Epidemics - the Dynamics of Infectious Diseases

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10/10 stars
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Epidemics - the Dynamics of Infectious Diseases

Course Details

Cost

FREE

Upcoming Schedule

  • TBA

Course Provider

Coursera online courses
Coursera's online classes are designed to help students achieve mastery over course material. Some of the best professors in the world - like neurobiology professor and author Peggy Mason from the University of Chicago, and computer science professor and Folding@Home director Vijay Pande - will supplement your knowledge through video lectures. They will also provide challenging assessments, interactive exercises during each lesson, and the opportunity to use a mobile app to keep up with yo...
Coursera's online classes are designed to help students achieve mastery over course material. Some of the best professors in the world - like neurobiology professor and author Peggy Mason from the University of Chicago, and computer science professor and Folding@Home director Vijay Pande - will supplement your knowledge through video lectures. They will also provide challenging assessments, interactive exercises during each lesson, and the opportunity to use a mobile app to keep up with your coursework. Coursera also partners with the US State Department to create “learning hubs” around the world. Students can get internet access, take courses, and participate in weekly in-person study groups to make learning even more collaborative. Begin your journey into the mysteries of the human brain by taking courses in neuroscience. Learn how to navigate the data infrastructures that multinational corporations use when you discover the world of data analysis. Follow one of Coursera’s “Skill Tracks”. Or try any one of its more than 560 available courses to help you achieve your academic and professional goals.

Provider Subject Specialization
Humanities
Sciences & Technology
4721 reviews

Course Description

Not so long ago, it was almost guaranteed that you would die of an infectious disease. In fact, had you been born just 150 years ago, your chances of dying of an infectious disease before you've reached the tender age of 5 would have been extremely high. Since then, science has come a long way in understanding infectious diseases - what they are, how they spread, and how they can be prevented. But diseases like HIV/AIDS, Malaria, Tuberculosis, or the flu are still major killers worldwide, and novel emerging diseases are a constant threat to public health. In addition, the bugs are evolving. Antibiotics, our most potent weapon against bacterial infections, are losing their power because the bacteria are becoming resistant. In this course, we'll explore the major themes of infectious diseases dynamics. After we’ve covered the basics, we'll be looking at the dynamics of the flu, and why we're worried about flu pandemics. We'll b... Not so long ago, it was almost guaranteed that you would die of an infectious disease. In fact, had you been born just 150 years ago, your chances of dying of an infectious disease before you've reached the tender age of 5 would have been extremely high. Since then, science has come a long way in understanding infectious diseases - what they are, how they spread, and how they can be prevented. But diseases like HIV/AIDS, Malaria, Tuberculosis, or the flu are still major killers worldwide, and novel emerging diseases are a constant threat to public health. In addition, the bugs are evolving. Antibiotics, our most potent weapon against bacterial infections, are losing their power because the bacteria are becoming resistant. In this course, we'll explore the major themes of infectious diseases dynamics. After we’ve covered the basics, we'll be looking at the dynamics of the flu, and why we're worried about flu pandemics. We'll be looking at the dynamics of childhood diseases such as measles and whooping cough, which were once considered almost eradicated, but are now making a comeback. We'll explore Malaria, and use it as a case study of the evolution of drug resistance. We'll even be looking at social networks - how diseases can spread from you to your friends to your friends' friends, and so on. And of course we’ll be talking about vaccination too. We’ll also be talking about how mobile phones, social media and crowdsourcing are revolutionizing disease surveillance, giving rise to a new field of digital epidemiology. And yes, we will be talking about Zombies - not human zombies, but zombie ants whose brains are hijacked by an infectious fungus. We're looking forward to having you join us for an exciting course!
Reviews 10/10 stars
331 Reviews for Epidemics - the Dynamics of Infectious Diseases

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Rankings are based on a provider's overall CourseTalk score, which takes into account both average rating and number of ratings. Stars round to the nearest half.

