Master's degree programs in biostatistics are available in an online format, though they are more commonly offered in traditional on-campus settings. Students who are interested in these programs will likely want to consider the differences in the types of programs that are offered. Below, we will discuss common admission requirements for these programs, as well as provide a few examples of common courses.
Online Master's Degree Programs in Biostatistics
Students who are interested in enrolling in an online master's degree program in biostatistics will have the option of selecting a Master of Science (MS) in Biostatistics or a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree with a concentration in biostatistics. A student's career goals will likely help them make this decision, though both programs place an emphasis on how biostatistics are used in the field of public health. Some courses that are commonly found in these programs include:
Foundations and Introduction to Public Health
Both MPH and MS programs typically include a foundational course that provides students with an overview of the field of public health. This course will likely focus on the theoretical aspects of public health, the history of public health, and the public health field today. After taking this course, students should have a better understanding of the role of a public health professional.
Epidemiology in Public Health
It is also very common for students to take an introductory-level epidemiology course in order to understand the role of epidemiology within a public health context. Students in this course will learn about the types of methods that are used in epidemiology research, which will include the development of community surveys. The course will also cover topics like the prevalence of various diseases in certain communities.
Biostatistical Methods I
In this course, students will learn how to use different types of biostatistical methods to solve problems in the field of public health. This course will cover topics like standard probability distributions, power and sample size estimation, simple linear regression, and correlation. Students may also work with statistical analysis software in this course in order to solve advanced problems.
Biostatistical Methods II
These programs will also typically include a more advanced biostatisical methods course that builds off the skills and knowledge that students learned in the introductory course. In this course, students will learn to analyze and interpret more complex sets of data and be introduced to variance using the ANOVA model. In addition to working on theoretical problems and data sets, students will also be exposed to real life problems in public health in order to put their data analysis skills to good use.
In this course, students will learn how to use survival analysis in the field of public health. Students will learn about topics like log-rank tests, the Cox regression model, and Kaplan-Meier estimates. Students will employ these methods to solve problems in the public health field related to disease and death.
General Admission Requirements for Online Master's Degree Programs in Biostatistics
To gain admission into master's degree programs in biostatistics, students will need to possess a bachelor's degree, which can typically be in any field. However, students may be required to have completed some courses in topics like statistics and calculus in order to be prepared for the graduate level coursework. To apply, students will need to submit their undergraduate transcripts, a personal statement, letters of recommendation, and GRE scores. These programs often have a minimum GPA requirement of 3.0.
In summary, it is possible to enroll in an online master's degree program in biostatistics, either as a Master of Science program or Master of Public Health program. Both options require that students take similar coursework that exposes them to topics in public health and biostatistics.