Academic Courses

Committee on Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS)

The Committee on Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS) is an independent academic unit based in the University's Biological Sciences Division (BSD). With support from CHeSS and the Institute for Translational Medicine, we advance multidisciplinary training in clinical and translational science at the University of Chicago and develop high-quality coursework for researchers and students committed to significantly impacting medical science and practice.

The CCTS supports the development of curriculum in clinical and translational science at the University. Courses are designed to provide undergraduates, graduate-level trainees, postdoctoral fellows, and junior faculty with state-of-the-art skills in the field. For more information, please contact Kelsey Bogue, CHeSS Associate Director of Training Programs & Communications, at kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu.

Current Areas of Concentration include:

  • Comparative Effectiveness Research
  • Translational Informatics
  • Health Services Research
  • Quality and Safety
  • Clinical Research
  • Community-Based Research
  • Global Health
  • Pharmacogenomics

View Past CCTS courses here.

Spring 2019 Courses

CCTS 21004 
Christian Traditions And Medicine In The Late Modern World

Instructors: John Yoon & Herbert Lin  
Time: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2:00-3:20 PM
Location: Billings Hospital M214 
What is the meaning of medicine in our contemporary world? How has it changed over time, and what are its normative conditions and challenges? What religious and spiritual resources might Christian traditions bring to bear on such questions? This course rests on the assumption that contemporary challenges in medicine stem from a moral pluralism reflecting the cultural conditions of late modernity, as well as from a growing inability to maintain clinical excellence in an increasingly complex and bureaucratic health care system. We will first examine this assumption and its sociological, historical, and theological significance. In parallel, we will engage guest speakers throughout the course who will help us comparatively explore several Christian responses to modernity and to diverse domains of medicine. Lastly, we will critically explore James Hunter’s constructive proposal of “faithful presence,” and what that might mean in the context of medicine. Our goal, ultimately, will be to reflect on the conditions and challenges of modern medicine and to appraise the historical and theological resources that the Christian traditions may offer.

PQ: Completed SOSC Sequence.

CCTS 21007/43007
Clinical and Health Services Research: Methods and Applications

Instructor: Gregory Ruhnke
Time: Mondays and Wednesdays, 5:30-6:50 PM
Location: Billings H300
This course will introduce the interdisciplinary field of health services research with a clinical focus. Through exposure to theoretical foundations, methodologies, and applications, students without significant investigative experience will learn about the design and conduct of research studies. Students will also learn where research studies fit within the stages of translational medicine, and how different types of studies build upon an inform the science conducted at each other stage of the translational medicine spectrum. Using a highly interactive approach, topics will allow students to gain experience in areas pertinent in health services research, including assessment of health status, survey research, large-database analyses, measurement issues (e.g. socioeconomic status), outcome selection/measurement, risk adjustment, and common statistical techniques.

Selected sessions will focus on the use of hospital information systems, research focused on high-risk populations such as the aging and elderly, ethical issues surrounding the conduct of clinical investigations, and the use of results for clinical care, quality assessment, and health policy. One session will be dedicated to the process of peer-reviewed journal article publication and critique of literature.

Please contact the instructor directly at gruhnke@bsd.uchicago.edu with any questions. 

CCTS 32411 
Mediation, Moderation, And Spillover Effects 

Instructor: Guanglei Hong
Time: Wednesdays from 1:30-4:20 PM, and Fridays from 1:30- 2:50 PM
Location: Rosenwald Hall 329 (Wednesdays), and Walker Museum 303 (Fridays)
This course is designed for graduate students and advanced undergraduate students from social sciences, statistics, public health science, public policy, and social services administration who will be or are currently involved in quantitative research. Questions about why a treatment works, for whom, under what conditions, and whether one individual’s treatment could affect other individuals’ outcomes are often key to the advancement of scientific knowledge. We will clarify the theoretical concepts of mediated effects, moderated effects, and spillover effects under the potential outcomes framework. The course introduces cutting-edge methodological approaches and contrasts them with conventional strategies including multiple regression, path analysis, and structural equation modeling. The course content is organized around application examples. The textbook “Causality in a Social World: Moderation, Mediation, and Spill-Over” (Hong, 2015) will be supplemented with other readings reflecting latest developments and controversies. Weekly labs will provide tutorials and hands-on experiences. All students are expected to contribute to the knowledge building in class through participation in presentations and discussions. Students are encouraged to form study groups, while the written assignments are to be finished and graded on an individual basis. 

