Genome-wide association studies [ESP74]

Course highlights

EC points


Start date


End date


Course days

Monday to Friday (5 full days)


Prof. Fernando Rivadeneira

Course fee

€ 988






Basic understanding of genetic epidemiology (as covered by ESP43), the principles of linkage disequilibrium and the HapMap & 1000 Genomes project (as covered by ESP57) is advised.


  • Genetic Epidemiology


Go to the ESP website

Detailed information about this course:


Faculty: Prof. Fernando Rivadeneira, MD PhD

Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) constitute a powerful approach to investigate the genetic basis of multifactorial disorders. In the last decade, GWAS have yielded spectacular successes in the discovery of genes involved in complex traits and disorders (e.g. body height, BMI, cardiovascular disease, cancer and neurological disorders). This was made possible by the advent of high-throughput genotyping technology and the knowledge on genome structure and organization derived from the HapMap and 1000 Genomes Projects. Applying the GWAS approach has facilitated researchers to incorporate these analyses into large genetic, clinical and epidemiological studies.

This course aims to introduce epidemiologists, molecular biologists and clinicians into the basic principles of GWAS, addressing aspects of study design, data collection and analysis, extending to the interpretation and follow-up of results. The course consists of lectures providing a conceptual framework on crucial aspects of quality control, imputation of missing genotypes, statistical tools, methods to detect and correct for stratification, meta-analysis and genomic annotation of GWAS signals; accompanied by instructive hands-on computer exercises on the principles of analysis of quantitative traits and disease outcomes using software packages that are available in the public domain.

The course format will allow interactive break-out discussion sessions on theoretical and practical aspects of running GWAS, together with expert-advice procurement on diverse components of collaborative research within networks and consortia.

//Please note that the course information is subject to change and will be updated from time to time. We will do our utmost best to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the information on this website.//


After completing the course, participants will be able to understand the principles of GWAS, perform a basic genome-wide association analysis, interpret results and integrate them in a genomic context by means of web-based bioinformatics resources.



Reduction on fees


50% reduction on our fees for participating institutes of NIHES

This 50% reduction is offered to participants formally appointed at the departments or sections participating in NIHES.

University Medical Center Rotterdam/Erasmus University Rotterdam:

  • Department of Epidemiology
  • Department of Public Health
  • Department of Psychiatry, Section of Medical Psychology and Psychotherapy
  • Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry/Psychology
  • Department of Medical Informatics
  • Department of General Practice
  • Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management
  • Generation R

50% reduction on our fees for NIHES affiliated partners

This 50% reduction is offered to participants formally appointed at the following NIHES affiliated partners:

University Medical Center Rotterdam/Erasmus University Rotterdam, departments of:

  • Dermatology
  • General Paediatrics
  • Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
  • Rehabilitation Medicine

UMIT, Department of Public Health, Health Services Research and Health Technology Assessment.

25% reduction on our fees for Erasmus MC employees

For participants formally appointed at all departments of Erasmus MC (except the departments mentioned above).

25% reduction for all (international) PhD students
Please upload proof of enrollment as a PhD student in the application form and state the name of your tutor on the application form (remarks field).

25% reduction on our course fees (maximum 3 EC points per academic year) for all NIHES alumni
Please state that you are a NIHES alumnus/alumna and the academic year you graduated (remarks field). Please note that the reduction on fees for alumni does not apply to the Erasmus Summer Programme.