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10/10 starsCompleted
3 years, 11 months ago
I really enjoyed this course. The examples used, the variety of material, and the cartoons were great and I went a away with a new interest and enthusiasm for the subject.
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10/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 2 months ago
Content was great. It was easy, simple and interesting. The videos were short so my attention never got diverted. Absolutely loved the way the instructors taught and explained. Each had their own style and enthusiasm. And finally thanks to Coursera.org for providing the content worldwide
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Miranda Moses profile image
Miranda Moses profile image
10/10 starsCompleted
  • 9 reviews
  • 3 completed
4 years, 4 months ago
This course is the one that takes you through the entire chain of diseases and their causes, symptoms, prevention etc. The information provided is clear and useful.
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10/10 starsCompleted
  • 2 reviews
  • 1 completed
4 years, 5 months ago
This course should be the standard for how engaging online courses should be done. Fascinating content, the lecturers do an excellent job of clearly explaining concepts. Highly recommended.
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10/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 10 months ago
Excellent course. I leant how an epidemic can spread, and some surprising events like the Amoi Gardens Building Complex in China, and the SARS epidemics. I greatly enjoyed the course. Thank you!
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8/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 10 months ago
Broad interesting picture about complex issues, with possibilities to go deeper with additional readings. The team succeed in the challenge of making such field easy to catch, with step by step progress.
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10/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 10 months ago
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Marg Goodlin profile image
Marg Goodlin profile image
10/10 starsCompleted
  • 1 review
  • 1 completed
4 years, 10 months ago
I expected to learn about epidemics, and I did. I loved the fact that I took the course during the arrival of Ebola to the U.S., and they added a video just to deal with information about that. I cannot think of anything to improve. It was a fabulous course, and I hated to see it end.
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Kirsten Frank profile image
Kirsten Frank profile image
10/10 starsCompleted
  • 1 review
  • 1 completed
4 years, 10 months ago
I expected to learn about the types of infectious disease. I expected to learn about the mathematics of disease spread in a population. This course covered the material that I expected and gave interesting examples to illustrate the material. I really like the Ask Us Anything videos.
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N Y profile image
N Y profile image
10/10 starsCompleted
  • 4 reviews
  • 4 completed
4 years, 10 months ago
Superb content, one of the few MOOCs I would definitely wish to repeat again in future years to learn more about what has changed in the field.
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10/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 10 months ago
I found that the course provided a good introduction to the varied aspects of epidemiology. The course met all of my expectations. I found that the reading assignments were sometimes difficult to download and think that this area could be improved in future course presentations. As I said above the instructors did an outstanding job with the lectures and I especially liked the team aspect of the presentation of the course material.
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10/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 10 months ago
The Course Content is excellent. I really didn't expect such good information, it was really helpful, easy to understand and well planned. It also covers many different topics about epidemics, microbiology, statistics, public health policies, even the social aspects of disease control. I really recommend this course to anyone interested in knowing the dynamics of diseases, even if you don't have previous experience with any of these topics. I am well impressed with the course, it was worth the time that I spent watching the videos, reading the material and participating in the forums.
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9/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 10 months ago
Expected to learn a lot of epidemiology and I did. I liked that the discussion forums were very active with students and instructors and they there was a very good Ask Us Anything video set every week. I didn't like the fact that the video lectures were the only reference material for the course. The course didn't go into the mathematics or derivation of the infection/transmission epidemic (SIR) model of the understanding of each component of the equation in a lot of dept. This was evident by confusion by many students and posts about this on the discussion board. The instructors did however provide additional reading material on this. It was very disappointing that there were no slides/PDFs/PPTs provided for this course. Please provide this as reference material in future versions of the course. Generally very good course overall and recommended.
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Maddie M profile image
Maddie M profile image
10/10 starsCompleted
  • 1 review
  • 1 completed
4 years, 10 months ago
I would highly recommend this course! A great into to epidemiology! The content was very interesting, the instructors were engaging, and the videos were animated just enough to help with the content without being distracting. There are no deadlines in this course except for the end date. This worked out poorly for me, since I am a procrastinator and completed most of the course in the last 2 weeks, thereby missing out on prime discussion time. However, if you are a sporatically busy person, this might be good for you!
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Kathie Bailey profile image
Kathie Bailey profile image
10/10 starsCompleted
  • 1 review
  • 1 completed
4 years, 10 months ago
This course is easily one of the best classes I have EVER taken. If I was still in college, it might even convince me to go into public health. At the time this course was being offered, ebola was raging in West Africa. While the course lectures discussed it some, ebola was kept it in a balanced context (i.e. it is an example, but it isn't the only one). Ebola and other current events were discussed in very lively conversations on the class discussion boards. Student participation in the discussion boards was strongly encouraged. Several other things made this class unique. First, the faculty took some of the best student questions every week and discussed them ina roundtable format in the Ask Us Anything forums. It was a wonderful supplement to the weekly lectures, and demonstrated that the faculty were really interested in and following student questions. Second, two games were offered. (Class enrollment was not required... This course is easily one of the best classes I have EVER taken. If I was still in college, it might even convince me to go into public health. At the time this course was being offered, ebola was raging in West Africa. While the course lectures discussed it some, ebola was kept it in a balanced context (i.e. it is an example, but it isn't the only one). Ebola and other current events were discussed in very lively conversations on the class discussion boards. Student participation in the discussion boards was strongly encouraged. Several other things made this class unique. First, the faculty took some of the best student questions every week and discussed them ina roundtable format in the Ask Us Anything forums. It was a wonderful supplement to the weekly lectures, and demonstrated that the faculty were really interested in and following student questions. Second, two games were offered. (Class enrollment was not required to play either of them.) Vax is a game that you play as a single user - making decisions about who to vaccinate and how to isolate and quarantine individuals when an infection breaks out. MOOCdemic is played on your mobile device with others worldwide. In MOOCdemic, you learn about disease spread and control. I probably learned as much about epidemics from these two games together as I learned from the lectures, quizzes, and discussion boards. I definitely recommend this class to anyone with an interest in public health. It is a fabulous class.
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Emeka Chris profile image
Emeka Chris profile image
10/10 starsCompleted
  • 1 review
  • 1 completed
4 years, 10 months ago
This course is a breaker,a record in my assets of knowledge,I finished school,and did epidemiology in my final,but I confess that this online course was an eye opener,I never believed to understand epidemiology like I did in this cousrse,far better that want I learnt in school.The instructors made me go wow,all professionals,lesson simple accurate timed and explanatory.the only dislike I have is inability to download some videos.
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Student

