INTHE4007 – Research Methodology

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The research methodology course is taught over two semesters, with a final exam in the spring semester. Part one of the course that is taught during autumn is called Project planning. Part one provides an introduction to the process of developing a research project, focusing on how to move from an idea to aims and objectives, and identifying the appropriate methods and data collection

Part one does not go in-depth into qualitative or quantitative methods or research ethics, but will discuss some key issues to cover when developing research protocols for qualitative and quantitative research projects, and the main ethical considerations that should be included in the research protocol. The course will focus on practical issues concerning the development of the research protocol, and ample time will be set aside for students to discuss potential research ideas, and develop and receive feedback about their master’s projects.

Part two, which is taught in the spring semester, consists of a series of lectures and workshops giving you a more thorough and practical knowledge of methods applied in health research. The course includes lectures about how to choose an appropriate research method, how to define sample size, and practical exercises in developing questionnaires, interview guides, conducting interviews and making observations.

Learning outcome


  • Project Planning(autumn):

You will learn the main steps of the research process, the main elements of a research protocol and the main methodological, and ethical considerations that should be made when developing a research protocol.

  • Quantitative Methods (spring):

You will get knowledge of different types of study design and choice of statistical tests. There will be an introduction to bias in epidemiological studies. You will learn how to Draw directed Acyclic Graphs (DAGs).

  • Qualitative Methods(spring):

You will learn about qualitative research design, and get practical experience with qualitative research methodologies


  • Project Planning(autumn):

You will learn how to develop a research idea, how to formulate research objectives, identify the appropriate study design, and how to move from a research idea to a finalized research protocol.

  • Quantitative Methods(spring):

You will learn how to define precise research questions. Important data collection issues will be addressed and challenges in the specific projects will be discussed. You will get assistance in calculation of appropriate sample size in your own study and also learn how to evaluate the methodology in real epidemiological studies

  • Qualitative Methods(spring):

You will develop your research questions, conceptual framework, methodological - and validity strategies, and a draft of interview guides.

General competence

  • Project planning(autumn):

You will attain familiarity with the research process, and to assess the feasibility of the developed project.

  • Quantitative Methods(spring):

You will attain an understanding of basic principles in the field of epidemiology and statistics. You will also practice how to use this knowledge in your project planning, and after completion of the course you will be better equipped to implement your own master project.

  • Qualitative Methods(spring):

You will attain an understanding of how qualitative methods can be used in your planned Master's Thesis. You will be taught how to choose an appropriate research methodology for your individual research project and how to plan for field work and data collection.


Compulsory lectures and workshops.


Home examination


The Board at the University of Oslo has decided to introduce detailed guidelines for all examinations, which take place at the University. The description of the grading should be clear and transparent. This is done to ensure alignment between learning outcomes, assignments, and grading. The Faculty of Medicine has developed a web page with information regarding exams and the grading procedures (norwegian version).

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Language of examination

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

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a pass/fail scale. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.

Facts about this course






Covers two semesters, starting every autumn


Every spring

Teaching language