Evidence Based Diagnosis and Screening

Module Overview

This module takes you from the basics of assessing a diagnostic test through to the latest developments and areas where solutions are still developing. Through a series of interactive lectures, seminars and practical sessions, you will learn in detail about how to conduct a systematic review of a diagnostic or screening test. The principal areas to be covered include: specialist literature searching for relevant tests, critical appraisal of diagnostic test reports and systematic reviews of diagnostic tests, information synthesis, data analysis, report writing, economic evaluation of diagnostic tests and use of specialist software. Wherever possible, both the teaching provided and your learning will draw upon real life examples, including work done in the Department of Public Health and Epidemiology and local NHS.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the module you should be able to:

  • Determine the relevant questions to be asked about test evaluation and identify appropriate methodologies to provide an answer;
  • Demonstrate recognition of the limitations of evidence re: diagnostic and screening tests;
  • Know how to plan and undertake a systematic review of a diagnostic or screening test.


20 credits

Module Attendance Required

1 block week of teaching

Module Dates

Please note that students must have successfully completed both the Methodological Basis of Health Technology Assessment and the Health Economics modules.


One critical appraisal of a large diagnostic or screening test accuracy systematic review or HTA (75%); One 15-minute presentation and answer questions on the critical appraisal (25%)

Academics involved in the delivery of this module

Clare Davenport