Applied Economic Modeling for the Veterinary Sciences
Economic modeling underpins decision-making in the entire field of animal health economics, so a good understanding of the issues and tools involved is vital. The aim of this hands-on course is to enable you to become familiar with using the relevant tools so that you can become more actively involved in economic decision-making, particularly with regard to disease control.
Many economic tools have been developed and are currently being applied to support decisions concerning animal health. These include basic methods such as partial budgeting, cost-benefit analysis and decision analysis, but also more advanced methodologies such as linear programming, the Markov chain and Monte Carlo simulation. You will learn about all of these, together with how to detail the critical steps in a systems analysis and choose appropriate modeling types and techniques.
By gaining greater knowledge of economic concepts and theory during this course, you will be able to contribute in an informed manner to economic decision-making discussions, policy development and implementation.
Applied Economic Modeling for the Veterinary Sciences is one of the online medical courses that is part of MSc Epidemiology Postgraduate Online; the online MSc program in Epidemiology offered by Utrecht University, University Medical Center Utrecht, MSc Epidemiology and Elevate Health.
By the end of the course, you should be able to:
- Analyze economic problems using basic methods such as partial budgeting, cost-benefit analysis and decision analysis
- Detail the critical steps in system analysis and choose appropriate modeling types and techniques
- Describe the use of more advanced methodologies such as linear programming, Markov chains and Monte Carlo simulations
- Describe the uses of social cost-benefit analysis and multi-criteria analysis
- Discuss the importance of animal health economics in decision-making, implementation and evaluation of animal health programs, and in policy development and implementation processes.
The whole course will take place online. The following learning methods will be used:
- Web lectures
- Online discussions
- Articles, e-books and papers
- Multiple-choice questions
- How to analyze economic problems using basic methods such as partial budgeting, cost-benefit analysis and decision analysis
- How to detail the critical steps in a systems analysis and choose appropriate modeling types and techniques
- The use of more advanced methodologies such as linear programming, the Markov chain and Monte Carlo simulation
- The social cost-benefit and multi-criteria analyses
- The importance of animal health economics in decision-making, implementation and evaluation of animal health programs, and policy development and implementation processes
Please note that you are required to hand in assignments during some of the learning units in this course:
Sunday before start date - introduce yourself
Sunday – complete Learning Unit 1 and 2
Sunday – complete Learning Unit 3 and 4
Sunday – complete collaboration activity Conjoint Analysis
Sunday – complete Learning Unit 5 and 6
Sunday – complete Learning Unit 7 and 8
Sunday – submit assignment 'Present and discuss a mastitis paper'
Sunday – submit assignment 'Present and economic approach for a disease problem'
Sunday – complete Learning Unit 9 and 10
Sunday – provide peer feedback on assigment 'Present and discuss a mastitis paper'
Sunday – complete Learning Unit 11 and 12
Approximately 3 weeks after course closure - submit final assignment. The exact deadline will be determined at a later stage.
To successfully complete this course, you need to participate actively in the discussion forums and complete the learning unit assignments, including:
- A proposal for a decision problem related to animal health.
As this is a university course, it is covered by academic accreditation. Upon successful completion of this course, you will receive a recognized certificate from Utrecht University, the UMC Utrecht and Wageningen University.
To enrol to this course, you need:
- A BSc or MSc, or a similar level of academic ability
- A basic understanding of veterinary epidemiology, statistical and mathematical applications*.
- Basic MS Excel skills
- Sufficient proficiency in English reading and writing
* You require some understanding of economics (at least in broad terms) from your previous education or professional experience. Terminology such as fixed and variable costs, supply and demand, depreciation and interest should be familiar.
You can gain the knowledge required for this course by following the course Economic Principles and Concepts in the Veterinary Sciences
Basic economic and microeconomic information is also available via Wikipedia.org and other internet sources, such as the following:
You will need to be able to do some basic calculations with the MS Excel functions. If you lack MS Excel skills,use the Excel ‘help’ function or do an online tutorial here: http://office.microsoft.com/en-gb/training/get-to-know-excel-enter-formulas-RZ006107930.aspx
As this is an online course, you do need access to an internet connection in order to be able to follow lectures, complete assignments and communicate with fellow participants.
“I have learnt how to apply economic modeling methods and I’m currently using them in my research work.” Walter Okello
“I would recommend this course to anyone who is actively involved in animal production systems and to people who are involved with decisions about animal health at a governmental level.” Gordon Adam