Spring 2022 - HSCI 207 D100

Research Methods in Health Sciences (3)

Class Number: 8048

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Th 12:30 PM – 2:20 PM
    AQ 3181, Burnaby

  • Instructor:

    Cecilia Sierra Heredia
    Office Hours: Thursdays, 11:30 - 12:20pm
  • Prerequisites:

    HSCI 130 with a minimum grade of C-. Corequisite: STAT 201 or 203 or 205.



Principles and applications in health sciences research methodology. Quantitative and qualitative methods. Research process and design. Appropriate approaches for diverse research questions. Research ethics, sources of data, sampling, measurement, data collection, initial data analysis techniques. Students with credit for HSCI 307 may not take this course for further credit.


This course is designed to provide students with substantive and fundamental knowledge of health sciences research methodology, and emphasizes the steps involved in the research process. It will introduce the key methodological approaches used in health sciences research, both quantitative and qualitative. This course covers topics ranging from research design, ethics, sources of data, sampling techniques, measurement of variables, data collection, and simple data analysis techniques.

There will be one 2-hour lecture session each week and one 1-hour tutorial session each week that will include in-class exercises or quizzes and small group assignments to assist in assignment and exam preparation. This course will have a mix of synchronous and asynchronous in person and online activities:

- In person: Lectures & Tutorials, Midterm & Final Exam.
- Asynchronous online: Weekly quizzes for lecture & tutorial, upload of tutorial assignments & homeworks.
- Synchronous online: Office hours for Instructor and TAs.


This course intends to provide students with a strong foundational knowledge of the research methods used in health research. It is designed to equip students with the essential knowledge needed to conduct health research. By the end of the course
students should be able to:

• Apply the basic elements of the research process to health sciences problems.
• Differentiate between qualitative and quantitative paradigms.
• Interpret the research literature and judge its relevance to research questions.
• Demonstrate competence in conducting a basic literature search for a health sciences research topic.
• Distinguish the characteristics, strengths, and weaknesses of different study designs and the research questions they address.
• Articulate the principles of ethical research practice and identify common ethical dilemmas and their resolutions.
• Explore common study feasibility issues.
• Describe processes of knowledge synthesis, dissemination, and exchange.
• Demonstrate competence in applying these concepts in a research paper.


  • Quizzes & Posts on Discussion Boards 15%
  • Tutorial Assignments 15%
  • Homework Assigments 20%
  • Midterm 25%
  • Final Exam 25%



The required texts for this course will be provided in electronic format on the course website.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in spring 2022 will involve primarily in-person instruction, with safety plans in place.  Some courses will still be offered through remote methods, and if so, this will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes.  You will also know at enrollment whether remote course components will be “live” (synchronous) or at your own pace (asynchronous).

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the spring 2022 term.