Book Review: Raj Bhopal, Concepts of Epidemiology: Integrating the Ideas, theories, Principles, and Methods of Epidemiology, 2nd Ed., Oxford University Press, New York, 2008

Stellman, Steven D.

"Choosing an introductory textbook for graduate students in epidemiology can be a daunting task. Many competing texts cover similar concepts – causal inference, study design, analysis of data, surveillance, screening, etc. They differ in their emphasis on chronic vs. infectious diseases, level of detail in describing and illustrating specific study designs, emphasis on epidemiology in clinical practice vs. discovery of lifestyle or environmental risk factors, and in the assumed level of mathematical and statistical competency of the student.
In the Second Edition of 'Concepts of Epidemiology' (Bhopal, 2008) Raj Bhopal, Professor of Public Health at the University of Edinburgh, has thoughtfully considered all of these distinguishing points and has crafted a beginning textbook with many strengths, particularly in fulfilling the subtitle's promise of 'Integrating the ideas, theories, principles, and methods of epidemiology.' He has organized his book in unusual way. Where most textbooks tick off epidemiological concepts linearly, Bhopal dwells on defining and measuring population and disease in early chapters, and does not introduce effect measures such as risk ratio, rate ratio, and odds ratio until nearly two-thirds of the way into the book. This layout emphasizes concepts and their interrelationships, while abundant examples prevent it from becoming overly theoretical and pedantic" -- page 95


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June 2, 2014