Education and Training Core

The training developed will emphasize that effective injury prevention and control requires multidisciplinary training and education that is grounded in an understanding that the factors that determine injury occurrence are multilevel.

The following three primary objectives of the Education and Training Core are:

1) Increase the number of faculty, undergraduate and graduate students at Columbia conducting research related to injury epidemiology, prevention and control;

2) Expand the amount of training in injury epidemiology, prevention and control in courses taught in the Mailman School of Public Health, other Columbia Schools and in courses at other universities in the region; and

3) Train and provide technical assistance in injury epidemiology, prevention and control to those interested at the local, city, state, regional and national level including interdisciplinary training opportunities at all levels.

Specific examples of activities to meet these Training and Education Core objectives, include:  1) a new cross disciplinary injury certificate, 2)  short courses open to the public, 3)  creation of an innovative injury epidemiology laboratory, 4) expanded practica and internship opportunities for MPH students, 5)  injury related theses and dissertations and 6)  participation and leadership in the departmental Epidemiology Innovation Cluster.

Injury Certificate

The MSPH re-engineered its curricula in 2012 to integrate MPH teaching across disciplines and to incorporate a newly developed certificate program as a core element in the degree. A new cross disciplinary Injury Prevention and Control Certificate is spearheaded by the Center.  More information is available from the Mailman School of Public Health.

Center Director, Dr Guohua Li has edited the comprehensive and cutting-edge textbook, Injury Research: Theories, Methods, and Approaches (, which will be a foundation text for the Injury Prevention and Control Certificate courses.  It is written by an internationally known multidisciplinary team of experts. It provides a solid foundation for gathering injury data and monitoring trends and includes research methods and injury-reduction approaches gleaned from public health, medicine, engineering, behavioral science, and other areas that demonstrate both the intricacies of causation and the potential for intervention.

Short Courses Open to the Public

Since 2011, the Department of Epidemiology at the Mailman School of Public Health has hosted a highly successful summer institute called Epidemiology and Population Health Summer Institute (EPIC) at Columbia University.  EPIC offers affordable, short, foundation courses, skill-building courses (e.g., SAS, R, STATA), and substantive epidemiologic courses to scholars, researchers, and practitioners in and outside of Columbia who are interested in learning more about population health. These courses enroll a multidisciplinary group, including senior faculty from various departments at schools of public health, clinicians from New York City medical centers, MSPH students, junior faculty from the College of Physicians and Surgeons, and researchers from abroad.

Visit the Injury Epidemiology and Prevention EPIC course website for more information.

Injury Epidemiology Laboratory

Injury Epidemiology LaboratoryAn Injury Epidemiology Laboratory pictured at right is provided in the Center by the Department of Epidemiology.  There are four work stations with appropriate software and major injury databases installed. It will be available for faculty and students throughout Columbia working on injury prevention.

Core faculty and a dedicated graduate research assistant will facilitate the use of available national, state, and local data for student theses, dissertations, and course projects.  Databases are available in-house with appropriate permissions for injury research.

Injury Practica and Internships

MPH and DrPH students must engage in fieldwork, or practicum work, as a degree requirement. We will offer practicum opportunities for students at MSPH. Dr. Joyce Pressley leads the Epidemiology Practicum program. Each practicum experience requires substantive work (280+ hours) in a research or community-based setting.  The Center will work with MSPH students to develop practicum opportunities addressing both unintentional and intentional injury and focusing on the CDC CIPC priorities: motor vehicle injury, traumatic brain injury, falls in the elderly, child maltreatment, and youth violence prevention projects based both in the university with community partners and at New York City and State agencies, such as the NYC DOHMH.  The Center will make injury-related practicum opportunities available to students in the department of Epidemiology as well as other departments. One example of a practicum opportunity is the NYC DOHMH’s nationally acclaimed Health Research and Training Program (HRTP). This 50 year old program draws undergraduate, graduate, and professional school students interested in both public health research and practice, and exposes them to the “real life” challenges of public health.

Injury theses and dissertations

Center faculty continues their active role in mentoring master’s and doctoral students training in a range of disciplines.  Refer to document listing previous master’s and doctoral mentored by Center faculty in the past.  The Center is collaborating with SafetyLit to index all past injury-related theses and dissertations.  All newly published injury-related doctoral and master’s theses from Columbia are automatically indexed.

The Center facilitates linkages between appropriate injury faculty members and interested department of Epidemiology doctoral students seeking research expertise in injury control epidemiology, including unintentional and intentional injury prevention. Currently there is one doctoral student completing an injury related dissertation and three who are planning to focus on injury in their dissertations.