Modeling Vaccination Impact on a Measles Epidemic
This case study follows the 2019 measles epidemic in Samoa to highlight how vaccination impacts disease spread. Students model scenarios with different vaccination rates based on authentic data, then compare SIR graphs to visualize the effects.
The case study facilitates students’ use of the “Epidemic Simulator” from the Modeling Disease Spread Click & Learn. It is recommended for students who have already completed the “SIR Model Basics” section of the Click & Learn, those who are already familiar with the SIR model, and/or college introductory biology classes. By completing this case study, students will deepen their understanding of the SIR model, interpreting SIR graphs, and how vaccination impacts SIR curves.
Student Learning Targets
- Analyze how a highly infectious disease (large R0) spreads in a population.
- Modify parameters in the SIR model to integrate vaccination.
- Predict how different vaccination rates will impact the spread of disease using the SIR model.
- Define the basic reproduction number (R0), transmission rate, and recovery rate.
- Describe how the proportion of vaccinated individuals in a population impacts herd immunity.
basic reproduction number (R0), epidemiology, herd immunity threshold (HIT), infectious, lockdown, recovery, SIR model, susceptible, transmission, vaccine
Boodoosingh, R., S. Akeli Ama’ama, and P. Schoeffel. “A Perfect Storm: The Social and Institutional Contexts of Samoa’s 2019–2020 Measles Epidemic and the Lessons Learned for the COVID-19 Pandemic.” The Journal of Sāmoan Studies 10 (2020): 5–24. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/346412940_A_Perfect_Storm_The_Social_and_Institutional_Contexts_of_Samoa's_2019-2020_Measles_Epidemic_and_the_Lessons_learned_for_the_COVID-19_Pandemic.
Wu, D., H. Petousis-Harris, J. Paynter, V. Suresh, and O. J. Maclaren. “Likelihood-based Estimation and Prediction for a Measles Outbreak in Samoa.” Infectious Disease Modelling 8, 1 (2023): 212–227. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.idm.2023.01.007.
World Health Organization (WHO). 2022. “Global Health Observatory.” Accessed March 1, 2023. http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A824?lang=en.
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Accessibility Level (WCAG compliance)
SEP2, SEP4, SEP5
AP Biology 2019
SP1, SP2, SP4, SP6
IB Biology 2016
Common Core 2010
ELA.RST.9-12.3, ELA.RST.9-12.7, MP2, MP4
Vision and Change 2009
CC5, DP2, DP3, DP6