Thesis or First Author Manuscript

All MS in Epidemiology students are required to complete a Thesis or First-Author Manuscript. The goal of the Thesis/Manuscript is for students to synthesize, integrate and apply the skills and competencies they have acquired to a public health epidemiological problem. The topic of the project will depend on the student’s area of interest.

The Thesis aims to advance or create new knowledge to an existing body of research. The student develops a research question and a hypothesis based on previous research on the topic. The student gathers data (either through primary or secondary data collection) and analyzes the data, usually with statistical analysis software, such as SAS or SPSS. The findings are then discussed as to whether or not they support the hypothesis. The study should be designed so that the results of the analysis are generalizable to a larger population, rather than the sample used in the student’s data analysis.

The First Author Manuscript is a similar research pursuit, and must be written in publishable format for a selected scholarly journal appropriate for their topic. The format of the paper is based on the formatting guidelines for submission as outlined by the selected journal.

Please read the Thesis/First Author Manuscript Guide on Blackboard for all details and instructions.

The Thesis/Manuscript must be completed under the direction of an ISMMS Faculty Advisor. If a student is working closely with an offsite mentor, this mentor may serve as a co-advisor/second reader alongside an ISMMS Faculty Advisor.

Once an ISMMS Faculty Advisor has been determined, the student must submit the Statement of Support with an approved outline of the project to Academic Program Office.

This Statement of Support must be submitted prior to initiating any research or project to ensure relevancy to epidemiology.

The Thesis/Manuscript requires:

  • One written Thesis/Manuscript formatted according to guidelines outlined in the Guide

  • Two Oral Presentations

    • Public Health Research Day Poster Session in the Spring II term before graduation

    • 10-minute Oral Presentation to summarizing their project to the ISMMS Faculty Advisor and Second Reader

  • Forms documenting the experience

    • Statement of Support – submitted before beginning work

    • Evaluation – submitted after the Oral Presentation

    • Deposit Form - submitted after the Oral Presentation

    • Other documentation as detailed in the Guide

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