Course: Reproductive and Perinatal Epidemiology

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Course Description

This course focuses on current research, controversial issues, and methodological problems in the epidemiology of reproductive and perinatal health. Lectures and analyses of research papers present reproductive health issues such as conception and infertility, contraception and hormone supplementation, and reproductive health cancers as well as perinatal issues such as complications of pregnancy, infections in pregnancy, maternal mortality, adverse pregnancy outcomes, and birth defects.

Course Objectives

  • To review the epidemiology of female and male reproduction, including contraception, reproductive associated neoplasias and STDs, and the epidemiology of pregnancy and perinatal outcomes.
  • To provide information on the sociodemographic, behavioral, and biologic risk factors for adverse outcomes, to review the biologic mechanisms for observed epidemiologic associations.
  • To apply epidemiologic findings to clinical and public health concerns in developed and developing countries.
  • To critically review scientific literature in the field of reproductive and perinatal epidemiology.


There is no required textbook for this course.

A l ist of required readings is assigned to accompany each lecture.

Course Requirements

Midterm Exam: The midterm exam focuses on the material on reproductive health covered in the first half of the term.  The midterm contributes 30% of the final grade.

Final Exam: The final exam is cumulative, and may include the following formats: true/false, matching, short answer, and essay. The exam contributes 50% to the final grade.

Class Group Discussion: Discussion and presentation sessions begin with the second meeting of the course and will be given during the final 30 minutes of the session. The class is divided into fixed discussion groups of 4-5 students per group. Groups are given 15 minutes to discuss 2 to 3 questions that relate to that day's lecture topic and/or assigned readings. Discussion questions are distributed before class. Each group must briefly summarize their group's discussion of the assigned issues to the class and lead a class discussion of these issues (not more than 5 minutes per group presentation). The presentations and class discussions contribute 20% to the final grade.