UW School of Dentistry


Courses in Clinical Dental Research Methods


Time: 8:00–9:30 MWF • Faculty: Spiekerman

This is equivalent to the introductory course taught for graduate students throughout the health sciences. Topics covered include descriptive statistics, elementary probability, comparison of two-sample means and proportions, simple linear regression and correlation. Parametric and non-parametric methods are discussed. More advanced methods (multiple regression, analysis of variance, logistic regression) are briefly described but not covered in detail. Applications and examples in dentistry are stressed throughout.

Clinical Epidemiology & Study Design in Dentistry

Time: 8:00–9:30 TTh • Faculty: Hujoel

The main goal of this course is to provide an overview of the scientific principles in clinical research. In the first part of the course, principles underlying all research designs are introduced. Topics covered include biological plausibility, the importance of comparison and temporality in establishing causality, data torturing, the formulation of a research question, refutation, placebo effects, and scientific conflicts of interest. In the second part of this course, three specific research designs are introduced: the case-control design, the cohort design, and the randomized controlled trial.

Computing Applications & Data Analysis

Time: 10:00–12:00 TTh • Faculty: Kaiyala

In this course, students learn how to use a variety of computer software packages for research applications. Instruction is given in e-mail, web resources, design of web pages, PowerPoint presentations, data analysis using Excel and SPSS, sample size calculations, and other topics. Practical aspects of data analysis are discussed, and students receive hands-on experience in analyzing data sets from oral health research studies. The course is designed to reinforce the theoretical principles covered in other Summer Institute courses such as “Biostatistics” and “Fundamentals of Observational Studies and Clinical Trials.” Classes are held in a computer lab where students have access to PCs.

Behavior and Measurement in Dental Research

Time: 10:00–11:30 MWF • Faculty: Heaton, Coldwell, Coolidge, Cunha-Cruz, Grembowski, McKinney, Mancl, Milgrom, Ramsay, Seminario

The University of Washington has an unusually large number of behavioral scientists engaged in research in dentistry. This course is designed to introduce participants to some of the most commonly used methods and study designs in behavioral dental research and measurement issues in behavioral and observational studies. Applications to studies of dental fear, pain, autism in dentistry, neurosensory assessment, dental services utilization, outcomes of major dental procedures, orthodontic treatment, and pediatric oral health are included.

Fundamentals of Observational Studies and Clinical Trials

Time: 2:00–4:00 W • Faculty: McKinney, DeRouen, Chi, Cunha-Cruz

Fundamentals of designing observational studies and randomized clinical trials will be discussed. Topics on observational studies will include how to design cross-sectional, case control, cohort and community-based participatory studies. Topics on randomized clinical trials to be addressed include: what constitutes a clinical trial; reasons why clinical trials are used; characteristics of good trials; ethical issues; special topics in clinical trials including recruitment, compliance, and limitations of results.

Molecular Biology & Oral Health Applications

Time: 1:30–2:20 TTh, Room RR-134, Health Sciences Building • Faculty: Presland, Roberts

This course is designed as an introduction to molecular biology and recombinant DNA techniques, and its applications. It will discuss both basic concepts of molecular biology such as nucleic acid structure and function, RNA and protein synthesis, and applications that are relevant to oral health and dentistry as well as biological sciences in general. This course should provide a broad understanding of molecular biology and genetics, and how these disciplines are revolutionizing all aspects of biology and health care.

Seminar on Grantsmanship

Time: 2:00–4:00 MW • Faculty: McKinney, Dickstein

Introduction to the grant review process; types of grants; criteria used in evaluating grants; elements of strong grant applications; human subjects and other ethical issues. Participants will be divided into teams and go through the process of developing an interdisciplinary grant proposal.