UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for
Research and Training in Tropical Diseases
Programme Grant to Develop a Masters Course in
Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics in Africa
TDR invites universities and teaching institutions in Africa to apply
for a Programme Grant to develop a Master of Science (MSc) degree
course on clinical epidemiology and biostatistics applied to tropical
TDR supports strategic, applied and operational research and capacity
building programmes in the discovery and development of clinical and
non-clinical interventions for the control of target tropical diseases:
malaria, leishmaniasis, schistosomiasis, onchocerciasis and lymphatic
filariasis, African and American trypanosomiasis, and leprosy. The
development of scientifically sound protocols, rigorous implementation
of projects in the field and adequate data analysis and reporting are
essential requirements for a proper evaluation of new pharmaceutical
products and control interventions.
The objective of the Programme Grant is to strengthen or promote the
development of a MSc programme on epidemiology, clinical investigation
and biostatistics which is focused on infectious and parasitic diseases
and which offers training to African health professionals working in
academic or public health institutions. The ultimate goal is to
establish an academic training capacity of excellence focused on the
public health problems of Africa.
The course should provide training in the design, implementation,
monitoring and evaluation of new individual- and population-based
control measures directed to tropical diseases. It is expected to last
one academic year and comprise classes, practical activities and a
dissertation covering, but not restricted to, the following areas:
* Epidemiology- basic epidemiology methods; health indicators; study
design; measurements; surveillance systems; use of epidemiology in
primary health care units, hospitals and public health systems.
* Biostatistics - basic statistics concepts; statistics applied to
different epidemiological study designs; description and analysis
of epidemiological data.
* Computing - training in common data management and statistical
* Clinical investigation - development of protocols for the
evaluation of pharmaceutical products under good clinical practice
and protocols to evaluate new diagnostic methods.
The programme can be developed in an individual institution or on a
partnership basis with other African institutions, and could involve
collaborators from schools elsewhere with international prestige.
The Grant would cover an initial period of three years and be of not
more than US$50 000 per year. Support is intended to cover the costs of
recruiting academic staff, updating laboratory or computing facilities,
preparing teaching material, international travel for consultants and
subscription to relevant scientific journals. The course must be
operational after the first year of funding. At the end of the grant
period, the MSc programme is expected to continue without TDR support.
Applicants for TDR Research Training Grants (RTGs) at MSc level will be
recommended to attend the course. RTGs cover: travel to and from the
university at the beginning and end of the course; academic tuition as
established by the teaching institution; living expenses; a laptop
computer; recommended books; and small funds towards completion of the
dissertation. It is expected that a maximum of five RTGs a year will be
approved for the newly established course.
Universities, medical schools, health science schools and academic
institutions in Africa currently offering MSc courses, preferably in
epidemiology or related disciplines.
Applications should be submitted with the following documentation:
1. A letter from the authority responsible for approving academic
programmes indicating their interest in developing such a course.
2. A brief institution profile which includes structure, courses
available, degrees offered, staff, grants received.
3. Details of the proposed MSc programme.
4. Available facilities and capabilities related to the proposed
course (personnel, infrastructure, laboratories, field station,
funded research projects, library).
5. Curriculum vitae of staff involved (or post descriptions of staff
to be recruited).
6. Plan for capacity building (staff development, recruitment,
All applications MUST be received by 1 April 1998 at the following
Dr. Farrokh Modabber, Coordinator
Research Capability Strengthening
Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR)
World Health Organization,
1211 Geneva 27, Switzerland
Telephone: (41-22)791-3879/ 4727
e-mail: modabber at who.ch
Telegram: UNISANTE-GENEVA Telex: 415416 OMS
JB - TDR/TDM - 23Jan98