PQ: Intermediate Statistics such as STAT 224/ PBHS 324, PP 31301, BUS 41100, or SOC 30005 in addition to Introduction to Causal Inference or their equivalent.

CCTS 38300
Health Economics And Public Policy

Instructor: David Meltzer
Time: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2:00-3:20 PM
Location: The Keller Center 1002 
This course analyzes the economics of health and medical care in the United States with particular attention to the role of government. The first part of the course examines the demand for health and medical and the structure and the consequences of public and private insurance. The second part of the course examines the supply of medical care, including professional training, specialization and compensation, hospital competition, and finance and the determinants and consequences of technological change in medicine. The course concludes with an examination of recent proposals and initiatives for health care reform.

CCTS 42001 
Global Health Sciences III: Topics in Global Health 

Instructors: Christopher Olopade & Olufunmilayo Olopade 
Time: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1:30- 2:50 PM
Location: TBA
This course will review the major factors that influence the health of individuals and communities worldwide and seek to gain a better understanding of the complexities of global health. Students will study both broad and disease-specific global health challenges (e.g., cancer, diabetes, and cardiopulmonary disease) and strategies for responding to them; key institutions and stakeholders; environmental impacts on health; ethical considerations in research and interventions; maternal and child health; health and human rights; and international legal frameworks within global health diplomacy. The course encompasses lectures, student presentations, and the preparation of a proposal addressing a significant global health problem with major impact.

PQ: To be eligible for this program, students should have completed at least one of the following Biology Fundamentals sequences by Winter 2019: 1) Epidemiology and Population Health; 2) Global Health Infectious Diseases.

CCTS 47007 
Methods In Health And Biomedical Informatics III 

Instructor: Samuel Volchenboum 
Time: Thursdays, 1:30-3:30 PM
Location: Billings Hospital H300
Most Health and Biomedical Informatics (HBMI) Graduate Programs around the country have independently come to the conclusion that the computational methods that informatics graduate students need to be familiar with is too broad and numerous to be addressed by a series of independent courses. Therefore, most programs have created a set of integrated courses that expose the students to a wide variety of informatics methods in short modules. Typically, these required methods series are organized as a series of required courses taken during the first year of graduate study. This course is the result of discussions by Health and Biomedical Informatics researchers and educators from the Chicago Biomedical Informatics Training (CBIT) initiative. This course is designed as the third course of a year-long sequence and is worth 100 units. Registration for the full year is expected.

PQ: CCTS 47005 during Fall 2018 and 47006 in Winter 2019. Location rotates between Northwestern's downtown campus, UIC, and UC.

Winter 2019 Courses

CCTS 20400/40400/BIOS 25327
Health Disparities in Breast Cancer

Instructors:  Eileen Dolan, Suzanne D. Conzen
Time: Monday and Wednesdays, 3:00-4:20 PM
Location: TBA
Across the globe, breast cancer is the most common women’s cancer. In the last two decades, there have been significant advances in breast cancer detection and treatment that have resulted in improved survival rates. Yet, not all populations have benefited equally from these improvements, and there continues to be a disproportionate burden of breast cancer felt by different populations. In the U.S., for example, white women have the highest incidence of breast cancer but African-American women have the highest breast cancer mortality overall. The socioeconomic, environmental, biological, and cultural factors that collectively contribute to these disparities are being identified with a growing emphasis on health disparities research efforts.  In this 10-week discussion-based course students will meet twice weekly and cover major aspects of breast cancer disparities.