9/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 10 months ago
Y'all did a great job of presenting the information in your video's.
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9/10 starsTaking Now
4 years, 11 months ago
I expected to get a review of subject matter I learned in college many years ago. Instead I got up to date info on those things in the news, Ebola and EV-D68 and viruses in particular. The additional readings were particularly useful. The Moocdemic game did not excite me but then again I am an older student. On the other hand the VAX game was great. Both games are a good way to keep the interest of the younger student. As referenced above, the AUA segment each week was just the thing to answer the many questions posed on the discussion forum. I do not know how it happened but the forum was lively and very interactive. I have taken other MOOCs where the forums have been stilted, not at all fun. The only thing I might improve is to make the quizzes a bit more challenging. The quizzes did not always match the level of info presented in the lectures.
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Dianne Owens profile image
Dianne Owens profile image
8/10 starsCompleted
  • 30 reviews
  • 30 completed
5 years, 1 month ago
Having finished a MOOC on Vaccines earlier in 2013, I decided to enroll in this MOOC. This MOOC gave a great overview as to how diseases spread and react to stimuli. It also deals with how health professionals combat epidemics via a number of techniques. The videos make use of animations for teaching concepts. Giving each lecturer some time in front of the camera gave them some time away from the lab. The end of the week panel discussions based on forum questions offered us some further understanding of epidemiology.
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leonard mangini profile image
leonard mangini profile image
2/10 starsCompleted
  • 39 reviews
  • 37 completed
5 years, 4 months ago
Trivial course- barely high school level. Highly repetitive "content" You could watch an entire week's content in 20 minutes and get 100% on the quizzes from common knowledge rather than syllabus content
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Louis-Claude Canon profile image
Louis-Claude Canon profile image
9/10 starsCompleted
  • 7 reviews
  • 6 completed
5 years, 8 months ago
Although the pedagogical objectives are quite limited and the course is not demanding in terms of workload, the materials are certainly well-produced and the concepts are well presented. Each video is extremely clean and there are also "games" to visualize the concepts.
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10/10 starsCompleted
5 years, 9 months ago
This is a very good course which shows you how epidemics come about. In comparison to other courses this one was great and even had a game to show how epidemics work. I really enjoyed this course only thing negative is no one has given us information about certificates of completion and everyone is questioning it. Other then that there is nothing ad to say, I think everyone should take it and learn how this happens.
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Herbert Adams profile image
Herbert Adams profile image
1/10 starsCompleted
  • 1 review
  • 1 completed
5 years, 9 months ago
this subject is pretty easy as far as working as at your own pace.. after completion of the 8 week course ..I NEVER RECEIVED BY STATEMENT OF ACCOMPLISHMENT.. i talked to 3 different people complaining they gave me excuses that the holiday was around so i waited.. but they still starting up new courses!!! don't do it.. your going to do it all for nothing!!!
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Marcus Sellers profile image
Marcus Sellers profile image
8/10 starsCompleted
  • 1 review
  • 1 completed
5 years, 10 months ago
I have several years of graduate work in molecular genetics, microbiology and ecology as well as some Immunology. This is the first course like this I've taken, so n=1 is not a valid sample size. Likes: The information was solid, the papers and additional readings were extremely useful and using a multiple lecturer model where the experts from their own fields of expertise really helped convey the information. This course was excellent at presenting the basic underpinnings of epidemiology and the issues with disease control and health consequences of communicable diseases both emergent and established throughout the world faced by various institutions and governments. Dislikes: Mostly technical. One of the biggest issues was breaks in the videos. I don't know if it was a compiling issue, browser incompatibility issue or what, but it was really annoying and distracting to have the lecture stall or crash. I could play past the break, b... I have several years of graduate work in molecular genetics, microbiology and ecology as well as some Immunology. This is the first course like this I've taken, so n=1 is not a valid sample size. Likes: The information was solid, the papers and additional readings were extremely useful and using a multiple lecturer model where the experts from their own fields of expertise really helped convey the information. This course was excellent at presenting the basic underpinnings of epidemiology and the issues with disease control and health consequences