Historical Epidemiology

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Course Description:

From the Black Death to smallpox to HIV/AIDS to the Ebola virus, disease continues to profoundly impact human history and the progress of societies. Study modern epidemiological techniques for tracking and analyzing disease impact on human society and apply those techniques to historical epidemics to better understand them. Evaluate diseases throughout the ages and their impact on society. Use the lessons of the past to develop modeling techniques for fighting modern disease. Grasp the responsibilities of organizations like the World Health Organization and Center for Disease Control and the role of consumer and social media in the quest to fight current and future epidemics.

Georgia Tech (8-10)

Term 1 2015

  • Instructor: Miss Krystal
  • TA: Halli

New class as of 2015. Learned about diseases, parasites, viruses, etc. that will make you want to stock up on antibacterial soap and hand sanitizer, but we all know better than that. Many hands-on labs of growing bacteria and taking water samples. E. Coli is pretty much everywhere, but luckily not in the Woodruff drinking water. The takeaways from our cultures are that Russell's feet are absolutely disgusting and that you should probably never ever touch a frisbee again. At the end of the term, each student did a final presentation on the disease of their choice and argued on why their disease should be in the imagined Disease Hall of Fame. The class was originally housed in Skiles, but was forced to evacuate after asbestos were discovered in the building. The change to Clough was very welcomed, as Skiles was pretty old and in very sad condition. After spending a couple days in Clough, the class eventually found a permanent home in the Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering. This again elated all of the students because Woodruff is much closer to the dorms than Clough and Skiles, making the daily million mile marches a little more bearable. There was one field trip to the CDC with the Biomedical Engineering class, but unfortunately we were not allowed into any of the actual buildings and were only allowed into a small museum (which, fun fact, some of the "Contagion" CDC scenes were filmed in). One of the highlights of the class was when Ms. Krystal, our fantastic instructor, tricked us all into thinking we had a huge final exam, when in fact we were only going to watch Contagion. Her amazing prank was perfected with the yelling of Woody's infamous "GOTEEM', and the stunned faces of all her students. Many episodes of House were watched during class, and became a favorite among the students. The class was filled with many lively debates and discussions, ranging from bioweapons to Chinese genocide (as hopefully only jokingly recommend in Jason's final presentation). One book, "The Cobra Event", was read during the term, which scared the entire class with its very graphic descriptions of death by a bioweapon. Everyone in the class got along really well (some REALLY well if you know what I mean ;))))))))), and lasting friendships were formed over talks of deadly viruses and parasites. Evening studies were great, and mostly included TED talks and online games. Overall this class had a great first year, and we hope it's taught at tip for many years to come. #ShutUpJared

Rice Term 1 2018

  • Instructor: Ian Abbey
  • TA: Katie Whitson

The Epi Dem Dem class was great, although we played a lot of zombie simulation.

Students: Collin Pelitere ,Gabby, Sofia, Victoria, Calum, Alton, Toby, Sophie, Jesse, Langston, Megan, Shrita, Roberto (traitor), Christopher (Bobby), Evan,

We watched the movie Outbreak and the movie Contagion, as well Horatio Hornblower: The Fire Ships (oh my god Bunting seriously), and The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles. We read The Ghost Map which everyone liked better than The Great Mortality, and the World War Z book. On the last day, we gathered around as our comrades listened to the anthem of the great Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Glory to Lenin! Glory to the great Socialist cause! Glory to the motherland! URA!!!

Something we learned in this class is if you’re having a bad day, just play medieval music on YouTube and read the entire comment section, or read the reviews for Haribo Sugar-Free Gummy Bears on Amazon. #NeinNeinNein

Rice University

Term 2 2018

  • Instructor: Emma Verstraete
  • TA: Priyanka (The coolest TA that always spills the tea about everyone)


  • Sophie Lair
  • Bella Nowinski
  • Christie Vernon
  • Chris Green
  • Brandon A
  • Ford Abney
  • Cooper Whitehouse
  • Michael Chen
  • Varun Vedala
  • Alan Moon
  • Mary Matias
  • Indira Singh
  • Arman Tavallaei
  • Anna Croitoru
  • Charity
  • Ethan Khan
  • Raein Anjom
  • Amarachi Moghalu

Notable Events

Ma'am Emma often talked to the class in drippingly dark and sarcastic humor, at which nobody laughed.

Alan Moon started a large argument over the pronunciation of the word "CEDAR." He said it "si-DAR" (sɪ.'daːr, si-'där) while most of the classroom said "SEE-der" ('siː.dər, 'sē-dər). It is now considered a campus tradition.

After watching a documentary on the Spanish Flu pandemic, our class chant/song became:

    I had a little bird/birdie
    His/It's name was Enza
    I opened (up) the window
    And influenza/in flew Enza.

Note that parentheses and slashes indicate differing recitations or a double meaning.

Raien sits in his chair weirdly.