PQ: BIOS 25108

CCTS 40500/CCTS 20500/BIOS 29208
Machine Learning & Advanced Analytics for Biomedicine

Instructor: Ishanu Chattopadhyay
Time: Mondays, 5:30-8:30 pm
Location: Billings H300
The age of ubiquitous data is rapidly transforming scientific research, and advanced analytics powered by sophisticated learning algorithms is uncovering new insights in complex open problems in biology and biomedicine. The goal of this course is to provide an introductory overview of the key concepts in machine learning, outlining the potential applications in biomedicine. Beginning from basic statistical concepts, we will discuss concepts and implementations of standard and state of the art classification and prediction algorithms, and go on to discuss more advanced topics in unsupervised learning, deep learning architectures, and stochastic time series analysis. We will also cover emerging ideas in data-driven causal inference, and demonstrate applications in uncovering etiological insights from large scale clinical databases of electronic health records, and publicly available sequence and omics datasets. The acquisition of hands-on skills will be emphasized over machine learning theory. On successfully completing the course, students will have acquired enough knowledge of the underlying machinery to intuit and implement solutions to non-trivial data science problems arising in biology and medicine.

PQ: Rudimentary knowledge of probability theory, and basic exposure to scripting languages such as python/R is required. This course does not qualify in the Biological Sciences major.

CCTS 43000
Introduction to Global Health

Instructors: Christine Babcock and Keegan Checkett
Time: Tuesdays Thursdays, 12:30-1:50 PM
Location: TBA
This course provides an overview of global health from the historical perspective to the current state of global health. The course features weekly guest lecturers with a broad range of expertise in the field: topics include the social and economic determinants of health, the economics of global health, global burden of disease, and globalization of health risks, as well as the importance of ethics, human rights, and diplomacy in promoting a healthier world. The course is designed for graduate-level students and senior undergraduates with an interest in global health work in resource-limited settings.

PQ: Open to advanced Undergraduates and Graduate Students. This course does not meet the requirements of the Biological Sciences Major.

CCTS 47002
Advanced Community Based Participatory Research Training Program 2

Instructors: Deborah Burnet and Doriane Miller
Time: TBA
Location: TBA
The goal of health-related research is to improve the lives of people in the community studied. In traditional research, the community is not actively involved in designing the projects. Community-based participatory research is a partnership approach to research that equitably involves community members, organizational representatives, and academic researchers in all aspects of the research process. The Advanced CBPR Training Program is designed to help meet the growing need and demand for educational resources that help build the knowledge and skills needed to develop and sustain effective CBPR partnerships. The Program consists of six sessions that are offered on various Fridays throughout the year.

Registrants who wish to receive 025 units of course credit must enroll through the University Registrar's office for CCTS 47001 in the fall and CCTS 47002 in the winter. Participants must also register online here whether or not they choose to take the course for credit. 

CCTS 47006
Methods in Health and Biomedical Informatics II

Instructor: Samuel Volchenboum
Time: Thursdays 1:30-3:30 PM
Location: Rotates between Northwestern and UIC campuses 
Most Health and Biomedical Informatics (HBMI) Graduate Programs around the country have independently come to the conclusion that the computational methods that informatics graduate students need to be familiar with is too broad and numerous to be addressed by a series of independent courses. Therefore, most programs have created a set of integrated courses that expose the students to a wide variety of informatics methods in short modules. Typically, these required methods series are organized as a series of required courses taken during the first year of graduate study. This course is the result of discussions by Health and Biomedical Informatics researchers and educators from the Chicago Biomedical Informatics Training (CBIT) initiative. This course is designed as the third course of a year-long sequence and is worth 100 units. Registration for the full year is expected.

Must have taken CCTS 47005 during Fall 2018. Course runs 01/11 - 03/08. Location rotates between Northwestern's downtown campus, UIC and UC.

Fall 2018 Courses

CCTS 40004
Advanced Clinical Pharmacology I

Instructor:  Mark Applebaum and Manish Sharma
Time: Thursdays, 2:00 PM- 3:20 pm
Location: TBA
This course provides an interactive introduction to fundamental principles of the practice of clinical pharmacology relevant to drug development and personalized therapeutics. Topics include: pharmacokinetics, drug metabolism, protein binding, absorption and renal and hepatic elimination, pharmacodynamics, introduction to modeling methods, evaluation of adverse events, and pre-clinical and clinical elements of drug development.

