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Top 30 Epidemiologist Interview Questions

Question 1 of 30
How would you design a surveillance system for young children?
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Question 2 of 30
Describe a situation when you were able to have a positive influence on the actions of others.
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"I really connected with people in my last presentation in our community to positively impact the overall health status. I had numerous people compliment my presentation skill, the information presented and that it was all easy to understand."
As an Epidemiologist, your research can help millions of people and impact serious changes in the world. Focus on telling the interviewer how you positively made a change.
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Question 3 of 30
Give me an example of when you took a risk to achieve a goal. What was the outcome?
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"Studies show that there is a connection between smoking and lung cancer. I took the risk to focus my energy on the connection between second-hand smoke and lung cancer. My risk paid off and my research was published last year."
As an Epidemiologist, you make take risks in your job, within your research or how you present information. Whatever your risk was, tell the interviewer about it with confidence. Tell the interviewer that you take risks to think outside the box and get people thinking.
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Question 4 of 30
Are you experienced in speeches and presentations? How do you prepare for these?
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Hopefully one of your weaknesses isn't public speaking. If public speaking isn't a strength be sure to mention it but add that you are working at it improving yourself and getting more comfortable. Tell the interviewer what your tricks are to professionally deliver information to the audience. This is not the time to tell the interviewer that you picture everyone naked.
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Question 5 of 30
How strong is your knowledge in toxicology?
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"My knowledge is very strong in toxicology. I utilized my knowledge while researching and presenting infarction on prescription drug addiction and overdose."
Because there are so many areas to research that involve toxicology, you are or are becoming an expert on the subject. Toxicology is a field of science that helps us understand the harmful effects that chemicals, substances, or situations, can have on people, animals, and the environment.
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Question 6 of 30
Walk me through how you prepare technical and research reports and communicate the results to individuals in industry, government, or the general public.
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Question 7 of 30
Do you prefer a research or clinical setting?
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Question 8 of 30
What is the most fascinating disease you have studied in your epidemiology career thus far?
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Question 9 of 30
How well do you work with people?
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Question 10 of 30
What type of data analysis are you most familiar with?
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Question 11 of 30
As an Epidemiologist, what do you believe is your best asset?
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Question 12 of 30
What is the most challenging part of supervising technicians and other Epidemiologists?
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Question 13 of 30
Explain what are the measures can be taken to control communicable disease?
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Question 14 of 30
Explain what is reservoir.
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Question 15 of 30
Are you aspiring to return to school for your Ph.D.?
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Question 16 of 30
Tell me about a disease you have recently investigated. Were you able to discover any breakthroughs?
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Question 17 of 30
Tell me about a public health report you contributed to.
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Question 18 of 30
What made you choose to become an Epidemiologist?
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Question 19 of 30
What is your philosophy towards work?
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Question 20 of 30
What do you like least about being an Epidemiologist?
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Question 21 of 30
How do you manage stress in your daily work?
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Question 22 of 30
Would you consider your ability to analyze data or information a strength?
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Question 23 of 30
In your opinion, what are the 3 most important skills that a successful epidemiologist should possess?
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Question 24 of 30
What is your leadership style?
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Question 25 of 30
What are your long term goals in epidemiology?
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Question 26 of 30
How do you ensure successful communication with others, even if they are are not easy to get along with?
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Question 27 of 30
What are your thoughts on the Ebola epidemic?
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Question 28 of 30
What are the types of public health surveillance?
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Question 29 of 30
Describe your experience using health survey data.
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Question 30 of 30
Which industry related current event interests you the most?
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User-Submitted Interview Answers

