UCL Institute of Health Informatics


UCL launches Doctor as Data Scientist Module

9 October 2019

Data science will continue to help physicians extract clinically relevant information from dense low-quality data sets previously not possible. Doctors need to be equipped with the relevant skills to extract this information so UCL has introduced 'Doctor as Data Scientist'.

doctor as data scientist

Health data is increasing in size and complexity and the UK has some of the richest health data in the world. At the UCL Institute of Health Informatics, we specialise in utilising this data to develop a better understanding of diseases on a national and international scale. With the right skills, clinicians could also utilise this data or research. In agreement if this, a recent Forbes article listed the following five key reasons why doctors should learn data science:

  1. Diagnose using large volumes of data generated from continuous monitoring
  2. Diagnose using multiparameter data
  3. Diagnose using data visualization

  4.  Understand AI workflow

  5. Understand the statistical significance of clinical studies

To address this, this term, the new “Doctor as Data Scientist” vertical module (throughout all years of the course) has been rolled out in the UCL medical school MBBS programme. Led by the UCL IHI's Dr Ami Banerjee, this is the first time that principles of evidence-based medicine have been combined with digital health technology, data science and learning health systems, for all MBBS students. The aim of this module is to not only give students knowledge of new concepts from AI and genomics in risk prediction to coding and electronic health records, but also to reinforce the importance of critical appraisal and research methods in daily clinical practice.