Online Biostatistics Course and Class Overviews

The field of biostatistics brings together the disciplines of medicine and statistics for the sake of improving public health and furthering biomedical research. Online classes in biostatistics usually satisfy some requirements for healthcare degrees, especially those in public health. These classes may also provide continuing education units for health service professionals and mathematicians.

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Online Courses in Biostatistics

The following descriptions are for some typical biostatistics courses that are available online.

  • Introduction to Biostatistics Course: This course presents basic concepts of probability, sample size, outliers, medical uncertainties, predictive value and missing data prevalence. Lessons cover random and bootstrap sampling. Students learn the various types of tests such as diagnostic, goodness of fit and non-inferiority. In addition, they study a historical overview of biostatistics.
  • Advanced Biostatistics Course: Students build on their previous exposure to biostatistics by defining serial and parallel testing, examining nonparametric methods and studying receiver operating characteristic curves. They also learn to define odds ratios, relative and attributable risks, confidence intervals and hypothesis testing. The course introduces basic concepts in survival analysis.
  • Designing, Implementing and Interpreting Clinical Trials Course: Students review the history and use of clinical trials, discover how to properly determine sample size, define a control group and apply statistical models. They examine different types of adaptive trial designs in comparison to classical designs. Teachings also discuss the differences between Bayesian and frequentist analysis.
  • Using Biostatistics in Epidemiology and Public Health Course: This course explains how biostatistics applies to epidemiology in order to identify, report, prevent and control population-wide disease paths in defined geographic areas. Lessons cover bias and validity, as well as both univariate and multivariate models. Students design studies, examine data and review historical cases to craft effective public health strategies.
  • Using Biostatistics to Analyze and Predict Survival Rates Course: Enrollees analyze variance techniques, utilize Kaplan-Meier survival curves and develop time-to-event models to predict survival rates. They also examine covariate data, Cox proportional hazards and frailty models. Students learn to apply recurrent event and competing risk analysis to the physical, life and social sciences.
  • Statistics in Medicine Course: This online course uses real-life examples to critically analyze statistical data in the medical field. The course format requires that students view pre-recorded video lectures prior to scheduled class discussions.
  • Categorical Data Analysis Course: In this course, students analyze biomedical and public health literature using methods for assessing categorical response and counting data. Topics of study include proportions, contingency tables, linear models and logistical regression.
  • Correlated Data Analysis Course: This course introduce students to the theories and methods of correlated, continuous, binary and count data, as they are applied to biomedical and public health research. Students may gain experience with specialized statistical software, such as SAS software.

Program Information

Online biostatistics classes usually form part of the curriculum for bachelor's and master's degree programs in public health, as well as degree and graduate certificate programs in health informatics, epidemiology and statistics. Since biostatistics is a valuable interpretive tool in epidemiology, the two disciplines are often presented together.

Biostatistics classes may require students to have previous linear algebra, calculus or statistics experience. Enrollment may also entail previous scientific training and knowledge of medical terminology. Calculators with statistical functions may be required, and courses that use statistical analysis programs often charge an additional fee for licensing rights.

Individuals who are interested in biostatistics study online can find introductory and advanced courses where they can learn about the theoretical and methodological aspects of using statistics in the fields of biology and health.

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