COOL CLASSES: “Introduction to Health Statistics”

The Health Studies Program offers this introduction to statistical reasoning and application specifically for students interested in the health professions.

Class Name: “Introduction to Health Statistics”

Taught by: Visiting Assistant Professor of Mathematics and Statistics Ning Xu


Here’s what Xu had to say about her class:

“Health Statistics” is a course tailored for students who are interested in pursuing a career in the health professions. In this class students learn to use tools to deal with various types of data that arise most frequently in the medical and biological fields. By the end of the course students will have experienced the whole process of conducting biomedical/public health research with a quantitative approach, from formulating a meaningful question, carefully designing a study that answers precisely the question, to performing statistical analysis with a computer software to reach the conclusion. With the increasing computation power of computers, and the ability of statistical softwares to perform any task on demand, I hope students will learn the reasoning and logic behind each procedure, and give computers the appropriate command.

My research is in the field of biostatistics. I work closely with physicians, psychologists, and epidemiologists—some of which my students are most likely to become in the future. My experience has shown me that data is playing a growing part in the health professions, and that health professionals need to have a basic understanding of statistics to stay at the forefront of knowledge discovery. Although I teach “regular” statistics courses as well, I feel it’s important to design a course that cover methods that would be most useful to students specifically interested in health studies.

Explore other courses the Health Studies Program is offering this semester. 

Photo: (cc) Oliver Bieh-Zimmert/Flickr

Cool Classes is a series that highlights interesting, unusual, and unique courses that enrich the Haverford experience.