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506 FETP: Scientific Writing and Report Preparation

Reviewing published scientific material and writing reports are vital skills needed by the epidemiologists or other public health managers in order to update their knowledge and share their findings with the other health care personnel.

This unit is divided into 2 parts i.e. critical review of the published articles and writing reports and short communiqués to ministry/department of health.

  • Part 1: Scientific material published in journals, technical reports and print media are vital sources of information. However, appropriate utilization of this information needs the ability to critically evaluate the quality of this evidence before adapting it into practice. To develop this skill, this unit begins with a series of lectures on searching biomedical literature and critical reading. This is followed by assignments and group discussions focusing on critically reading of published material, while identifying strengths and weaknesses in methodology, analysis, results, discussion, conclusion and presentation styles.
  • Part 2: In other course units, students will learn to write epidemiological reports conforming to the requirements of the peer-reviewed journals and universities. But in this unit, emphasis will be placed on preparing academically less rigorous but clearly written reports for timely feedback of the results of their investigations to practicing health professionals and the public; in addition to the routine communication with other departments. As Arabic is the official language of Saudi Arabia, residents will also be tutored in writing such reports and communiqués in Arabic for Ministry/Department of Health.


At the end of this course unit residents should be able to

  • develop the skill in conducting biomedical literature review
  • develop the skills in critically reviewing epidemiological articles published in scientific journals
  • develop the skills for writing reports and communiqués to the Ministry/ Department of Health in Arabic

Course Outline:

  • Searching biomedical literature
  • Principles of critical reading of biomedical literature with special focus on epidemiological literature
  • Styles of writing to and for Governmental organizations, in Arabic

Teaching Strategy:

  • For part 1, teaching will include a small series of lectures followed by skill development assignments and group discussion. 
  • For part 2, residents will be assigned to write Arabic reports/letters to Ministry/Department of Health, in relation to their study projects and field assignments.

Course Assessment:

The unit will contribute 300 marks to the final evaluation. The distribution of marks will be

  • Part 1 (50%=150 marks) It will be based on assignments of critical review submitted by residents and their participation in group discussion, as evaluated by unit coordinator.
  • Part 2 (50%=150 marks): Arabic report/letters to Ministry/Department of Health for two of the projects conducted by the resident.