An 'electronic' extramural course in epidemiology and medical statistics.
This article describes an extramural university course in epidemiology and medical statistics taught using a computer conferencing system, microcomputers and data communications. Computer conferencing was shown to be a powerful, yet quite easily mastered, vehicle for distance education. It allows health personnel unable to attend regular classes due to geographical or time constraints, to take part in an interactive learning environment at low cost. This overcomes part of the intellectual and social isolation associated with traditional correspondence courses. Teaching of epidemiology and medical statistics is well suited to computer conferencing, even if the asynchronicity of the medium makes discussion of the most complex statistical concepts a little cumbersome. Computer conferencing may also prove to be a useful tool for teaching other medical and health related subjects.
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