Question 1 of 30
How would you design a surveillance system for young children?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
By first establishing goals (what are we trying to find out?), Develop a case definition (what characteristics define a case), select appropriate personnel to track cases, acquire tools and clearances for collection, analysis, and dissemination of data, implement the surveillance system, and then evaluate the surveillance activities.
2.
Active surveillance at school.
3.
I will approach the community facilities that cater children such as day care, schools, pediatric clinics and other health care facilities.
4.
I would first identify who is going to be researching this topic, whether it is on the local or state level, and I would verify the known diagnoses within this population. I would then work to find cases in the area,
5.
Put them in a room and put a camera with them and someone watching the camera at all times.
6.
Analyse secondary data on the target population first then plan the work.
7.
Simple and easy to understand.
8.
Develop a questionnaire to ask parents or guardians questions about their young child at schools, daycare, doctor's office, or dentist offices.
9.
You could ask schools or day cares to collect syndromic or disease information when parents call their kids in sick. You could ask pediatritians. You could do this actively or passively.
Question 2 of 30
Describe a situation when you were able to have a positive influence on the actions of others.
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I worked for several different areas within the health care system and during this process I had to interact with all socioeconomic backgrounds and being able to empatize and show compassion help others feel acknowledge.
2.
I was able to have a positive influence on the actions of others during a group project that I was able to complete with 3 other students who I never physically met. One of my courses, the program development and evaluation course was entirely online and each student in the group was a busy professional who did not have much time for physical meetings so we were able to complete the project entirely online because I set up mini-deadlines for each person to send me drafts of their research and then their rough drafts for their sections, and was persistent with my e-mails and everyone was able to complete their work on time and we received a 100% on the assignment.
3.
During inspections of restaurants, I relate educational information to the operators as well to keep them well informed.
4.
While tutoring for the osteopathic students.
5.
When I worked as a graduate assistant, I allowed my students to contact me whenever and I did my best to answer their questions. I allowed them to schedule meetings with me and walked through the material. Not everyone understands statistics and some people are.
6.
In an staunch environment, help people regain focus on situation and not management to gain desired end result.
Question 3 of 30
Give me an example of when you took a risk to achieve a goal. What was the outcome?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I was a time a mentally ill man walked to working environment armed with a broken bottle and a hammer, charging at everybody, we were trapped in the pharmacy, out of no where I asked him what do you want?you know we are here to to help you... Ah. Come-on !!come on now!.He pulsed and asked me to give him a hug, and I did as he asked; then I asked him to give me his wepon and he complied with my order.
2.
I will think of it later.
Question 4 of 30
Are you experienced in speeches and presentations? How do you prepare for these?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Well, most recently I prepared my capstone presentation which was indeed a success, everyone involved really enjoyed it. I prepared by first setting a deadline and deciding to follow a scientific paper approach with a Background, Methods, Results, Conclusions, and Future Recommendations sections. I then, wrote out what I wanted to include in each section and narrowed that down to the main points by trying to think from an audience-memberís point of view. Lastly, I thoroughly practiced the presentation by timing myself and practicing a number of times in front of a mirror to make sure I could make good eye contact, was using my hands appropriately, and had good posture and a good tone of voice.
2.
I prepared by doing resaerch on the topic that I was going to discuss about, logic model, breaking the model into its different components and looking for practical examples to cite in order to make the audience easily understand and relate to the presentation.
3.
I spent time researching the presentation material, put together a presentation, had it reviewed, practiced the speech and got feedback on how to make improvements. I also researched the target audience so I could make sure my presentation was relevant to their interests.
4.
Yeah for me! I'm two of the ones on the list!It's good to be a geek...Of course, in the long term I don't have faith in such lists. If you're ialnspeisnbde then a LOT of effort goes into fixing that.
5.
Presentation- research the issue on norovirus, contacted agencies connected/involved with the story; prepared my power point.
6.
Study the topic, study the audience.
7.
Osteopathic college... Think of it from their perspective. What would they be interested in.
Question 5 of 30
How strong is your knowledge in toxicology?
Question 6 of 30
Walk me through how you prepare technical and research reports and communicate the results to individuals in industry, government, or the general public.
Question 7 of 30
Do you prefer a research or clinical setting?
Question 8 of 30
What is the most fascinating disease you have studied in your epidemiology career thus far?
Question 9 of 30
How well do you work with people?
Question 10 of 30
What type of data analysis are you most familiar with?
Question 11 of 30
As an Epidemiologist, what do you believe is your best asset?
Question 12 of 30