There is a love square involving Raien, Leah Mei, Charity, Indira. (Technically Charity isn't in it, she got friendzoned hard)

Christie often wore thot knots. This was one of the catalysts for the dress code revolution. (The boys wore thot knots too.)

Chris was often known for putting his thumb and his index finger in the shape of an L and then proceeding to put to the crook of the L underneath his chin to indicate a confused look. He used this quite often whenever something funny involving him or something he was confused about came up. This was his superlative for our class term page written by Alan Moon.

When our class went to the Rice Coffeehouse, Ford did a flip on concrete and hit his head. He also sprained his arm. Quite unfortunate.( ‾ ʖ̫ ‾)

Rice Term 1 2019

Instructor- Dr.A (Dr. Ariel)

TA- Ms.Katy


  • Rhys - The one who just didn't want to be there
  • Ezekiel - Babushka, Ajax, Franklin, A man of many names
  • Jaz - Jaz hands!
  • Anika B. - b i g m o o d
  • Anika S. - how about squash though
  • Lilly - "It has three Ls"
  • Lily - "Oh my god a pokemon"
  • Carly - An actual army
  • Roma - Probably thinking of a rebuttle right now
  • Adelle - Frog cult leader, started the epedemic
  • Auggie
  • Wade - AKA chad dad
  • Josh
  • Kylie - looking dummy thicc
  • Christine - *just wants to be comfortable
  • Jules
  • Willis - wholesome in general

-Memories and Moments-

When Zeke first became Babushka

The frog epidemic that turned into a pandemic

Zeke's icecream chicken sandwich

Just Zeke/Ajax/Hot Water Boi/ Frank/ Green bean in general

Finding Ms.Katy in relationTIPS from 2013

Willis's wholesome temperature check

Being 87/10 because they're is absolutley no reason to be any lower than that

Rice Term 2, 2019

  • Instructor: Dr. Fairweather: *\notices cultural aspect\* owo what's this (she was also a gamer girl)
  • TA: Emily Orlick: Best TA ever, her disappointment was immense


  • Aubin Miles: Deborah, Bruh for short
  • Juliana Jasso: b r e a t h e d
  • Andrew Goad: best taste in music (Sea Shanties and Swedish Power Metal)
  • Anya Armetrout: Has squirpes (Squirrel Herpes)
  • Katelyn Taylor: She's from Utah and that's all we know about her (Maybe Mormon?)
  • Megan Garza: With an H
  • Isabel Irvine: Fangirling about something with Gabby as we type this
  • Gabrielle Torres-Coley: Most likely to become a bioterrorist
  • Crystal Lerner: Very stylish, she was pretty chill
  • Nathaniel Barnett: "uwu celery"
  • Alec Vasquez: *\sees groupchat has no stale iFunny memes\* It's free real estate
  • Tess Hodges: She got a plush frog from putt-putt fun house and it's cool (Meme Queen)
  • Viola Holmes: Most Britland (she's really cool)
  • Simona Kao: Secretly a memelord
  • Emily Meyer: Also a meme queen, started secret cult in quiet room
  • Samantha Brecker: Iconic hat
  • Ian Brown: Said it better than Andrew
  • Christina Lao: Best 4th year, we'll miss you so much; very trendy

Notable Events

  • Any minute Gabby wasn't asking a question (very few)
  • Squirpes
  • Squirrels are bioterrorists
  • Discovering Katelyn wasn't Mormon
  • Army General Curious George (ooh ooh ah ah, nuke North Korea)
  • Houston Heights Gated Gated Community
  • Everyone memeing in the Anti-Vaxx discussion
  • Debating about whether gingers have souls
  • Tess calling a squirrel sitting on a trash can a "trash gremlin"
  • Also Tess calling bunnies the “scourge of the Earth”
  • Starting a cult in the Ancient Egypt exhibit of the Museum of Natural Science
  • Civilization is syphilization
  • Singing sea shanties 24/7 (WAY HAY & UP SHE RISES, EARL-Y IN THE MORNING!!!)
  • uwu celery
  • Finding Dr. Fairweather’s YouTube channel (brief interview with a gamer)
  • + WIP bc there's a bunch more

Class Pets

  • Rodger: Vector for Squirpes
  • Stanley: Largest Stanley
  • Stanley Jr.: Middle Stanley
  • Lil' Stan: Tiniest Stanley
  • Lola: We went to the health museum and got a stuffed Ebolavirus and named her Eblola, Ebola for short

Emily Quotes

  • Do you know how big Russia is?
  • My disappointment is immense.
  • Go to r/imsorryjohn...
  • Apparently Russia doesn't exist.
  • I do not recommend jumping on coffins.
  • I'm a sucker for pineapple.
  • They're pretty, they're shiny, they're colorful, eat them. (on tide pods)
  • What has this world come to? They're literally police guarding ice cream!
  • Bruh.
  • It got to the point where they had two heads on one dog.
  • Gotta see them aliens