The number of primary studies evaluating prognostic factors and models is rising per day. Alike for therapies and diagnostic tests, critically summarizing and analyzing the evidence form prognosis studies in a systematic review and meta analysis is beneficial for health care professionals seeking the best evidence.
Reviews of prognosis studies are much more challenging because of more variation in questions & designs, specific sources of bias & variation, and more complex statistical meta-analytical models. Several advances regarding the design, critical appraisal and statistical analysis in systematic reviews of prognosis studies, have recently been made. In this online medical course for researchers we discuss and practice how to define your review questions, how to search the literature, how to critically assess the methodological quality of primary prognosis studies, and which statistical methods to use for their synthesis. The course consists of plenary presentations, small-group discussions, and computer exercises.
By the end of the course, you’ll should be able to:
• Explain the rationale for performing a systematic review of prognostic studies
• List the key steps of a systematic review of prognostic studies
• Formulate a focused review question addressing a prognostic problem
• Systematically search the literature
• Critically appraise the evidence from primary prognostic studies
• Formulate the difficulties of meta-analysis of prognostic research
• Meta-analyses of performance of prognostic models
• Meta-analyses of the added value of specific prognostic factors
This course includes an exam. The exams are, by default, online using online proctoring. If you wish to take the exam on-site in Utrecht, the Netherlands, this is possible as well.
Exam edition November 2023
The exam will take place on November 24th, 2023 from 14:15 – 16:15 CET. The re-examination will take place on January 12th, 2024 from 14:15 – 16:15 CET. Note: these times might be subject to change. The exact time and place will be announced as soon as possible in the learning environment and any changes announced there will overrule the information here.
The exam is not compulsory. However, if you want to receive the Course Certificate and the credits, it is obligatory to take the exam. You are allowed to redo the exam once.
It might be that, due to a force majeure situation, you cannot be present during the first exam moment.
• MSc Epidemiology Postgraduate students must then, preferably prior to the first exam option, ask the academic counsellor for permission to be absent. Please note that the academic counsellor can ask for some form of proof of your absence (e.g. in case of illness) to establish if you are applicable for authorized absence. Jaco de Fockert-Koefoed, MSc is the academic counsellor you need to turn to through email@example.com.
• All other participants should contact the MSc Epidemiology Office instead, through MSc-Epidemiology@umcutrecht.nl.
In short, as of now, it is no longer possible to skip the first exam option and -automatically- enroll in the second (re-sit) exam. Unauthorized absence during the first exam period results in no longer being able to finish the course that college year.
To enroll in this course, you need:
• A BSc or MSc degree in biomedical sciences, pharmaceutical sciences, medicine or veterinary medicine, or a comparable degree
• Access to the program R
• We strongly recommend that you take part in our online course Prognostic Research, prior to enrolling in this course
• Sufficient proficiency in English reading and writing