Sunday, October 23, 2016: 9:00 AM - 12:30 PM
Bayshore Ballroom Salon E, Lobby Level (Westin Bayshore Vancouver)
Course Type: Half Day
Course Level: Beginner
Course Limit: 30

Overview: This course will provide an overview of stated-preferences methods and a detailed introduction to discrete-choice experiments (DCE) – an increasingly common method for measuring the preferences of patients and other stakeholders in health. Specific attention will be placed on the conceptual and empirical underpinnings of different stated-preference methods and good research practices for the development, implementation, and analysis of DCEs. Lastly, several case studies will be presented to illustrate how DCE can be used to inform medical decision making will be presented.

Background: The application of stated-preferences methods in medical decisions making has increased rapidly over the past several decades. These methods are increasingly being incorporated into regulatory benefit-risk analyses and decisions. This said, understanding how patients and other stakeholders value various aspects of interventions in health care can inform both the design and evaluation of programs leading to clinical and policy decisions that better reflect the preferences of stakeholders, especially patients. This course will provide an overview of methods to elicit stated preferences and detail how to conduct a high quality DCE.

Format Requirements: We first review and describe the conceptual and theoretical basis of stated-preferences methods and the types of research questions that can be answered by these methods. We will subsequently delineate and describe the specific steps of developing, implementing, and analyzing a DCE. Case studies will be used to illustrate these stages and to exemplify how these methods can be used n regulatory benefit-risk analysis. An exercise on the interpretation of the findings from a DCE will be used to enhance the understanding of the methods and the value of DCEs in health research. Participants may have some familiarity with concepts of utility theory, but the course is targeted at the introductory level.

Description and Objectives:

The course will provide an overview of the most common stated preferences method in health research. Each step of developing, implementing, and analyzing a DCE will be reviewed, using case examples and an exercise to illustrate good research practices for applying this methodology.


  1. Be familiar with good research practices in guiding the design, development and execution of a discrete choice experiment (DCE) survey to elicit stated preferences and/or values of patients, physicians, and other decision makers;
  2. Describe the conceptual and empirical basis of different methods to elicit stated preferences in outcomes research;
  3. Identify and describe the practical design and analytical issues involved in developing, implementing, and analyzing a DCE survey instrument in order to obtain valid empirical estimates; and,
  4. Identify the appropriate method to analyze data from a DCE and interpret the results.
Course Director:

John F.P. Bridges, PhD
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Associate Professor
Health Policy and Management

John F P Bridges PhD is an international leader in the advancement and application of stated-preference methods in health and founding editor of The Patient – Patient Centered Outcomes Research. John has worked with numerous patient groups, health technology assessment agencies, regulators, and international aid agencies to utilize these methods to document the preferences of patients and other stakeholders. John is a frequent speaker on patient engagement, patient preferences and patient-centered benefit-risk analysis. John is an associate professor in the Department of Health Policy & Management at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Course Faculty:

Deborah Marshall, PhD
University of Calgary
Community Health Sciences

Deborah Marshall is a Canada Research Chair, Health Services and Systems Research and the Arthur J.E. Child Chair and professor of Rheumatology Outcomes Research at the University of Calgary. Deborah’s research program focuses on patient preferences and patient engagement research, cost-effectiveness analysis, and dynamic simulation modeling of health services delivery to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of health care services. She is a founding investigator of the innovative Patient and Community Engagement Research (PaCER) Program at the University of Calgary which trains patients to design and conduct health research.