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Cause of Death


University of Queensland


Data and statistics




Gain the knowledge to correctly diagnose underlying cause of death.

In this POLHN self-paced program, you will learn the process of data collection on death, and how to apply this.

This course begins with an introduction on what cause of death is, and why a correct diagnosis is so important. Next, you will learn about underlying cause of death, and finally through case studies and examples will make different certifications.

This death records management course provides students with the knowledge to correctly diagnose the underlying cause of death. In this self-paced program, you will learn about public death records practice and the process of data collection, as well as various associated aspects related to the certificates of the cause of death.

After the completion of this course, the students shall be able to understand:

  • The importance of certifying death correctly
  • Vital statistics associated with death records
  • Proper and effective usage of the cause of death data
  • The current global situation regarding the quality of the cause of death data

Getting Started

The course has been developed by the University of Queensland, with the aim of delivering valuable insights into the cause of death for the public health practitioners and health workers. The main areas in focus for this course are introduction and importance of determining the cause of death, introduction to the underlying cause of death (UCOD) and associated cases, and case-based learning and assessments. The course includes various features to reinforce knowledge retention and to achieve the learning objectives. The course places a strong emphasis on using the contextualized and relevant examples for the development and improvement of underlying concepts involved in the cause of death.

The course is divided into 3 modules, as given below:

  • Module 1 - Introduction and importance
  • Module 2 - Introduction to the underlying cause of death (UCOD), and certificates of the associated cases
  • Module 3 - Case-based learning and assessments

Module - 1: Introduction and Importance

Module 1 deals with the topics such as the significance of certifying death in a correct manner, the uses to which the data related to the cause of death can be put to, the global situation in the context of the cause of death, and the phenomenon of the underlying cause of death (UCOD). 

Module - 2: Introduction to the Underlying Cause of Death (UCOD), and Certificates of the Associated Cases

Module 2 is concerned with the discussion regarding the underlying cause of death (UCOD), and how to correctly certify the associated cases. Moreover, the module also details the external cause of death, common problems encountered during the cause of death, examples regarding how to certify correctly, guidelines for the recording of specific disease conditions, and ensuring that the certificate is complete in all aspects.

Module - 3: Case-based Learning and Assessments

Module 3 encompasses various examples for enhancement of the learning outcomes through a case-based and hands-on learning approach.

Pacific Health Systems

POLHN has dedicated public health professionals in its DPS research team who have decade long experiences in Health Security and Emergencies, NCDs and Health Through the Life course, and Health System
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Course Questions & Answers

At the end of each module there are quiz questions based on the course content: Module 1- consists of 6 questions to test your knowledge. Module 2- consists of 12 questions to test your knowledge. Module 3- consists of 12 questions to test your knowledge.
Can't find the answers you're looking for? Get in touch with POLHN! Contact us here and we will respond to your enquiry as soon as possible.
Yes, this course has recommended and additional readings. These can all be easily accessed on Moodle.
There is no time limit for completing this course. POLHN recommends spending about 4 hours per week over the period of 6 weeks.
Once you enrol yourself into this course on Moodle you will have access to all the lectures and assignments.
Once you successfully complete your course by completing all the modules and passing all the assessment, your certificate will be automatically generated and sent to your email. You can also access all your certificates through our online certificate verification system here: If you are having any problems accessing your certificate, simply email us at and we will help you.

Study Material

This self-paced course has been designed in a manner that enhances understanding of the core concepts and provides easy to access learning materials. The course uses a range of study material such as pre-recorded videos, lecture slides, quizzes and assignments, and is developed by a team of dedicated health education experts.

Getting Help

Connect with other students through the discussion forum, where you can easily discuss the course or debate the ideas. Need more help? Your instructors are also available online to answer any questions you might have.

Extend Your Career with a Verified Certificate

POLHN self-paced courses are recognised by Pacific Ministries of Health. Once you have successfully completed the course, you will receive an official certificate. This certificate can be used for credit to gain CPD points.

Request more info

This course provides the knowledge to correctly diagnose the underlying cause of death. It explains public death records practice, data collection and various aspects related to death certificates.

Cause of Death

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