What is the most challenging part of supervising technicians and other Epidemiologists?
Question 13 of 30
Explain what are the measures can be taken to control communicable disease?
Question 14 of 30
Explain what is reservoir.
Question 15 of 30
Are you aspiring to return to school for your Ph.D.?
Question 16 of 30
Tell me about a disease you have recently investigated. Were you able to discover any breakthroughs?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Iíve never really had the opportunity to investigate a disease but during my project for my Public Health Practice and Issues course, I was able to work with an epidemiologist here at the department to go through the steps necessary for investigating a case of Neisseria meningitidis in a daycare. We were able to go through and see how all the different aspects of public health concepts (including biology, epidemiology, ethics, informatics, etc.) were applied.
Question 17 of 30
Tell me about a public health report you contributed to.
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I contributed to a report on Orthodox Jewish Youth Risk Behaviors, something that really stood out to us in the data was that Orthodox Jewish families had significantly high levels of junk foods and sugared beverages in their home which is one of the many reasons why we moved forward with our work at Case. We decided to conduct another survey to see if there is a need and interest for a health promotion program that specifically targets the home food environment and we actually found that there is and so we are currently working towards developing a culturally tailored health promotion program.
2.
Although, I have not officially contributed to reports with my name on it, however, I have assisted in west Nile virus sample collections, time and areas samples was collected.
Question 18 of 30
What made you choose to become an Epidemiologist?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I love to protect general public from out break, reduce disease transmission through causative investigation, and educate the public on preventive measures.
Question 19 of 30
What is your philosophy towards work?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Seeking for the causative agents and educating for preventive measures.
2.
Can clearly identify and tackle the problem.
Question 20 of 30
What do you like least about being an Epidemiologist?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I will probably find it stressful in the beginning to complete the tasks of an epidemiologist and also doing data analysis in a timely manner. However, I think any new situation just requires perseverance and hard work and those are things I can definitely do!
2.
I protect they general public.
Question 21 of 30
How do you manage stress in your daily work?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Concentrate on the work at hand.
Question 22 of 30
Would you consider your ability to analyze data or information a strength?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Personal characteristics that add to my overall effectiveness include being detail-oriented. One example of this was when I assisted my previous employer with writing a report. I analyzed results from a Jewish Youth Risk Behavior Survey and wrote the results section of the report and my professor appreciated my writing so much he was willing to have me as a co-author on the article.
2.
I am a team player, I'm interested in results that will protect the general public, I have a great interpersonal skills, I m calm and very understanding to public view and needs.
Question 23 of 30
In your opinion, what are the 3 most important skills that a successful epidemiologist should possess?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I have the necessary knowledge through my work during the MPH program in my biostatistics and epidemiology courses. I also received some exposure at the CDPH during the projects I completed for my coursework. Particularly, I was able to get an idea of steps involved in investigating diseases. I also have the necessary skills required for the position because I have dealt with a lot of data analysis through my coursework and also through my experience as a health educator with the Jewish Community Health Initiative. I have developed surveys, collected data, and analyzed data in the past for the purpose of developing a health promotion program. I have also taken a grant writing course and developed a grant proposal as part of an assignment and believe I have the necessary skills for grant-writing.
2.
I have have many opportunities in my nursing career that has prepared me to assess, organize, evaluate and intervene with appropriate steps to address numerous situations requiring these skills.
3.
Yes, other educational research background, I have public health inspections, attend to citizens reports etc.
Question 24 of 30
What is your leadership style?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
Decisions regarding critical matters are most difficult for me. For example,
2.
As usual life and death decisions are very difficult.
Question 25 of 30
What are your long term goals in epidemiology?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
In my current position, some of the short term goals were: 1. Develop a survey 2. Collect data 3. Analyze data and some of my long term goals were/are to use the data and results and apply them to the program development and then eventually to implement and evaluate the program in the Orthodox Jewish community.
2.
My long term goal was to become senior and my short term goal to be excellent in my jobs.
3.
Short-term: publish two meta-analyses.
4.
Long term: to contribute to health improvements short term: to fulfil tasks.
Question 26 of 30
