This is an "on demand" online course providing an introduction to the principles and practice of decision modelling for economic evaluation in health. The course is aimed at health economists and those health professionals with experience of health economics who wish to develop skills and knowledge in decision analysis for purposes of cost effectiveness analysis. It is designed for participants who are familiar with the basic principles of economic evaluation who wish to build, interpret and appraise decision models. It is envisaged that participants will currently be undertaking economic evaluation within the pharmaceutical and medical device industries, consultancy, academia or the health service.

Teaching Methods

  • Four modules together with introductory, policy context and closing sections

  • ‘Bite-size’ video presentations from members of the Faculty for each module

  • Computer-based exercises using MS Excel

  • *NEW* Alternative ‘R’-based exercise track for those already familiar with R

  • Video ‘run-through’ of each exercise by members of the Faculty

  • Online discussion forums monitored by tutors

How It Works

The course comprises a combination of video lectures and exercises. Students are granted 2 months' access from enrolment and can work through the content at times that suit them. There is a discussion board available on the course platform, where you can leave messages regarding the course content. The Foundations course is expected to involve a student commitment totalling approximately 14 hours.


By the end of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Consider the role of decision modelling in economic evaluation to guide decision making

  • Use the basic building blocks of decision analysis such as joint and conditional probabilities and expected values

  • Implement the principles of conceptual modelling as a way of planning a model

  • Understand the strengths and weaknesses of the decision tree model and build such a model in Excel

  • Understand the strengths and weaknesses of the Markov model and build such a model in Excel

  • Build a model for a generic diagnostic test and understand how to assess the value of diagnostic information

  • Think critically about the structure of decision models in particular situations and apply these appropriately

  • Implement key generic analytic steps in decision analysis such as evidence identification and basic synthesis, sensitivity analysis and reporting results


Participants would be expected to have attended a general course in economic evaluation such as York expert workshops offered by the University of York. A familiarity with Microsoft Excel is essential.


Course Lead Andrew Briggs

Andrew is Professor of Health Economics at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. His main methodological focus of research has been health economic evaluation, particularly statistical methods for cost-effectiveness analysis. This includes statistical methods for estimation of parameters for cost-effectiveness models as well as statistical analysis of cost-effectiveness alongside clinical trials. He has a more general interest in epidemiological methods, in particular the use of prognostic scoring methods for predicting health outcomes and the relationship with heterogeneity in cost-effectiveness analysis.

Module Lead Karl Claxton

Karl Claxton is a Professor in the Department of Economics and Related Studies at the University of York. He is also a Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for Health Economics, University of York. He was a Harkness Fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health and from 1999 until 2007 he held an adjunct appointment at Harvard as an Assistant Professor of Health and Decision Sciences. His research interests encompass the economic evaluation of health care technologies.

Module Lead Stephen Palmer

Stephen Palmer is a Professor and Deputy Director of TEEHTA. He has worked in economic evaluation for over 15 years in areas including pharmaceuticals, cardiology, cancer, mental health, diagnostic and screening programmes and policy. He has extensive experience of health economic evaluation, regulatory and reimbursement processes. His principal areas of expertise relate to the methodology and application of decision-analytic modelling and Bayesian approaches to Health Technology Assessment.

Module Lead Claire Rothery

Claire Rothery is a Senior Research Fellow on the Programme on Economic Evaluation and Health Technology Assessment. She joined the Centre for Health Economics in 2006 after completing the MSc in Health Economics at York. She holds a MSci in Mathematics (2001), PhD in Theoretical Physics (2004), and MPhil in Medical Statistics (2005), all awarded by Queen's University Belfast, Northern Ireland. Claire’s research interests are centred on the development and application of decision analytic modelling methods and Bayesian approaches to Health Technology Assessment. She has specific interests in the use of constrained optimisation methods in economic evaluation and Value of Information analysis for informing research prioritisation decisions.

Course Lead Mark Sculpher

Mark Sculpher, PhD, Professor and Director of the Team for Economic Evaluation and Health Technology Assessment, Centre for Health Economics, University of York. Mark has worked in the field of economic evaluation and health technology assessment for over 25 years. He has particular interest in decision analysis, pharmaceutical policy and uncertainty analysis.

Module Lead Alec Miners

Following graduation from the MSc in Health Economics at York, Alec worked for 5 years at the Royal Free Medical School, London. His main work / thesis project was on a study assessing the cost-effectiveness of different treatments for people with clotting factor disorders. He then worked at the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence as a Technical Advisor and as a honorary Research Fellow at Brunel University, before joining the LSHTM in 2006. He was a member of NICE's Technology Appraisals Committee between 2007 and 2015 and is a current member of its Decision Support Unit. He was external examiner for the MSc's in Health Economics and Health Policy, and Health Economics and Econometrics at the University of Birmingham (2017-2020).

R Tutor Lead Nichola Naylor

Nichola Naylor is an Honorary Research Fellow at LSHTM, working across the Centre for Health Economics in London and the Centre for the Mathematical Modelling of Infectious Diseases. Her research interests for the past six years have included using economic methods to efficiently tackle antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and using R to promote open science. She recently joined Public Health England to lead health economics work contributing to the UK AMR strategy. She holds a PhD in Clinical Medical Research from the NIHR Health Protection Research Unit on Healthcare Associated Infections and Antimicrobial Resistance at Imperial College London, and an MSc in International Health Policy (Health Economics) from the London School of Economics and Political Science (2013).

R Tutor Lead Jack Williams

Jack is a Research Fellow in the Department of Health Services Research and Policy at LSHTM. His research interests are in economic evaluation methodology, and performing economic evaluations of public health interventions. He has a previously worked in consultancy, performing economic evaluations in a variety of disease areas. Jack’s current research focuses on the cost-effectiveness of public health interventions to identify and treat those with hepatitis B and hepatitis C. He also works alongside the LSHTM Clinical Trials Unit, and has been involved in economic modelling of treatments for traumatic brain injury and gastrointestinal bleeding.

How TTo Register

The course fee is payable in advance. The easiest way to register is by clicking "Purchase" next to the relevant price below (Private/commercial or Public sector/academic) and completing the payment process online using a card. This will grant you immediate enrolment, which will then remain in place for 2 calendar months. If you require to pay via invoice, for example through your institution, please send an email to Nicola Bogle at [email protected] stating your name, the course(s) that you wish to sign up for, the invoice address, and your desired enrolment start date. Please note that you will only be able to begin on the specified start date if the invoice has been settled by this time.


Please select "Purchase" next to the relevant category adjacent. An additional 25% discount on top of the public sector/academic price is available for persons working for academic institutions, public sector or non-governmental organisations in countries defined as low or middle income (LMIC) by the World Bank. Please email Nicola Bogle at [email protected] to request the discount.