of communicable diseases both emergent and established throughout the world faced by various institutions and governments. Dislikes: Mostly technical. One of the biggest issues was breaks in the videos. I don't know if it was a compiling issue, browser incompatibility issue or what, but it was really annoying and distracting to have the lecture stall or crash. I could play past the break, but I invariably lost information in the lecture. The frequency of the breaks was on average somewhere around 2 per lecture set (week) but as many as 4 and as few as one (Each lecture had one break, multiple lectures in a week had a break). Please work this out. Secondly, a couple of the quiz questions came from information not presented in either the lecture or the additional readings. As someone who has taken graduate courses, it was merely a matter of tracking down the information on the interwebs and my own reference library. Not everyone either has the capacity, time or experience to know how to find the information that is x degrees removed from the information presented in the lecture. Thirdly, be more explicit in the description exactly what the course requirements are and are not. I think I missed certification in this course because it was not clear that the two things needed were the weekly quizzes AND ten comments. The way it read, it was an either/or choice. Which leads to the fourth. The On-line commenting section was a nightmare in navigation and while I appreciate the numbers and differing skill levels of the people participating, there were an ordinate amount of trolls and newbs and I felt uncomfortable commenting. Lastly, any comments I could make were of the ibid variety, especially in the additional reading sections, so I didn't as I am no AOLer. I realize this is a function of the number of participants (monkeys with typewriters) vs. information, but it does cut down on my desire to comment. In conclusion, the information was solid, the lecturers were knowledgeable, the quizzes helpful but the video streaming needs work and the commenting section needs to be better designed so navigating it isn't a nightmare.
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10/10 starsTaking Now
5 years, 10 months ago
This course was amazing! I found the class to be informative and the lectures were entertaining. I would recommend this course to anyone as their first MOOC in the Sciences. Many thanks to Penn State, Dr. Marcel Salathé, and staff for sharing this class with the world.
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10/10 starsCompleted
5 years, 10 months ago
This is my second Mooc...I am thoroughly delighted with this course and highly recommend it to any and everyone interested in Infectious Diseases. I Loved the Video Lectures,The additional Reading I Downloaded Read and Shared. The quizzes were challenging andmade me really think. I enjoyed every aspect of this course overall!! Jennifer Carlson
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10/10 starsCompleted
5 years, 10 months ago
Wow! I don't use superlatives very often, but this course deserves several. The curriculum was well structured, and it was so very interesting. Feel we have gotten around most parts leaving me with a really good understanding (of the complexity) of this area. The speakers communicated effectively, not too many fancy words, nor making it too simple, and they used shorter illustrative examples. The videos were relatively short and they were accompanied by simple, nice and relevant graphs and pictures. Though I watched the videos alone, I ended several of them with a Wow! One thing was challenging though, the discussion forums. Ways too many people, way too much voice. Very impressive work! Thank you.
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Thomas Joehl profile image
Thomas Joehl profile image
10/10 starsCompleted
  • 1 review
  • 1 completed
5 years, 10 months ago
I am 72 years old and had no prior experience with the subject or any other life sciences subject, even Biology. It's a bit unfair for me to grade this course as it is my first coursera class. I enjoyed EVERYTHING about this course: knowledgeable instructors, short detail packed videos, interesting discussion forums, quizzes that allowed re-takes to encourage learning not just a grade. Hooray for all the team at Penn State. I am hooked on coursera.
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10/10 starsCompleted
5 years, 10 months ago
I am a student of Clinical Pharmacy & Molecular Pharmacology and I enjoyed the course very much as it is related to my subject. All course instructors are awesome in delivering useful information about Epidemics. The animations, using in the course is very useful and supportive with the course materials. If PDF version of lecture slides are given, that will be more better.
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10/10 starsCompleted
5 years, 10 months ago
I found this a very broad and accessible introduction. Professors covered a wide range of topics and strengthened the impact of presented theory with well-chosen, real world case studies. Great to have a class taught by so many different experts! I would recommend this highly to anyone interested in learning more about the ecology and evolution of infectious disease.
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