Foundations of Epidemiology: Open access textbook


Textbook description:

It covers basic epidemiology concepts like surveillance, incidence and prevalence, study designs and why it matters which one was used, measures of association, random error, bias, confounding, effect modification, causal thinking and screening. 

Who is this textbook for?

It is aimed at allied or public health students or practitioners, who are either new to epidemiology or need a quick refresher.


Marit Bovbjerg, PhD, MS, co-director, Uplift Lab

Who can use this textbook?

It is available, without cost, to anyone who needs or wants a textbook on basic epidemiology. It can be used either in classrooms by other professors, or for self-study by anyone.

How to access the text:

It can be read online or downloaded into a variety of formats.

From the author:

For several years now, I have tried to use only open access materials in my classes. Textbook costs have risen substantially over the last decade, and many students are unable to afford to buy all of their books. Rather than see students either struggle through the class without having the book, or see them have to choose between paying bills and buying books, I make sure all required reading in my classes is available without cost to the students. For some of my classes, this is easy. For my undergraduate and graduate introductory epidemiology classes, however, this proved to be substantially more difficult. There are indeed numerous websites and videos dedicated to explaining basic epidemiology and biostatistics concepts; unfortunately none of them put everything I wanted in one coherent place. I started supplementing with my own notes on various topics, but still wasn’t entirely happy with the material I was assigning to students. Thanks to the Open Oregon State initiative, I received a small stipend to write this text, which I am pleased to now make available to you and your community.

At the Uplift Lab, we are proponents of open access, not only for classroom materials, but also for scientific research. Click here for more information.