular, the course will
• enable students to conduct independent scientific investigations of a broad spectrum of issues linked to health care, based on a specter of research methods
• enable students to assess existing research in a critical and independent manner.
• choose a method that will be suited for the formulated research question
• develop students’ ability to discuss a defined methodological issue in a systematic manner
• enable student to understand and deal with ethical issues in science and specially in health care research
• enable students to write a scientific report


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Formal prerequisite knowledge



Lectures and seminars with required assignments.


Written exam, 4 hours. A qualification test has to be passed before the exam.

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

All written exams and term papers at the master's programme in Health Economics, Policy and Management have to be conducted 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.

For the required qualification test, students are awarded either a passing or failing grade. The pass/fail scale is applied as an independent scale with only two possible results.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Students that fail the qualification test may, re-take it within one week.

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.

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




Replaced by HMM4104A and HMM4104B


Every spring

Teaching language