How do you ensure successful communication with others, even if they are are not easy to get along with?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I actually was placed with an equally determined person for one of my projects in my Biostatistics course so in the beginning of the project, we didnít really get along but we were both able to stay professional enough to complete the project by focusing on the tasks involved because we had to complete smaller assignments that built up to the final project/presentation. I am good at keeping my personal feelings separate from my professional work and I can assure you that I would do the same in this position. Anyways, my group partner and I became good friends after the project because we both realized there was an issue and we openly discussed it and were able to overcome it.
2.
I have been working working with the public for many years, sometime people hear what they want, but you have to politely assure them that it was nothing personal, that you only trying to help.
3.
Keep personal outside work.
Question 27 of 30
What are your thoughts on the Ebola epidemic?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
1. The spread of the disease in Africa really has to do with so much more in terms of cultural, political, and socio-economic factors and it makes me realize again why the field of public health is fascinating. 2. The job of an epidemiologist is even more important now because we already saw a few cases of Ebola in the US and we need to work towards preparing the community by arming them with accurate knowledge and a set of actions 3. I think the most difficult part for me was to see the level of panic rising among my friends and family. I think as a public health professional we all have a duty to ensure that misinformation and panic are not spread and that people around us always have the accurate information and are able to act on it.
2.
I think we should start our investigations-(samples collections, test)from the orign, design better public educational ways(eg. Mobile ed link, like amber alert, educate school teachers, primary care health professionals, church an city leaders.
3.
I think that it is self-limiting internationally because of its extreme severity.
Question 28 of 30
What are the types of public health surveillance?
User-Submitted Answers
1.
There are many types of public health surveillance systems, mainly active surveillance which is when an epidemiologist or public health professional actively investigates cases or health conditions by contacting the public or hospitals which is the best type of surveillance because it is accurate and timely but it is also the most expensive and passive surveillance is when hospitals, clinics, and other sources provide information on cases/health conditions to public health departments and this type of surveillance is usually of a lower quality because itís from multiple sources and it may also lack in timeliness and one other surveillance system that Iíd like to mention, which I am most familiar with, is the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System which tests repeated measures that relate to behaviors known to cause disease or injury in the population. Although, on a smaller scale, I have analyzed data from a survey that followed a similar format and I also assisted in developing a survey that followed a similar format and also analyzed the data from that survey.
2.
Contact outreach programs, churches, Physicians and nurses, schools, and other recreational centers for report.
Question 29 of 30
Describe your experience using health survey data.
User-Submitted Answers
1.
I have about 2 years of using health survey data. I have some exposure from my coursework but I have also been working with a professor at Case Western Reserve University and I have helped him in the past with analyzing data collected through a Jewish Youth Risk Behavior Survey which follows a similar style to the BRFSS. For my capstone project, I also assisted in developing a similar survey to analyze Orthodox Jewish Parentsí attitudes, behaviors and household policies regarding healthy eating and physical activity. I am familiar with a lot of functions in SPSS 22. The only function I havenít really utilized is multiple regression analysis but I know if Iím given the opportunity, I would be able to learn and follow through with any tasks that require that function.
2.
I used it at the health department.
3.
It helps in investigation disease(out-break) port of entry, outcome, number of cases, lifestyle etc.
Question 30 of 30
Which industry related current event interests you the most?

About Epidemiologist

August 7th, 2017

As a public health professional, you analyze and develop programs that protect the health of individuals, families, and communities in the United States and abroad. Using education, development of healthy lifestyles, research and program implementation, Epidemiologists are agents for disease prevention and health promotion. From food poisoning to an influenza outbreak, you are the detective for the community to investigate the cause of disease and control its spread. You conduct fieldwork to determine what caused disease or injury, what the risks are, who is at risk and how to prevent further incidences.

Your biochemistry and molecular biology training will be your guide as an Epidemiologist. Your experience will lead you to the initial discovery and containment of an outbreak, such as avian flu or mad cow disease. Strong quantitative skills, including biostatistics and computer applications, are skills needed to be a successful Epidemiologist. Public speaking and program management are also skills needed in fostering health promotion and disease prevention and assessing the quality of health care in the community.

To prepare for your interview, you'll want to do your research on the company. Know what outbreak they are focused on learning more about or population they are serving. Come to the interview with resume in hand, references ready and relevant stories to share. If you haven't been out of school for long, refer to studies you were apart of or published work. If you've been in the career field for awhile highlight what you've been a part of and how you impacted the findings.

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