PQ: MEDC 30777, equivalent to Intro to Pharm., approval. Course starts 9/21.

CCTS 46001
Fundamentals of Quality Improvement and Patient Safety(QI & PS 101) 

Instructor: Laura Botwinick and Andrew Davis 
Time: Tuesdays, 5:00-6:20 pm
Location: Billings H300
Quality Improvement & Patient Safety The course was designed for medical faculty, fellows, nursing and pharmacy professionals, clinical administrators, and staff at University of Chicago Medicine with the support of the Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS) and the Center for Quality. The course provides an overview of concepts and methodologies for improving the quality and safety of care.  Participants will design quality improvement projects using skills learned in class.  In addition, UCMC leaders and experts from the Center for Quality and Operational Excellence will speak on key topics throughout the course. Enrollment is limited to 30 to allow robust group interaction.

Key objectives for the course include:

  • To become familiar with tools of improving quality of care and service delivery
  • To design an actual quality improvement project using skills learned in the class
  • To understand the factors impacting the delivery of safe and high quality care in health care organizations, such as teamwork, good communication, and organization culture
  • To  understand “Systems Thinking” and other key concepts like Human Factors and Reliability
  • To understand the key role of QI in today’s health care environment as a mechanism for improving organizational effectiveness and the patient experience

This course will run from October 9 through November 20, 2018 and is comprised of seven classes total. Faculty, staff, and students/trainees at the University of Chicago Medical Center are welcome to audit the course at no charge and should contact Kelsey Bogue at kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu to register. To earn 025 credits, please enroll in the course through my.uchicago.edu.

CCTS 47001
Advanced Community Based Participatory Research (CBPR) Training Program I

Instructor: Deborah Burnet and Doriane Miller
Time: Fridays, 12:00-1:00 pm
Location: TBA
The goal of health-related research is to improve the lives of people in the community studied. In traditional research, the community is not actively involved in designing the projects. Community-based participatory research is a partnership approach to research that equitably involves community members, organizational representatives, and academic researchers in all aspects of the research process. The Advanced CBPR Training Program is designed to help meet the growing need and demand for educational resources that help build the knowledge and skills needed to develop and sustain effective CBPR partnerships. 

Registrants who wish to receive 025 units of course credit must enroll through the University Registrar's office for CCTS 47001 in the fall and CCTS 47002 in the winter. Participants must also register online here whether or not they choose to take the course for credit. 

CCTS 47005
Methods in Health and Biomedical Informatics 

Instructors: David McClintock and Samuel Volchenboum 
Time: Thursdays, 1:30 pm- 3:30 pm 
Location: TBA
Most Health and Biomedical Informatics (HBMI) Graduate Programs around the country have independently come to the conclusion that the computational methods that informatics graduate students need to be familiar with is too broad and numerous to be addressed by a series of independent courses. Therefore, most programs have created a set of integrated courses that expose the students to a wide variety of informatics methods in short modules. Typically, these required methods series are organized as a series of required courses taken during the first year of graduate study. This course is the result of discussions by Health and Biomedical Informatics researchers and educators from the Chicago Biomedical Informatics Training (CBIT) initiative. This course is designed as the first course of a year-long sequence and is worth 100 units. Registration for the full year is expected.

Send questions about enrollment to kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu. Course runs from 9/21-11/30. Orientation will be held on 9/5. Location rotates between Northwestern's downtown campus, UIC, and UC. See chess.uchicago.edu/CCTS for more information. 

Summer 2018 Courses

CCTS 41006
Discourse of Islamic Bioethics
Instructors: Aasim Padela
Time: Mondays, 11:30 am-1:00 pm
Location: TBA
This course is a mentored and directed reading course that introduces students to critical concepts in Islamic theology and law that undergird normative ethical frameworks within Islam and exposes the student to exemplar works from the wide range of Islamic bioethics literature. The first part of the course will focus on the theoretical aspects of the Islamic moral and ethical tradition and cover scholarly contestations regarding Islamic moral theology as they relate to an Islamic bioethics. The latter half of course will focus on the practical aspects of the emerging field by considering research methods for the field and selected literature reviews of Islamic responses to pressing bioethical issues.

