Biostatistics

Biostatistics is a rapidly-growing field that applies statistical methods to improve public health and reduce illness. 

Students working on a white board

Use data to fuel real world change

As a biostatistician, you'll be a critical member of the research team. You'll design studies, analyze the resulting data and communicate the results.

You might design a clinical trial of a new medication, craft a study to determine the most effective way to prevent teen smoking, or help identify factors which predict a particular disease—fascinating and important projects that impact people and society.

Our students gain the confidence they need to work with very large data sets (often called "big data") using various computer techniques (with some additional computer science courses.). They use their finely honed quantitative analysis skills every day to make a difference in many fields.

The required courses for the Biostatistics major are

MATH 118 Introductory Statistics 4
MATH 220 Multivariable Calculus 4
MATH 211 Linear Algebra 4
MATH 227 Intermediate Statistics: Design & Analysis 4
MATH 228 Introduction to Data Science 4
MATH 229 Regression Models 4
MATH 338 Probability 4
MATH 339 Statistical Theory 4
MATH 391 Special Topics Statistics Or Biostatistics 4
CS 112 Introduction to Computer Science 4

CS 112 followed by MATH 4101 (Programming in SAS at Emmanuel College.)

In addition, students must take two biology courses:

one from

BIOL 104 Introduction to Environmental Science 4
BIOL 123N Principles of Microbiology 4
BIOL 113 General Biology 4

and the other from a 200- or 300- level biology course.

The minor in biostatistics consists of

MATH 118 Introductory Statistics 4
MATH 227 Intermediate Statistics: Design & Analysis 4
MATH 229 Regression Models 4

one from

BIOL 104 Introduction to Environmental Science 4
BIOL 113 General Biology 4
BIOL 123N Principles of Microbiology 4
BIOL 336 Genetics 4
BIOL 346 Epidemiology of Infectious Disease 4

and one from

SOCI 241 Health, Illness & Society 4
PSYC 203 Research Methods in Psychology 4
MATH 228 Introduction to Data Science 4

We encourage our students to take advantage of multiple hands-on learning opportunities, including on-site research, off-site research and internships. You'll sharpen your skills and refine your interests while building your resume and developing important mentoring relationships.

Students have recently held the following positions:

  • Intern at Boston University School of Medicine examining the correlation between patient religiosity and health outcomes
  • Intern at John Snow, Inc., to analyze survey data from project OPTIONS, a physician delivered intervention for HIV positive patients in clinical care
  • Research assistant for the C - Change program at the Health Care Research Unit of Boston University School of Medicine on the treatment of elderly patients who are on Medicare
  • Intern at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, Tuberculosis Division, studying the correlation between how far patients live from the closest TB clinic and the extent to which they complete their treatment program
  • Intern at EMC to become a "big data" analyst
  • Intern at Brigham & Women's Hospital examining the association between various genetic factors and multiple sclerosis.

So you know that Simmons is a great place to be, you've learned about our programs, maybe even come for a visit...now you're ready to apply! Let's get started.

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