Biostatistics – the best of both biology and statistics!


To simply define Biostatistics, it is the application of statistics to the world of biology. The study will include biological experiments design, gathering, and analysis of data from these experiments, along with the inference of results. 

Through a degree in Biostatistics, you will learn how to make sense of all the data around you. These experimental results will aid in better informed biological decisions and a safer world for healthcare services. 

Subject Brief

The subject and degree for Biostatistics involve learning the application of various mathematical tools in the field of statistics to medicine and biological sciences. The study will help you answer questions related to biology, medicine, and public health. 

Biostatistics classes use statistical methods and implement them in real-world applications in healthcare. It is the ideal career move if you wish to make a great impact in the medical field and research further.

Levels at which the study of the subject is offered

Biostatistics is offered on all levels. Undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs are available at major universities. Some universities may only have certain degrees available, so it is best to check for the availability of your level program before shortlisting. 

While the undergraduate will be general and deal with what is biostatistics, a master’s degree will teach you in-depth details of the subject such as statistical theory, bioinformatics, biostatistical methods, plan of studies, performing analysis, interpretation of analysis, and managing reports.

Top 10 Universities Offering the Subject 

The Biostatistics department of your university must be succinct to handle the depth and subject matter of the field. Your professors, relevant coursework, and resources present at the school make a lot of difference. 

Here are the 10 best universities offering Biostatistics programs with their approximate tuition fees, subject rankings for biological sciences, country, and course names (MSc, BSc, Ph.D., etc.)

University Name Course Name QS Subject Rankings (2023) Country situated Tuition fees
Harvard University  Ph.D. in Biostatistics 1 United States USD 50,496
University of California MA in Biostatistics 7 United States USD 21,736
Yale University MS in Biostatistics 10 United States USD 71,489
Cornell University Master in Biostatistics  15 United States USD 20,460
John Hopkins University MS (ScM) in Biostatistics 19 United States USD 76,200
Columbia University  Ph.D. in Biostatistics 20 United States  USD 19,894
University of Pennsylvania Ph.D. in Epidemiology and Biostatistics 24 United States USD 45,254
Duke University MS in Biostatistics 44 United States  USD 38,993
Washington University in St Louis Master of Science in Biostatistics 50 United States USD 60,900
Northwestern University Master of Science in Biostatistics 64 United States USD 80,080

Academic Cycle: Intakes, deadlines across levels

The intakes and deadlines for the undergraduate and graduate programs will vary according to the universities you choose. Most American Universities have two or three intakes – fall, spring, and summer. 

On the other hand, British universities will usually have a single intake, namely the Fall intake that begins in September for the biostatistics course.

Curriculum across levels

The undergraduate/ graduate degree in Biostatistics will focus on understanding statistical methods, with a strong inclination towards maths courses. Apart from that, you will also take additional biological sciences courses. Moreover, you may be asked to take up projects or internships to complete the degree. 

Typical courses in biostatistics include:

  • Intermediate Statistics: Design and Analysis
  • Essential Elements of Probability and Statistical Inference
  • Principles of Microbiology

Job Prospects with Salaries (Applications of the Subject)

Graduating from a good institution and learning the skills to become an experienced biostatistician is rewarded through top career options and advantages. The average salary of a biostatistician in the US is around USD 77,972, as per Payscale data.

With a doctoral program certificate, you can also be a part of academia, teach other upcoming students and shape the future of the country’s healthcare. Lastly, biostatistics industries include high-tech firms, research institutes, and pharmaceutical companies. 

Future Application of the Subject

The Bureau of Labor Statistics, US, believes that opportunities in Biostatistics will elevate by 33 percent between 2020-2030, a much more significant growth rate than other degrees or professions.

In the coming years, more so post-pandemic, an increasing need for biostatisticians has arisen along with a jump in the scope of biostatistics. 

Biostatistics will integrate quantitative abilities with biological projects to create immense value in the future. The field will aim to solve health issues that will improve the quality of life by leaps and bounds. 

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Q) What is biostatistics?

Biostatistics definition can be found in its name as it is a cross breed of biology and statistics. Biostatistics helps analyze limited data sets to grasp essential information and find results to pressing biological issues. This is a crucial process in the functioning of various industries impacting a country’s healthcare.

Q) How do we use biostatistics to improve public health?

Biostatistics can improve a country’s health care and public health by finding references from the present data. These references allow clinical researchers to make better decisions in various matters, from trial design to protocol development.

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