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330.669.89 Epidemiology of Major Mental Disorders

Mental Health
Summer Inst. term
2 credits
Academic Year:
2019 - 2020
Tue 05/28/2019 - Fri 06/14/2019
Auditors Allowed:
Yes, with instructor consent
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
William Eaton
Course Instructor s:
Frequency Schedule:
One Year Only

330.617.60 or 330.617.81 or a clinical background in psychiatry, psychology, or social work, or equivalent introductory background in epidemiology. 340.601.01 or 340.601.11 or 340.601.93 or 340.601.94 or 340.751.01 or another prior or concurrent course in epidemiology approved by the instructor. This course is a subset of Psychiatric Epidemiology (330.603), and students who have taken 330.603 are restricted from taking this class. Undergraduates not admitted.


Presents an overview of the epidemiology of anxiety and mood disorders, schizophrenia and associated syndromes, affective psychosis including bipolar disorder, and dementia and related syndromes. Prepares students who have basic knowledge of the clinical features of the syndromes, but touches briefly on issues of assessment in the context of epidemiology. It includes the fundamentals of descriptive epidemiology for each syndrome (prevalence, incidence, natural history); consequences of the syndromes for impairment, disability, and general health; and an assessment of risk factors for the syndromes, including a discussion of the genetic epidemiology of the syndromes. Examines the special conceptual challenges for the field of epidemiology which are presented by the mental disorders.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Define methodological and conceptual issues that are especially important for psychiatric epidemiology as distinct from other substantive areas of epidemiology
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of the descriptive epidemiology of five major categories of mental disorders—anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and dementia; identify gaps in literature; and be able to synthesize diverse research literature on these disorders.
  3. Discuss, analyze and present to others the most important genetic and environmental risk factors for the five major categories of major mental disorders
  4. Describe gaps in knowledge, and future needs and trends in the field of psychiatric epidemiology
Methods of Assessment:

Grades will be based on class participation (40%) and a “take home” final exam (60%).
Class Participation
Half of the class participation grade will be based on participation in the two scheduled live talks (see the Schedule), and the other half on providing one short answer question and answering one short answer question from another student for each of the live talks.
"Take Home" Final Exam
The “take home” final exam will consist of completing three 1-2 page essays selected from 8 essay questions that will be due at 11:59 PM on one week after the last day of the course. See the Schedule for specific dates.
One or two major readings are assigned for each lecture and should be completed prior to viewing that lecture. Students are expected to read one or more other articles for each day, chosen from a list provided. 

Enrollment Restriction:

Students who have taken 330.603 are restricted from taking this class. No Undergrads.

Instructor Consent:

No consent required

Special Comments:

Response to questions from both live talks are due June 14; final essay exam is due on June 21, 2019