CCTS 45000
Intro to Biostatistics

Instructor:  John Cursio
Time: Tuesdays, Wendesdays, and Thursdays, 3:00-4:30 pm
Location: Biological Science Learning Center, Room 240
This course will provide an introduction to the basic concepts of statistics as applied to the bio-medical and public health sciences. Emphasis is on the use and interpretation of statistical tools for data analysis. Topics include (i) descriptive statistics; (ii) probability and sampling; (iii) the methods of statistical inference; and (iv) an introduction to linear and logistics regression.

PQ: Two quarters of pre-calculus.

CCTS 45100
Clinical Epidemiology

Instructors: Brian Chiu and Diane Lauderdale
Time: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:00-11:00 am
Location: Biological Sciences Learning Center, Room 240
Clinical epidemiology is the "application of epidemiologic principles and methods to problems encountered in clinical medicine." This course introduces the basic principles of epidemiologic study design, analysis and interpretation, with a particular focus on clinical applications. The course includes lectures and discussions based on critical appraisal of significant research articles. The course is primarily intended for, but not restricted to, students with prior clinical training. Public Health Sciences 30700 and 30900 may not both be taken for credit, either will fulfill the basic epidemiology requirement for the MSCP in Public Health Sciences and either will serve as the epidemiology prerequisite for Public Health Sciences 31001.

PQ: Introductory statistics recommended.

CCTS 45200
Fundamentals of Health Services Research: Theory, Methods and Applications

Instructors: Marshall H Chin and David Meltzer
Time: Monday through Friday, 1:00-2:30 pm
Location: TBA
This course is designed to provide an introduction to the fundamentals of health services research. The basic concepts of health services research will be taught with emphasis on both their social scientific foundations and the methods needed for their practical application to empirically relevant research. Theoretical foundations will draw on principles from economics, sociology, psychology, and the other social sciences. Methodological topics to be covered will include techniques for data collection and analysis, including outcomes measurement, survey methods, large data set research, population-based study design, community based participatory research, research based in clinical settings, qualitative methods, cost-effectiveness analysis, and tools of economic and sociological analysis. The theoretical and empirical techniques taught will emphasize those relevant to the examination of health care costs, quality, and access. Major applications will include: measurement and improvement of health care quality, analysis of health disparities, analysis of health care technology, and analysis of health care systems and markets.

PQ: Course is for SPORT participants. If you're not in SPORT and wish to register, please email CV to kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu.

Eligibility

The CCTS provides quality clinical and translational science training to postdoctoral BSD fellows; advanced graduate students in the biological and social sciences; and junior faculty. However, many courses may be relevant to undergraduates, medical students, and/or more advanced faculty. We encourage interested students, fellows, or faculty members to consider our offerings. Please contact Kelsey  Bogue, CCTS administrator, at kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu with any questions. 

How to Enroll

Interested trainees may take advantage of CCTS offerings in any of the following ways:

  • Enroll in the individual course(s) most relevant to their planned research or field of study;
  • Complete an Area of Concentration curriculum in conjunction with a master’s degree through the Department of Public Health Sciences;
  • Attend any of our ongoing lectures or seminar series.

There is no formal application process for participation in most CCTS courses, but we encourage trainees to reach out to faculty instructors prior to enrolling in a course. Students who wish to take courses for academic credit must enroll through the University Registrar. Some courses will also have a separate registration form that you can find on this webpage or in the CHeSS newsletter. For more information on how to enroll, please contact CCTS administrator Kelsey Bogue at kbogue@bsd.uchicago.edu.

Support

The CCTS is supported by the Institute for Translational Medicine, which is funded by an NIH-sponsored Clinical & Translational Science Award (CTSA). Additional support is provided by CHeSS.